Good news, bad news for Gophers' defense

Minnesota's defense is regaining the services of a key player but losing another.

In a mini surprise, Gophers safety Kim Royston on Friday received a sixth year of eligibility from the NCAA. Royston missed the entire 2010 season after breaking his leg last spring, but his chances for a sixth year seemed slim because he had already sat out a season after transferring to Minnesota from Wisconsin. He'll provide leadership in the secondary after a strong 2009 campaign in which he recorded 86 tackles, seven passes defended, an interception and a forced fumble.

The news isn't so promising for the Gophers' defensive line as coach Jerry Kill told WCCO on Sunday that defensive tackle Jewhan Edwards is no longer in school. Edwards started 11 games in 2010 and led Minnesota in both sacks (3) and tackles for loss (11). He's a significant loss for a defense that ranked last in the Big Ten in sacks (9) this past season.