Toledo Rockets

P.J. Fleck leaving Western Michigan to coach Minnesota

Rocked by a threatened player boycott of a bowl game over the handling of a sexual assault investigation and struggling with lagging attendance at its shiny stadium, the Minnesota football program badly needed of an injection of energy and optimism.

They don't come any more exuberant than P.J. Fleck.

Minnesota hired Fleck on Friday, hoping that "Row the boat" mantra that worked wonders at Western Michigan can unite a deeply fractured program.

"I'm not here to change the tradition," Fleck said at his introductory news conference. "I am here to change the culture."

The hiring comes three days after athletic director Mark Coyle...