MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Former Minnesota Gophers quarterback Philip Nelson was arrested early Sunday morning in Mankato, Minn. for an alleged assault, according to authorities.
The Mankato Police Department said they came across a victim of an apparent assault near the intersection of Cherry and South Front streets around 2:09 a.m. Sunday.
The injured victim, identified as 24-year-old Isaac Dallas Kolstad, of Mankato, was transported to the local hospital by ambulance. Kolstad is listed in critical condition at the Mankato Mayo Clinic Health System.
Kolstad was a student at Minnesota State University-Mankato and a former linebacker on the school’s football team. He recently graduated and was out Saturday night celebrating with friends, according to his father.
His father said his son is fighting for his life, minute-to-minute.
“We are extremely grateful for the outpouring of support we have received during this difficult time. Isaac is a very strong and determined young man, who is dearly loved by his family and friends. We would respectfully ask for your continued prayers,” the victim’s family said in a statement.
Police say 20-year-old Nelson, also of Mankato, was located on scene and taken into custody. He was booked into the Blue Earth County jail.
“He grew up in Mankato and played at Mankato West and was Mr. Football in the state of Minnesota for guiding them to a state runner-up finish,” said WCCO’s Mike Max.
Police say they are looking for a second suspect involved in the assault.
Nelson is being held on possible third-degree assault charges.
Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call 911.
Nelson announced in January that would be transferring to another school — a surprising development for a player who played in 11 games last season and was once viewed as a promising building block for coach Jerry Kill’s program.
Nelson said at the time he was looking to play in a system that centers more around the “pass game which utilizes my skill sets.”
A few weeks later, Nelson announced he would transfer to Rutgers.