Joe Christensen covered Major League Baseball for 15 years, including three seasons at the Baltimore Sun and eight at the Star Tribune, before switching to the college football beat. He’s a Faribault, Minn., native who graduated from the University of Minnesota in 1996. He covered Jim Wacker’s Gophers for the Minnesota Daily and also wrote about USC, UCLA and the Rose Bowl for the Riverside Press-Enterprise before getting this chance to cover football again.

Email Joe to talk about the Gophers.

Posts about Football

Decker Signs with Broncos

Posted by: Phil Miller Updated: July 27, 2010 - 1:36 PM

                Eric Decker, the Gophers’ all-time leading receiver,  will report to the Denver Broncos training camp on time, after agreeing to a contract on Tuesday.

                Decker, who spent much of July in Minneapolis preparing for his rookie season in the NFL, signed with the Broncos just one day before he is to report to training camp in suburban Denver. Decker was chosen in the third round of last spring’s draft, the 87th overall pick, after leaving Minnesota as the university’s all-time leader in catches (227) and receiving yards (3,119).
                Training camp will be the first time Decker has participated in a live scrimmage since last October, when he tore a ligament in his left foot during a game with Ohio State. Decker, who had surgery to reattach the ligament, sat out of the Broncos’ minicamps and offseason workouts, sticking to rehabilitation drills on his injured foot.

Greetings from Ryan Field

Posted by: Updated: September 26, 2009 - 9:59 AM


Good morning.


Sitting here in the press box at Ryan  Field with our football columnist Mark Craig. It's a bit hazy, but you can still see Lake Michigan. Nice campus, quaint stadium, real grass.

We did this the right way. We left very early, got here without any traffic and had time to stroll over to a breakfast place before coming to the press box. So I'm fat, fed and happy and ready for the game.

I still think the Gophers are going to win this game, but that it will be close. They say it might rain here at some point during the game, which should make things more interesting. I'll get back to you at halftime with some thoughts then.

Have a good day

Gophers recruit has a leg up

Posted by: Updated: September 8, 2009 - 10:32 AM



You might already know, but I thought I'd pass this along. Kip Smith, a kicker from Broomfield, Colorado, has committed to the Gophers for next year.

Well, Smith kicked a Colorado state-record 67-yard field goal to help Broomfield Legacy beat Mountain Range, 29-7. The circumstances were a little odd. It was late in the first half. After a fair catch at their own 43, the Broomfield coach called a time out. According to Colorado high school rules, his team was then allowed a free kick from that spot.

  Smith teed up the ball and let it go. According to a report on, Smith's kick cleared the uprights with 5 yards to spare. The national high school record is 68 yards.

Two Gophers honored

Posted by: Updated: September 7, 2009 - 12:14 PM



I went to bed early last night, so I didn't see the e-mail until this morning.

Gophers linebacker Lee Campbell, who had a career-high 13 tackles, 11 solo, was named the Big Ten's defensive player of the week. He had three of those tackles in overtime, including a key tackle of Delone Carter on second and four that forced the pass attempt that Nate Triplett intercepted.

Eric Ellestad, playing in his first college game, made three of four field goal attempts, including the game-tying kick in the final minute of regulation and the game-winner in overtime.


That's about it. Have a good day.

A touching tribute

Posted by: Updated: September 5, 2009 - 11:05 AM

Just a quick note to let you know that safety Kyle Theret will be wearing No. 14 today in tribute to Damien White.


White was the wide receiver out of California who signed with the Gophers in February of 2007 but left the program last year. White was shot and killed in Los Angeles this spring.


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