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.

Gophers player capsule: WR Jamel Harbison

Posted by: Joe Christensen under Gophers player capsules Updated: March 5, 2013 - 10:38 AM

I spent a few hours inside the Gibson-Nagurski Football Complex at Minnesota's Pro Day on Monday and took heart knowing the weather should be considerably better once spring practice begins for the Gophers, on March 26.

Here's a look at one of the players the coaching staff can't wait to see back out on the field:

Number: 16
Position: Wide receiver
Eligibility: Redshirt freshman
Height/Weight: 5-11/195
High School: Charlotte (N.C.) Mallard Creek

Recruiting flashback: He scored 21 touchdowns as a high school senior in 2011, and drew a four-star rating from, which ranked him as the nation’s No. 32 receiving recruit. listed him as a three-star recruit, with other offers from West Virginia, Vanderbilt, Virginia and North Carolina State.

2012 rewind: Harbison had a terrific fall camp and started the season opener against UNLV. But in the second quarter, he was tackled hard on a running play and tore the ACL in his right knee. The only salvation for the Gophers was knowing it happened early enough for Haribson to qualify for a medical redshirt. “The good Lord is probably telling us we need to redshirt him anyway,” Coach Jerry Kill said that week. “Am I disappointed? Yeah, I think Jamel had a chance to be one of our premier offensive players. At the same time, I know I’ve got him for four years.”

2013 outlook: Harbison’s rehab is said to be going well. It sounds like he’ll be ready for spring practice, though the Gophers will be careful not to push him too hard only six months out of surgery. The focus will be on getting Harbison ready for the Aug. 29 season opener against UNLV. With A.J. Barker’s departure, Derrick Engel (375 yards) and Isaac Fruechte (256 yards) are the team’s top returning receivers. That unit could take a big step forward once Harbison returns to full speed.


Los Angeles 4 Bottom 6th Inning
Pittsburgh 4
San Francisco 3 Bottom 6th Inning
Philadelphia 5
Texas 0 Top 8th Inning
NY Yankees 0
Boston 0 Bottom 7th Inning
Toronto 4
Miami 6 Top 7th Inning
Atlanta 2
San Diego 0 Bottom 4th Inning
Chicago Cubs 2
Cincinnati 1 Top 5th Inning
Milwaukee 2
Cleveland 3 Top 4th Inning
Minnesota 0
Kansas City 1 Top 4th Inning
Chicago WSox 0
Tampa Bay 1 Top 4th Inning
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Washington 0 Bottom 2nd Inning
Colorado 0
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