Gopher football drawing fans to stands, radio show |

Gopher football drawing fans to stands, radio show

Updated: November 19, 2019 06:51 PM

The Minnesota Golden Gopher football team has captured the attention of Minnesota sports fans more than at any time since the 1960s.

It's not only true in terms of television ratings and fans in the stands on Saturdays, but also on Tuesdays in a local restaurant. That's the day coach P.J. Fleck conducts his "Gopher Football Weekly" radio show from Joe Senser's in Roseville.

"This is a special season no matter what happens," Fleck said on his show Tuesday.

The restaurant wasn't as full as it was the Tuesdays before and after the Penn State game, but the crowds on Tuesdays have grown steadily since September as the Gophers record grew to 9-1.

"The first few weeks we were about two thirds full," says assistant general manager Rob Jahnke. "We've been full every week since before the Penn State game."

Fans like Nikki Hahn even bring items to be autographed by the coach. She had a boat oar signed by Fleck, who created the "Row the Boat" mantra for his team.

"It was just the perfect opportunity and the perfect item to have him sign for us, and he was very gracious," she said. "He's been very gracious at every commercial break with anything anyone has presented to him to sign."

Hahn is one of many Gopher fans who now make regular lunch dates at Joe Senser's during the college football season.

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Tom Hauser

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