Covering A Gopher Football Game

Same sport, different beast

They say it's not what you know, it's who you know, but sometimes it's a little bit of both to be honest. That proved to be true this year after a season of covering the youth lacrosse league here in my town.

One of the coaches for one of the teams I covered, unbeknownst to me, also works for the U of M football program. Upon completion of the season and his wife purchasing photos she also mentions her husband would like to talk to me. Curious and intrigued I naturally say I'd love to chat. He offers me the chance to come shoot a non-conference game as a thank you for everything I did for the lacrosse program, to which I was naturally excited and honored by (and of course took).

Being the fall is and always will be the busiest time of year for me, the scheduling was going to be tricky. I had already committed my schedule for the entire fall to a company I contract with on top of having dozens of my own sessions scheduled and a plethora of fall sports to cover from youth through high school. Thankfully I was able to move some things around and make a game work against the Ragin Cajuns!

College games (especially major D1 colleges like the U of M) are an entirely different animal compared to the high school environments I've become used to. There's a wide array of other photographers, videographers and the network cameras broadcasting the game to work around in addition to area restrictions for the bench and player area etc. Since I would be limited to where I could shoot from, this was a perfect opportunity to get to use my new 400mm lens and get some much needed practice with it.

The game itself started out pretty even, but the Gophers pulled away as the contest went on. This game was also their homecoming and a freakishly warm day for late September in Minnesota. I had a ton of fun experiencing a college game from field level and getting to cover it without any overhanging pressure to get specific shots and just enjoy the experience from start to finish. Naturally I had some pre-game jitters heading into it, but settled in and relaxes after the first few minutes realizing it wasn't any different really at it's core.

I want to thank the parent (Paul) once again for the opportunity he gave me. While I realize this was likely a one time thing, I would love to cover more U of M athletics if the opportunity ever presented itself!

Currently Listening To: Flexicution by Logic