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Wessington Springs' Quinten Christensen commits to South Dakota State University football team

“It’s always been my dream school to go play there for those guys,” Quinten Christensen said. “Our community really bleeds blue and yellow. They were kind of the first big school to believe in me and jump on me and they made a really good scholarship offer and it was too good to turn down.”

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Woonsocket/Wessington Springs/Sanborn Central’s Quinten Christensen, left, committed to play football for South Dakota State University on Friday. Corey Flatten, right, addresses Christensen during their Oct. 9, 2020 game against Chamberlain. (Matt Gade / Republic file photo)

WESSINGTON SPRINGS -- Quinten Christensen jumped at the chance to be a Jackrabbit.

The Woonsocket/Wessington Springs/Sanborn Central all-state defensive lineman announced his verbal commitment to the South Dakota State University football team on Friday. Christensen visited campus on Thursday, and when coach John Stiegelmeier offered him a scholarship, he accepted the offer 10 minutes afterward.

“I definitely was not expecting it,” Christensen said. “It was super surprising. It was kind of a no-brainer for me after they offered me a scholarship.”

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Christensen received interest and visited FBS member Kansas State, along with FCS schools North Dakota State University and University of North Dakota. But had yet to receive official scholarship offers from the schools. He received scholarship offers from some Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference schools, including Northern State University.

But when SDSU -- last season’s FCS national runner-up -- pulled the trigger and offered him his first Division I opportunity, Christensen felt at home.

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“It’s always been my dream school to go play there for those guys,” Christensen said. “Our community really bleeds blue and yellow. They were kind of the first big school to believe in me and jump on me and they made a really good scholarship offer and it was too good to turn down.”

Christensen said he’s been in contact with SDSU since last fall, while he’s also attended Jackrabbit games at Dana J. Dykhouse Stadium.

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“I got the chance to go to the Southern Illinois playoff game,” Christensen said. “It was a really great atmosphere and I just knew I wanted to be a part of it.”

Christensen, who is 6-feet-5, 250 pounds, registered 59.5 tackles (16 tackles for loss) and 5.5 sacks last season as a defensive end. He also won last season’s Class B state heavyweight championship in wrestling.

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Wessington Springs/Woonsocket/Wolsey-Wessington's Quinten Christensen embraces his coaches after winning the 285-pound state championship on Saturday at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center. (Jeremy Karll / Republic)

He’s projected to play offensive tackle and Christensen said the SDSU coaches feel he’s got untapped potential to build upon. The Jackrabbit coaches said he fits the mold of their current tackles, while Christensen himself said he’s got plenty of room for growth.

“I am really raw and I haven’t been in the weight room much,” Christensen said. “I just kind of work on the ranch. So I don’t get a whole lot of weight training in. They think they can put 40 pounds on me pretty easily and that’s kind of what they like.”

Christensen has been slowed this summer by a knee injury. This spring, he tore his meniscus in a wrestling tournament, which slowed his recruiting. But he’s since had surgery and has continued to rehab this summer.

“I hadn’t been able to work out or go to any camps,” Christensen said. “So that slowed my process down a little bit, but that just kind of showed how much faith they have in me.”

Christensen, who plans to major in agriculture business, said he will be ready for this football season. He can sign his national letter of intent in December.

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