Tradition • Character • Service

Tradition • Character • Service

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

More Fun with Chuck: I've Got Your Back Ferris State

As part of the Grand Valley and Ferris State rivalry week, a Youtube.com contest was held. Fans were asked to make amusing videos and the best one's producer would win $250 in prizes.

A Grand Valley student was the winner with a parody of a Britney Spears fan whining "Leave Britney alone." His "Leave Ferris Alone" was featured at halftime with the Lakers already up 34-0. Ferris fans felt the showing of the video was in poor taste and unsportslike. I tend to agree, especially considering the context of the score and that Ferris players were reportedly coming back onto the field for the second half when it was shown.

So Ferris fans and any other D2 fans, I present this little tribute to Grand Valley coach Chuck Martin for you.

It's all in fun. I guess I should have entered the contest.

I apologize for forgetting to thank Cowboy Eric at GVfootball.com one of the other great D2 fan sites! I "borrowed" the pictures for the galleries.

Monday, October 29, 2007

Chargers Remain in 8th in Regional Log Jam

NCAA Division II Northwest Regional Rankings (October 29, 2007)

1. Nebraska-Omaha (8-0)
2. Grand Valley State (8-0)
3. North Dakota (7-1)
4. Central Washington (7-1)
5. Ashland (6-1)
6. South Dakota (6-3)
7. Winona State (8-1)
8. Hillsdale (7-2)
9. Saginaw Valley State (6-2)
10. Michigan Tech (5-5)
11. Wayne State (Nebraska) (6-3)
12. Northwood (Michigan) (4-4)

No movement this week as the leaders of the Northwest Region all hold serve.

Important games to watch this week include:

1. Nebraska-Omaha - 6. South Dakota (Thurs. Nov. 1)
4. Central Washington at MN St. Mankato
5. Ashland - Wayne St. (MI)

Running Game Propels Chargers to Big Win


Jim Pruitt, News Editor
Hillsdale Daily News
517.437.6020



While still possessing one of the best passing attacks in the nation, Hillsdale College found a new weapon in its arsenal — a running game.


Out of rhythm in the air, the Chargers used a bruising ground attack to separate themselves from Tiffin in a 31–14 nonconference game Saturday at Muddy Waters Stadium. The win keeps Hillsdale’s playoff hopes alive as they prepare for a road game at Findlay this week.

Vinnie Panizzi rushed for a career–best 161 yards and two touchdowns to help Hillsdale (7–2) secure the win under cloudy skies and brisk northwest wind. The Chargers gained more yards on the ground (261) than they did in the air (190) for the first time all season.

“Now Findlay and Saginaw Valley have two facets to defend against,” Chargers offensive coordinator Barry Fagan said referring to Hillsdale’s next two opponents.

Full Story

Friday, October 26, 2007

D2football.com: Tony Nicolette's Gliac Column

Tiffin (3-0 GLFC, 7-1) at Hillsdale (6-2, 6-2)

The Chargers have a lot to gain with this game. Despite Tiffin's schedule not being overwhelmingly strong, they are still 7-0 against Division II opponents. A win here can only help the Chargers in their quest to gain entrance to the playoffs. Tiffin looks to prove they will be able to hang with GLIAC opponents when they enter the conference next year.

Tiffin Keys:
- Solid offensive output. QB Matt Root is a solid player completing 65.7% of his passes and averaging over 230 yards per game passing. Hillsdale has been prone to giving up yardage, so Tiffin should be able to move the ball. WR's Dyshaun Edwards and LaMar Tipton have been Root's main targets this year; Pierece Wade is averaging upwards of 90 yards a game on the ground.
- Contain the Chargers. Stopping Nicolet, Gurica and Waldie is darn near impossible - especially at Muddy Waters Stadium. But the Dragons need to come close. If the Hillsdale offense is able to do whatever it wants, TU could be in trouble.
- Avoid the shootout. Both teams can move the ball but Hillsdale definitely has the advantage at home, especially in a track meet.

Hillsdale Keys:
- Play some defense. Tiffin has shown the ability to move the ball, but against lesser competition. The Chargers need to do what they can to frustrate the Dragons and not let them gain confidence on the road.
- Offense back on track. Mark Nicolet really didn't have his best stuff at Mercyhurst last week. With that said, the Lakers have actually been pretty solid against the pass so Nicolet's struggles were not shocking. Tiffin's lone loss this season was to a Ohio Dominican club that throws the ball very well, so if the Chargers can emulate the game plan ODU used they should be able to move the ball via the air.
- No mistakes. Turnovers helped Mercyhurst stay close last week. Giving a team like Tiffin any extra help could very easily prove costly. Don't allow that to happen.

Prediction: Despite playing clubs of little to no national acclaim, the Dragons continue to rack up wins having lost only twice since the start of 2006. Hillsdale has proven itself to be more than formidable this season, but they let mistakes get in the way of being undefeated to this point. Losses against Ferris and UIndy arguably should not have happened, and Tiffin would love to add its name to the list of teams that aided in snuffing out HC's playoff hopes. Much like Northern, Hillsdale has shown they are a much better club at home and I think they will look that way again this week. Hillsdale 37, Tiffin 28.

Full Column

Regional Games to Watch

October 27, 2007
1. Nebraska-Omaha 7-0 at St. Cloud St. (4-4)
2. Grand Valley 7-0 - Ferrris St. (4-4)
3. North Dakota 6-1 at Minn. Duluth (3-5)
4. Central Washington 6-1 - Augustana (3-6)
5. Ashland 5-1 - at Findlay (4-4)
6. South Dakota 5-3 (5-2 D2) - MN St. Mankato (4-4)
7. Winona State 7-1 at MN Crookston (1-6)
8. Hillsdale 6-2 - Tiffin (7-1 / 7-0 D2)
9. Saginaw Valley 5-2 at UIndy (5-3)
10. Indianapolis 5-3 - SVSU (5-2)
11. Minnesota State Mankato 4-4 at USD (5-3 / 5-2 D2)
12. Findlay 4-4 - Ashland (5-1)

Thursday, October 25, 2007

The Collegian Gets After Its Readers to Bleed Charger Blue.

The Collegian

D2football.com: David Bykowski's Independents Column

Tiffin Dragons (7-1) at Hillsdale Chargers (6-2), 2:30 ET

For Tiffin, this game technically has little significance this season. The Chargers are but a blip on a schedule where games against Missouri-Rolla and Central State remain, two obstacles separating the Dragons from a GLFC title. For Hillsdale, the game has more significance: ranked #8 in the latest regional rankings, the Chargers need wins in this game and subsequent tests against Findlay and Saginaw Valley State to have any hope of sneaking into the playoffs. But in reality, the greatest meaning to this game is the fact that with Tiffin joining the GLIAC next season, this is the kind of game that can start a long conference rivalry.

As expected at the beginning of the season, Tiffin has plenty of weapons on both sides of the ball. QB Matt Root has emerged as the leader under center with the versatile Donnie Johnson playing just about any offensive skill position for the Dragons. Root's arm has been good for over 1,800 yards so far this season with many of those thanks to receptions by WR Dyshaun Edwards and LaMar Tipton. On the ground, it seems like it's a different leader every week: throw the names of Pierece Wade, Alvin McKnight, and even Donnie Johnson into a hat, pull one out, and there's your leading rusher. Jon Hemmelgarn has started to see more action recently and has emerged as yet another threat in the Dragons' versatile offense. Defensively, it's hard not to start with a pair of linebackers: leading tackler Parris Burt and sophomore Drew Douthit, who already has 12 tackles for loss and six sacks. The defensive line has put plenty of pressure on opposing quarterbacks thanks to DL Luke Seal with a team-high 13 tackles for loss and converted offensive lineman Wyatt Thames, who has a team-high eight sacks on the year.

Hillsdale, however, has been quite a surprise this season. Picked ninth in the GLIAC in the preseason coaches poll, the Chargers' only blemishes on the year have been close losses to Indianapolis and Ferris State, and they have a big win over Ashland (#5 in the regional rankings) and a shutout win over Michigan Tech. QB Mark Nicolet has been nothing short of amazing this season, completing 68.5% of his passes for over 2,500 yards on the year and 24 touchdowns to just five interceptions with WR Nick Gurica (58 catches, 850 yards, 8 TD) and Aaron Waldie (49 catches, 898 yards, 12 TD) being the favorite targets. The defense hasn't been great, but in most cases, it has gotten the job done, especially at home. When it does click, it's usually against the pass, as Hillsdale has 15 interceptions on the season as a team, and DB Josh Hutchison has deflected and broken up a number of passes this season, so throwing anywhere near him would not be recommended.

Tiffin's pass defense has been somewhat suspect throughout this season, particularly in a good-but-not-great defensive secondary, and you can be sure that Hillsdale will look to come out with a game plan similar to the one that Ohio Dominican had in their win against the Dragons. The Chargers certainly have the quarterback and receivers to beat Tiffin's secondary, and as long as Hillsdale defense can get enough stops, the Chargers should be able to defend their home turf. But this game definitely has a good chance of being a shootout.

Prediction: Hillsdale 41, Tiffin 35

Full Column

Monday, October 22, 2007

Regional Rankings: Chargers Move up a Pair to #8

Hillsdale moves up two spots from 10th to 8th place this week in the regional rankings. Ashland remains in the 5th spot with its win at Ferris State. Remember the rankings are all mathematical and measure primarily winning percentage in addition to strength of schedule. The Chargers must win their final 3 games if they hope to qualify for a playoff spot. Even if Hillsdale and Ashland both win out, the Chargers have a good shot at catching the Eagles when full strength of schedule is measured. Hillsdale's remaining 3 opponents are 16-6 against division II competition. Ashland's remaining opponents are 7-17. Other factors are calculated as well, including head-to-head results.

Korte Named GLIAC Defensive Player of the Week


Hillsdale College Release

Tom Korte named GLIAC Defensive Player of the Week
October 22, 2007 - Junior linebacker Tom Korte won his first career GLIAC Defensive Player of the Week honor Monday morning. The award was announced by the conference office.

Korte was a key part of Hillsdale's 42-33 win over Mercyhurst College Saturday afternoon in Erie, Pa. After missing the Oct. 13 game vs. Wayne State due to injury, Korte returned to the Charger lineup in a big way, recording a team-high eight tackles and two interceptions.

His second interception came with 23 seconds left in the fourth quarter, when the Lakers were trying to come back from a nine-point deficit. His pick sealed Hillsdale's second road victory of the season.

Korte has been a starter at linebacker ever since he arrived on Hillsdale's campus in the fall of 2005, and has established himself as one of the finest players at that position in the conference. Korte was named First-Team All-GLIAC in 2006, and was named honorable mention All-American by Don Hansen's Football Gazette. Korte led the GLIAC in tackles last season with 134, and has maintained that pace this season. He was named Hillsdale's team MVP in 2006.

In 2007, Korte has 44 solo tackles, and 74 total tackles, which rank him second in the conference. He has a team-high four interceptions on the season and has 5 1/2 tackles for loss. He was also an Academic All-GLIAC selection last year.

Korte is a 2005 graduate of Grand Rapids Catholic Central High School.

Sam McGuffie: UM Recruit

For all of you who also bleed Maize and Blue. Check out who's coming our way. Look out Buckeyes! Check out this one too.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Hillsdale Grad Wins KC Marathon

Congrats to 2007 graduate of Hillsdale College Peter Sercer for winning the Kansas City Marathon this past Saturday. It was Sercer's first attempt at the 26 mile-plus distance. He finished in 2 hours 30 minutes and 42 seconds with no other competitors in sight.

On his first try, 22-year-old wins KC Marathon
Kansas City Star

Mercyhusrt Victory: Truly a Team Effort


Yeah, I called the Hillsdale win over Mercyhurst College yesterday "ugly". Spotting a team with a 4-4 record 14 points on the road was pretty ugly. Four turnovers were pretty ugly. But, once you look beyond that you can find some really great accomplishments from the Charger football team.

All year we have marveled at Division II's top trio of quarterback Mark Nicolet and receivers Aaron Waldie and Nick Gurica. They have posted ridiculous, video game-like numbers and have been the star attractions for the blue and white's quest for the D2 playoffs. You would think that if a team could lock down those three statistically the Chargers would be dead in the water. Like Kramer on Seinfeld always said, "You would think so....but you would be wrong."

Nicolet had his toughest day of the year yesterday. Having posted 300 yard or more efforts over the past six games, Mercyhurst gave him fits all day. Mark had thrown 2 picks all year, but the 3 over and 5 under zone by the Lakers clogged up the field and MC nabbed 3 interceptions. Gurica and Waldie were both held to 28 and 30 yards respectively. In the end, all that meant was that different Chargers would step up and win this one.

AJ Kegg nearly broke the 100 yard mark in receptions on Saturday as he caught 4 balls for 92 yards, including a 28 yarder and a clutch 4th down reception that eventually led to Hillsdale scores.

Vinnie Panizzi continued to legitimize the Charger running threat as Hillsdale posted 254 rushing yards. Behind a bullying performance by the Hillsdale offensive line, Panizzi carried 29 times for 112 yards and 3 touchdowns.

Another kid who has spent 4 years in the wings of the Hillsdale ground game is Brett Lark. The senior has played most of the season as the #3 back but he has been impressive in his chances to shine following a TJ Campbell injury. Larked carried 5 times for 69 yards yesterday including a beautiful 59 yard blast deep into Mercyhurst territory.

Gurica even got into the run game a bit. Hillsdale completely fooled the Lakers and put things almost on ice with a 12 yard end-around that Gurica took into the endzone virtually untouched. H-back Billy Kanitz, who scored an earlier touchdown, sealed an end and tackle Jared Veldheer drove the only other Laker half-way to Syracuse. Gurica's touchdown came virtually at the same point during this week's in-doubt affair that his big catch against Wayne State occurred in that still in-doubt affair.

Of course, Nicolet and Waldie didn't go completely unnoticed. The Charger quarterback kept an option and lowered his shoulder to bull through Mercyhurst for a key first down on that last touchdown drive. Waldie tied Dave Misfud's 22 year-old single season touchdown reception record of 12 with the Chargers' first points of the game. Nicolet dropped a perfect pass into all kinds of traffic.

Of course, this win would not have been at all possible if the Charger defense hadn't done its job. There used to be a sign hanging over the equipment room at Hillsdale that read: "We furnish everything but GUTS". Hillsdale sure packed enough of those for this road trip.

After missing most of last week with an ankle injury, Tom Korte returned to his role as the All-American candidate that he is. His 8 stops led Hillsdale, as did his 2 interceptions. The first came on an MC fourth down attempt. Korte sniffed out the screen perfectly, putting the ball back into Charger hands. That spark would lead to Hillsdale's 2nd touchdown, tying things at 14-14. Even bigger that momentum shift was the game saver on what would prove to be Mercyhurst's last offensive play. Facing 3rd and 10 from its own 40, Eric Weber got pressure on Laker QB Mitch Phillis. Korte broke on the ball and secured the win.

Another great defensive performance came from db Josh Hutchinson. He showed why he is the fastest player in the GLIAC as he ran down Laker Richard Stokes for a touchdown saving tackle. Hutchinson broke up 3 passes, made 6 solo tackles, and had a pick of his own. That one came with Hillsdale clinging to a 28-27 lead and would help motivate a 14 play 84 yard drive, culminating in a Panizzi touchdown.

True freshman Cody Henderson continues to shine as he contributed 5 tackles, a pass break-up, and a tackle for a loss.

I had to come back and add a comment about this kid. Mark Petro has gotten so automatic, that we might be starting to take him for granted. 6 of 6 PATs were no easy task.

Hillsdale showed a different wrinkle this past Saturday. When its marquee showmen struggled, the Chargers showed a true team effort with big performances from a number of guys all working toward 11-17.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Tony Nicolette: D2football.com GLIAC Column

Hillsdale (5-2, 5-2) at Mercyhurst (3-4, 4-4)

This is a game that looked like it would be very interesting and have a big impact on the conference a couple of weeks ago. Now, it's one team trying to stay on course for a shot at the playoffs while the other is just trying to get back on course at all as the high-octane Hillsdale offense pays a visit to Erie. The Lakers will try and stop the bleeding of a three-game losing streak.

Hillsdale Keys:
- Tough defense. The Chargers are still short some key players, but they need to not be the catalyst that gets Mitch Phillis and Co. back on track. Keeping them rattled is their best bet.
- Run the ball. Vinnie Panizzi had a big day against Wayne State last week. Look for more from him this week against the less than impressive MC run defense.
- "The road is your friend". Hillsdale has really struggled to have a great performance away from Muddy Waters. They must overcome this if they want to make and succeed in the playoffs.

Mercyhurst Keys:
- Stop the run - well, stop anything. The Laker defense has been, well, offensive the last three weeks. You know Nicolet is going to get his, and if MC allows Hillsdale to run the ball as well this one could be gruesome.
- Offense must re-ignite. Hillsdale's defense has not been fantastic thus far this year, especially on the road. This is when Phillis and Stokes must get things going the way they were a month or so ago.

Prediction: While Mercyhurst should be able to move the ball (I know, I said that last week as well), I just don't see how their defense is going to be able to slow down Hillsdale's offense. The Charger road woes have been almost exclusively on defense, as they are averaging more than 37 points a game away from home. With the Mercyhurst defense playing the way it has the past few weeks, that average should go up. Hillsdale 58, Mercyhurst 38.

Rest of Column

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Mark Nicolet, semifinalist for Draddy Trophy

Hillsdale College Release

October 15, 2007 - Hillsdale College senior quarterback Mark Nicolet has been announced as one of 16 Division II semifinalist for one of the most prestigious college football postseason awards.

Nicolet is a semifinalist for the National Football Foundation Scholar-Athlete Award, also known as the Draddy Award. The awards recognizes players who excel both on the field and in the classroom. Eligible players must carry a minimum grade point average of 3.2 and must have demonstrated outstanding news story imageleadership on the team and in their communities.

The award is named after Vincent dePaul Draddy, a quarterback from Manhattan College who developed the Izod and Lacoste brands.

Past winners of the award have included Peyton Manning, Chad Pennington, Craig Krenzel and Danny Wuerffel.

There will be 15 finalists announced on Oct. 25. Each finalist will receive an $18,000 postgraduate scholarship and be recognized as part of the 2007 National Scholar Athlete Class. The winner will be announced at the NFF Awards Dinner on Dec. 4 at the Waldorf-Astoria in New York City. This will be the 18th year the award will be presented.

Nicolet is currently enjoying a record-breaking season for the 5-2 Charger football team. He has compleyed 164 passes in 236 attempts for 23 touchdowns and two interceptions. He leads the GLIAC with 2,398 passing yards this season, and has broken single-game school records for completions and passing yards this season. He needs three touchdown passes to break the school's single-season touchdown pass record, and is less than 300 yards away from Hillsdale's single-season passing yardage record.

Nicolet Takes Passing Efficiency Lead, Others Ranked in D2 Elite

Passing Efficiency,

Rank Name, Team G Pass Att./Pass Com/Int Yds PassTD Pass Eff
1 Mark Nicolet, Hillsdale 7 236 164 2 2398 23 185.3
2 Brad Iciek, Grand Valley 6 126 82 3 1271 15 184.3
3 Danny Freund, No. Dakota 7 179 120 5 1864 17 180.3
4 Billy Malone, Abilene Chr. 7 208 137 2 1992 20 176.1
5 Mike Reilly, Central Wash. 6 200 133 1 1771 19 171.2

Total Offense,
1 Ben King, Minn. St. Mankato Sr. QB 7 377 2582 368.9
2 Mark Nicolet, Hillsdale Sr. QB 7 280 2458 351.1
3 Keith Null, West Tex. A&M Jr. QB 7 338 2417 345.3
4 David Knighton, Harding Jr. QB 6 329 1934 322.3
5 Ted Schlafke, Minn. Duluth Jr. QB 7 442 2198 314.0

Total Passing Yards,
1 Ben King, Minn. St. Mankato Sr. QB 7 337 199 12 20 2516
2 Keith Null, West Tex. A&M Jr. QB 7 314 211 7 25 2454
3 Mark Nicolet, Hillsdale Sr. QB 7 236 164 2 23 2398
4 Chris Dougherty, Saginaw Valley Sr. QB 7 263 172 6 21 2075
5 Billy Malone, Abilene Christian Jr. QB 7 208 137 2 20 1992

Receptions per Game,
1 Nick Smart, Southwest Baptist Sr. WR 7 85 793 7 12.1
2 Dusten Copeland, Western St. Jr. WR 7 58 803 2 8.3
3 Cedric Jones, Valdosta St. So. WR 6 48 522 5 8.0
4 Ashton Gronewold, Mo.-Rolla Sr. WR 7 55 665 7 7.9
5 Nick Gurica, Hillsdale Sr. WR 7 54 822 8 7.7
14 Aaron Waldie, Hillsdale Jr. WR 7 46 868 11 6.6

Receiving Yards per Game
1 Elfren Quiles, Kutztown Sr. WR 7 48 957 7 136.7
2 Aaron Waldie, Hillsdale Jr. WR 7 46 868 11 124.0
3 Scott Peters, Winona St. Sr. WR 7 40 862 9 123.1
4 Weston Dressler, North Dakota Sr. WR 7 46 840 7 120.0
5 Nick Gurica, Hillsdale Sr. WR 7 54 822 8 117.4

Vanover, GLIAC Special Teams Player of the Week


Matt Vanover nets second GLIAC Special Teams Player of the Week honor this season
Hillsdale College Release

October 15, 2007 - For the second time this season, Hillsdale College punter Matt Vanover was named the GLIAC Special Teams Player of the Week. The award was announced by the conference office Monday morning.

Vanover had three punts in Saturday's win over Wayne State, but each were effective in giving the Chargers field position advantage. Vanover's three kicks spanned a total of 145 yards, an average of 48.3 yards per punt. He also kicked a 61-yard punt, his third boot this season of 60 or more yards.

Vanover previously won the award in September. He currently leads the GLIAC with 46.6 yards per punt, five yards per punt more than any other player in the conference.

Hillsdale is 5-2 on the season, and plays at Mercyhurst College at 1:30 p.m. Saturday. The Chargers are ranked 10th in the latest Northwest Region rankings, released Monday afternoon.

Vanover is a 2004 graduate of Adrian High School.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Hillsdale Moves up to #10


The Chargers creeped up one spot in the latest NCAA Northwest Region Poll from 11th to 10th. Remember all voting is done via a mathematical formula that figures winning percentage and strength of schedule. There are no pollsters or computers, just math.

Here are this week's matchups:
1. Nebraska-Omaha (6-0) hosts Minnesota Duluth (3-4)
2. Grand Valley State (6-0) at Northwood (3-3)
3. North Dakota (6-1) idle
4. Central Washington (5-1) vs. Western Washington (2-4) in Seattle
5. Ashland (4-1) at Ferris State (4-3)
6. South Dakota (4-3) at Augustana (3-5)
7. Winona State (6-1) hosts Bemidji State (4-3)
8. Minnesota State Mankato (4-3) host St. Cloud State (3-4)
9. Saginaw Valley State (5-2) idle
10. Hillsdale (5-2) at Mercyhurst (4-4)
11. Michigan Tech (4-4) at Northern MI (1-5)
12. Indianapolis (5-2) hosts Wayne State (2-5)

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Gurica ties mark in Hillsdale win


Gurica ties mark in Hillsdale win
Sunday, October 14, 2007
Citizen Patriot staff reports

It was another victory and another record-setting performance Saturday afternoon for the Hillsdale College football team.

The Chargers stayed unbeaten at home with a 35-21 victory over Wayne State at Muddy Waters Stadium, and Nick Gurica tied his own single-season school record for pass receptions in a game with 13.

Gurica, a senior from Adrian, had 13 catches for 167 yards and three touchdowns. Earlier this season, Gurica broke the school record of 11 with 13 catches.

Gurica's record-tying catch couldn't have been bigger. With Hillsdale holding a 28-21 lead, Gurica hauled in a 33-yard touchdown pass from Mark Nicolet for his 13th catch of the game with 5:10 left in the fourth quarter. Earlier in the fourth quarter, Gurica caught a 9-yard touchdown pass with the Chargers trailing 21-20.

Gurica also had a 15-yard touchdown reception the first quarter as Nicolet completed 26 of 33 passes for 312 yards and three touchdowns.

Hillsdale also had its running game in order as Vinnie Panizzi had 158 yards and a touchdown on 28 carries. Panizzi had a 2-yard touchdown run, while Billy Kanitz had a 1-yard touchdown run.

The victory left Hillsdale with a 5-2 record overall and in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference. Hillsdale has won five games in each of the last two seasons but has not reached six in a season since 1999 (8-3).

Hillsdale has four games remaining, including two at home (Oct. 27 vs. Tiffin and Nov. 10 vs. Saginaw Valley State) and two on the road (Oct. 20 at Mercyhurst and Nov. 3 at Findlay).

D2 Northwest Regional Recap

Here is how ranked teams from NCAA Division II's Northwest Region faired on Saturday.

1. Nebraska-Omaha (5-0) beat UND 28-17, now 6-0
2. North Dakota (6-0) lost to UND 28-17, now 6-1
3. Grand Valley State (5-0) beat UIndy 41-17, now 6-0
4. Central Washington (4-1) beat Western Oregon, 49-14, now 5-2
5. Ashland (3-1) beat Northern MI 47-21, now 4-1
6. South Dakota (3-3) beat Western Washington 24-10, now 4-3
7. Winona State (5-1) beat Northern State 49-10, now 6-1
8. Michigan Tech (4-3) lost to SVSU 33-16, now 4-4
9. Minnesota State Mankato (3-3) beat UMD, 35-14, now 4-3
10. Indianapolis (5-1) lost to GVSU 41-17, now 5-2
11. Hillsdale (4-2) beat Wayne State 35-21, now 5-2
12. Minnesota Duluth (3-3) lost to Mankato 35-14, now 3-4

Saturday, October 13, 2007

Way to Finish! Chargers Win 35-21

Everything that did not happen right at Indianapolis for Hillsdale, did happen this Saturday as the Chargers turned in a fantastic finish to their tilt with Wayne State. Vinnie Panizzi turned in a great ground performance for Hillsdale as he had his best day ever in blue and white. The sophomore carried 28 times for 158 yards and a touchdown. Mark Nicolet got his 6th straight 300 yard game with a 26 of 33, 312 yard, 0 interception, 3 touchdown performance. Nick Gurica led all receivers with 167 yards on 13 catches and all three of those touchdown passes from Nicolet. The biggest td came in the 4th quarter to give Hillsdale a 34-21 lead which with the Mark Petro extra point turned out to be the final score.

The Charger defense turned in a gutty effort, playing without its leader Tom Korte who continues to nurse an ankle injury. The Chargers got big, big stops in the final quarter as Wayne was forced to go to the air while playing catch up. Alex Wocjik had 13 stops and true freshman Cody Henderson had 10. Evan Brown forced and recovered a big fumble in the first half.

HC moves to 5-2 and remains in the playoff hunt.

Front Page News!

This blog is hitting the big time! Believe it or not, The Grand Rapids Press put the Chuck Martin Voodoo Doll on the front page of the sports section yesterday. Wouldn't it figure that a perennial scout teamer like me would make the front of the sports section by dinking around with Photoshop. It's all in fun and all of the GVSU fans I have talked to have gotten a big kick out of it.

I am actually going to venture out to Allendale tonight as a guest of D2football.com's Tony Nicolette after I finish watching the Chargers and Wayne State on webcast. It should be a good game between Grand Valley and Indianapolis.

Here's the article:

Grand Valley streaking toward football history
Friday, October 12, 2007
By Greg Johnson
The Grand Rapids Press

ALLENDALE -- At chargerfootball.blogspot.com, an unofficial fan site for Hillsdale College football, a visitor can print a kit to "Build Your Own Chuck Martin Voodoo Doll."

It is Hillsdale that currently boasts the longest winning streak in Division II college football history at 34 games.

Grand Valley State, coached by Martin, stands at 33 consecutive wins heading into Saturday night's homecoming battle with Indianapolis, the second-place team behind the Lakers in the Great Lakes Conference.

Never mind that Hillsdale set the record between the years of 1954 and '57 behind former Michigan State coach Frank "Muddy" Waters; some folks there apparently liked bragging about it for 50 years. (Andy's note: It's part of who we are buddy. It's not about being has-beens or living in the past. It is the bar Charger Football ultimately strives to attain once again.)

"Carefully cut around outline," it says under an outlined picture of Martin holding last year's Division II national title trophy. "Fold on center line. Tape point A to B. Keep in gross place. Apply whatever curse necessary."

Martin figures having curses wished on him for winning is better than the alternative. Not that the Lakers are talking about it.

"We don't talk about it at all," he said. "I'm sure our kids know. I'm sure our coaches know. I know. We are awfully proud of our winning streak. We're happy there is a winning streak. It's great that people every week hear about a winning streak because that means you have one. It's better than a losing streak. That's not much fun."

Read More

Friday, October 12, 2007

D2football.com: Tony Nicolette's Gliac Column

Wayne State (1-4, 2-4) at Hillsdale (4-2, 4-2)

The Warriors will try and make it two straight this week after roughing up Gannon last Saturday. Hillsdale will have to shake off letting a big game get away from them last week at UIndy. Based on how well the Chargers throw the ball and how poorly WSU defends the pass, I'd say things will be a little rosier this weekend in The Dale.

Wayne State Keys:
- Graham/Bell - We've heard a ton about these two guys in the pre and early season. Thus far, Joique Bell has been the only one of the two to stay healthy enough to have a major impact. If these two can have a big day and keep HC's offense on the sideline, WSU's chances improve dramatically.
- Secondary must step up. As I mentioned earlier, the Warriors have been getting torched of late by opposing passing games. Hillsdale LOVES to sling it, so if WSU doesn't do a good job of shutting down the passing lanes this game will likely get out of hand.

Hillsdale Keys:
- Avoid the let down. Last week's loss has to be tough to accept, but the Chargers need to do so and forget about it. Winning out is their best shot at a playoff berth, so HC needs to come out firing and put last week behind them.
- Do what you do: Nicolet chucks it all over the joint, Hillsdale scores points. They may not get a better match-up the rest of the season, as WSU is eleventh in the GLIAC in pass defense.
- Contain Graham/Bell. So far, WSU hasn't been able to threaten anyone via the air. If HC can keep these two from controlling the clock and the flow of the game, they'll be in good shape.

Prediction: Hillsdale has to be ticked at letting last week get away from them. They always play better at home, and WSU's secondary is definitely vulnerable. I think the Chargers recover. They need to, as their playoff season is essentially under way. Hillsdale 55, Wayne State 28.

TWIG Notes

- The dynamic Hillsdale duo of WR's Aaron Waldie and Nick Gurica continue to torch opposing secondaries. Waldie ranks second nationally with 800 receiving yards, and Gurica is fifth with 655. Both are also second and fifth respectively in receiving yards per game, and Waldie is tops in the country with eleven receiving TD's.
- Congratulations to Ashland's Vince Cashdollar, Hillsdale's Mark Nicolet, and Wayne State's Frank Lietke. Each has been named a semi-finalist for the National Football Foundation's Draddy Trophy. The award recognizes an individual as the absolute best in the country for his combined academic success, football performance and exemplary community leadership. There were only sixteen semi-finalists in all of Division II, so to get three of those sixteen out of the GLIAC is fantastic. Well done, fellas!
- Despite a lack of help around him, Joique Bell is having another great season for Wayne State. The super-soph is seventh in the country in rushing with 874 yards, and is tied for third nationally in scoring with Ashland's John Schroeder at 15 points per game.
- Last week, teams having their Homecoming game went 5-0 in the GLIAC. So far this year, the league's teams are 7-1 in their Homecoming games, with only Mercyhurst dropping its game against Ashland. Grand Valley, Ashland, and Findlay try their hands this weekend.

Full Column

Thursday, October 11, 2007

CSTV: Brandon Misener, A Regional Affair

The only rankings that matter for the playoffs are the regional rankings

Oct. 11, 2007
By Brandon Misener
Special To CSTV.com


The first regional rankings came out Monday, and like every year, there were some shockers. Those of us who have been following the transition from the old ways to the new methods of selecting the playoff were not shocked at all by the rankings. In fact, if one would decide to put in the time to do the math, they aren't that hard to figure out.

Along with the regional rankings came the typical questions for those following them for the first time.

"How can Grand Valley be ranked No. 1 in the country but No. 3 in their own region?"

hose of us who have been following Division II know the answer. National ranking in the AFCA or D2Football.com polls have nothing to do with playoff selection. The regional rankings are all that matter from a playoff participation standpoint.



Practically, the NCAA could release only one regional ranking, the one at the end. After all, that is when all schedules and results are complete. All we are seeing now is a mid-season snapshot of what would happen if the playoffs were to start on Saturday.

This early release of the regional rankings provides a barometer to allow teams to figure out different scenarios that ensure their participation in the playoffs.

Teams can move up or down based upon a couple of factors, but they can only control one. Winning and losing D2 games has a huge impact on where a team will be ranked. The other factor, strength of schedule, is something over which the team has no control. They have to play the teams on their schedule, as do the teams with which they are fighting for participation.

This Week


It would be hard to live up to last week, but this week is no slouch when it comes to great contests. In fact, it's very close.

There are three equally great contests. The first kicks off Thursday.

Delta State at Valdosta State

The teams are both Top-10 teams and both have playoff and Gulf South Conference championship aspirations. The most interesting thing about this game is that both have new coaches and neither team has faced competition nearly as tough as it will in this game.

The winner of the game will essentially be a win over North Alabama away from a conference championship and an undefeated season. The loser is still likely to be in the playoffs, no matter its result against UNA.

Catawba at Carson-Newman

This is how things "used to be" every year in the South Atlantic Conference. Whichever team won this game would end up as the SAC champion.

In the past two years, Presbyterian and Newberry have won the conference while Catawba and Carson-Newman didn't live even live up to their conference reputations, much less their national standing.

They're both back in the SAC and the nation.

And they're both pretty close to being locks for the playoffs. After this game, Wingate is the toughest team on the schedule of both C-N and Cat U. Right know, that looks like a winnable game for both teams - meaning the loser of this game will likely only have one loss at the end of the season.

Nebraska-Omaha at North Dakota
This is a battle of two heavyweights in Division II.

In spite of the fact that both are undefeated and unlike the first two games between ranked opponents, this game is extremely important to both teams.

Either looks like it could be the class of the North Central Conference, but there are still tough opponents left in conference play. In addition, they both play in the same region as Grand Valley, who will most likely go undefeated during the regular season.

Provided it wins the rest of their games, the winner would most likely have the top seed in the region with Grand Valley in the second slot. The loser, however, will likely have to play in the first round (no bye week) and potentially travel to Allendale in the playoffs - not a desirable situation.

Midwestern State at Tarleton State
Tarleton State has quietly put together an undefeated season. Midwestern State suffered its first loss last week against West Texas A&M.

However, the stakes are the same for both.

In spite of the fact that Midwestern has a loss, they only have one really tough game left - Abilene Christian. Tarleton, however, has games left with Abilene Christian and West Texas.

Both teams need this game to give themselves some room for error the remainder of the way.

Customize any Item in the Team Shop

Click for bigger view. Put a name, or number, or name and number on any item in the Chargerblue.com Team Shop. All you need to do is find an item in any of the shops (1,2,3,4,5) and email me with how you would like to personalize it. A small fee ($1 per item) will be added to the price of each piece purchased. I will create you your own private store where you and your friends and family may order as much stuff as you would like.

Have an idea for a new design or new item? Let me know and we can make it work for you.

Monday, October 08, 2007

Chargers Ranked 11th in 1st Regional Poll

The NCAA has released its first regional poll of the season. Hillsdale squeaks in just under the 12 team cutoff at the 11th spot. Grand Valley is ranked 3rd. Ashland is 5th while Michigan Tech is 8th and Indianapolis is 10th.

Don't try to look at this list and make any sense of it. Go check out the mayhem fans are having at the D2football.com Message Board.
It is all based on computer formulas that rank based on a number of factors including strength of schedule, out-of-conference games, and a bunch of other factors that we will learn more about as the season nears the end. Don't panic. There is a ton of football to play.

The Chargers must make the top 6 to be playoff eligible. It is all up to them.

Northwest

1. Nebraska-Omaha (5-0)
2. North Dakota (6-0)
3. Grand Valley State (5-0)
4. Central Washington (4-1)
5. Ashland (3-1)
6. South Dakota (3-3)
7. Winona State (5-1)
8. Michigan Tech (4-3)
9. Minnesota State Mankato (3-3)
10. Indianapolis (5-1)
11. Hillsdale (4-2)
12. Minnesota Duluth (3-3)
Southeast

Otter Talks about "What's Right" about Hillsdale and D2 Football

Earlier in the season head coach Keith Otterbein spoke with Bo from the "What's Right" blog. Since June, Bo has been tirelessly interviewing leaders in small college athletics.

Listen to Keith and Bo.


Give his site a look. Click on Bodine's Blog to hear lots of other great interviews.

WCSR's Andy Brown Interviews Howard Mudd


Offensive Line Coach Howard Mudd of the Indianapolis Colts played football for Hillsdale College in the early 1960s. Over the summer Mudd welcomed several of the Chargers and Coach Otterbein's staff into practice and into a little bit of the way the Colts do things. He was on hand at Saturday night's game at Indianapolis where WCSR's Andy Brown caught up with him.


Saturday, October 06, 2007

Stinkeroo! Chargers blow 2nd half lead.

After blowing the game wide open at 23-7, Hillsdale let Indianapolis continue to hang around too long and it bit them big time. There were too many missed opportunities all night.

Don't get me wrong. There were a lot of great plays. The Charger defense turned the Greyhounds away time after time. At several points throughout the night, I said to myself that stops including Tom Korte's interception would help the Chargers seal the deal. They shoulda, coulda, woulda, but didn't.

Credit Mark Petro for handing in one of the most complete games of his career, converting on 3 field goal attempts and 3 PAT opportunities. Only getting 9 points on those trips instead of 21 kept Indy alive though.

Here is the ugliest stat of the night. Hillsdale was 0 for 9 on 3rd down. They were 14 of 18 last week on 3rd down in the 37-0 win over Michigan Tech. Critical penalties didn't help any either.

Hillsdale did protect the football well and with the fumble recovery and 2 interceptions by the defense, Hillsdale moves to a +13 on the season.

The offense showed it could strike from anywhere as evidenced by quarterback Mark Nicolet's back-to-back touchdown strikes to Aaron Waldie (63 yards) and Nick Gurica (72 yards) that put Hillsdale up 30-14. But instead of pushing for more points and definitive score, things ground to a halt as Hillsdale tried to go between the tackles on possessions in the 4th quarter that got them nothing. They burnt some clock only to see Indianapolis burn up the turf in the opposite direction for 20 unanswered points 4th quarter points and the victory.

Mark Nicolet turned in another 300 yard plus performance going 16 of 25 for 346 yards, 3 touchdowns and no interceptions. Gurica caught 7 balls for 145 yards and a score. Waldie caught 4 for 133 and 2 scores.

Tom Korte and Palmer Schoening both had 11 tackles. Korte was unvailable for the final series with what has been reported to be an ankle injury. All in Chargerblue need to pray for a swift recovery.

Hillsdale returns home against Wayne State next Saturday afternoon for a 2:30 kickoff. The Chargers have loved the homecooking and have been lights out at home. A cat named Joique Bell comes to Hillsdale looking to test the Chargers in what will be another very tough battle in the GLIAC.

Like I said, still a lot of great performances and this Hillsdale program continues to perform at a highly improved level. It's just those little things that sneak up on you and get you. The Chargers are now 4-2 overall and in the GLIAC.

Greyhounds Present Challenge to Chargers

Greyhounds present challenge to Chargers
Hillsdale College needs road win at Indy to keep playoff hopes alive

By RJ Walters
Daily News Sports Writer
October 6, 2007

Charger football is alive and well right now, and ranked No. 24 in the latest D2football.com poll. But to move forwards toward their ultimate goal of making the playoffs, Hillsdale College will have to beat Indianapolis on the road today, something they haven’t been able to do since 1995.

The Greyhounds, like the Chargers (4–1 overall, 4–1 GLIAC), are a team on the rise who at 4–1 have playoff hopes of their own. And with six of the last seven meetings between the two squads determined by a touchdown or less Hillsdale head coach Keith Otterbein expects a power struggle right from the start.

“This is one of those games that over the past few years we’ve really banged heads and been equally matched,” he said. “Every game has been a nitty–gritty, hammer–it–out type game where the guy who makes the most plays is going to win.”

Last year Hillsdale made more plays but just barely, in a 14–13 Charger homecoming victory where true freshman Brad Otterbein started the game at quarterback because of an injury to Mark Nicolet. It took a 98–yard drive and a touchdown pass to Aaron Waldie with 1:22 left on the clock to give Hillsdale the win.

This year coach Otterbein said he expects another tough contest, but he hopes the team can build on its 37–0 shutout of Michigan Tech last weekend because Indianapolis is a similar squad.

Read more.

Friday, October 05, 2007

D2football.com: Tony Nicolette's Gliac Column

Game of the Week

#24 Hillsdale (4-1, 4-1) at Indianapolis (3-1, 4-1)

As I mentioned above, Hillsdale has not been as crisp on the road as they would like. The Chargers are 1-1 away from Muddy Waters, and gave up 41 points in each affair. Based on the way UIndy's defense has been playing lately, I don't think it's a stretch to surmise that if the Greyhounds score 41 on Saturday they'll be in pretty good shape. With that said, UIndy hasn't had to slow down a team scoring even close to 45 points a game since they lost to Tech back in Week Two. The Chargers are clipping along at 45.6 per heading into Saturday.

Much has been made of these two QB's, and the match-up should be entertaining. I'll be more interested to see how each team is able to run the ball. Will the injury-plagued 'Hounds be able to keep up the solid production they have enjoyed? Will Hillsdale be able to establish enough of a ground game to keep the UIndy defense honest so Mark Nicolet to do what he wants?

Hillsdale Keys:
- Stop the run. UIndy has been successful running the ball, despite the fact that they are down to their sixth and seventh string guys having to get carries. Because of that success, Casey Gillin hasn't had to throw the ball very much. Not only are the RB's dealing with injuries, but the top two/three WR's are all out as well. If UIndy has to throw (especially in a pressure situation), will the untested receivers be up to the challenge? HC might be well-served to find out.
- Keep opposing offense off the board. So far, this has been a big problem on the road. It can't be this weekend for Hillsdale to win.
- Generate turnovers. Hillsdale is a league best +10 in turnover margin. Indianapolis is a league worst -6. Exploiting that might be a good idea.
- It's been a magic season thus far for Mark Nicolet. Another great game (almost pedestrian for him at this point) will certainly put the Chargers in position to claim the victory.

UIndy Keys:
- Get pressure on Nicolet. No one really has yet this year, and making him react vs. doing what he wants will be important.
- No mistakes. Gillin and company have done well at that thus far, and Hillsdale doesn't need any help with short fields.
- Run the ball. Hey, NMU had one guy get over 300 yards against them. Despite the injuries, UIndy has had success at this anyway. Having some more this week is imperative. Long drives keep Nicolet off the field.
- Homecoming - Loud crowd, etc. All right, I've beaten that to death and you all get it.

Prediction: These are two teams that are playing at a pretty high level at the moment. Both have shown the ability to play good defense, and each has a potent offense. With that said, I just think that Hillsdale has way too much firepower. If they can avoid the turnovers and sub-par defense that plagued them in their last two road games, I think they just have too much for UIndy. It won't be a gimme, however. Hillsdale 35, UIndy 27.

Full Column

Google Map to University of Indianapolis


View Larger Map

Charger fans will be tailgating in Lot 14 which is located just west of the stadium. Tailgating begins at 3:00 PM. Game time is 6:00 PM.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

CSTV Offers Free Slate of D2's Best

Al Gore will never get my vote, but the man gets my sincerest thanks. If he hadn't invented the Internet, there is no way I would be able to catch all of the following great games on CSTV's free webcasts. Visit their D2 page to watch.

Oct 6 - 3:00 PM
Pittsburgh State at Northwest Missouri State

Oct 6 - 8:00 PM
West Texas A&M at Midwestern State

Oct 13 - 2:00 PM
Minnesota State Mankato at Minnesota Duluth

Oct 18 - 8:00 PM
Chadron State @ Nebraska-Kearney: Watch reigning Harlon Hill Winner Danny Woodhead lead CSC.

Oct 27 - 1:00 PM
North Alabama at Valdosta State: Battle for the GSC crown

Oct 27 - 2:00 PM
Mesa State at Chadron State

Oct 27 - 7:00 PM
Ferris State at Grand Valley State: Anchor Bone at stake

Nov 1 - 8:00 PM
South Dakota @ Nebraska Omaha

Tunnels Trump Blowup Dolls


One of the best additions Hillsdale has added to Muddy Waters Stadiums is the player entrance tunnel leading from the locker room to the field. There's nothing classier than to see a sea of blue all jacked up, ready to come bursting onto the field. I'll take the tunnel anyday over the inflatable cartoon characters that lots of schools like to run through now. In the GLiac you can run out a dog's mouth, through a ship's wheel, under a "W", or through a wolf. I will gladly take the tunnel any day. Good job Otter and the rest of the people at Hillsdale for bucking the inflatable trend. What could the Chargers run out of anyway? They don't use the horse image enough. Maybe a big black cloud with lightning bolt slide would have worked, nah! The tunnel is the obvious choice.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

GLIAC: Big 1, Little 11 huh?

I am getting pretty sick and tired of fans around the country taking pot shots at the GLIAC as a one-horse show. Grand Valley has looked mighty tough on Saturdays and just might cruise to an undefeated season. What is also apparent to people who really follow the GLIAC as opposed to making glancing at a poll once in a while is that the GLIAC has seriously stepped up its game on almost every campus.

If Grand Valley was so far above all of the rest of the league, then it would reason that they would dominate the league statistically as well. Not true at all. What is true is that the GLIAC as a conference has tons of teams and players ranking very highly in the nation. Here are major categories where GLIAC teams or players are in the top 25.

Total Offense:
6. Hillsdale
7. Ashland
15. GVSU
16. Northern Michigan (0-4), How many other leagues have 0-4 in the top 20?

Passing Offense:
2. Hillsdale
4. Saginaw Valley
6. Ashland
11. Mercyhurst
21. N. Michigan

Rushing Offense:
4. Northwood
19. GVSU
22. Indianapolis

Passing Efficiency:
4. Hillsdale
6. GVSU
9. Ashland
24. Mercyhurst
25. Saginaw Valley


Scoring Offense:
6. Hillsdale
9. Ashland
10. GVSU
22. Mercyhurst


Total Defense:
8. Indianapolis

Rushing Defense:
15. Indianapolis

Pass Efficiency Defense:
6. GVSU

Scoring Defense:
7. GVSU

Turnover Margin:
5. Hillsdale
10. Findlay


Rushing Yards per Game:
8. Bell, WSU
14. Childs, NU
15. Boussuah, NMU

Total Offense:
1. Nicolet, Hillsdale
9. Dougherty, SVSU
11. Cundiff, Ashland
15. Van Wieren, Ferris
20. Rivera, NMU
24. Iciek, GVSU

Catches per Game:
6. Waldie, Hillsdale
11. Gurica, Hillsdale

Receiving Yards per Game:
1. Waldie, Hillsdale
9. Gurica, Hillsdale
11. Gilmore, Ashland
23. Ziegelhofer, Ashland

Total Receiving Yards:
1. Waldie, Hillsdale
10. Gurica, Hillsdale
13. White, MTU
18. Hill, Mercyhurst

Scoring:
4. Schroeder, Ashland
5. Bell, WSU
14. Waldie, Hillsdale
23. Panizzi, Hillsdale

All Purpose Yards:
7. Bell, WSU
11. Waldie, Hillsdale
23. Wells, NMU
25. Harvey, Ashland

Passing Yards:
2. Nicolet, Hillsdale
4. Phillis, Mercyhurst
5. Dougherty, SVSU
13. Short, MTU

Passing Yards per Game:
2. Nicolet, Hillsdale
4. Dougherty, SVSU
15. Cundiff, Ashland
17. Phillis, Mercyhurst
20. Rivera, NMU

Rushing Yards:
9. Bell, WSU
13. Stokes, Mercyhurst
21. Wright, UIndy
24. Childs, Northwood
25. Boussuah, NMU

Total Tackles:
11. Wisniewski, WSU
14. Korte, Hillsdale
14. Volmering, SVSU

Solo Tackles:
3. Korte, Hillsdale
7. Volmering, SVSU
9. Meyer, Findlay

Sacks:
5. Miller, SVSU
12. Wild, Mercyhurst
19. Harvey, Findlay
19. Williams, UIndy

TFL:
4. Wild, Mercyhurst
21. Clement, Northwood
21. Jacobs, SVSU
21. Miller, SVSU

Save your "Your league is weak so everybody puts up big numbers." takes. If that were true than the national rankings would be ruled by leagues we can all agree are weaker than the GLIAC. Bottom line is that the GLIAC is seeing great performances every week in hard fought games. Teams have all ramped up their talent-levels and some of the best in the country.

Big 1, Little 11 huh?

Visit http://web1.ncaa.org/stats/StatsSrv/ranksummary and see how other leagues compare nationally. Make the same list. Let's see what they have.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Hillsdale to Face Red Hot Greyhound Defense


As Saturday's game at the University of Indianapolis approaches the Hillsdale offense must prepare for what should prove to be its toughest defensive yet this season. The Greyhounds own top defensive marks in several GLIAC categories and have absolutely dominated their last 3 opponents.

Despite all sorts of injuries on the offensive side of the ball, great defense had allowed UIndy to match Hillsdale's impressive 4-1 record. The Greyhounds have given up just 19 total points in 3 weeks. You don't need a lot of points to win games under those conditions.

They held Findlay to 15% passing completions, only 6.4 yards per catch, 112 yards of total offense, 3 points, and 7 first downs.

They held Gannon to 6 yards per catch, .6 yards per rush, 5 first downs, no points, and 65 total yards of offense.

St. Joe's squeaked in 16 points on them in between those two games.

The bright spot for the Chargers is that earlier in the year Indy gave up a ton of points and yards to Michigan Tech in a 44-30 loss. Hillsdale had its best defensive day of the season against Tech, but this is on the road and the road hasn't been especially kind to the Chargers this year.

Indy will be fired up as they are likely still scratching their heads as to how they lost to Hillsdale last year. It is also homecoming at U of I.

Indy's coach played and coched at Hillsdale. He's a fiery guy on his quietest days, so he will be really amped for this one.

I can guarantee that Otter is talking a ton about the last too road outings for the Chargers. If they protect the football and play good defense, then we will be fine.

Hillsdale Football Cracks D2 Top 25


Hillsdale College, who now sits alone at 4-1 and second place in the GLIAC standings has cracked the top 25 for the first time in 8 years. The Chargers are currently ranked #24 by D2football.com. Grand Valley is ranked number one and the only other GLIAC team ranked. Several Northwest Region foes and possible first-round playoff opponents make up this week's list. North Dakota is #2 at 5-0. Nebraska-Omaha is #5 at 5-0. South Dakota is #20 at 3-2. Central Washington is 23 at 3-1. The national polls play no role in playoff seedings. The regional rankings that select the six playoff teams for each region are expected out after this coming weekend's games.

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