Tradition • Character • Service

Tradition • Character • Service

Saturday, August 31, 2013

Chargers debut new Adidas uniforms

Hillsdale_Chargers via Instagram
It's been a while since Hillsdale has made many changes to its football uniforms. The Chargers have worn the simple home blue jerseys with the large white block numbers (opposite on the road) since the early 2000's.

Big changes were debuted on Friday as the team appeared for pictures in new more modern looking threads from Adidas. Hillsdale had worn uniforms from Russell Athletic since at least the late 1980's.

Back on the road white jerseys is "Hillsdale" across the chest. Teams at different times throughout Hillsdale's history, even back to the Muddy Waters days have had "Hillsdale" across the chest. Home uniforms will feature "Chargers".

We knew the Chargers were planning on switching from New Balance shoes to Adidas but in a February Collegian article Coach Otterbein stated the plan was to stay with Russell. No word has been given on what swayed the decision. The basketball program recently switched its uniforms from Russell to Adidas and price was a factor in that move.

Hillsdale opens the season next Saturday at home against Cal. PA. at 7:00.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Chargers scrimmage Saturday

Coach Otterbein and the Chargers will scrimmage on Saturday at 11:00 AM. Admission is free and this will serve as a great chance to see all of the new faces in action before California (PA) comes to Hillsdale on September 7 for Opening Night.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Don't Blink...Twenty years later

People like to tell college kids that "These are the best years of your life." I would agree with the caveat "up to this point in your life".

It only gets better if you maximize all of the opportunities for which college prepares you. It goes fast though.

I can't believe it has been 20 years now since I was preparing for my final season of playing football at Hillsdale. Those were some amazing years surrounded by friends, constantly being challenge in the classroom, and finding where I could contribute to a great football program. College seems so magical because your future is right in front of you yet you don't have the day-to-day worries and responsibilities that can bog you down later in life.

One of the greatest lessons I learned while playing for the Chargers involved overcoming adversity by focusing on the big goal, the dream, what really matters. Every setback is an opportunity to grow and get better...even when you're 42.

Enjoy every second. Every phase in life should be "the best years of your life". Have a great year Chargers....all of you.

Monday, August 26, 2013 Tony Nicolette previews the 2013 GLIAC Football Season readers best know Tony Nicolette as the GLIAC blogger. Tony is transitioning away from that role and has picked up some duties with the GLIAC conference's media relations department. Here he offers a team-by-team peek at each squad heading into 2013.

BAY CITY, Mich. – That last two GLIAC seasons have produced first-time, outright championships for a pair of the league’s long-standing members; Hillsdale earned the title in 2011, with Ashland completing an unbeaten regular season to claim the crown in 2012.  Will the 2013 title go to another first-timer?  The league’s head coaches seem to think it not impossible as their preseason poll results were announced.

On the heels of their 11-0 regular season, Ashland is picked to repeat as league champs garnering ten first-place votes and 88 points.  The South is no runaway in the coach’s minds, however, as fourth-year member Ohio Dominican ranked second notching 80 points along with four first-place nods.  Findlay was the final member of the south to earn a first place vote, and tallied 69 total points to slot third.  On the strength of their defense and excitement around new coach Ted Karras, Walsh earned a fourth place spot with 43 points, followed by Lake Erie (40), Tiffin (30), and Malone (21).

The picture in the North has even less clarity, which resembles how the standings looked at the end of 2012.  Four teams finished atop the north at 7-3 last year, and each of those clubs earned at least one first-place vote in this year’s preseason poll.  Grand Valley led the way with 94 points and six first-place ballots.  Saginaw Valley also picked-up six first-place votes, but only tallied 87 total points to finish second.  Fellow co-champs from last year Michigan Tech (66 points, one first-place vote) and Hillsdale (65 points, one first-place vote) finished fourth and fifth respectively, but found themselves passed over for third by the coaches as Ferris State garnered 69 total points along with a single first-place nod.  It’s obvious that the coaches see Ferris and Ohio Dominican as teams to watch out for in 2013, and it will be interesting to see if their thoughts are validated on the field.

Rounding out the North Division balloting was sixth place Wayne State with 48 points, seventh place Northern Michigan with 23 points, and finally Northwood with 22 points.

The 2013 Division II football season opens for six GLIAC members on Thursday, September 5th, with seven more of the league’s clubs playing two days later on Saturday the 7th.   The conference schedule then begins in earnest on Saturday, September 14th.

Full Release. Experienced Defense leads way for Team 121

Hillsdale College launched its own coverage of Charger Football today with its season preview. 

FOOTBALL PREVIEW: Experienced Defense Leads Way For Team 121

August 26, 2013 - An old sports cliché goes something like "It's not how you start, it's how you finish."

Finishing is one of the key themes for the 2013 Hillsdale College football team.

The 121st football team in the history of the college opens its newest season at home on Saturday, Sept. 7 against California of Pennsylvania, starting what is sure to be one of the most challenging schedules in all of NCAA Division II. This marks the first time since 2010 the Chargers will begin a season at home.

Hillsdale was selected to finish in fifth place in the GLIAC North Division in a poll of GLIAC coaches. The Chargers received one first-place vote. The poll, along with complete previews of the other 14 GLIAC football programs, can be found in the link at the top of this story.

Full Preview

Keith Otterbein highlights Hillsdale College's upcoming football season

As part of the GLIAC conference's virtual media day, Hillsdale College produced the following video preview as Coach Keith Otterbein highlights the upcoming Charger Football season.

Videos from all GLIAC teams can be found on the league's Media Day Central page.

Hillsdale picked 5th in GLIAC North Coaches Poll

The GLIAC released its pre-season poll today and Hillsdale placed 5th in the North Division voting. The Chargers did however garner a first place vote. Ashland was picked to win the South.

Rank Team Votes 2012
1 GVSU (6) 94 8-3
2 SVSU (6) 87 8-3
3 Ferris St. (1) 69 7-4
4 Michigan Tech (1) 66 7-3
5 Hillsdale (1) 65 7-4
6 Wayne State 48 5-5
7 Northern Mich. 23 4-7
8 Northwood 22 5-6

Rank Team Votes 2012
1 Ashland (10) 88 11-1
2 Ohio Dominican (4) 80 8-3
3 Findlay (1) 69 7-3
4 Walsh 43 3-8
5 Lake Erie 40 3-8
6 Tiffin 30 3-8
7 Malone 21 1-9

Sunday, August 25, 2013 scouts the GLIAC North

Perry A. Farrell from the Detroit Free Press breaks down the GLIAC with this quick synapsis.

2012 record: 7-4, 7-3.
Key players: Senior OL Tim Hornak, senior OL Nick Landry, senior WR Andrew Mott, junior TE Mike Carter, senior LB Steven Embry.
Keep an eye on: Quarterback Sam Landry is a left-hander who takes over the position. He’s hard to bring down and has a great arm.
Overview: Hillsdale was one of four teams to share the North title and look to be in the hunt with nine of 11 starters returning on defense, including the front seven.

Take a look at what he has to say about the rest of the Michigan schools. 

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Three GLIAC Teams appear in pre-season coaches poll

The first D2 coaches poll is out and three GLIAC teams are listed. Hillsdale starts the season unranked but received a number of votes.

9. Ashland
14. Grand Valley
22. Saginaw Valley

Take a look at the full poll and see if you notice the same thing I do. It seems that the coaches based this year's rankings heavily upon last year's records. That doesn't seem to make a whole lot of sense in that college teams by nature see a lot of turnover. Also, it's the nature of D2 for coaches in one region to not know a whole lot about teams outside of their immediate region or conference.

Polls are an engrained part of following football. It would be nice to see Hillsdale get some recognition beyond a few votes, but in the end D2 football is about making the playoffs and coaches polls don't have any bearing on that selection process.

Friday, August 09, 2013

Seven questions with #7 Hillsdale QB Sam Landry

Senior quarterback Sam Landry takes the reins as Hillsdale College enters the 2013 football season. Here is a chance to get to know Sam a little better in his own words.

Fans worry every time a senior graduates. What do you bring to the quarterback position to reassure fans that the offense will be in good hands now that Anthony has departed? 
Anthony was a great quarterback and it is always tough to follow someone who had the success that he had on the field. I am lucky to have been able to work with him for the past two years. I have been working hard this offseason through film study and on the field so that the transition from Anthony to me can be as smooth as possible. I am lucky to have an experienced receiving corps that is essentially the exact same receiving corps from last year and an experienced offensive line to protect me in the pocket. With all of these pieces, our offense (specifically our passing game) should be able to pick up right where it left off.

What did you learn from him that has prepared you to take over? 
I have been able to watch film of Anthony from the past two years and been able to learn from him in a lot of ways, but the thing that I have learned from Anthony the most is just to enjoy the ride. It is easy to get caught up in the season, but it is important to enjoy every second of it. He has been a great person to talk to throughout the offseason and I will definitely be able to talk to him throughout the season if I need anything.

What can you say to fans worried about Joe The Show graduating? 
Replacing “Joe the Show” is obviously not easy. Isaac Spence has done a great job through the years of being ready when called upon and really showed just a glimpse of what he can do last season in the playing time he had. I know he is excited to show everyone how hard he has been working. We have a lot of talent in our backfield, Bennett Lewis is a young guy who we are excited to see prove himself… Alex Koski and Wade Wood also provide us with great depth at the position. Like I said, Joe was a special player and will be hard to replace, but we’ve got talent at the position.

One of Hillsdale's obvious strengths is the defense returning. How does playing against those guys everyday make you better?
We’ve got a great defense coming back this season. Playing against those guys has helped me tremendously. Because they are so “good” at defending our routes, it forces me to throw into much tighter windows than I will in a game. Yes, it is extremely frustrating playing against them at times. They know our plays, the snap count, some of them probably even know some of the signals… It gets frustrating; but, if you ask them, I’m sure they will say that the offense holds every play so it is even. 

What has it meant to play with your brother Nick who is an offensive lineman at Hillsdale?
I’m so blessed to have been able to play with Nick as long as I have. My relationship with him has become much stronger at Hillsdale. I know it makes my parents happy that we play at the same school. My freshman year with me playing at Kalamazoo College and Nick at Hillsdale was definitely a hardship for my parents trying to make the both of us happy. 

How much do you worry that if you tick off your brother he just might happen to miss a block sort of on purpose? 
We used to joke about it in high school until he “accidentally” let in former MSU Spartan and current Tampa Bay Buccaneer Will Gholston untouched on my first high school pass. I was on the ground for about 5 minutes before being able to get off the field. Needless to say mother prefers we don’t joke about it anymore.

Best thing about being a Charger is...... definitely the brotherhood of being a Hillsdale Football player. It starts in the locker room with the current players. We are truly a family. Those will be some of the best memories at Hillsdale. It goes further than that though. I’m lucky to have met guys like Troy Weatherhead who has helped me a great deal through the past couple of years or even Aaron Waldie who I never even went to school with. Any time I’ve been able to meet football alumni it has been easy to develop a relationship with them and continue to keep in contact with them. I am really blessed to be apart of a brotherhood like this one.

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Hillsdale Football looks for 7th straight winning season

As Hillsdale College enters the 2013 football season, the Chargers will be looking for their seventh straight winning season. Their current streak of six is the longest streak since the 1980 to 1986 teams posted seven straight. The longest streak in school history came under Muddy Waters as his 1953 to 1965 teams posted thirteen in a row. Hillsdale will report to camp Thursday August 15th and will open the season at home on Saturday September 7 against California University of Pennsylvania.

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