Chadron State football reloads for fall – RIVER COUNTRY

CHADRON, Neb. – Chadron State College football’s 2022 season arrives with big question marks to address on both sides of the line of scrimmage.

In 2021, the Eagles benefited from the sixth-year quarterback’s veteran leadership Dalton Holst, whose 11,531 career passing yards now sit atop the CSC record books. For the first time in several years, they will have to replace him with someone who hasn’t started a game at center at CSC.

There are three main candidates for the position.

The most veteran of the three is Heath Bemiller, a graduate transfer from Northern Arizona University. The junior, from Chandler, Ariz., still has two years of eligibility after being redshirted as a safety in 2018, playing seven games in 2019 as a quarterback, then playing one in the spring of 2021 before being transferred to CSC in the middle of 2021-22. .

Also in the running is Preston Pearson, a redshirt freshman from Kearney High. He was a 2020 Super State first-team selection and also an All-Class A first-team selection, according to the Lincoln Journal Star. Pearson showed enough in spring drills to be high in the mix, after a redshirt in 2021.

The return of the backup role last season is in the second year Mason Hamilton of Gilette, Wyoming. The two-time former Wyoming Super 25 selection followed Holst into 2021 and saw relief action in six games, completing touchdown passes in the Eagles’ last two games.

“The three guys we’re looking for for quarterback are athletic,” CSC offensive coordinator said Micah Smith. “They all run well and throw the ball efficiently. On top of that, they are all smart football players who understand the game. It’s going to be tough to decide who gets the first shots at kick-off next month. “

CSC fires four running backs who have previously carried the ball in games.

Best rusher 2021 Jeydon Cox, of Jackson, Wyoming, returns to the front of the pack. In his 15 games as an Eagle, he averaged 6.2 yards per carry, good for third-best in the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference over the past two years. His 648 rushing yards in 2021 included nine touchdown dives, and he added 161 receiving yards.

Dorian Necklace is a change of pace from Cox. The Tallahassee, Fla. native is bigger, at 6-1, 213 pounds, and packs a punch out of the backfield. He recorded 422 yards last fall on the ground and two scores.

Brock Pingof Billings, Montana, also replaced fullbacks last year, rushing 32 times for 162 yards and two touchdowns.

The return from a sabbatical year is Jalen Starkof Chicago, Illinois, who led the team in all four of their 2020 games with 330 yards and seven points scored.

Mitchell’s Rylan Agualloa freshman in a red shirt, also joins the running back stable this fall, after a good spring.

Receivers are a talented bunch, but they need to replace production for All-RMAC second-team pick Chad Mikelsonand Cole Thurnessan all-conference receiver twice.
The competition surely starts with the two most experienced large, Ali Moussa from San Diego and Montel Gladney of Jackson, Mississippi. Both are seniors.

Musa is the leading returner last season, when he caught 17 balls for 279 yards.

Gladney has 356 career receiving yards and three catches scored at CSC, after being traded in the fall of 2020.

The other main targets are second-year students Jamal Broderfrom Carol City, Florida, junior Ahlonte Hair from Live Oak, Fla., and transfer junior Dr. Evans, also from Live Oak.

The offensive line will be anchored at left tackle by first-team All-RMAC returning senior Juan Estrada-Sanchez from Denver. He will take over for All-America Second Teamer Justin Calderonwho will be an assistant coach in the fall.

Broomfield, Colorado, junior Michel De Camillis is the presumptive starter at center, where he has played the past two seasons.

Freshman in red shirt Vincent Mosleyfrom Fort Collins, Colorado, senior Emmit Rosentraterof Paxton, Nebraska, and Turkish Aksel of Nesodden, Norway, will enter fall camp at the top of the rotation for the other three forward positions.

Smith said the offense will look to use quarterback athleticism to rush the ball more from that position.

On the opposite side of the ball, the Eagles are looking to make up for the graduation of three of their top four tackles at linebacker.

Junior Joey Geil, of Casper, Wyoming, is one to watch at center linebacker. He has led or co-leaded the team in each of the last six games of 2021 after being forced into the roster due to injuries. He also recorded the team’s best seven tackles for the loss.

Likely joining Geil in the field are sophomores Saxon-Wrightof Monument, Colorado, and Xavier Harrel of Highlands Ranch, Colorado.

Also in both depths are transfers Heamasi Latu from Oakland, California and Jordan Suckow of Brentwood, California. Latu was Nebraska-Kearney’s fourth tackle in the fall of 2020, while Suckow was an all-conference winner at Tabor College last year.

defensive coordinator Clint Sasse added this real freshman Ritchie McCormackof Tucson, Arizona, could also work their way up the depth chart.

On the defensive front, the Eagles have plenty of options.

Junior Gabe Perkins from Aurora, Colorado and senior Bray de Tayven of Highlands Ranch are the upper ends, with the second year Hunter O’Connor of Broomfield also entering the scene.

Inside linemen include seniors Kobe Whipple from Rosebud, South Dakota, transfer of graduates from Fort Lewis Blayke De La Rosa from San Diego, sophomore year Kien Martin from Overton, Nebraska, and freshmen in red shirts True Tanner of Eaton, Colorado, and Isaiah Guerue of Morrill, Nebraska.

Casper, Wyoming, native Trevon Smitha junior who has started the past two seasons, will likely need a few more weeks to recover from a knee injury.

Finally, the defensive backfield has one of the best depths he’s seen in several years.

Two fifth-year players will certainly lead the unit. They are Brendan Brehmer of Alliance, Nebraska, and Bobby Peel of Fresno, California.

Brehmer had a stellar season in 2021 with 55 tackles and one blocked kick. In previous seasons he had struggled with injuries, but he was able to recover and start all 11 games last fall.

Peele is a first-team All-RMAC cornerback. Looking back to his two junior college seasons, including one and a half at CSC, Peele has 21 interceptions in 33 games. He finished last season with six picks in 10 games.

At present, in pencil in the other two secondary positions are junior Jahvonte HairAhlonte’s twin brother and redshirt freshman Dax Yeradi of Wright, Wyoming.

A host of other defensive backs are expected to contribute.

“Defensively we’re about as deep as we’ve ever been,” the defensive coordinator said. Clint Sasse. “We have guys at all levels who can play, and we’re excited to start knocking.”

Special teams will look like last year. Senior Gunnar Jones of Rogersville, Alabama, will handle kickoff and kickoff duties. Jones can also throw, but there are others who could also be called into action, including junior Parker Dillan from Imperial, Nebraska, which launched in 2020, and a redshirt freshman Brodie Eisenbraun of Sturgis, South Dakota.

Returning the ball will likely be a running back Jeydon Cox and receiver Dr. Evans.

Head Football Coach Jay Long knows the schedule is off to a flying start and he’s looking forward to the challenge.

“When you watch our first five games,” Long said, “we start by traveling to the Lone Star Conference favorite. Then you come right back on the road to a Division I opponent. We have a big game at home against our rival, and then it’s back on the road. Three of our first five games are against playoff teams, and you add Utah Tech, which used to be Dixie State. We want to compete for the conference, and we want to do the playoffs, and that’s the kind of schedule it takes.”

Fall camp started on Monday August 8th. The first game of the season will take place on September 1 in San Angelo, Texas. Kick-off time is 6 p.m. MT.