A Homecoming To Celebrate Past Husky Legends
Townsquare Media's Joe Erickson attended a SCSU homecoming of sorts this past weekend. Here is his report from the event.
At a school where there isn’t a homecoming this past weekend was, to many former SCSU football players, just that.
Players like WR Brent Otto, who for many years was known for the Huskies version of “The Catch” at Selke Field in 1989. It beat rival NDSU, and was part of the school’s first ever conference title.
Teammate Shawn Kakuk coached after his career in cardinal and black concluded.
The event featured a who’s who of the 80’s, 90’s, and 00’s! Players like Dean Dirkes, Greg Gronski, Brad LaCombe, Adam Cramlet, Mike Gromaki, Jesse Akemann, and Steve Vant Hul.
Also in attendance: Corey Peters, Ryan Koch, Mark Henderson, Nick Peterson, Brian Skoog, Jeremy Mikla, Matt Greinman, Dave Grilz, Corey Miller, and Jim Holasek. Some went on to play after Saint Cloud State like LaCombe, who starred in the Arena Football League.
And then there were the coaches, past and present. Coach Noel Martin, SCSU all-time leader in wins joined in the festivities, as did defensive coordinator matt Pawlowski. Pawlowski is known for his top ranked north central conference defenses. Coach Mick Lucia from the 80s was part of the activities. Throw in current coaches Jim Louis (also played for SCSU), Steve Grimit, and current head coach scott Underwood (3rd in wins with 50), and you’ve got quite the coaching forum!
The stories were flowing as teammates talked of the wins and the near-misses. They spoke of plays made, road trips, and of course, who was tougher!
Games against North Dakota, Northern Colorado, Augustana, Mankato State (when that’s what it was!) and North Dakota State. Long field goals, players getting cleated, last minute drives, and a few playoff games were among the topics of discussion.
For me, it was a time to connect the past with the present. In the 90s, i was a reporter/host of Husky Magazine on Midwest Sports Channel (now Fox Sports North). These were the coaches and players that I covered and got to know very well. Through the years, I have supported the Huskies and attended many games at Husky Stadium. I consider many of the current coaches my friends. So when it all came together for me with the past players and coaches and present coaches…well it was very cool for me!
On the field, the Huskies took care of business, beating MSU-Moorhead soundly 64-27. The offense amassed over 700 yards, with 512 of that in the air.
Off the field, another victory came in the form of a bid to the NCAA D-2 playoffs. The victory ties the record for most wins in a season (10). Many individual records were also achieved. Most notably, Harlon Hill candidate (award for the nation’s top D-2 football player) Phillip Klaphake’s 10,500 passing yards sets the mark for Husky QB’s.
Through it all, it was a weekend to celebrate team achievements. This Saturday, the 2013 SCSU Husky football team is headed to Arkansas to take on Henderson State. And it goes to show that sometimes a rich tradition and a winning past can equate to a bright future!