Times Sports Editor
Starting a football program from scratch is a monumental task, regardless of what level. Former Rose-Hulman coach Ted Karras, did exactly that when he took over at Marian College more than two years ago and he brought four Northview Knights with him to begin the program.
Matt Crooks, Jaime Bays, Dayne Upperman and Devon Chamberlain have all been part of the Knights' team the past two seasons, with the 2007 season being the first actual year of play for Marian.
After preseason prognosticators predicted zero wins for the Knights, Marian exceeded expectations with one win and several other close contests that included an eight-point and 10-point loss.
"We saw a lot of progress this year," said Karras of the program. "'We weren't expected to win any games, but we won one and were competitive."
Bays got a great deal of playing time for Marian, starting out as a running back and kick returner before moving to linebacker. Some late injuries sidetracked him from a strong finish for the Knights.
"Jaime is a captain for us and is a vocal leader," said Karras. "We moved him to outside linebacker and special teams. He did a lot of good things for us this season."
Though he's been behind a former All-State kicker on the depth chart, Crooks has come on during the season as well mentioned Karras.
"Matt just keeps getting stronger. He's improved immensely in the weight room since his senior year," assessed Karras. "He traveled to all the games, he just needs to develop a little more range."
Chamberlain, a two-sport Knight, also made many of the road trips for Marian and though he didn't get on to the field this year, his future is bright at Marian.
"Devon has been named Scout Team Player of the Week this year and he traveled quite a bit for us," commented Karras. "He just needs to work on his hands a little bit."
For Uppmerman, he red-shirted this season and Karras feels that he'll be a very valuable player down the road for Marian as a lineman.
"Dayne moved to defensive line this season and earned numerous Scout Team Player of the Week honors," said Karras. "He just needs to get a little more college savvy. This redshirt season has helped him a lot because he's been in the system for a whole year getting better."
And improving should be the rule of thumb for next year with just a few players completing their eligibility, including place kicker Bryan Quackenbush from Perry Meridian, which could open the door for Crooks.
Regardless, these Knights have been part of history during the inaugural year for the football program and hope to be part of many more program firsts.
Joe Evinger is a member of the College of the Canyons football program and has registered a solo tackle for the California Junior College power. The team will host Saddleback College in the Western State Conference Bowl at 7 p.m. on Saturday.
The 6'6, 300 pound lineman is a 2007 Northview graduate.
The Marian Knights tipped off their season with a convincing 88-38 pasting of Holy Cross that earned coach John Grimes his 500th coaching victory over the weekend.
Heath Chamberlain, a Northview graduate, tallied 13 points and eight rebounds in what his coach feels might be a breakout season for the sophomore.
"This is Heath's third-year at Marian and he's made tremendous progress in regards to becoming a polished basketball player," said Grimes, in his 32nd season. "At this point he's the starting post player and he's made a lot of progress. The best thing is that he's got three years of eligibility remaining so we're looking forward to more development as he progresses."
Marian will be hosting a tourney beginning on Friday evening when the Knights take on IU-Northwest at 6 p.m.
The Lincoln Land Loggers advanced to 3-1 on the season after an 89-86 win over the RMC Eagles on Tuesday evening.
Northview grad, Matt Stuckey had two points and a rebound in over 22 minutes of action. Those results came on the heels of a two point effort against McKendree's JV on Nov. 7.
St. Mary-of-the-Woods College dropped a pair of decisions recently with a narrow 80-77 loss to the Taylor-Ft. Wayne Falcons on Saturday and a 94-51 defeat to Taylor in their home opener on Tuesday.
Former Northview teammate, Lexee Hayes got her first action of the season with two points against Taylor.
Hayes' classmate, Josiah Brock, is a member of the Lincoln Christian College basketball team who opened the season with a tough, 87-80 double-overtime defeat to Kuyper.
Brock had a big game in his college debut however, tallying five points, seven rebounds, five blocks and two steals.
Julia Whitted, a sophomore at IUPUI, got her second year underway with a 10 point, four rebound effort in 21 minutes before fouling out against Michigan State, a 65-35 loss.
The former Northview competitor also had 14 points in just 17 minutes during an exhibition win over the Ohio Legends.
Clay City 2006 graduate, Whitney McWilliams, will take on her second year with Olney Central, who dropped their season opener against Illinois Central College, 65-51.
The Vincennes Blazers placed 18th in the National Junior College Cross Country Championships last weekend.
James Grounds, placed 63rd overall in 26:54, second on his team to finish his cross country career for the Blazers.
The Greyhounds' volleyball team from the University of Indianapolis had to hold their collective breath a bit while they awaited word of their postseason status from the NCAA this week.
Indianapolis, and former Northview netter, Christy Fulk, reached the championship match of the Great Lakes Valley Conference Tourney over the weekend, but lost in three game to nemesis, Lewis.
Lewis has downed the Greyhounds twice out of just three losses this year for Indianapolis.
After that loss, UIndy had to await word of whether they would receive an at-large berth.
And indeed they will, the NCAA gave the Greyhounds a No. 3 seed in the Great Lakes Regional at Allendale, Mich.
There the Greyhounds (32-3 overall) will take on No. 6 seed Hillsdale today at noon.
This is just the second time the Greyhounds have reached the NCAA tourney. The 2003 version posted a 29-11 mark and won the GLVC title and a sixth-seed at the regional where Indy lost to Grand Valley State, an eventual Final Four team.
For the season, Fulk, a sophomore, has played in 45 games and has started three matches. She has 35 kills on the season with two assists and three digs for the Greyhounds.
The Indiana State Sycamores haven't had quite the same success as their northern Indiana counterparts.
ISU dropped to 3-20 overall and 0-15 in the Missouri Valley Conference with a pair of road losses over the weekend.
Clay City graduate Ashley McCullough, has seen action in eight matches this season and have played in 12 games.
The Sycamore freshman has four kills on the season and two digs for ISU who has struggled to a 3-21 mark overall.
Brianne Arvin is a freshman at Stephens College in Columbia, MO. and is also a member of the volleyball team that finished the season at 17-14
No statistics were available for the 2007 season.