If you have made it out to a local high school football game this season, it may seem like you have stepped back in time. You are probably just like me, raised on the idea that you have to run the ball to win, a mantra that is being challenged every week in the upper echelons of football. In a day and age where we see Quarterbacks throw the ball 50 times a game in the NFL and college, Central Minnesota high school football teams are going old school.
Right here, it just seems right. Maybe it is because it gets colder here sooner than everywhere else, but this brand of football just seems to fit Central Minnesota. Plus, watching the trio of McAfee, Mueller and Peterson is exciting enough in its own right.
Don’t blame the coaches for being old-fashioned; it’s a pretty good idea to run the ball if you have guys like Eric McAfee, Jacob Peterson and Mac Mueller carrying the football.
First you take McAfee, a senior Running Back for the Sartell-St. Steven Sabres who is gaining huge chunks of yardage this season. Not only was he week two’s Metro Sports Commission player of the week, but he has piled up 490 yards on the season on 65 carries and added 9 Touchdowns.
Even though he can’t play at Clark Field, Jacob Peterson is doing all he can to make Husky Stadium feel like home. He leads area Running Backs with 507 yards and has become a dual threat for the Tigers. Not only does he have 8 touchdowns on the ground, but he has thrown for multiple touchdowns this season as well on option plays. His success is nothing new, he ran for over 1,000 yards last season, and looks to be well on his way this season.
And last but not least, Mac Mueller has filled some huge shoes this year. Last season, Rocori was led to the State title by Quarterback Nate Meyer, who graduated and went on to South Dakota State. No big deal right? All Mueller has done is step on the field and made the Spartans the odds on favorite for the state title again. He’s doing damage on the ground (500 yards at 8.1 yards per carry) and through the air (497 yards passing on 71% passing) racking up a combined 15 touchdowns through 3 games.
As a guy who was raised on old-school football, I find it nostalgic to watch these kids run. With the season only three games old, I can’t wait to see what they have in store the rest of the way.