Oct. 24, 2013
Homecoming at Northwest remains special eventBy David Boyce | Northwest Missouri State vs. Missouri Southern | Saturday, Oct. 26, 2 p.m.
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MARYVILLE, Mo. - One of the amazing aspects of Northwest Missouri State football program over nearly two decades of excellence is how it rarely comes out flat for a game.
It would be easy to understand the Bearcats suffering an emotional letdown for Saturday’s afternoon home game against Missouri Southern.
Northwest is coming off an important 24-15 victory against Pittsburg State at the Fall Classic XXII at Arrowhead.
How can you top beating your rival in front 17,369 fans at the stadium of the only undefeated team in the NFL?
That is lofty stuff.
Well, Homecoming at Northwest is even more special. It is when the students and the community come together and celebrate all that is good about Northwest and Maryville.
“It is such a great atmosphere for a small town,” said Northwest football coach Adam Dorrel, who grew up in Maryville and played football at Northwest. “I’m proud of the university and the community. I worked at other institutions where Homecoming is not like this.
“What makes this special is that everybody, whether it is the Greek organizations, the extracurricular, all the student-athletes and the community all come together to make it a special Saturday afternoon and very memorable.”
A lot of work goes into making Homecoming at Northwest such a fantastic day. Dorrel said his team has one responsibility and that is to win.
So when the kickoff sails into the air 2 p.m., Saturday at Bearcat Stadium, the players will be ready to improve upon their 7-0 record.
“Homecoming is very important,” said senior offensive lineman Jake Scarbo. “Like A.D. said, we have one job and that is to win. We have to go out and do our job. “I think we have had that mindset throughout.”
The scores definitely prove that. Northwest went through a four-week stretch in which they played teams without a victory. The Bearcats were not perfect, but they left no doubt about the outcome.
Their closest game during that span was a 28-point win at Northeastern Oklahoma. Dorrel was a bit upset at how the Bearcats played in the second half of that game.
The players answered the challenge and won 72-10 the following week at home against Central Oklahoma.
“I think being able to bounce back comes to age and experience,” Scarbo said. “We do a great job as seniors and coaches to reset our minds every week. We kind of forget about it after we watch film on Sunday. We come in on Monday and start watching our next opponent and that is when everything starts over for us.”
The Bearcats understand they are playing a tricky and dangerous team on Saturday. Missouri Southern is 5-2 overall and 4-2 in the MIAA. The Lions run an old school, triple option offense, which is radically different from what other teams in the MIAA are doing.
No matter what Missouri Southern does on offense and defense, the Bearcats are preparing in the same manner as previous weeks.
“I try to take each week and treat it as the same as every other week,” said senior offensive lineman John Petroff. “I don’t want that to come off as Missouri Southern is not a quality opponent. Their defense does some very special things.
“It is another step in us winning the MIAA championship. It is another stepping stone to where we want to go.”
Where the Bearcats first want to go is reclaim the MIAA title. In order to do that, they can’t afford to look past any team in their final four weeks of the regular season. The last four opponents have a combined record of 26-2.
“It is one of those things, if we want to obtain our goals, we have to show up every week,” Dorrel said. “Our kids will do that.”
For more information, please contact:
Media Relations Department, Northwest Athletics
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Lamkin Activity Center | 800 University Drive | Maryville, MO 64468