April 16, 2014

Chadron State faces tough test against #2 team in the country

The Chadron State football team will play their biggest game of the season, Saturday when it visits Colorado State-Pueblo. Kickoff will be at 2 p.m. It will be the school’s homecoming contest. The ThunderWolves are 5-0 for the season and ranked No. 2 in this week’s American Football Coaches Association poll behind only Pittsburg State of Kansas.

After going 11-0 during the regular season a year ago, they are the defending Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference champions and were the preseason favorites during the coaches balloting this summer. Pueblo opened the season with wins of 44-34 over nationally-ranked West Texas A&M and 41-24 over Northeastern Oklahoma in non-conference action.  Like the 4-1 Eagles, Pueblo has begun the RMAC schedule with three victories—35-27 over Western New Mexico, 30-0 over Adams State and 50-21 over Fort Lewis.

This is the fifth year since CSU-Pueblo revived its football program. The Eagles won 32-0 the first time the teams met in 2008 while CSC was en route to its third straight conference championship. However, the ThunderWolves have won 28-17, 33-30 in triple overtime and 38-28 since then.

Chadron State coach Jay Long said his team knows it will have a big challenge on Saturday and is excited for the opportunity.

“We’ve got to do our jobs, but I think we will compete well,” Long said. “They don’t try to trick you on either offense or defense. They mostly just line up and try to beat you with their execution and their personnel. They have a very good team that is really well coached.”