The Milwaukee Penguins

The Milwaukee Penguins is the Division 1A collegiate football team for Milwaukee College. We're a school "known for its academics." This is a record of our accomplishments, on the field and off.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Season 3, Game 8:vs Louisiana State

Louisiana State University Tigers (4-3, #35) at Milwaukee College Penguins (5-2, #45)

Way back when I was recruiting for the first Milwaukee College Penguins football team (2004 edition), I confided in then sophomore half back Wetzel (HB #47) that he would be vying for the Heisman trophy come his senior year. Well, his senior year has arrived and the Heisman trophy committee has yet to knock on our door. Wetzel and I haven't discussed that earlier conversation as much.

"What happens to a dream deferred?"

Among the choices that Langston Hughes did not list is this: He hands it off to the next guy. In this case, the next guy is junior fullback B Foldy (FB #29). He's more of a blocking fullback but today, Foldy got payback. Against the Tigers, he scored a Penguin record FIVE touchdowns, four on the ground and 1 through the air. He didn't rip up the field - he only had 53 yards rushing on 14 attempts - but he got it where it counts. And I got the blow out I had been passive-aggressively asking for.

But not without a price. Starting cornerback and ex-girlfriend Bennett (CB #10) - and yes, the two are related - came out of the game in the fourth quarter with a pinched nerve. The doctors think she'll be out three or four games. I only carry four cornerbacks! I'll have to do some shuffling if I want to bring in our dime coverage.


score: 28-45
first downs: 11-32
total offense: 297-496
rushes - yards: 20-68 --- 46-200
comp-att-TD: 10-20-1 --- 19-35-2
passing yards: 229-296
sacked: 2-3
turnovers: 0-2
fumbles - lost: 0-0 --- 3-0
intercepted: 0-2
top: 10:10 -- 21:50


Root (QB #5) 135.0 rating, 16-30 for 237 yards, 2 TD, 1 INT
Koch (QB #22) 119.1 rating, 3-5 for 59 yards, 1 INT; 4-56 rush (14.0 avg)
Wetzel (HB #47) 20-57 rush (2.8)
B Foldy (FB #29) 14-53 (3.7 avg), 4 TD; 2-16 rec (8.0 avg), 1 TD
Bogner (LT #52) 13 pancakes


Umali (CB #3) 5 tackles (1 for loss), 1 sack
Conti (MLB #72) 3 tackles (1 for loss)
Hayden (LOLB #56) 3 tackles (1 for loss)
K Anderson (SS #26) 3 tackles
McClone (CB #46) 2 tackles, 1 pass deflect

NOTES: After Hurricane Katrina, Milwaukee College was one of the first teams to open up our schedule to accommodate the Louisiana collegiate football teams. We'll be facing one more Louisiana team (Louisiana Tech) later on this season.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Season 3, Game 7:vs U of Southern Mississippi

University of Southern Mississippi Golden Eagles (3-3, #72) vs Milwaukee College Penguins (4-2, #48)

After such a mistake-laden, harrowing game against the previously #17 Colorado State Rams, we practically welcomed the USM Golden Eagles with open arms. They are ranked #72 going into this game. But as we know, current rank standings can be deceptive.

We have been playing sloppy of late and our secondary hasn't been coming up with the interceptions. But we've been escaping with wins. How many times can we continually give our opponents chances to win the game before they actually make good on that chance?

A bit unprepared, the Golden Eagles pounce on us for 10 points early in the first quarter. Their touchdown came off an interception. But we come back, quick, scoring 24 unanswered points and limiting their offense to negative rushing yards. Still, our 24-17 lead going into the half felt tenuous.

I almost lost it when, after Chi (K #40) kicked a long field goal, the officials called a holding penalty on Bogner (LT #52), which effectively put us out of Chi's range. Of course, the Golden Eagles score a tying field goal on their next series. We fumble the ball back to them and our defense bends but doesn't break to the tune of allowing only a field goal. Then, in our next series, we threw the ball back to them! They had three interceptions to our one. This time, the Golden Eagles get a TD out of the deal. 34-24 in the fourth quarter. Another two-possession game.

Our defense then doesn't even bend, and our offense finally wakes up and, after being shut out in the third quarter, responds with the needed two touchdowns, a pass to B Foldy (FB #29) and another to Wetzel (HB #47) in the waning seconds. "Ho-hum," my team collectively seems to say. Meanwhile, I'm freaking out on the sidelines.

We made it exciting for the 5,089 in paid attendance.


score: 34-38
first downs: 11-19
total offense: 216-385
rushes - yards: 20-(-5) --- 36-159
comp-att-TD: 17-35-2 --- 17-38-3
passing yards: 221-226
sacked: 4-4
turnovers: 1-4
fumbles - lost: 0-0 --- 1-1
intercepted: 1-3
top: 13:31 -- 18:29


Root (QB #5) 115.0 rating, 15-33 for 203 yards, 3 TD, 2 INT
Wetzel (HB #47) 22-76 rush (3.4 avg), 1 TD; 2-16 rec, 1 TD
Foldy (FB #29) 4-49 rush (12.2 avg), 1 TD
Franklin (WR #81) 5-116 rec (23.1 avg), 1 TD
Buccheri (RG #59) 8 pancakes


Straka (CB #1) 6 tackles (1 for loss), 1 sack, 3 pass deflects
Umali (CB #3) 6 tackles (1 for loss), 1 INT
Price (LE #90) 2 tackles (2 for loss), 2 sacks
Bushell (MLB #42) 4 tackles (2 for loss)
Hayden (LOLB #56) 4 tackles

NOTES: We went 3-4 in converting fourth downs.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Season 3, Game 6:vs Colorado State

Colorado State Rams (5-0, #17) vs Milwaukee College Penguins (3-2, #68)

In the pre-season, the Colorado State Rams were ranked at #54. Coming into today's game, which would be broadcast regionally, they have risen up to #17 in the AP poll on the strength of their perfect record. No injuries on either side of the field made sure this was the game that we had agreed to in the pre-season.

I'm told that Lee Corso, who was calling the game for the regional broadcast, said "You could forget about this one, because it's going to get ugly. Why am I even here?!"

For the first defensive play of the game, from the 3-4 formation I called a Thunder Green blitz as a nod to the gods, and was rewarded by K Anderson (SS #26) sacking their QB.

On our first offensive possession, I introduced my new plan: the two-headed quarterback. I gave senior Root (QB #5) the start, but, on third-and-8, I called a 5-wide receiver set ... with sophomore Koch (QB #22) taking the snap. Why? With the threat of five wideouts occupying the six defensive backs, and All American Bogner (LT #52) and Leplae (LG #69) blocking the leftside, Koch was given the room to run. Koch got the first down, and dutifully left the field so Root could finish off the drive. 7-0.

Multiple mistakes by me and my team cost us more points, though. There was Chi (K #40) not being able to hit a 50-yard field goal (okay, that's not so much a mistake but we could've got him in closer); there was Root throwing an interception into the endzone.

We trade touchdowns to go 14-14 into the half. But it should've been 17-14 in our favor, except for mistake #3. With the ball on the 15-yard line with just 6 seconds left in the half, I send Koch out there with the five wide instead of calling for the field goal and he throws a completion but there's not enough time to line up for the kick. I have to manage my time better!!


The second half was insane. After we score a FG on our opening drive, the Rams score a touchdown but miss the extra point. I tell you, the winds off Lake Michigan can really wreak havoc on poor kickers. 20-17 in their favor. (It should've been 20-20 had I not make Mistake #3.)

Mistake #4. Straka, doing his usual excellence on a punt return, fumbles the ball for the first time all year. It's recovered by the Rams on the 41 yard line. Our defense stands firm, but, given the good field position Straka had us at, I would say that's at least another 3 points lost.

Early in the 4th quarter, their wide-receiver scores another long touchdown pitch-and-catch. 27-17, making it two scores to win the game.

On our next position, Root throws another INT. Mistake #5, but our defense stands firm and when our offense re-takes the field, I give the reins to Koch. Sorry, Root, but I was pissed more at myself than at you. Okay, a little at you. Koch gamely runs and throws until the drive stalls on the 15-yard line. But Chi hooks the field goal attempt left. Mistake #6.

Our defense bails us out again. Sort of. They get down to the 41 yard line. By running the ball, they run down the clock to less than 4 minutes. Koch in command again, running for the first down. He would finish with over 80 yards running, but he wouldn't finish the game. Tackled while throwing, Koch re-injures something and has to leave the game with an abdominal strain.

A chastened Root comes in with 2:32 left on the clock. 41-yard pass to Morgan (WR #88), followed a by a 13-yard touchdown throw to Columbus (WR #82). 27-24. Had I not made those earlier mistakes, we would've had some kind of a lead.

2-minutes left and our defense gets another three-and-out. Stuffing the run. Using a time-out. Stuffing the run again. Letting the clock run. On third-and-6, their QB throws an incomplete pass, stopping the clock with 90 seconds left. Plenty of time. We get the ball back near the 50 yard line.

Long throw to Franklin. Almost intercepted. 14-yard pass to Franklin. Now we're on the 39. Then, the play of the year. Trips Left. The play is called "Destroy." Root scrambles but the pocket holds. She heaves it down towards Morgan. The ball gets tipped by their cornerback, and into Morgan's little hands. Her momentum carries her the five yards into the end zone. We assume the lead with 50 seconds left.

Now that's a lot of time on the clock, especially with three timeouts. They get down to the 30 yard line, but a field goal won't win it for them. 31 seconds left. Walton, their QB, heaves it but my brother, Umali (CB #3) is covering his guy too well. The next play, my bro makes me proud by getting a sack. It's our fifth and perhaps most important sack of the day. Back to the 40 yard line. Anderson deflects a pass (which should've been an interception), and finally, Bennett does the same to end the game.

Root kneels a couple of times. Penguins over Rams.


score: 27-31
first downs: 13-25
total offense: 467-479
rushes - yards: 22-54 --- 37-149
comp-att-TD: 15-33-4 --- 22-47-3
passing yards: 413-330
sacked: 2-5
turnovers: 2-3
fumbles - lost: 1-0 --- 1-1
intercepted: 2-2
top: 12:55 -- 19:05


Root (QB #5) 124.6 rating, 13-25 for 185 yards, 2 TD, 2 INT
Koch (QB #22) 113.9 rating, 9-22 for 145 yards, 1 TD; 7-80 rush
Wetzel (HB #47) 21-69 rush, 1 TD
Franklin (WR #81) 6-142 (23.6 avg)
Buccheri (RG #59) 13 pancakes


Conti (MLB #72) 8 tackles (1 for loss)
Straka (CB #1) 5 tackles, (2 for loss)
Division (ROLB #39) 3 tackles
K Anderson (SS #26) 3 tackles (1 for loss), 1 sack, 1 INT, 1 pass deflect
Bennett (CB #10) 2 tackles (2 for loss), 1 INT, 3 pass deflects

NOTES: 8-16 converting third downs. Koch should be back for the next against (against Southern Mississippi University), so expect to see the same game plan.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Season 3, Game 5:at Notre Dame

Milwaukee College Penguins (3-1, #58) @ Notre Dame Fightin' Irish (3-1, #31)

42. 18. Those were the scores that Notre Dame beat us by the last two seasons. The Penguins meet up with arch-rival Notre Dame each year as a way to gauge our progress. But it is not like Notre Dame is going through a renaissance. In fact, it's the first time in three years that we've met up with them when they haven't been in the Top 25. The gap is getting closer.

Koch (QB #22) was cleared to play today and, despite back-up quarterback Root's (QB #5) fine performance in the last two games (wins against the University of Illinois and Buffalo, in which she threw for 255 yards each game), I elected to go with Koch.

The first quarter was a defensive battle, which tends to favor us. It wasn't until early in the 2nd quarter did we finally put points up on the board; Chi (K #40) kicks a field goal to give us our first ever lead against the Fightin' Irish.

But we couldn't score again in the half. Notre Dame finally broke threw, scoring two touchdowns but missing the extra point each time! 12-3 going into the half.

Both team's adjustments yield touchdowns in the third. But it's here in the second half where Koch starts to falter. Two interceptions. And then a sack puts him out of the game with "back spasms." Root comes in, cold, and throws an interception to ice the game for Notre Dame.


score: 10-25
first downs: 13-14
total offense: 225-323
rushes - yards: 25-32 --- 28-54
comp-att-TD: 18-42-0 --- 17--30-4
passing yards: 193-269
sacked: 2-1
turnovers: 3-0
fumbles - lost: 1-0 --- 1-0
intercepted: 3-0
top: 16:29 -- 15:31


Koch (QB #22) 75.5 rating, 18-40 for 193 yards, 2 INT
Wetzel (HB #47) 16-33 rush (2.0 avg), 1 TD; 4-23 rec
Williams (TE #80) 3-32 (10.6 avg)
Franklin (WR #81) 3-82 (27.3 avg)
Buccheri (RG #59) 3 pancakes


Straka (CB #1) 7 tackles, 1 pass deflect
Loeb (DT #60) 5 tackles
Conti (MLB #72) 4 tackles
Division (ROLB #39) 4 tackles (1 for loss)
Price (LE #90) 3 tackles (2 for loss), 1 sack

NOTES: This was kind of a demoralizing loss. It's the first time in a very long time where we haven't forced a turnover of any kind. The closest we got was forcing a fumble, but we went back to our old ways and didn't recover it. Also, everybody and their mother was hoping that Koch would come back and build upon that solid first game of the season, where he scored twice, one through the air and once rushing. But he proved to be in a fragile state of health. With an undefeated Colorado State looming in the horizon, expect to see some unusual tactics from us.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Season 3, Game 4:at Buffalo

Milwaukee College Penguins (1-1, #62) @ Buffalo Bulls (1-2, #82)

I read this to my players before the game against Buffalo. It's written by Nobel Award winning author, Harold Pinter, and it is titled "American Football."

American Football

It works.
We blew the shit out of them.

We blew the shit right back up their own ass
And out their fucking ears.

It works.
We blew the shit out of them.
They suffocated in their own shit!

Praise the Lord for all good things.

We blew them into fucking shit.
They are eating it.

Praise the Lord for all good things.

We blew their balls into shards of dust,
Into shards of fucking dust.

We did it.

Now I want you to come over here and kiss me on the mouth.


Luckily, nobody took me up on the offer - and hopefully nobody will sue me for sexual harassment. Everybody knew I was reciting a poem.

Smash mouth football. That's what we had to do in order to win today's game. We entered the fourth quarter down 24 to the Bulls' 27. I couldn't believe it, actually. Near the beginning of the last quarter, Root (QB #5), still filling in for injured Koch (QB #22), tosses her second touchdown pass of the day, a short cross pattern to Sieczek (TE #86) to take the lead. Then our defense took over, giving us two three-and-outs while I called running play after running play. Wetzel (HB #47) and B Foldy (FB #29) combine for over 150 yards on the ground, and over 20 minutes of the game clock.


score: 34-27
first downs: 24-10
total offense: 411-422
rushes - yards: 43-156 --- 17-48
comp-att-TD: 17-29-2 --- 12-22-3
passing yards: 255-374
sacked: 2-2
turnovers: 1-1
fumbles - lost: 0-0 --- 1-0
intercepted: 1-1
top: 20:30 - 11:30


Root (QB #5) 148.3 rating, 17-29 for 255 yards, 2 TD
Wetzel (HB #47) 35-140 rush (4.0 avg), 1 TD; 3-7 rec, 1 TD
Columbus (WR #82) 5-79 rec (15.8 avg)
Finner (WR #83) 4-61 rec (15.2 avg)
Buccheri (RG #59) 5 pancakes


Straka (CB #1) 5 tackles, 2 pass deflect
Hayden (LOLB #56) 4 tackles
Price (LE #90) 4 tackles (1 for loss), 1 sack, 1 forced fumble
K Anderson (SS #26) 3 tackles (1 for loss), 1 sack
Geigel (FS #23) 1 INT, 1 pass deflect

NOTES: Next up, our seasonal meeting against Notre Dame. Koch should be healthy enough to start ... but will I want to? Root has gone 2-1 in the last three games. It is her senior year, after all.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Season 3, Game 3:vs. U of Illinois (Homecoming)

University of Illinois (1-1, #42) @ Milwaukee College Penguins (1-1, #83)

Homecoming. The pageantry. The tailgates. The tofu pups and "not dogs." All we need is a win.

During practice, Root (QB #5) practiced timing patterns with our top recruit, Morgan (QB #88). Senior to freshman. As I watched from the sidelines, I was impressed with these two people at different ends of their careers matching each other's intensity. This would be Root and Morgan's first start at home.

On our first possession, Root played calmly and converted third down after third down before connecting on a 34-yard touchdown throw to Morgan. After a Straka (CB #1) interception, the two would connect again, this time for 21 yards. It was 14-0 just like that.

Our defense got burned on a long run, but we re-grouped after that. We actually scored on our first four possessions. Morgan's TD catches were followed by a Wetzel (HB #47) run and a Chi (K #40) field goal. 24-7 at the half.

The Fightin' Illini gave it a fight in the second half, but we matched their scores. B. Foldy (FB #29), with his younger sister E. Foldy (red-shirted SS #24) leading the cheers from the sideline, powered in two scores. We ran well throughout the game. Even backup half-back (and K. Anderson's (SS #26) sister), M. Anderson (HB #12), got a couple of a touches. We hogged the ball and kept their offense off the field for all but 9 minutes and 51 seconds.

With the convincing win, we are now 1-2 on homecoming games.


score: 20-41
first downs: 11-27
total offense: 295-450
rushes - yards: 16-113 --- 44-195
comp-att-TD: 12-24-2 --- 17-33-2
passing yards: 182-255
sacked: 1-1
turnovers: 3-0
fumbles - lost: 0-0 --- 1-0
intercepted: 3-0
top: 9:51 - 22:09


Root (QB #5) 136.4 rating, 17-33 for 255 yards, 2 TD; 8-37 rush (4.6 avg)
Wetzel (HB #47) 29-116 rush (4 avg), 1 TD
B Foldy (FB #29) 5-23 rush (4.5 avg), 2 TD
Morgan (WR #88) 3-65 (21.6 avg), 2 TD
Buccheri (RG #59) 10 pancakes


Miller (RE #62) 4 tackles (1 for loss)
Conti (MLB #72) 4 tackles
Hayden (LOLB #56) 2 tackles (1 for loss), 1 sack
Straka (CB #1) 2 tackles, 1 INT, 1 pass deflect
Bennett (CB #10) 2 tackles, 1 INT, 1 pass deflect

NOTES: The athletic director of Milwaukee College was so enthusiastic at our first homecoming win that he let it slip that all the upper-ups were talking about a "contract extension" for me at the end of the year. I pshawed and quickly changed the subject. I know how quickly fortunes can change. First things first. Up next: Buffalo.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Season 3, Game 2:@ Kansas State

Milwaukee College Penguins (1-0, #82) vs. Kansas State Wildcats (1-0, #13)

I had said in my pre-season thoughts that this would be our first major test. We traveled overnight to Manhattan, Kansas and practiced in the palatial KSU Stadium. Nuts. The U-shaped stadium felt like it could hold over 50,000 people.

And it sounded much more than that on game day. Yikes. Somehow, the game garnered the attention of the regional television team. The cameras, the announcers, and really, the crowd, all worked against us. On top of that, our starting QB, M. Koch (QB #22) was out with a pinched nerve.

Remarkably, back-up quarterback Root (QB #5) wasn't cowed by any of the above-mentioned factors. This was her first start of her career! After the Wildcats scored easily on their first possession, the defensive squads traded three-and-outs. Then Root marched the Penguins down the field in a masterful scoring drive, capped by Wetzel's (HB #47) first running score of the season.

Tied going into the half. But it should've been much more. We couldn't capitalize on K Anderson's (SS #26) or Bennett's (CB #10) interceptions. Root also threw an interception. I hate those interceptions right at the goal line.

Kansas State made some big adjustments and came out and scored TDs on their first two possessions. Quickly, it was 21-7. We pressed but we could only come up with a field-goal from Chi (K #40). I went for it a couple of times and fourth-and-short but failed each time. Root was frustrated out there - despite the score this was a winnable game. I made some bad calls, putting our defense up against the wall, but our receivers also made 6 drops. 6 drops.

First major test: failed.


score: 38-10
first downs: 17-17
total offense: 302-499
rushes - yards: 33-104 --- 27-149
comp-att-TD: 15-38-0 --- 14-23-4
passing yards: 198-350
sacked: 1-0
turnovers: 1-3
fumbles - lost: 1-0 --- 0-0
intercepted: 1-3
top: 18:11 -- 13:45


Root (QB #5) 78.0 rating, 15-38 for 198 yards, 1 INT; 10-26 rush (2.5 avg)
Wetzel (HB #47) 22-73 rush (3.3 avg), 1 TD
Morgan (WR #88) 4-64 yards (16 avg)
Franklin (WR #81) 3-50 yards (16.6 avg)
Bogner (LT #52) 6 pancakes


Conti (MLB #72) 8 tackles (2 for loss)
Miller (RE #62) 4 tackles (1 for loss)
Bennett (CB #10) 4 tackles, 1 INT
Germain (DT #91) 3 tackles
Price (LE #90) 3 tackles

NOTES: Our next game is homecoming. We face the Fightin' Illini. Hope to see all of Milwaukee there.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Season 3, Game 1:@ Eastern Michigan

Milwaukee College Penguins (0-0, #89) vs. Eastern Michigan University (0-0, #110)

Windy and rainy here in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Despite our 0-1 record in the rain, our players - and myself - were optimistic about today's game. We were psyched. We were fielding three 1st team All-Americans (Buccheri (RG #59), Leplae (LG #69), and Straka (CB #1)) and one 2nd team All-American (Bogner (RT #52)). Also, we were introducing several highly touted recruits: my brother, R. Umali (CB #73) comes off his red-shirted year to join the secondary; top recruits Morgan (WR #88) and Franklin (WR #81) join their old teacher Mr. Finner (WR #83) in the wide-receiver corps. I expect lots of synergy there.

The first play of the game. The Eastern Michigan Eagles kick-off and Straka promptly returns it 91 yards for the touchdown. It's the Penguins' first kick-off returned for a touchdown. That's the first play of the season?! This bodes well.

Our first defensive play of the game. Hayden (LOLB #56) blitzes in for the sack. Two plays later, Geigel (SS #23), making her first start (replacing E. Ziegeweid who graduated), makes our first interception of the season. On our ensuing drive, Koch (QB #22) displayed his agility and ran it in. 14-0, lickety-split.

K. Miller (RE #62) recovered a fumble; Straka got an interception. By the end of the first half, we were up 31-3, largely due to 21 points off of turnovers.

But despite our blow-out, we suffered a big loss. M. Koch got injured late in the game and had to be helped off the field. The team doctors say he is out 3-4 weeks. In comes plucky back-up quarterback, Root (QB #5). She gamely led our charges to our only touchdown in the second half, completing 6 of 8 passes for 93 yards. It's her senior year; she'll be starting her first game against highly-ranked Kansas State.


score: 47-3
first downs: 20 - 8
total offense: 391-177
rushes - yards: 32-206 --- 33-26
comp-att-TD: 13-27-2 --- 9-28-0
passing yards: 185 - 151
sacked: 3 - 4
turnovers: 4 - 7
fumbles - lost: 6 - 3 --- 4 - 3
intercepted: 1 - 4
top: 16:16 -- 15:44


Root (QB #5) 213.9 rating, 6-8 for 93 yards, 1 TD
Koch (QB #22) 84.4 rating, 7-19 for 92 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT; 8-41 rush (5.1 avg), 1 TD
Wetzel (HB #47) 22-138 rush (6.2 avg); 2-36 rec (18 avg)
Morgan (WR #88) 4-59 yards (14.7 avg), 1 TD
Leplae (LG #69) 6 pancakes


Umali (CB #73) 7 tackles (1 for loss) 1 sack, 1 forced fumble, 1 pass deflect
Straka (CB #1) 2 tackles, 1 INT, 1 pass deflect; 1 kick return, 91 yards, TD
Hayden (LOLB #56) 3 tackles (2 for loss), 2 sacks, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recover
Conti (MLB #72) 5 tackles (3 for loss)
Bushell (MBL #42) 6 tackles (1 for loss), 1 forced fumble

NOTES: Our defense hasn't given up a touchdown in two straight games. Freshman kicker R. Chi (#40), under winds gusting at about 25-26 mph, went 4-5 in field goals.

Saturday, October 08, 2005

Season 3: Pre-Season Thoughts

My superiors in the Milwaukee College Athletic Department have made me aware that this is the season. My contract only runs through three seasons. While I've increased the visibility of the school and its attendant prestige, I still haven't posted a winning season nor seriously been considered by any of the multitude of bowls. A winning season is a must for this season if I'm to have any chance of retaining my job. The bowl bid will natural follow.

Look for Game 2 versus Kansas State as an early test. It's actually our only Pre-Season Top 25 match-up on the schedule. Notre Dame, whom we meet in Game 6, is ranked at 29 before the season's start. The schedule's difficulty is ranked at three stars. Our opponent's average pre-season rating is 66.

I'm excited for our season. Our defense only gets better with the addition of my brother, R. Umali (CB #73), at cornerback. Our top top recruits this season, both wide receivers, give us the much-needed speed at that position. Maybe this is the season that an actual wide receiver will lead my team in receptions; for the past two seasons, it's been Wetzel (HB #47).

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Season 2's Graduating Seniors (continued)

All hail the graduating seniors from the defensive squad and special teams.

N. Frank (RE #48). Practice squad RE, special-teamer and back-up to starter K. Miller (RE #62). 4 tackles, 1 forced fumble. Being on the Penguins afforded him the time to maintain the Nicholas Frank Public Library as well as attend Milwaukee College on scholarship.

R. Umali (ROLB #50). 45 tackles, 1 sack, 1 INT, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovered, 9 pass deflects. My dad, as well as my mom, leaves the team and heads immediately to semi-retirement.

V. Valiant (ROLB #54). 18 tackles, 1 forced fumble, 3 pass deflects. My dad's back-up saw some quality play time due to my dad's injuries. At the other end of life's arc from my dad, Valiant should now be in junior high.

S. Umali (MLB #43). 55 tackles, 1 sack, 1 INT, 1 forced fumble, 1 pass deflect. My mom led the team in tackles with 38 during Season 1. She split MLB duties with V. Bushell (MLB #42) during Season 2. She one-ups my dad by graduating into full-retirement.

D. Smith (CB #21). 22 tackles, 1 sack, 1 pass deflect. 4th on the corner back depth-chart, D. Smith was dependable off the bench. He stays in the field of education.

E. Ziegeweid (FS #34). 64 tackles, 10 INT, 1 forced fumble, 1 fumble recovered, 21 pass deflects. Ziegeweid led the team in INT in the first season. His risky strategy of mostly going for the INT instead of just playing it safe and going for the deflect remains a core tenet of our secondary.

A. Melchior (SS #24). Back-up to K. Anderson (SS #26), she talled 17 tackles in a couple of years. She leaves the team to assume a full-time managerial position in an arts organization.

S. Goodman (K# 30). 26-33 (78%) field-goals, longest: 45-yards. 76-76 extra-points. Perfect field-goal kicker (14 for 14) in his senior year, Goodman, a philosophy major, leaves school to work at a local law firm.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Season 2's Graduating Seniors

The Milwaukee College Penguins are losing 16 players to graduation! Join me in recognizing their accomplishments and wishing them well in their future careers. This post contains the career totals of the 8 seniors who played on the offensive squad.

S. Barber (HB #11): 83-346 yards (4.2 avg), 3 TDs; 17-168 rec (9.9 avg), 2 TDs. Holds the record for longest run from scrimmage (44 yards). Already a commuter student, Milwaukee has a better chance of seeing her artworks than of seeing her.

B. Ciraldo (FB #25): 110-428 yards (3.9 avg), 5 TDs (24 long); 5-84 rec (16.8 avg). I'm told he's working for a local film production company.

E. Gerber (FB #21): 21 tackles. Steady player on special teams. He goes on to continue his film studies.

E. Beaumont (WR #81): 45-569 rec (12.6 avg), 4 TD; 15 pancakes. He moves on to an interesting job: the librarian at the County Jail.

J. Montgomery (WR #15): 38-605 rec (15.9 avg), 8 TD; 3-19 rush (6.3 avg), 1 TD. A favorite target for quarterback M. Koch (QB #22), Montgomery surprised all by coming back from a broken ribs suffered on the last game of Season 1. She leaves Milwaukee to teach at a university in Chicago.

C. Khalafian (CK #80): 68-879 rec (12.9 avg); 5 TD. By far the furthest commuter student. Living in LA and working a film editor, she made each game and proved her reliability on the field, finishing second only to Wetzel (HB #47) in receptions.

R. Nordstrom (LT #68): 1 kick return, 16 yards. Special-teamer whose only stat is a crazed kick-return. She assumes a job teaching our city's future.

C. Vee (C #63): 59 panackes, 4 sacks allowed. I'm told, through an unverified source, that she's going to continue her time here in Milwaukee, but that's all I know.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

Season 2 Lauds

Where would our running game be without our dominating front line, anchored by the voracious S. Buccheri (LG #59). Tallying something like 75 or so pancake blocks this season, she was the shoo-in to repeat as Lineman Of the Year. Congratulations!

She also made 1st Team All-American, along with fellow guard, X. Leplae (RG #69). What a duo.

Straka (CB #10) made the Freshmen All-American team, finishing the season with 8 interceptions. Our 39 takeaways (25 interceptions and 14 fumble recoveries) was tops in the league!

Good job!

Towards the Off-Season

The "strength" of our schedule was probably the determining factor in us not getting invited to a bowl. I can't say I'm surprised ... we did our best just to post a .500 season. Next year, we'll be in a bowl. My contract sort of stipulates that. Even though my job safety is rated as a "B", I am not taking anything for granted.

My recruitment efforts have started in earnest.

For the National Championship, it's #1 Oklahoma versus #5 UCLA in the Orange Bowl.