The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

Sports

August 24, 2013

College football: Local products look to keep Bloomsburg University in right direction

By Todd Hummel

For The Daily Item

BLOOMSBURG -- The more things change the more they stay the same is one of the oldest clichés in the book.

However clichés are clichés for a reason.

With retirement of long-time coach Danny Hale -- who left with a 173-56-1 record after 20 seasons -- Bloomsburg University will maintain its status quo at least for this season.

Long-time assistant coach Paul Darragh, the Huskies' defensive coordinator for the last 18 years, takes over on an interim basis for the 2013 season.

With most of the coaching staff staying the same, the players see very little change around the Huskies.

"Coach Darragh has been around coach Hale so long everything is almost the same," Senior offensive linemen Chris Steck said. "Not much has changed. The seniors have been pushing guys to stay focused and work hard."

Steck a senior guard from Mount Carmel is among a group of offensive players back for the Huskies from last year's 10-2 squad.

Steck has a bevy of running backs to block for including Harlon Hill finalist Franklyn Quiteh, who rushed for 2,121 and 24 touchdowns last season.

"We've all been playing together so long especially on the line," Steck said. "We don't even have to make (line) calls all the time. We just know what the other guy will do by feel."

With backup tailback Eddie Mateo (1,092 yards, 6 touchdowns) not returning to the team, redshirt freshman Tyrelle Thomas is vying for the spot. Thomas is the Southern Columbia standout, who tore his ACL before his senior season.

Another local product is another unsung hero of the running game, fullback Matt Wenrich. The Selinsgrove High grad touched the ball just five times last season, but, Wenrich earns his rewards in other ways.

"It's great to block for these guys," Wenrich said. "When you get a block to get these guys (into the secondary), they are off to the races. It's a great feeling."

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