The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA

September 23, 2013

Todd Hummel's college football column: Lewisburg graduate making impact at Dickinson College


Daily Item

---- — Dickinson College needed a center after Marc Baumann graduated and Kyle Santorine was looking for a school to play college football.

Except there was no apprenticeship for the Lewisburg graduate. He stepped right on to the field for the Red Devils as their starting center in the first game of his collegiate career back on Sept. 7 when Dickinson hosted Hobart.

"Coming in as a freshman, knowing the previous center graduated, I knew there would be a spot open," Santorine said. "I really worked my butt off this summer."

Santorine made a trip home this past weekend, getting to Christy Mathewson Memorial Stadium on Friday night to see his former team win its homecoming game against Shikellamy.

Then with some of his former Lewisburg teammates in attendance on Saturday afternoon, Santorine helped Dickinson rush for 258 yards in their first win of the year: 24-21 over Susquehanna.

Santorine knew it wouldn't be easy to step on the field as freshman in college and play on the offensive line.

"The guys have been great. I've been putting a lot extra work outside of practice with film sessions and going over plays," Santorine said. "The upperclassmen have been great."

Another big change for the 6-foot, 280-pounder is the type of offense they run at Dickinson. Santorine of course played in Lewisburg's Delaware Wing-T offense in high school, while the Red Devils play a spread-option offense. Most of Santorine's snaps are out of the shotgun, though the Green Dragons did run some shotgun at times.

"We did shotgun all through high school, so that hasn't been the much of a switch," Santorine said. "The terminology is different and even the way to execute plays is different."

An example in the Wing-T, Santorine usually performed a down block. In the Red Devils' offense, Santorine is responsible for getting a linebacker and even pulling at times.

"In the spread, I'm more trying to get into the second level," Santorine said. "I'm pulling sometimes. It's a lot different than the Wing-T."

However, that isn't the biggest difference for Santorine. Like most high school players making the jump, the speed of the college game is a lot different for Santorine.

"Guys come off the ball quicker. They are stronger," Santorine said. "You have to stay lower in your blocks. You have to think faster. It's a big change."

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In another Lewisburg update, safety Robbie Gaines got his first collegiate interception last weekend for Emory and Henry in the Wasps' 49-13 win over Ferrum.

Gaines, now a junior, also had a tackle in the team's victory Saturday over Marysville (Tenn.).

Gaines is a two-time member of the Old Dominion Athletic Conference All-Academic team and is president of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes at Emory and Henry.