FORESTER FOOTBALL

FORESTER FOOTBALL

Saturday, December 10, 2011

FORESTERS PREPARE FOR ALL-AMERICAN BOWL IN MINNEAPOLIS

Head Coach Jim Catanzaro will be making his second appearance as a coach in the annual DII/DIII All-American Bowl in Minneapolis, MN this upcoming week. He will be joined by Forester football team members Luke Butts, Kevin Davis, and Kenny Clady-Mason.

"I am thrilled that I will have the opportunity to coach our players in the game. Last year, after seeing the quality of the competition, I felt that it would be very difficult to get our guys in. After the seasons that Luke and Kevin had, the committee was actually coming to me to ask about them. Kenny was selected primarily off of his junior year when he was a second team all-conference player. His senior season was plagued by injuries, but I believe that the time off will definitely help him be prepared to have one more great game," said Catanzaro.

The official LFC Press Release can be seen HERE

Monday, November 28, 2011

Foresters have six named to the All MWC teams!

Official LFC Press Release

The Lake Forest College football team received a nod of six all-conference selections from the Midwest Conference. Named to the First team were senior WR Kevin Davis and senior DB Luke Butts. Butts earned his third all-conference nod, while Davis received his first as a wide receiver after being a two time selection on special teams.

Record setting junior Quarterback Pete Scaffidi, junior running back Al Mitchell, and senior offensive lineman Gil Munoz were all named to the second team, while senior defensive lineman Casey Flynn received his second nod to the all-conference team as a second team selection.

Davis, who scored 13 touchdowns, while breaking the school record for receiving yards in a season (1,282 yards). Butts finished in the top 6 in school history in tackles (319) and interceptions (10) for his career.

"All of these players are very deserving. I am confident that the coaches in the MWC have seen that we are a program on the rise, and the acknowledgement of the contributions these players have made is well deserved. I couldn't be more happy for them, and I know that this is not the last awards they will receive," commented Coach Catanzaro.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Foresters Extinguish Prairie Fire

In a highly anticipated game, the Foresters did something on Saturday that they hadn't done since 2006, and that was win a game on the road vs. Knox College 31-27.

In addition to winning the game, the Foresters continued their assault on the teams offensive record books, as several records were either tied, or fell at Saturday's game. For a complete summary of records that were broken or tied, please see this article.

The Foresters had two unlikely heroes on the day, in addition to their offensive superstars. Freshman Kicker Donnie Caldwell, made a huge play in the third quarter as he connected on his first field goal of his career to extend the Forester lead to 24-7. This would be the Foresters only points in one of their longest touchdown droughts, going 32 minutes between their last two touchdowns in the game.

Junior Aidan Price's block and recovery of Knox's extra point attempt after their final touchdown kept the Prairie Fire lead at 3points.

"Aidan's block was a huge play. This allowed us to have options. If we needed to, we felt that we could line up for a field goal and tie the game and go to overtime if we needed to. I am glad that we didn't need to. With Donnie making his first field goal attempt, we knew he be confident, and we knew where we would need to be on the field in order for him to make the field goal," said Coach Catanzaro.

The Foresters had one of their best defensive "halves" on the season in the first half against Knox. Allowing just 118 yards, of which 71 came on Knox's lone scoring drive. The Foresters also limited the Prairie Fire to 6 total first downs, four of which came on the lone Knox scoring drive. The Forester defense received a big boost from Freshman John Preston. Preston, who had spent much of the season at Fullback, made his first start at linebacker versus Knox.

"John Preston's performance on Saturday, sealed his move to the defensive side of the ball. He had one of the most productive games of any defensive player in my time at Lake Forest. One of the things that won't show up in the box score is how impactful his two sacks were on the course of the game. His ability to get pressure, without us having to zone blitz really gave us a strong advantage. He was as focused as any player on his task, and executed with outstanding skill. He set the tone for our whole team on our first kick off when he ran down the field, and made a big hit on the Knox returner. From that point on, he just had a game to remember. I hope he can duplicate that next week."

For his efforts, Preston was named the MWC Defensive Player of the week, the first since Ed Dobernig in week 8 of the 2010 season. Preston finished the day with 18 tackles, 2 sacks, and 1.5 tackles fora loss. For more information on the MWC Player of the Week award, please click here.

The offensive attack was balanced throughout the team as two receivers, Kevin Davis and Austin Sobey would have over 100 yards receiving, and junior running back Al Mitchell would have his biggest rushing total of his career with 171 yards on 24 carries. His 171 yards were the 8th highest single game total by a Forester running back. Sobey would tie a school record that he shares with Davis among others with three touchdown receptions. Sobey is the first player in school history to have multiple three TD games in the same season, after securing three TD's versus Illinois College earlier in the season.

Davis would add to his single season records for yards with another 148 yards receiving. Among his yardage was a critical fourth down reception on the game winning drive. On fourth and five with under three minutes to go in the game, Scaffidi found Davis in the right flat. At the point of reception, Davis would not have had the first down, but with a burst of speed towards the sideline, he was able to pick up the necessary yardage and get out of bounds.

"Our final drive of the game was text book. We knew that our play makers on offense would find a way to do get us the score. The first play of the drive really set the tone, rather than go to the air immediately, we ran a run play with Pete. This is a play that we hadn't run all game, and it collected 18 yards of breathing room for us. I have to admit, I was a little nervous when we got to 3rd and 4th down, but if there is one thing that I have learned this season is that we have guys who will find a way to make the necessary play on offense. When Pete found Kevin for the first down, it calmed me down quite a bit. Pete's pass to Austin for the game winning touchdown was a perfectly executed play against the coverage that we saw. On the previous play, all of the coaches saw an opening for a touchdown. I give a lot of credit to Coach Kerr for coming back with that play-call to get the game winner," said Catanzaro. "One thing that goes unnoticed and I have to mention is that as we went into the kickoff team huddle after the touchdown, we were short a few players due to injuries that were suffered during the game. I called out to KD and said, 'Hey man, I need you for one more play. Can you give it?'-- He didn't even hesitate, 'Coach, I got you.' Mind you, Kevin had come off the field with a minor injury in the third quarter. This is not a surprise by any means, but how many record setting wide receivers are running down on their teams kickoff team. Not only did he run down, he went out there and made the tackle. After giving up a big return in the third quarter, we really needed to get them pinned on their side of the 50, and Kevin did that. He is one of the most humble, and hand-working players on our team. The maturation that he has gone through from his freshman year to now, is something that is truly special, and he is a player that I couldn't be more proud of."

"Austin had a great game. In addition to the three touchdown passes that he caught, there were numerous drive extending catches as well. He did a great job of getting open and making catches. Knox was trying to double team Kevin early in the game, and Austin and Pete did a tremendous job of making them pay against single coverage. Austin has had a breakout junior season. I know how hard he worked in the weight room this past spring and he is really seeing some rewards from that."

Scaffidi recorded his third straight game of 300+ yards passing, and his sixth on the season. On the season Scaffidi has an astounding TD to interception ration at 28-5. Scaffidi is current ranked 2nd in NCAA Division III in Points responsible for, 3rd in total offense, 7th in Passing yards per game. Senior Kevin Davis is ranked 3rd in receiving yards per game, Davis is also 4th in receiving yards (total).

"It was a great win. It made for an enjoyable bus ride home, and now our guys are focused on closing out the conference slate next Friday," said Catanzaro.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Coach's Show Cancelled!

The Forester Football Coach's Show is cancelled today, due to the teams travel to Galesburg for their game against Knox. Coach Cat sends his best, and hopes that next week we will be able to talk about a win streak during the Coach's Show.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Pictures from the Benny Watters Cup

Pictures from the Benny Watters Memorial Cup can be found HERE

Foresters unload on Vikings!




The Foresters completed their road trips to Wisconsin on Saturday with a victory over Lawrence. The Foresters finished 2-0 on games played north of the border. This day saw the Foresters dominate in every facet of the game from start to finish.

The Foresters kicked off to start the game, and the defense recorded a quick 3 and out on a Vikings offense that had scored 62 points in a single game this season. After a LU punt, the Foresters went 8 plays and 87 yards, culminating on a 54 yard touchdown pass from junior Pete Scaffidi to senior Kevin Davis. The prolific duo would combine for five completions for 152 yards and 3 TD's on the day. The Foresters took the lead at the 8:54 mark of the first quarter and never looked back, on their way to a dominating and record setting performance.

The Foresters defense would show that they were ready for the challenge of the day, and record another 3 and out series where the Vikings would have negative ten yards on the drive. The Forester defense would finish the day recording six three and outs on the day, a season high. The Forester defense also held the Vikings to a 12% conversion rate on third downs (1-8).

Several Foresters had days they are not likely to forget anytime soon. Junior Pete Scaffidi continues his assault on the LFC single season and single game record books, as he tied his own record (5 TD passes in a game), and increased his season touchdown mark (now at 25). Scaffidi is now within 8 completions and 207 passing yards of topping those marks for the single season as well.

Teammate Kevin Davis, is nearing a number of his own records, as he needs 2 touchdown receptions and 56 yards to break the programs single season marks with three games remaining in the season. In addition, Davis, tied his own single game record of three touchdown receptions in the game.

Not to be outdone, freshman place kicker Donnie Caldwell tied a school record held by Pat Dunne '02 for extra points in a single game with 8. Ironically, Dunne, recorded his 8 extra points against Lawrence in 1999.

"It was a great win. I was thrilled to see our team play at a high level on both sides of the ball. I was disappointed that we gave up the two late touchdowns when the game was out of hand (56-24). I am excited that we did as much damage in the passing game on so few attempts. To average 12 and a half yards per attempt and 20.5 per completion is outstanding. Defensively, I was really excited about how we started the game. We came out with great determination and felt like we had something to prove," commented head football coach Jim Catanzaro after the game.

"The true stars of the game were the offensive line. Gil, Sal, Dan, Ari, and Tommy paved the way for something that I have never seen at Lake Forest, or anywhere else that I have coached. 610 total yards, 239 on the ground, and 0 sacks. That is truly an awesome display. I couldn't have been more proud of the way that those guys played. I know that with Ari, a first year football player, and Tommy (sophomore) that they really want to help the three seniors go out with some big time memories. I have no doubt that when these guys comeback for homecoming ten years from now, this will be one of the games at the top of their list."


"Our offense has kept us in every game, and our defense is starting to catch up. We have played seven games this year, and have had a different starting lineup on defense each week. Our guys up front did a tremendous job, despite being without two of our senior starters, who were hurt for the week. (Kenny Clady-Mason and Dylan Burke). We saw a great performance by Taylor (Holzmeyer) up front. Two sacks, a forced fumble, and a few more pressures, really created havoc on their backfield," said Catanzaro. "Guys have to step up when others get injured, and I saw a few guys definitely do that."

"The players did a great job executing the game plan on both sides of the ball, and Coach Kerr put together an offensive plan of attack that was as perfect as they get. I know when we watch film, we'll hope that there are some areas to improve upon, because as coaches we are never satisfied, but I can tell you, watching that game today from the sideline, I was as satisfied in the moment as I have been in a long time," finished Catanzaro.

Coaches Players of the Game:
Offense: Kevin Davis 5 catches, 152 yards, 30ypc avg, 3 TD (ties school record)

Defense: Luke Butts 12 tackles (10 solo), 1 Pass break up, and 2 TFL's

Special Teams: Donnie Caldwell- 8 Extra points (ties school record)

Lineman: Taylor Holzmeyer- 2 sacks, 1 Forced Fumble, and 2 pressures.

Scout Team: Clint Stibbard- LB

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Foresters can't close out conference leaders.



The Foresters provided their fans with one of the most entertaining games of the season on Saturday. From the pre-kickoff stare down, to the the final play of the game, there was no doubt that the Foresters were going to fight the entire game through against the conference leading Scots from Monmouth.

Through the first three quarters, the Foresters benefited from some timely defensive plays and a potent offense that continues to be near the top of the league in most statistical categories. With seven minutes to go in the third quarter, the Foresters lead 28-19, when Jordan Cruz picked off All-American quarterback Alex Tanney and returned the ball to the 46 yard line.

"This was a critical point for us. This could have given us an opportunity to go up 16-17 points. We know that their offense is potent, and to put pressure on them would have been great. We had proven that we could put together long drives, just like our first one (seven minutes long), and we felt that we could do that again if necessary in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, we weren't able to put the ball in the end zone," commented Coach Catanzaro.

The Foresters would punt, and the Scots would go 80 yards on 9 plays to cut the Forester lead to 2 points. On the subsequent kickoff, the Foresters would fumble the return, and the Scots would capitalize on the mistake taking their first lead of the day at 32-28 over the Foresters. The teams would score a combined 46 points in the fourth quarter. The Foresters unfortunately would come up a touchdown short against the Scots falling 53-47.

"I couldn't be more proud of our guys. They refused to be intimidated, and fought from the opening kickoff to the end of the game. Some of our playmakers really stepped up and made big plays," said Catanzaro. "Guys like KD, Pete, and Al Mitchell really stepped up to the challenge that we put on them at the beginning of the week. When you look at what those three individuals did today, you can't help but be excited about what the future of our program looks like."

The three players that Catanzaro mentioned accounted for 145 rushing yards, 237 yards receiving, and 389 yards passing. Both Mitchell and Scaffidi threw for a touchdown, while Davis and Scaffidi both rushed for touchdowns. Mitchell and Davis both caught touchdowns from Scaffidi as well. Junior Rocky Al-Mutawa recorded 3 catches for two touchdowns on the day, while sophomore tight end Justin Smith had the best day of his young career with 7 catches for 66 yards and a touchdown.

The Forester defense was paced by John Dillon and Jordan Cruz. Dillon had 10 tackles on the day, while Cruz had five tackles, a sack, a tackle for a loss, and an interception. Sophomore cornerback Darrius McKay added his third interception of the year in the first half as well.

"If you were to tell me before the game that we would score 47 points, and force three take-aways against any opponent, I'd believe that we would win 99.9% of those games. Unfortunately, we ran into the top team in our conference and they were able to overcome those two things and still find a way to win. As I told our players, the thing that will take us to the next step is finding ways to win the game in the end. I feel like this season has had so many near misses, that we are bound to get over the hump soon," said Catanzaro. Near misses is the perfect description for the Foresters W-L record to this point. Their record sits at 1-5, the Foresters have been within 5 points of winning the game in the fourth quarter in each game except for the Grinnell game.

The Foresters return to action in Appleton, Wisconsin to take on Lawrence University on Saturday, October 22nd at 1pm.

Players of the Game:
Offense: Pete Scaffidi 36*-48 360yds 4TD's, rushing: 17car 63 yds 1Td
Defense: Jordan Cruz
Special Teams: Tanner Daugherty 3 tackles and averaged 36.2 yards per punt.
Scout Team: Jr. Justin Novak
Lineman: Gil Munoz

*School Record


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Foresters collect first MWC victory on the road at Beloit!


It was the first victory of Coach Jim Catanzaro's young head coaching career in the state of Wisconsin, but more importantly, it was the Foresters first MWC victory of the 2011 campaign.

The Foresters came out of the locker room performing at a very high level. The defense, which had gone through a rough couple of games pitched only its second shut out quarter of the '11 season in the first quarter. The Foresters gained some significant momentum in the first quarter as they forced a fumble on Beloit's second possession. The Forester offense turned that takeaway into seven points four plays later on a three yard pass from Pete Scaffidi to Kevin Davis. It was the fifth time that the two South Elgin High School alums have connected for a touchdown pass in give games.

Beloit would attempt to answer the Forester score, but a missed field goal would provide the Foresters a chance to extend their lead. On the fifth play of the drive, Scaffidi would again find Davis for a 61 yard touchdown. The touchdown gave the Foresters their first double digit lead of the season.

"It was awesome. We had talked about extending a lead the last two weeks, and to finally accomplish it, I think was a great feeling for everyone on the team. We had explained to the players the advantages and the two score lead, and what it would allow us to do as coaches. I know that they were really trying to make that happen. After we got that second touchdown, there was a portion of our playbook defensively that had been dormant for a while that we could now tap into. Our defensive guys were excited," said Coach Catanzaro.

The Bucs would take their next possession 49 yards, before a big third down stop by the Foresters. Beloit would convert the 26 yard field goal. The Foresters next drive would be their only 3 and out possession of the day. After a Tanner Daugherty punt that pinned Beloit inside their 20 yard line, junior safety Aidan Price, who was making his first scheduled start for the Foresters recorded his first career interception. Price would return it the interception to the 14 yard line. The first play from scrimmage was 14 yard touchdown pass to junior Austin Sobey to give the Foresters a 20-3 lead.

The Foresters went into halftime, with words of caution from their head coach. "No lead is safe, and we must FINISH the game," said Catanzaro. "I didn't want the players to think that a lead at halftime would equal a victory."

Beloit would score on their first possession of the second half a 9 play 58 yard drive the took almost 5 minutes off the clock.

"I was glad that our guys made Beloit work hard on that drive. I was disappointed in how they scored (31 yard touchdown pass) on 3rd and 12. We were in a pretty good coverage position, we just failed to make the play, and it allowed a very talented player (BC's Derek Carrier) to get into the end zone," commented Catanzaro.

The Forester offense took the field and responded. The Foresters marched 60 yards on 9 plays including a 4th and 1 conversion on their own five yard line, before junior Al Mitchell walked into the end zone on a 1 yard touchdown carry.

Beloit's next possession would last for 13 plays and 6 minutes and 40 seconds, but would only cover 41 yards. The Foresters would record a stop on 4th and goal from the 19 yard line, after a holding call had backed up the Buccaneers.

The Foresters lead 27-10 at this point, and were interested in clicking off as much time from the clock as possible. The first play of the drive ended the third quarter, and the Foresters started the fourth quarter with one goal in mind. "We wanted to run the ball, play after play, and keep the clock running. We had a conversation as coaches that we wanted to shorten the game. Since there had only been three total possessions in the third quarter, we wanted to replicate that in our favor during the fourth quarter," commented Catanzaro.

The players took the coaches "orders" and executed to perfection. Their possession resulted in a 13 play 51 yard drive that churned six minutes and thirty-six seconds off of the clock. The Foresters did not score any points, but they kept the football away from the Beloit offense. Unfortunately, during this time, the Buccaneers had come up with a "big-play" idea for the Forester defense and on the fifth play of the drive, the Bucs again found Carrier for a 57 yard touchdown that saw him split two defenders on his way to the end zone.

"Derek showed why he is an NFL prospect. There aren't a lot of guys that are his size with that type of speed. I was thoroughly impressed with the way that he played, and am glad that this is the last time that we have to see him on the opposing sideline," said Catanzaro.

The Forester offense took over the next possession still with a 10 point lead. The Foresters would put together a drive that was almost identical to their last drive. 13 plays, 51 yards and an incredible six minutes and forty-nine seconds burned off the clock. The drive included a "controversial" decision by Coach Catanzaro to "go for it" on 4th and 1 from their own 36 yard line.
"It was a really easy decision for me. I know that we could get one yard if we executed it properly. We have had good success in those situations, and I wanted to maintain possession of the football. Our offensive line had been doing a great job, so we called the time out after the play clock wound down, and we made sure that we were all on the same page. But you'd better believe, after the game, even my wife asked me what I was thinking. The privilege of being the head coach, is that no one knows my team better than I do. I'd go for it again even if we didn't convert it there. I had the confidence in our offense to get it, and in our defense to get a stop if we didn't," said an emphatic Catanzaro.

Despite moving the ball, the Foresters did not score as two attempts to the endzone on third and fourth down inside the 16 yard line fell incomplete.

Beloit would have its final drive of the day ended on an interception by senior captain Luke Butts. It was Butts' fourth interception in four games against the Buccaneers.

The Foresters were paced on offense by Davis who had 5 catches for 147 yards and two touchdowns, while junior running back Al Mitchell would top the 100 yard mark for the second time in three games at 107 yards on 24 carries. Defensively Butts added 10 tackles to his interception and Aidan Price added 7 to his interception. Senior defensive lineman Kenny Clady-Mason caused a fumble that was recovered by Sophomore LB Bryce Jones.

The Foresters return to action on Saturday, October 15th against Monmouth College.

Players of the Week:
Offensively: Kevin Davis
Defensively: Aidan Price
Special Teams: Donnie Caldwell averaged 55 ypk on kickoffs.
Scout Team: Mike Somma
Lineman of the Week: Will Savor- graded out at 82% and recorded 2 pancakes coming off the bench.




Monday, October 3, 2011

Entertaining and exciting homecoming game, sees Foresters defeated.


In an effort worth of a homecoming performance, the Forester fell just short in their comeback efforts. The Foresters were able to claw within 3 points on the first play of the fourth quarter and again within 4 points with seven minutes remaining in the game.

Junior Quarterback Pete Scaffidi would become the first Forester ever to throw for over 300 yards in three consecutive games as he finished with 345 yards. Senior Kevin Davis would top 150 receiving yards for the second time in two weeks, besting his career single game high by one yard with 158 yards. Senior Luke Butts would record his first interception of the year, moving him up to 7th all time for interceptions for the Foresters.

Early in the game, the Foresters were their own worst enemy. After each teams first possession, the Foresters held a 7-3 lead over the Pioneers. On Carroll's second possession of the game, they held Carroll to a 3 and out series and forced Carroll to punt. The punt landed out of the endzone and the Foresters. The Foresters would also have a 3 and out, but the punt snap went awry and the Foresters were tackled on their own 11 yard line. The Foresters defense held tough on the first three plays, but the Pioneers attempt on 4th and goal from the 2 yard line was successful.

The Foresters next drive would end on a Pete Scaffidi interception. It was only Scaffidi's third interception on the season. Carroll would take possession of the ball and score to extend their lead to 17-7. The drive was aided by a 15 yard personal foul call against the Foresters.

Lake Forest would receive the kickoff and go 72 yards on 11 plays. The scoring play was a 4th & 11 pass from Pete Scaffidi to Kevin Davis that went for a 24 yard touchdown pass. The extra point from Donnie Caldwell would make the score 17-14 in favor of the Pioneers.

Carroll would return the following kickoff to the 42 yard line. They would pick up a first down on a screen pass to their running back. On the next play, the Foresters would intercept Carroll's pass on the seven yard line on a spectacular over the shoulder catch by sophomore defensive back Darrius McKay. The interception was McKay's second of the season.

The Foresters would pick up two first downs before and illegal block would negate an Al Mitchell 3 yard run, and send them back to the 18 yard line. On the subsequent 4th down, the Foresters would have their second miscue on special teams as a Carroll defender partially blocked the Tanner Daugherty punt.

"We had a chance to really build some momentum in the first half. I hate to use "coach talk" but we kept shooting ourselves in the foot. We had two opportunities to take the lead, or at least chance the field position in our favor, and both times, we gave the ball back to Carroll in better field position than they had left the field with on their previous series," commented Coach Catanzaro.

Carroll would take over, but it was the Forester defense that stepped up and held the Pioneers to a single first down. After gaining a first down, the Carroll QB would get to know sophomore defensive lineman Taylor Holzmeyer who sacked him for a 10 yard loss. The Forester defense would give up no more yards on this drive and force Carroll to punt. The Carroll punt went out of bounds, and the Foresters took over on their 20 yard line. After an incomplete pass and a false start penalty the Foresters were faced with a 2nd and 15 from their 15 yard line. Scaffidi would be intercepted for the second time in the contest by the Carroll defender Neal Layng. Layng would return the interception to the Lake Forest 12 yard line. On second down, the Pioneers were able to extend their lead to 24-14.

"That was a very frustrating sequence. I expected the defense to go out there and get a stop the way that they had been playing to that point, and hold for a field goal attempt. Too have two of their three touchdowns cover 12 and 11 yards total was frustrating. We knew that we could give them extra chances in the short field like that. They were second in the conference last year, and are a top three or four team in the MWC most seasons. You can't turn the ball over, or make special teams errors. They will capitalize on those situations," explained Catanzaro.

The Foresters next possession was showing great promise as they crossed midfield with ease and looked on pace to answer the Carroll score. On 2nd and 4 on the 41 yard line, Scaffidi completed a crossing route to Davis who took the ball to the 27 yard line before being hit awkwardly, and fumbling the football. Layng picked up his second turnover of the day and began a footrace through the Forester offensive lineman and appeared on his way for a touchdown, had it not been for junior wide receiver Rocky Al-Mutawa who caught Layng from behind on the 10 yard line.

"Rocky's hustle play turned out to be one of the most important plays of the game. It gave our defense a chance to go on the field at try to get a stop. The fumble really hurt us. The way we were moving the ball, it looked like we were going to cut the lead into a one score lead, and you could feel the energy get zapped from our sideline," said Catanzaro.

The Forester defense would be aided by a personal foul on second down and three consecutive incomplete passes by Carroll, before the 42 yard field goal attempt would push wide of the uprights.

"We felt that we dodged a bullet at the end of the half. I felt like our defense really responded, and had picked up a few big stops, and were playing really well when we had some space to work with. But we had also gotten two stops inside the red-zone. Despite the points, I thought we were doing a fairly good job on defense. I thought that if our offense just held onto the ball, that they could score a lot of points in the second half," said Catanzaro.

The Carroll offense, was averaging 195 yards rushing the ball per game, but were limited to 9 carries for 14 yards in the first half of play.

The second half started with the Foresters receiving the opening kickoff. The drive would march deep into Pioneer territory, before a 4th down completion to Austin Sobey would be marked 4 inches short of a first down. The Forester defense would come out and play a great series, which included Holzmeyer's second sack of the day on third down, thus forcing Carroll to punt again. The Foresters would march down the field, before the drive would stall on the 8 yard line. Freshman Donnie Caldwell would attempt a 27 yard field goal that would sail wide left.

The Forester defense would gain another stop of the Carroll offense, as Luke Butts would intercept the third down pass by Carroll on the 36 yard line. The Forester offense would take 10 plays, but on the first play of the fourth quarter would score on a Pete Scaffidi quarterback sneak, cutting the Carroll lead to 24-21.

"It was great to see the defensive takeaway leading to a touchdown. That is something that we had talked about all week in practice that we needed to make a big stop, or get a takeaway and then score. Pete told us that he could get us in there, even if we had to run the sneak four times in a row. I think that we were ready to do that at that point," said Catanzaro.

On Carroll's next possession, they would bounce a running play off a Forester tackle for 33 yards before junior Aidan Price would make the tackle. Price who was starting at safety for the first time in his career finished the day with five tackles and a forced fumble on the day. The Forester defense would gain one more big stop on the 14 yard line as Nick Waters broke up the Carroll 4th down pass attempt.

Unfortunately for the Foresters, they would commit another turnover on their first play after the 4th down stop. Junior Al Mitchell would take the handoff, but as he was tackled a Carroll defender was able to rip the ball away from Mitchell. Carroll would gain control of the bouncing ball, and take over with a fresh set of downs on the 18 yard line. Two plays later they would score to extend their lead to 10 points.

After a 41 yard kickoff return by McKay, Scaffidi would target junior Austin Sobey on the 1st play from scrimmage for a 37 yard touchdown.

"It was a great route conversion, and read by both players. After the "kick in the gut" of fumbling after the stop to get that score so quickly really helped out sideline and fans," said Catanzaro.

The following kickoff would drift out of bounds, giving the Pioneers a 1st and 10 on the 40 yard line. Carroll would march 60 yards on 8 plays over the course of 4 minutes in order to re-extend their lead to 10.

The offensive explosions were not complete by any stretch. Carroll would send their kickoff out of bounds, and the Foresters would look to capitalize with the short field. On their third play from scrimmage, they did just that as Scaffidi connected with Davis for a 46 yard touchdown. It was the second time the two South Elgin High School graduates had connected for a touchdown.

With seven minutes to go in the game, Carroll would hold a four point lead as the extra point attempt would be missed.

On the third play of Carroll's next drive, all-conference running back Joe Beckstrand would cutback a running play and go 39 yards for a touchdown, to get an 11 point lead for the Pioneers. The Foresters could not answer on their next drive, and Carroll was able to run out the clock on the Foresters homecoming.

"I think that every member of our team wanted that win more than anyone else. I know that we are all going to look at film tomorrow and be frustrated with our inability to capitalize on the opportunities that were there for the taking. We made some critical mistakes in special teams and in ball security early, and then defensively we had some lapses late in the game. Momentum is a funny thing, and we need to do a better job of riding that wave on the positive side of that. I am looking forward to getting back on the field to work towards that. We are a team that is much better than our record, but we have to figure out how to finish the game, once we accomplish that task, it will be the start of something really special," finished Catanzaro.


Players of the Week
Offense: Austin Sobey 9 catches 124 yards and 1 touchdown

Defense: Taylor Holzmeyer 2 sacks, 3 tackles, 1 pressure, 1 pass breakup

Special Teams: Darrius McKay 4 Returns 157 yards on kickoffs

Scout Team: Freshman Jared Herter

Lineman of the Week: Tom Mitchell






Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Foresters travel far, but fall short against Grinnell



"Disappointing. We played down today, and I am not sure why," commented Head Football Coach Jim Catanzaro after Saturday's loss to Grinnell.

"They are a talented team offensively. Their quarterback didn't run a lot, but he ran in critical times. Their passing game gave us fits defensively. Robert Seer is, in my opinion, one of the top two wide receivers in the league, and we didn't have an answer for him. We tried man, we tried zone, and we couldn't seem to stop him. It was like when Dan Carter played for us. He was going to get his, and we knew the ball was going there, and couldn't seem to stop him," said Catanzaro of the Grinnell wide receiver who had 11 catches for 156 yards and 3 touchdowns.

The Foresters were stout against the Grinnell running game, giving up only 2.7 yards per carry, but through the air was another story, as Grinnell amassed 338 yards through the air. The only more staggering statistic, was that the Forester offense racked up more yards than the Pioneers 443-408.

"A few things really tripped us up today. The long kick return, and the fumble, were extremely costly, not only on the field, but from an emotional start. You put together a great drive offensively to start the game, and go get the 7-0 lead. Then on the kickoff, you give up a 60 yard return to the 17 yard line. Most good offenses are going to score from that point. Our defense pushed them to fourth down, but weren't able to get the stop on 4th and goal. Then later in the quarter the defense comes up with a big goal line stand, on a big 4th down sack by John Dillon, and then two plays later, we turn the ball over on the 10 yard line. So their first two scores covered a total of 27 yards. You can't let a team build a lead that way," said Catanzaro.

"I think that the referee's got into our players heads as well. Especially in the secondary. A few questionable calls, and then the number of pass interference calls that were made. I have never in my life seen the number of defensive holding/pass interference calls in one game. There were 5 or 6 calls, and one negated an interception by us," said Catanzaro. "We need to clean up our pass coverage this week in practice. A couple of players have gained extensive playing time due to injuries, and they need to start playing at a higher level if they want to continue being on the field."

Offensively, the Foresters exhibited their best balance of the 2011 season. Junior Al Mitchell recorded 22 carries for 121 yards to pace the Forester rushing attack. The passing game saw another solid day by Pete Scaffidi as he completed 31 of 46 passes for 317 yards and 2 touchdowns. Scaffidi completed passes to seven different receivers, who were lead by senior Kevin Davis with 14 catches for 157 yards and a touchdown.

"KD put together a nice game, but I can guarantee you that he felt like he left a few catches/yards on the field. I know that he gave all that he had, and his performance showed that," said Catanzaro. The 14 catches in one game is the second highest total for a single game in school history. Only Dan Cole vs. Monmouth in 1990 recorded more catches in a single game (17).

"We have a big challenge this week against Carroll. They are coming to Lake Forest on a mission. They had an unusual early season loss against Illinois College, and they sent notice to the conference after they beat Ripon College that they are still a team to be reckoned with. They have a tremendous duo at running back, and they have some very talented tight ends, that we haven't seen a lot of the last two weeks. Our guys are going to have to have a great week of practice this week as we get ready for homecoming," concluded Coach Catanzaro.

Players of the Week:
Offensively: Junior RB Al Mitchell (22 carries for 121 yards and 2 TDs, 6 catches for 22 yds)
Defensively: Senior Safety Luke Butts 9 tackles, including 2 TFL's
Special Teams: Junior LB Aidan Price
Scout Team Player of the Week: Freshman DE Ramel Samuel
Lineman of the Week: Gil Munoz

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Foresters fall to IC despite record breaking day.

Junior quarterback Pete Scaffidi (pictured left) continued his hot streak passing the football, against Illinois College on Saturday. Scaffidi broke the school's single game record for touchdown passes with five. The previous record of four, was one that Scaffidi shared with five other former Forester signal callers.

Scaffidi also recorded the most completions in a single game by a Forester with 34, breaking the previous record of 33 set by Don Lackey in 2001. Scaffidi's 333 yards were good for the fifth highest single game output in school history. His 74% completion percentage was good for second on the single game list.

"I am thrilled with Pete's performance. He put a tremendous amount of effort in this off-season to make sure that our offense took the necessary steps under his leadership for us to be successful. I think one of the things that really stands out about Pete's performance thus far is how well he is spreading the ball around to different receivers. Seven different guys caught footballs for us, and six of them had double digits in yards receiving."

Scaffidi wasn't the only Forester etching his name on the top ten lists for the Foresters. Junior Austin Sobey tied the school record for touchdown receptions in a single game with 3. Sobey joins seven other former Foresters with this total, including teammate Kevin Davis (who had three TD's against Knox in 2010) and his position Coach Dan Carter, who accomplished the feat on three occasions.

Senior Kevin Davis recorded 11 receptions, which is good for 8th on the single game total list.

"Our receivers have really stepped up. Kevin and Austin have been more productive than last year, and more consistent. I think that is the most important thing. They are consistent and dependable, and they have developed a great chemistry with Pete. Coach Kerr has found a way to use their individual talents, and they are really excelling."

"There are two things that can not be overstated, and that is the credit that the offensive line deserves for these performances. In the last two games, we have passed the ball 75 times, and have our opponents have not recorded a single contact sack. (the lone sack was a QB scramble that was a one yard loss.) The second component that really stands out is how well we are taking care of the football. So far this year, we have thrown for 11 touchdowns, and only 1 interception. I am thrilled with the progress our offense has made," said Catanzaro.

Catanzaro was not as pleased with the defensive performance. "I am frustrated. We have talented players, above average athletes, and guys who work hard. Something isn't clicking, and it is my job to find a way to get us over this hump."

The Blueboys did not punt until midway through the third quarter, and converted 8 of 10 3rd downs in the first two quarters. "Since I arrived at Lake Forest, we prided our defense on making people work for everything, and being good at getting off of the field on third downs. We didn't do that on Saturday. They worked for everything, and didn't hit many big (yardage) plays on us, but we really struggled with getting of the field on third downs. We will look at our play calls, our execution, and our aggressiveness on film this week and get better."

Catanzaro continued talking about the defense,"when a defense is failing, it is usually one of four things. 1. Poor tackling, 2. Failure to create turnovers, 3. Failure to pressure the quarterback, and 4. Failing to get off the field on third downs. During different points of the game we struggled with each one of those things. We recovered one of two fumbles that were on the ground, and recorded a single interception. I felt that we had two more opportunities to create takeaways and we failed to do so. Our defense is young, with only two seniors and two juniors in the starting lineup, but I have higher expectations of performance from our sophomores that are on the field for us. They have a full season of experience from last year, and many of them had significant playing time. I am looking forward to this week's practice."

Donnie Caldwell, a freshman kicker for the Foresters, was pressed into his first collegiate action on Saturday. "We told Donnie about 25 minutes before kickoff that he was going to have to handle all of our place kicking injuries due to an injury to our starter. Donnie did a great job, and handled the pressure of kicking for the first time in a game very admirably," said Coach Catanzaro. Caldwell went 5-5 on PAT's, and averaged 48 yards per kickoff.

The Foresters prepare for their longest trip of the season to Grinnell, IA to face the Grinnell College Pioneers. The Pioneers lost to Ripon College on Saturday, dropping their record to 1-2, 0-2 in the MWC.

Coaches Awards:

Offensive Player of the Game: Pete Scaffidi, JR (South Elgin High School, South Elgin, IL) 34 of 48 for 333 yards, 5 TD's (School Record)

Defensive Player of the Game: John Dillon, SO (Basha High School, Phoenix, AZ) came of the bench to record 8 tackles.

Scout Team Player of the Week: Edwin Esperanza JR (Colonial High School, Orlando, FL)

Special Teams Player of the Week: Donnie Caldwell FR (Center Moriches, East Moriches, NY) 5-5 on Extra Points, and averaged 48 yards on kickoffs.



Thursday, September 15, 2011

Video of the Foresters entrance on Patriots day!

Turn up your speakers, so that you can hear the engines of the Illinois Patriot guard in the background! Thank-you to David Perales for sharing his video with us!

video

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Forester rally falls short in MWC opener.



"I'm not happy. I don't care about 'morale victories.' We need to win games like that in order to take the next step as a program," stated Coach Catanzaro after the game on Saturday.

The Foresters had put themselves in position to do something that they had not done since Nov. 15th, 2004, beat Ripon College. After a tough, physical, and full game that pitted two opposite teams against each other, the Foresters came up just short against the Redhawks.

The Foresters scored with 2:51 to play in the game as Austin Sobey caught his second touchdown of the day from Pete Scaffidi. This cut the Redhawk lead to 29-24. The Foresters attempted an onside kick, but failed to recover the bouncing ball. The Forester defense did something that they had struggled with all day long, they stopped the Redhawks on third down. The Foresters called a timeout, to stop the clock, and give them a chance for a fourth down stop. Instead of punting, which would have likely pinned the Foresters inside their own twenty yard line, Ripon attempted a screen pass. The Foresters were all over the play.

"They have beat us for a touchdown on that screen pass four times in the last three years. We knew it was coming, we just didn't know when. When we got to the end of the game, and they hadn't run it, it felt like it was there. Our defense did a great job seeing it, playing it, and making it impossible for the quarterback to throw it."

The emotional 4th down stop by the Foresters seemed to be fueled by the energetic Forester fans.
"In my six years at Lake Forest, I have NEVER heard a crowd like that throughout the whole game. The student section was on their feet, yelling and screaming. It was an awesome energy. I hope that they continue to come out and support us like that. They even had me as a coach feeding off of their energy," said Catanzaro.

The Forester offense took the field with 1:47 left in the game, on the 34 yard line. On the first play from scrimmage, Scaffidi dropped back to pass, and looked towards his favorite target of the day Sobey. As Scaffidi's arm moved forward, he was hit on the elbow by a Ripon defender. The ball sailed, and was intercepted by a Ripon defensive back.

"Pete made a great read, Austin was open, and if his elbow doesn't get hit, the pass is completed," said Catanzaro. "I had zero doubt that we were marching down to score. You could just see it in the eyes of our players."

"I was proud of the way our team fought. There were times that they could have given up, but that's not who comes out of an LFC locker room. The guys who watch film, eat, and change in Halas Hall, come to play for the whole game. That is a mentality that we have been ingraining in our players since I became head coach. I think you really saw it today. The second thing that I was really proud of was that nobody wanted a pat on the back. We were all angry that we let that one get away. We know the mistakes that we have to clean up, and we will work hard on those all week in practice," continued Catanzaro.

The Foresters were paced offensively on the ground by Jr. Al Mitchell, who ran for 76 yards on 15 carries. Scaffidi finished the day completing 74% of his passes on 20 of 27 passing for 260 yards and 3 touchdowns. He also ran for 35 yards. Sobey recorded 6 catches for 79 yards and 2 touchdowns. Senior Kevin Davis had 4 catches for 95 yards.

Defensively, Lake Forest was paced by Michael Garetto-Balmer and Jordan Cruz who each recorded 10 tackles on the day. Sophomore CB Darius McKay recorded an interception to thwart a Ripon drive.

The Foresters fall to 0-1 in MWC play for the 2011 season, and return to Farwell Field for another home game against Illinois College. The Blueboys defeated Carroll University 34-27 behind a stellar day from Freshman QB Michael Bates who threw for 374 yards against the Pioneers.


COACHES AWARDS:
Offensive Player of the Week: Austin Sobey, Jr.
Defensive Player of the Week: Jake Rotkvich, Jr.
Special Teams Player of the Week: Dominick Campagna (3-3 on XPT, 1-1 on FG's) Jr.
Scout Team Player of the Week: Ed Daniels, So.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

HEROES DAY 2011


The Lake Forest College Football team is proud to announce that on Saturday, September 10th, the Foresters will be hosting Heroes Day 2011.

"For the past two years, we have hosted a "Trick or Treat for the Troops" event in October. Our schedule this year, takes us on the road for the last two weeks of October. We didn't want to stop supporting our troops, so our team decided to tie our efforts into the 10th anniversary of September 11th. We wanted to honor all those who serve our country and community. September 11th was an day that impacted our nation in a way that had never happened before. In the aftermath of the attacks, countless public servants, both domestically, and internationally have sacrificed so much protecting our freedoms. As a team, we want to pay respect and tribute to all of those have done this," said Coach Catanzaro.

The Foresters along with the Alpha Phi sorority will be collecting items for the care packages that they send to troops overseas each year.
"In the past two years, we have sent over 85 care packages to our troops," said Catanzaro. "We have sent them to alums, family members, and friends of the program in the Army, each of the last two years. This year, we will be sending them to one of our Naval Ships that are currently at sea."

Suggested Items for Care Packages include:
Recreational Items: board games, playing cards, magazines, stationary, etc)
Clothing: hats, bandannas, white or black socks, brown or green plain tee shirts)
Non-Perishable Food: canned food, snack food, powdered drink mix
Toiletries: flavored tooth paste, tooth brushes, bar soap, etc

If you have any questions on how you can help, please call Jim Catanzaro, Head Football Coach, at 847-735-6137, or email him at catanzaro@lakeforest.edu.

Monday, September 5, 2011

Lightning Strikes!!!













The Foresters first game of the season was one that started with a BANG, and ended due to one. LFC traveled to Concordia University to renew the second game of their four game non-conference agreement to start the 2011 season. At kickoff, it was 90*, sunny, and humid, causing Coach Catanzaro to comment,"I hope we brought enough Gatorade, I'm sweating just standing here."

The Foresters won the toss, and chose to defer. Concordia received the opening kickoff, and the game was underway. The Cougars started out strong, using a quarterback run play to escape a backed up starting field position. Though the Cougars would gain 45 yards on their first drive, the Forester defense held strong and forced a punt. The ball was kicked through the end zone, and the Foresters received the ball on the 20 yard line.

Junior Al Mitchell received the call on the first play of the game. Mitchell used his "lightning" fast speed to turn the right corner and sprint up the sideline for an 80 yard touchdown. The Forester sideline erupted with enthusiasm as the junior started the season off on the right foot for the Foresters.

"Wow. All I could say was wow. I have seen Al run away from our defense, but his burst put him at a whole other level compared to the defense," mentioned Catanzaro.

On Concordia's next possession started with a 40 yard pass play. "We blew the coverage. We didn't get over the top of the route, and they took advantage of us." Concordia would go on to finish the drive and tie the game at 7.

The Foresters next offensive possession would be a three and out. The next CU possession was a 10 play scoring drive that was aided by a 3rd down "defensive holding" call on the Foresters away from the play. CUC would miss the extra point. This would be a critical component of the rest of the day.

Sophomore Darius McKay would take the following kickoff 32 yards to give the Foresters an advantageous starting field position. Mitchell would take the first two plays 33 yards to bring the LFC closer to the goal line. An Alec Howe rush for 6 yards, that included a bone crushing block by Jr. Tight End Justin Smith, put the Foresters inside the red zone. On the very next play, Jr. Pete Scaffidi would connect with classmate Rocky Al-Mutawa for a 19yd touchdown pass. The Foresters would go up 14-13 on the extra point.

The next Cougar drive would stall with a missed field goal inside their 20 yard line. With new NCAA rules in place, the ball was placed at the 20 yard line for the Foresters. As soon as the ball was snapped, QB Pete Scaffidi threw the ball to high school teammate, Kevin Davis, on a "quick strike." Davis would go 80 yards, untouched to extend the Forester lead to eight points after Domnick Campagna connected on his third extra point of the day.

The Cougars would get a momentum shift as freshman kick returner James Washington returned the kickoff 67 yards to the Forester 25 yard line. Three plays later the Cougars would score. A 2pt play attempt by Concordia would fail, giving the Foresters a two point lead 21-19.

The Foresters would be forced to punt on their next possession. The Forester defense looked to have Concordia in a tough position as they were faced with a 1st down and 25 yards, after an illegal block penalty. A pass interference penalty on the next play however, put the pressure back on the Foresters. Concordia would convert on 3rd and 3 to record their fourth touchdown of the day. They missed the extra point after this touchdown as well, gaining a lead of 26-21.

Freshman Joey Kropp would receive the next kickoff from Concordia, and provide an "electric" 78 yard retun to the Concordia 15 yard line.

"I couldn't believe that in the first 23 minutes of the game, we had three plays over 75 yards. That's incredible, I have never seen anything like that before," said Catanzaro.

On 2nd and 12, Scaffidi would throw his third touchdown of the day to Jr. Austin Sobey. Scaffidi to that point was 3 of 6 for 116 yards and 3 touchdowns. "He was on his way to a special day." Campagna connected on the extra point to give the Foresters a 28-26 lead. The Foresters 28 points required only 14 offensive plays.

"We were not only efficient, we were explosive. I was thrilled to see the adjustments made by Coach Kerr (new offensive coordinator) take shape on the field. I know that our players were confident in the changes that were implemented," said Catanzaro.

On the third play of the next Concordia drive, the game was halted due to lightning in the area at 2:12pm. The teams would attempt to restart the game at 3:50pm, but would be foiled in their attempt as lightning would reappear. After the game, there was confusion about how things were ended, it was made clear through a conference call later on Saturday evening, that in fact the officials had decided to postpone the game, rather than conclude the game.

Both administrations are currently looking for future dates to try and finish the game with the two teams.

Catanzaro on the delay,"I have never been in a situation like this before. I thought our players and coaches handled the delay the best we could given the situation we were in. I am thankful that (Mike) Gilboe was there to protect our players safety and be our point person on those issues. Now that we have stepped away from the game, I have learned every rule that there is regarding lightning, delays, and the like. I think a few of us in the decision making process didn't know what all of the options were for that situation. I look forward to trying to finish this game. I thought our players were playingPublish Post hard and at a very high level, and I am excited to see them carry this into the conference season against Ripon next week."

The lightning would also delay other division III games, as well as nationally televised games at Michigan and Notre Dame.


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Foresters practice off campus!




Wednesday, August 17th signified an important event for Lake Forest College football game: the first two-a-day practice schedule. The first practice took place at Halas on Farwell field like most practices, but the second practice started out with a field trip. The players loaded up in busses and got a chance to practice on historic Constitution Field at Great Lakes Naval Base (http://www.cnic.navy.mil/GreatLakes/index.htm). Great Lakes Naval Station is the ONLY Boot Camp for the US Navy. Over 250 trainees attended the night time practice to watch the Foresters. The Foresters had a high contact practice, with a number of situational scrimmages.

A group of trainees who are part of the Special Warriors training program at Great Lakes has a special interest in the process. LFC assistant Coach Mark Dodd, is their drill instructor for their training. Coach Dodd who has served in the military for over 20 years, assists the Foresters with the offensive line. All of the Foresters had to take notice as two minutes into the practice a “Hoo ah Chief Dodd” echoed through the entire Great Lakes Campus.

When asked why he wanted to practice at Great Lakes, Coach Catanzaro replied, “First and foremost, we appreciate the service and sacrifice, that the soldiers perform. We wanted to provide them a break from training, and hopefully some entertainment. There were two individuals who came up to me, one who was a receiver at a conference school (Illinois College) and another who was a tight end at Towson, and I think both of them would have loved to put the pads on again. The second, aspect that I really liked is that it gave us a “different feel” to practice. A night practice is something that we never get to do at home, so it was a great change of pace. Having a good size crowd at a practice is not something that our guys aren’t used to, and I know they were excited to have people yelling and screaming for them. It was a great environment, and I hope to be able to do that again next year.”

Regarding the scrimmage, Coach Cat commented,"The offense really got after the defense in the goal line scrimmage. I was REALLY impressed by the run game down inside the 5 yard line. The defense was able to respond during the full field scrimmage and did a tremendous job of taking away things from the offense. They played with more urgency during that period, and it was exciting to see them rebound in the same practice after a below average goal line scrimmage. I couldn't be more please with our teams effort."

Great Lakes Naval Station has an incredible historic tradition surrounding football. During the first half of the 1950’s, the “Bluejackets” were considered to be on par with the great Army, Navy, and other intercollegiate teams. In 1918, the Bluejackets won the 5th Rose Bowl. On that team was an individual who would later have a strong relationship with Lake Forest College. The starting Wide Receiver/Defensive Back was George “Papa Bear” Halas. The building that “bears” his name on campus, is the home of Forester Athletics, and the football teams locker room. Halas was named the MVP of the Rose bowl as he had a 32 yard touchdown, and returned an interception 77 yards for a touchdown. Halas, and the Chicago Bears, built Halas Hall on campus in 1978. The Bears resided on campus until 1997.

During the World Wars, many college football players, either graduated, or left college early for military service. This lead to an influx of talented players and coaches to Great Lakes. Hall of Fame players like Halas, Johnny Lujack, and Otto Graham, who had been a superstar at Northwestern University before entering the Navy. Future Hall of Fame Coaches like Paul Brown, Weeb Ewbang, and Frank Leahy all roamed the sidelines at Naval Station Great Lakes, prior to roaming major college and NFL sidelines.

Because so many players went from college to military service, Great Lakes boasted players like George Halas, Johnny Lujack and Otto Graham, who starred at Northwestern before joining the Navy. The Great Lakes teams were coached by the likes of Paul Brown, Weeb Ewbank and Frank Leahy.

In 1943, the Bluejackets defeated the #1 ranked team in the nation, Notre Dame, and finished in the top 20 of ranked college teams.

Lake Forest College and Great Lakes Naval Academy played against each other many years ago. In the 1940’s the two teams played three games against each other. Lake Forest won two of the three games, but the third game, played December 2nd, 1948, was a 7-14 loss and sadly the final game the two teams ever played against one and other.