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Hastings College

There will be plenty of competition for positions in Hastings this fall. Replacing the second-leading passer in the league from last season will be the place to start for the offense. John Dostal averaged 241 yards per game through the air in 2012 and his absence will be felt unless someone can step in and take control of the position. Matt Overmiller, a Hastings native, played in three games last season and was efficient connecting on four of seven pass attempts. He has good size and should know the offense well, entering his junior season. Whoever ends up the Broncos signal caller will have a couple valuable targets to throw to with 2012 leading wide-receiver Trevor Bohn (40 rec. 756 yds 4 TDs) and 2011 receiving touchdown leader Nate Arlt (academically ineligible in 2012) back in the lineup. Experienced offensive linemen Tanner Paxton and Steve Dunham will help raise the comfort level of the new quarterback. 

Said OC Joe Holtzclaw of his offense, “We have identified holes within the offense and have made it a point to fill those holes. We are looking forward to great competition in the backfield for those positions.”

More starters return on defense, but there is someone new at a key position – defensive coordinator. Adam Long enters his first season after spending time coaching linebackers at DII Colorado School of Mines, where he was also the strength and conditioning coach. Sometimes a new coach means open competition for many positions, but the Broncos hope to get leadership in the secondary from Alex Gildon after intercepting a team-high four passes last season, one of which was taken for a touchdown, and Garrett Griffeth who tallied an interception and 36 tackles in 2012. Chad Hartman and Joe Taulaki figure to be in the mix on the line after the two played in six and seven games, respectively, last season.

Said DC Adam Long of his defense, “Excited with what I’ve seen on film about how hard they have played and feels like we have the players that will fit into the new system.”

Thoughts: The Broncos will have to get comfortable quickly with a new quarterback on offense and a new defensive system. They open the season at home against Kansas Wesleyan, a team that spent time in the NAIA top 25 last season before a 6-5 finish. The Broncos then travel to Concordia before rival Doane comes calling. This team will be tested early. It could be a season of growing pains for the Broncos.