By Joey Bennett
A receiver named Russell from Terre Haute North has emerged as one of the top Division III college football players in the state of Indiana. It’s not Mike and it’s not Wabash College, as the former Little Giant standout concluded his eligibility last fall.
Chris Russell, Mike’s younger brother, is a sophomore at Anderson and has had a breakout season as a receiver and kick returner.
Chris graduated from North in 2006 and attended Purdue for one semester before transferring to Anderson, where he also runs track. Last year as a sophomore, Russell caught 12 passes for 128 yards.
This season, however, Russell has hauled in 26 passes (third on team) for a team-high 329 yards and five touchdowns. His longest reception is 57 yards.
His best game came on Oct. 4 in a 56-12 win over Hanover, as Russell had six catches for 162 yards and three touchdowns. On Oct. 18, Russell had two pass receptions for 25 yards and returned nine kickoffs for a total of 176 yards.
Last Saturday, he had eight catches for 92 yards.
Russell has also returned 22 kickoffs a total of 430 yards for a 19.5 average.
Anderson was 3-4 going into Saturday’s game with Bluffton.
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In other college football news:
• Little Giants win title again — Wabash College celebrated Senior Day for its two former North Patriots on Saturday with a 60-7 win over Oberlin, giving the Little Giants their fourth consecutive North Coast Athletic Conference title.
Jared “Bubba” Lange is one of the team’s top tacklers on the defensive line, and Drew Oehler is one of the team’s top scorers as the first-string kicker.
• Bulldogs derailed — Butler had won five consecutive football games until Saturday’s 45-9 loss to Jacksonville. The Bulldogs are still 6-2 overall and 4-1 in the Pioneer Football League.
Terre Haute North grad Derek Guggenberger had eight tackles to lead Butler on Saturday, and leads the team with 57 tackles (5.5 for loss). Guggenberger also ranks ninth in the PFL in tackles. Luke Johnson, Butler’s senior tight end from North, has caught eight passes for 47 yards and two touchdowns this season.
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• Hamilton GLVC’s top freshman — Terre Haute North grad Amy Hamilton continued her outstanding freshman cross country season for the University of Indianapolis on Oct. 25, finishing fifth in the 6-kilometer Great Lakes Valley Conference championships in 22:01.08 at Rolla, Mo.
Hamilton earned all-league honors for her top 10 finish and was later given GLVC Freshman of the Year honors as the Greyhounds placed sixth overall.
North grad Robert Roads placed 15th overall as Southern Indiana won its fourth straight men’s GLVC title.
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• Whitted honored in pre-season — The Summit League has announced that the IUPUI women’s basketball team, Summit League Tournament Finalists a year ago, was selected to finish fourth in the upcoming 2008-09 season in voting of the league’s media, coaches and sports information directors. Junior Julia Whitted of Northview earned her first Preseason First Team selection.
IUPUI, which finished fifth in The Summit League regular season a year ago, returns four starters from the 2007-08 squad.
Whitted was one of the country’s most-improved players in 2007-08, jumping from 3.4 points per game in 2006-07 to 14.4 last season. The Staunton native also averaged 8.8 rebounds overall and had 15.3 ppg along with 9.7 rpg in Summit League play. Her 3.3 blocks per game in conference play paced The Summit, as well.
The Northview product picked up her second straight First Team honor, as she was named to The Summit League Postseason First Team last season.
Joey Bennett is a former Tribune-Star sports reporter and copy editor who now teaches and coaches at Northview High School in Brazil. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Football individual recaps
(does not include Saturday’s games)
Nick Murphy, Rose-Hulman, Jr. — Has made 25 tackles, including 1.5 for loss, and has also added one sack and one forced fumble.
Brandon Mescall, Franklin, So. — No statistics available.
Raine Young, Manchester, Fr. — No statistics available.
Ryan Roberts, Indiana State, Fr. — Has moved into starting quarterback position. Through eight games, has rushed 35 times for 66 yards and completed 17 of 28 passes with one interception for 129 yards. Began season on defense, and made a total of nine tackles.
Shaine Tierney, St. Francis, So. — Has completed 24 of 37 passes with one interception as the backup quarterback for 424 yards and three touchdowns. Has carried the ball 19 times for 100 yards and two touchdowns.
Tavita Pritchard, Stanford, Sr. — Has completed 97 of 167 passes with nine interceptions and seven touchdowns.
James Kirkendoll, Texas, So. — Has eight receptions for 106 yards (fifth on team) with one touchdown.
Brock Goggins, Hanover, Sr. — No statistics available.
Dan Allen, Marian, So. — No statistics available.
Ethan Brewer, Indiana State, Fr. — No statistics available.
Lance Irwin, Rose-Hulman, Fr. — No statistics available.
Troy Johnson, Indiana State, assistant coach — Is in first season at ISU.
Derek Eitel, Rose-Hulman, Jr. — Has completed 102 of 181 passes for 1,255 yards with nine interceptions and nine touchdowns. Has rushed 57 times for zero yards.
Chris Stepp, Indiana State, Fr. — No statistics available. Currently sidelined with knee injury.
Travis Johnson, Indiana State, Fr. — No statistics available.
Morgan Miller, Greenville, Fr. — No statistics available.
Alan Wolter, Greenville, Fr. — Has made one reception this year, a 72-yard touchdown catch in a 59-0 win over Principia.
Tyler Howard, Greenville, Fr. — No statistics available.
Ross Shotts, Blackburn, Sr. — No statistics available.
Bobby Short, Rose-Hulman, Fr. — Has made five tackles.
Ethan Nash, Rose-Hulman, Fr. — No statistics available.
Ira Drummy, Anderson, Jr. — No statistics available.
Michael Woodsmall, DePauw, Fr. — No statistics available.
Scottie Austin, St. Joseph’s, Fr. — No statistics available.
Joe Evinger, College of the Canyons (Calif.), So. — Team is 8-0 and ranked second in Southern California Football Association poll.
Matt Crooks, Marian, So. — Backup kicker, has not attempted a kick this year.
Broc Miller, Indiana State, Fr. — No statistics available.
Dayne Upperman, Marian, Fr. — No statistics available.
Jered Timm, Marian, Fr. — Has made seven tackles, including four solos.
Dylan Kruse, Marian, Fr. — Has made three tackles, including one solo.
Ethan Kestenman, Rose-Hulman, Fr. — No statistics available.
Chip Keys, Eastern Illinois, Sr. — Has carried nine times for 16 yards and one touchdown.
Michael Mattingly, Franklin, Fr. — No statistics available.
Ben Wassel, Rose-Hulman, Jr. — Has made 30 tackles, including 2.5 for loss, and has also broken up two passes.
Mitch Downs, Franklin, So. — Has carried the ball 14 times for 69 yards and one touchdown.
Zach Clapp, DePauw, Fr. — No statistics available.
Kyle Fahey, Manchester, Fr. — No statistics available.
Josh Buis, Eastern Michigan, assistant coach — Has helped coach team to 3-6 record overall and 2-2 in the Mid-American Conference.
Drew Christy, Rose-Hulman, Jr. — Remains sidelined after off-season automobile accident.
Terre Haute North
Steve Englehart, Rose-Hulman, head coach — Has led team to 20-8 record in third season as head coach (entering Saturday’s game).
Kevin Dean, Rose-Hulman, assistant coach — Is in his second season as an offensive coach for the Engineers.
Jared Lange, Wabash, Sr. — Tied for third on team with 31 tackles, including 10 for loss, 4.5 sacks, and one forced fumble.
Drew Oehler, Wabash, Sr. — Has made all four field goal attempts and 20 of 22 extra points this year.
Pat Hancewicz, Franklin, Sr. — Has played in three games, making two receptions for four yards.
Luke Johnson, Butler, Sr. — Has made seven catches for 48 yards and two touchdowns.
Shawn Hines, Franklin, Jr. — No statistics available.
Seth Woodason, Harding (Ark.), Jr. — Has played in eight of the team’s nine games and has made four tackles.
Derek Guggenberger, Butler, Jr. — Leads team in tackles with 57 tackles, including 5.5 for loss and two sacks.
Paul McGuire, SE Missouri State, Sr. — Backup center for SEMO.
Dan Millington, Indiana State, Jr. — Has 16 tackles, including two for loss, and has recovered one fumble.
Justin Hall, Marian, So. — Has carried the ball 12 times for 40 yards. Has made 14 receptions for 137 yards and two touchdowns.
Daniel Watson, Marian, So. — No statistics available.
Chris Russell, Anderson, So. — Has made 26 receptions for 439 yards and five touchdowns.
Matt Seliger, Indiana State, Fr. — Has played in six games at quarterback, competing 9 of 27 passes with one interception for 39 yards.
Jake Schaffer, Wabash, Fr. — No statistics available.
Terre Haute South
Trent Miles, Indiana State, head coach — In first year as ISU head coach.
Kyle Toney, Indiana State, So. — No statistics available.
Pat Duncan, Rose-Hulman, Jr. — Has made 44 tackles (fourth on team), including eight for loss, and has also added three sacks, one broken up pass and one fumble recovery.
Michael Engle, DePauw, So. — Has completed four of seven passes for 39 yards as backup quarterback.
Kyle Harruff, Southern Illinois, So. — Is SIU’s backup punter, but has not yet kicked this season.
Koby Kraemer, Indiana State, Fr. — Has made four receptions for four yards, leads team in kickoff returns, ranks second in punt returns.
Brock Lough, Indiana State, Fr. — Has 87 yards rushing in 27 carries, with a long carry of 16 yards.
Zach Avary, Marian, So. — Has made four tackles, including three solos.