The NSU football team signed 30 players to national letters of intent during the annual college football signing day. The 30 players will join the Wolves’ program for the 2013 season. The signing class includes two players already on campus that are taking classes this spring.
“What you try and do is get a well rounded class,” Northern State coach Tom Dosch said about 2013 signing class. “There is obviously going to be some positions you emphasis more one year to the next, but ultimately you want to get guys at every position or just about every position in your signing class.”
The Wolves made a noticeable effort to continue to add depth at the offensive and defensive lines. NSU signed Carson Hogan, who is a 6-foot-10, 320-pound offensive lineman from Bemidji, Minn. The Wolves also signed offensive linemen J.J. Hahn (6-5, 300) of Glenwood, Iowa, and Austin Nath (6-2, 270) of Marshall, Minn.
“You never can have too many big guys,” Dosch said.
The Wolves also signed local linemen Robbie Aesoph of Faulkton, Lane Myer of Ipswich and Garrett Young of Warner. Versatile big man Mitch Brockhaus (6-9, 230) of West Central High School also signed with Northern State. Brockhaus could play on either side of the ball.
“If there is a big guy that we like, we are going to go after them hard because you can’t have enough of those guys,” Dosch said. “And we were able to compliment it with some skill guys.”
The Wolves also signed seven linebackers, three running backs, two tight ends, two defensive backs, two wide receivers, one quarterback, one kicker/punter and one projected at either wide receiver or defensive back.
“When you look across the board at both sides of the ball and in the kicking game, we were able to really get guys at every spot,” Dosch said.
The Wolves signed a pair of speedy running backs from Arizona in Sean Schweichler and Kyle Harms. Schweichler racked up 1,517 rushing yards this past season and 34 TDs. Harms tallied 531 rushing yards on 54 carries and totaled 14 TDs his senior season.
St. Thomas More quarterback Jake Sullivan also signed with Northern State. St. Thomas More is the same program that produced current NSU starting QB Jared Jacobson. Sullivan threw for 1,802 passing yards and 20 TDs as a junior. He had 651 rushing yards and six TDs on the ground in that campaign. He was 35-for-62 for 602 yards and 5 TDs through the air and accounted for another 3 TDs on the ground in three games to start his senior year before it was cut short by injury.
NSU also continued to make an emphasis on signing local players. Fourteen of the 30 signees are from South Dakota. Other area signees include: Josh Hilgemann, Aberdeen Central; Schyler Kumpf, Aberdeen Central; Tate Nafziger, Gettysburg and Brian Sumption, Frederick. Aberdeen Roncalli graduates Brendon Hoellein and Ross Barton also signed with the Wolves and are currently enrolled in classes at NSU. Other South Dakotans include: Adam Guthmiller, Brandon; Zach Page, Brookings and Jami Walters, Chamberlain.
“We have made that our No. 1 priority in the last three years since I have been here and will continue to do so,” Dosch said about signing South Dakota players. “I just think it is critical that you have got to get the best local talent you can playing on your team. We have really made a concerted effort to do that.”
Northern State signed seven players from Minnesota, three from Arizona, three from North Dakota and one each from Iowa, Wyoming and Nebraska.
Below is a complete list of all 30 signees with a brief bio on each player:
Robbie Aesoph: 6-2, 310, DL, Orient/Faulkton High School. All-state player, two-time all-conference and Aberdeen American News All-Area selection. Coach Dosch: “Rob is a tough, physical player who was a dominant force at Faulkton High School, as well as being a state champion wrestler. He has the physical tools to be an impact player.”
Ross Barton: 6-5, 220, TE, Aberdeen/Aberdeen Roncalli High School. All-state honorable mention, three-time all-conference and Aberdeen American News All-Area honoree. Coach Dosch: “Ross brings athleticism and toughness to the tight end position. His frame will allow him to add the size and strength needed at the college level. He is a good mid-year addition to our program.”
Josh Hilgemann: 5-10, 165, WR, Aberdeen/Aberdeen Central High School. All-state honorable mention, first team all-conference and Aberdeen American News All-Area selection. Two-year letter winner and team captain. Coach Dosch: “Josh is a difference maker at the receiver position. A standout multi-sport athlete at Aberdeen Central, he has the ability to outrun defenders, make difficult catches and he is a playmaker.”
Brendon Hoellein: 6-0, 215, LB, Aberdeen/Aberdeen Roncalli High School. Three time all-conference, two time all-state and two time Aberdeen American News All-Area selection. He played one season of baseball at Augustana. Coach Dosch: “Brendon is a physical, athletic linebacker who excelled at Roncalli High School. We are excited to have him in Wolves football after being away from the sport for two years.”
Schyler Kumpf: 5-10, 215, LB, Aberdeen/Aberdeen Central High School. All-state, all-conference and Aberdeen American News All-Area honoree. Coach Dosch: “Schyler is a physical, aggressive linebacker who excelled at Aberdeen Central. He has the toughness and athleticism needed to compete at a high level.”