Wildcats move to 11-man
By Misty Volaski
Watch out, Rangers. Villanova's
back in 11-man football action after 28-plus years.
The Wildcats had an 11-man squad up until the program came to
an abrupt halt on Oct. 5, 1975, due to a diminished roster and
Wildcat player Cody Supan was excited about the shift. "It's
the right thing to do," he said. "I'm looking forward
to the opportunity to see what we can do as a team."
The first Villanova football team took the field in 1927 and
produced their first All-American in 1940, Chuck Doud.
Villanova resurrected its program in 2001 with eight-man football
and made it to the play-offs that year.
Ryan Kum was a senior on the 2001 squad that went 8-2 and he
is now playing for the Brown University Bears.
Chris Gerhart is playing defensive end for Colby College in Maine
and was the leader of the 2002 squad that played in the powerful
"When we started our program three years ago, we always
had it in our minds to move to 11-man football," VPS coach
John Muller said. "Our school believes in a solid Catholic
education with football being a part of that education; 11-man
football is a logical progression for our school and we (the
athletic director and school administration) felt that this was
a good time to make the transition."
The roster, he added, has increased to 40 players this year,
with only eight seniors graduating from the team.
"Our future is very promising," Muller enthused.
Athletic director Tom Roanhaus said that he was "very impressed
with the level of support that coach Muller received from the
parents when we met with them a couple of weeks ago.
The support our coaches receive
from the parents here at Villanova is exceptional. John is the
perfect person to take us to 11-man, and a coach could not ask
for a better group of players and parents."
Villanova's already working on next year's schedule, securing
agreements with Sage Hill, Chadwick, Viewpoint, Twin Pines, Capistrano,
Valley Christian, Western Christian, Desert Christian and Malibu.
Returning players agree with the shift.
"It's a logical progression," said Nick Stelzer. "I'm
proud that I will be a part of the first senior class to play
11-man football again at Villanova. I know that all of the players
will do whatever it takes to make this a successful move."
Teammate Paul Song agreed. "I love the idea, it's great
timing! The coaches will get us there."
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