Tonight the Minnesota State Mavericks begin their 2021 season by taking on the Northern State Wolves at Blakeslee Stadium in Mankato at 6 p.m.
The Mavericks last appearance on the football field took place at the national championship in 2019. Where they fell short in a 48-40 point game. This devastating loss was followed by the 2020 season being suspended due to COVID-19. With everything going against them, this team is far from giving up and are ready to show the world what redemption looks like.
During a past interview, starting quarterback, JD Ekowa stated, “There is going to be a lot of pressure put on us this season, especially as we enter the season ranked No. 2 overall. But a little pressure does not scare us.”
Pressure plays a factor in every game for every position, however, the quarterbacks undoubtedly receive the most.
The Mavericks are led by senior quarterback, Ekowa. In the 2019 season, Ekowa played in all 15 games, including two starts. He completed 81 passes for 1,352 yards and 10 touchdowns, as well as 428 total rushing yards and three touchdowns. Ekowa was named to the NSIC All-Academic Team/Team of Excellence and received an NSIC Honorable Mention.
Graduate student, Hunter Trautman will be the starting quarterback for the Northern State Wolves. Trautman Started all 11 games at quarterback in the 2019 season and tallied 2,132 yards passing with 13 touchdowns, earning him a 56.3 pass completion percentage. On average, Trautman completed 193.8 yards passing per game. Trautman also rushed for 210 yards with seven touchdowns. He was named to the NSIC All-Conference Honorable Mention team following the season.
These two veteran quarterbacks will both be fighting the pressure as the clock counts down to zero. With only one coming out on top.
In 2019, the Mavericks averaged 47.5 points per game, while the Wolves averaged a total amount of 21.1 points.
Although earning points is an important part of the game, being able to stop the offensive side is usually what makes a team victorious.
Minnesota State completed 49 sacks resulting in the loss of 300 opponent yards. They were also successful in intercepting the ball 23 times for a gain of 273 yards.
The Northern State Wolves recorded 14 sacks, taking away 103 opponent yards. Their total number of defensive interceptions was 14 with the gain of 156 yards.
Ready to make an impact on the 2021 season, both teams come together today to face head to head.