Northwest Missouri State Bearcats football

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Northwest Missouri State Bearcats football
2014 Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association football season
Northwest Missouri Bearcats logo.png
Northwest Missouri football helmet.png
First season 1908 (1908)
Athletic director Mel Tjeerdsma
Head coach Adam Dorrel
3rd year, 36–6–0 (.857)
Home stadium Bearcat Stadium
Field Mel Tjeerdsma Field
Year built 1917
Stadium capacity 6,500
Stadium surface FieldTurf
Location Maryville, Missouri
League NCAA Division II
Conference MIAA
Claimed national titles 4 (1998, 1999, 2009, 2013)
Conference titles 25
Consensus All-Americans 69
Colors

Bearcat Green and White

          
Mascot Bobby Bearcat
Marching band Bearcat Marching Band
Major Rival Missouri Western State University
Website www.bearcatsports.com
National football championship trophy room at Bearcat Stadium prior to its national title in 2009. The two trophies in the middle are national championships in 1998 and 1999. The four trophies on the left are for appearances in the title games in 2005, 2006, 2007, and 2008. Northwest in 2009 made unprecedented fifth consecutive national title game in 2009 and won its third title. The stick in the middle left is the Hickory Stick in the contests with Truman State.

The Northwest Missouri State Bearcats football team has appeared in eight NCAA Division II national title games (and won four) since going 0-11 in Mel Tjeerdsma's first season in 1994.

The Bearcats have made the playoffs in 18 seasons. They have also won or shared 25 MIAA titles.

Northwest plays its games at Bearcat Stadium, built in 1917, and the oldest NCAA Division II stadium still in use. The field was expanded to 6,500 seats and a video screen was added in 2003 after Tjeerdsma began his run.[1]

It plays its games with Pittsburg State University at Arrowhead Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri in the Fall Classic at Arrowhead. Pittsburg has made four national title appearances since 1991. The Oct. 17, 2002 game was witnessed by 26,695—the largest number in MIAA history.[2]

Its best-attended local home game was 10,805 on Oct. 2, 2010 against Missouri Western in the Northwest Missouri-Missouri Western football rivalry.

Conference[edit]

Northwest was one of the original 1912 organizers of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Association. It has not played in any other conference. The conference headquarters until 1997 was in the Maryville, Missouri home of its first commissioner Ken B. Jones. In 1997 it moved to Overland Park, Kansas and has subsequently moved to Kansas City.[2] [2]

Championships[edit]

National championship seasons[edit]

Season Coach Selectors Record Bowl
1998 Mel Tjeerdsma NCAA Division II Playoff 15–0 Won NCAA Division II Championship
1999 Mel Tjeerdsma NCAA Division II Playoff 14–1 Won NCAA Division II Championship
2009 Mel Tjeerdsma NCAA Division II Playoff 14–1 Won Division II Championship
2013 Adam Dorrel NCAA Division II Playoff 15–0 Won Division II Championship
National Championships 4

NCAA Division II championship games[edit]

1998[edit]

In 1998 the Bearcats won the NCAA Division II national football championship by going 15-0—the first time in history a Division II school won 15 games and the first time a Northwest school won a team national championship in any sport.

1999[edit]

In 1999 Northwest defeated Carson-Newman College 58-52 in four overtimes to defend the title. The game was the longest in NCAA football playoff history in number of extra periods, surpassing six contests that were extended by three overtimes. The broadcast analyst on ESPN called it the best college football game he'd ever seen. The game solidified ESPN's interest in Division II football, prompting ESPN to cover the semi-final games.

2005[edit]

In 2005 the Bearcats were a Cinderella team, ranked 22nd at the start of the playoffs, but they won all of their playoff games on the road until reaching the finals against Grand Valley State University. Northwest led the game until the closing minutes and still almost pulled the game out. The Cinderella nature of Northwest coming from 22nd to challenge the #1 team in the final has been evoked as a weakness of the Bowl Championship Series, where such a run would be impossible.

2006[edit]

In the 2006 regular season the Bearcats went undefeated at 11-0. It was during their third playoff game, a game played against Bloomsburg University, that ESPN-U televised the game live from Maryville. This was the first nationally televised game from Bearcat Stadium. The game was also the first time that temporary lights (provided by ESPN) were used at Bearcat Stadium, (its lights were removed in 1977.) The Bearcats went 3-0 in the playoffs, thus earning a rematch against the Grand Valley State University Lakers at the NCAA Division II National Championship Game in Florence, AL, on December 16, 2006. The Bearcats fell to GVSU 17-14 after turning the ball over four times during the game.

2007[edit]

In the 2007 regular season the Bearcats went 9-1. Their only loss was to the #1 University of Nebraska at Omaha, who went 12-0 in the regular season. The Bearcats received a first round bye. In the second round, they faced #3 West Texas A&M University at Bearcat Stadium, and won with a final score of 56-28. In the quarterfinals the Bearcats traveled to Chadron, Nebraska to face #1 Chadron State College. Xavier Omon lead the Bearcats to a 26-13 victory by rushing for a personal best 309 yards (283 m). The Bearcats faced their long-time post-season rivals Grand Valley State University in the semifinals. Both Grand Valley and Northwest were #2 seeds in their respective regions, but the NCAA stated that due to Northwest's strength of schedule, Northwest would receive the home game. The game was broadcast from Bearcat Stadium on ESPN2; this was the second nationally televised game from Bearcat Stadium. The game was close through the third quarter. At the beginning of the fourth quarter Northwest lead the close contest, 17-16. But after a Northwest interception that produced a touchdown, and a 98-yard (90 m) Xavier Omon touchdown run, the Bearcats prevailed with a final score of 34-16, ending Grand Valley's NCAA record-setting 40-game winning streak. The Bearcats lost to #8 Valdosta State University in the NCAA Division II national football championship at 12pm (Eastern) on Saturday December 15, 2007 in Florence, Alabama; the game was broadcast on ESPN2.

2008[edit]

Main articles: 2008 NCAA Division II National Football Championship playoffs and 2008 NCAA Division II National Football Championship game

In 2008 the Bearcats played in their fourth consecutive national title game and lost to Minnesota-Duluth, which had a 15-0 season. Northwest has never lost a championship by more than seven points.

2009[edit]

Main articles: 2009 NCAA Division II National Football Championship playoffs and 2009 NCAA Division II National Football Championship game

In 2009 the Bearcats made its fifth consecutive national title appearance. No NCAA team in any division has ever done that. The Bearcats, which were ranked #2 going into the playoffs, received a first round bye. In the second round they avenged their only loss of the season by defeating Texas Abilene. In the closest game of the playoffs they defeated Central Washington University (ranked #1 at the time) in the quarterfinals by rallying in the second half and then blocking a Central Washington extra point in the closing seconds. In the semifinals it defeated University of California of Pennsylvania to qualify for its third meeting in the finals with Grand Valley.

Post season results[edit]

At the conclusion of the 2013 title, game Northwest is 41-14 in post-season play. It has been in the playoffs every year since 2004 and is 30-8 in that string and been in the national title game six times (winning two).

Year NW Rank Venue Opp Rank Opponent Score W/L Round Notes
1984 -- Away -- Nebraska-Omaha 15-28 L 1st Round
1989 18 Away -- Pittsburg State 7-28 L 1st Round
1996 2 Away -- Nebraska-Omaha 22-21 W 1st Round
1996 2 Away -- Northern Colorado 26-27 L Quarterfinal
1997 3 Maryville 16 North Dakota State 39-28 W 1st Round
1997 3 Maryville -- Northern Colorado 19-35 L Quarterfinal
1998 2 Maryville 16 Nebraska-Omaha 28-14 W 1st Round
1998 2 Maryville 6 Northern Colorado 42-17 W Quarterfinal
1998 2 Maryville 11 Texas A&M-Kingsville 49-34 W Semifinal
1998 2 Braly Stadium 3 Carson-Newman 24-6 W Finals
1999 4 Maryville 9 North Dakota State 20-13 W 1st Round
1999 4 Maryville 3 Northern Colorado 43-35 W Quarterfinal
1999 4 Maryville -- Indiana University (Pa.) 20-12 W Semifinal
1999 4 Braly Stadium 1 Carson-Newman 58-52 W Finals
2000 1 Maryville 5 North Dakota State 17-13 L 1st Round
2002 4 Maryville 11 Minnesota-Duluth 45-41 W 2nd Round (first round bye)
2002 4 Maryville 7 Northern Colorado 12-23 L Quarterfinal
2004 4 Maryville 6 Texas A&M-Kingsville 34-14 W 1st Round
2004 4 Away 1 Pittsburg State 36-50 L Quarterfinal
2005 21 Away 29 Angelo State 45-14 W 1st Round
2005 21 Away 12 Washburn 42-32 W 2nd Round
2005 21 Away 23 Pittsburg State 21-10 W Quarterfinal
2005 21 Away 13 North Alabama 25-24 W Semifinal
2005 21 Braly Stadium 1 Grand Valley State 17-21 L Finals
2006 2 Maryville 18 Midwestern State 27-0 W 2nd Round (first round bye)
2006 2 Maryville 8 Chadron State 28-21 W Quarterfinal
2006 2 Maryville 6 Bloomsburg 33-3 W Semifinal
2006 2 Braly Stadium 1 Grand Valley State 14-17 L Finals
2007 5 Maryville 4 West Texas A&M 56-28 W 2nd Round (first round bye)
2007 5 Away 2 Chadron State 26-13 W Quarterfinal
2007 5 Maryville 1 Grand Valley State 34-16 W Semifinal
2007 5 Braly Stadium 8 Valdsota State 20-25 L Finals
2008 3 Maryville 10 Pittsburg State 38-35 W 2nd Round (first round bye)
2008 3 Away 2 Abilene Christian 45-36 W Quarterfinal
2008 3 Away 5 North Alabama 41-7 W Semifinal
2008 3 Braly Stadium 6 Minnesota-Duluth 14-21 L Finals
2009 2 Maryville 16 Abilene Christian 35-10 W 2nd Round (first round bye)
2009 2 Away 1 Central Washington 21-20 W Quarterfinal
2009 2 Maryville 20 California (Pennsylvnania) 56-31 W Semifinal
2009 2 Braly Stadium 3 Grand Valley State 30-23 W Finals
2010 3 Maryville - Missouri Western 28-24 W 1st Round Northwest trailed by 17 at half—it largest deficit that it had come back from.[3]
2010 3 Away 4 Texas A&M-Kingsville 35-31 W 2nd Round Texas had defeated Northwest on opening day. Northwest won with 17 seconds remaining on Blake Bolles to Josh Baker pass.
2010 3 Maryville 7 Central Missouri 37-20 W Quarterfinal Northwest had won earlier game in Warrensburg on a field goal as time expired that was attended by 13,096—the biggest crowd at MIAA venue in history.[4]
2010 3 Away 4 Texas A&M-Kingsville 35-31 W 2nd Round Texas had defeated Northwest on opening day. Northwest won with 17 seconds remaining on Blake Bolles to Josh Baker pass.
2010 3 Away 1 Minnesota-Duluth 13-17 L Semifinal Played during snowstorm that collapsed the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome roof. Temperatures were in the single digits and the wind blew at 30 mph. Northwest led most of the game until 4:12 left in the fourth quarter.
2011 7 Away 17 Missouri Western 35-29 W 1st Round Northwest lost earlier game in St. Joseph 31-28. Northwest rallied in second half with 21 unanswered points. Northwest had been down 16-0 in the first four minutes of the game.[5]
2011 7 Away 1 Midwestern State 38-31 W 2nd Round (1 OT) Midwest was ranked #1 going into the game and was one of only 3 undefeated D2 teams. Midwest led 28-10 in the second quarter - the biggest Northwest deficit since it began its dominance in 2004. The game was played in 30 mph winds. Midwest marched to the Bearcat 9 with 10 seconds remaining. Greg Saladino shanked a potential game winning field goal throwing it into overtime. Bearcat quarterback Trevor Adams hit Kyle Kilgore on a 13-yard wheel route for the overtime's only score by either team.[6]
2011 7 Away 6 Pittsburg State 16-41 L Quarterfinal Pittsburg had defeated the Bearcats earlier in the season in a game that broke Northwest's record 49 straight MIAA victory record (a game in which the Bearcats had led 21-0) and this was a rematch of MIAA teams. The game was played in a driving rain. Northwest led 10-0 at the end of the first quarter and it was tied at half. Pittsburg scored 31 points in second half.
2012 10 Maryville 9 Harding University 35-0 W First Round
2012 10 Away 2 Minnesota State-Mankato 35-38 (2OT) L Second Round Northwest was down 0-21 but scored 28 points in the second half to force two overtimes in which Northwest ultimately lost after Mankato turned an intercepted pass into a field goal.
2013 2 Maryville 5 Minnesota-Duluth 45-21 W Second Round (first round bye)
2013 2 Maryville 5 Minnesota-Duluth 59-21 W Second Round (first round bye) [7][8]
2013 2 Maryville 12 Minnesota-St. Cloud 59-21 W Quarterfinal [9][8]
2013 2 Maryville 22 Grand Valley State 27-13 W Semifinal Game was attend by Missouri Governor Jay Nixon who gave a pep talk to team at the beginning.[10][8]
2013 2 Braly Stadium 13 Lenoir–Rhyne 43-28 W Final Lenoir set a record for most offensive rushing yards in any NCAA division in one season however it was held in check by Northwest which jumped to a 17-0 lead in the first quarter. The game was the last Division II championship at Braly Stadium. Northwest's home conference MIAA won a bid the week before the game to host future championships 100 miles from Maryville in Kansas City at Sporting Park .[11][8]

Record[edit]

Year Coach W L T MIAA NCAA D2
1908 Paul A. White 3 2 1
1916 George Palfreyman 2 5
1917 George Palfreyman 0 7
1918 M.H. Simms 1 1
1919 Robert Rice 0 4
1920 Robert Rice 0 3
1921 Russell Sprong 2 6
1922 Eugene Maynor 4 4
1923 H.F. Lawrence 3 3 1
1924 H.F. Lawrence 6 1 1
1925 H.F. Lawrence 7 0 1 X
1926 H.F. Lawrence 6 2
1927 E.A. Davis 1 7
1928 E.A. Davis 5 3 1
1929 E.A. Davis 3 2 3
1930 E.A. Davis 4 5 1
1931 E.A. Davis 9 0 X
1932 E.A. Davis 4 4 1
1933 E.A. Davis 1 8
1934 E.A. Davis 4 5
1935 E.A. Davis 3 5 1
1936 E.A. Davis 4 4 1
1937 Ryland Milner 2 5 2
1938 Ryland Milner 9 0 X
1939 Ryland Milner 9 0 X
1940 Ryland Milner 7 2
1941 Ryland Milner 6 2 1 X
1942 Ryland Milner 4 2 1 X
1943 Ryland Milner 5 1 1
1944 Ryland Milner 7 0
1946 Ryland Milner 4 3
1947 Ryland Milner 5 2 2
1948 Ryland Milner 6 2 X
1949 Ryland Milner 5 2 1
1950 Ryland Milner 3 5 1
1951 Ryland Milner 2 6 1
1952 Ryland Milner 6 3 X
1953 Ryland Milner 3 4 1
1954 Ryland Milner 2 6
1955 Ryland Milner 2 5 1
1956 Ryland Milner 2 7
1957 Ryland Milner 1 6 1
1958 Paul Turner 0 8
1959 Paul Turner 3 3 2
1960 Earl Baker 5 4
1961 Earl Baker 2 7
1962 Earl Baker 0 9
1963 Ivan Schottel 3 5 1
1964 Ivan Schottel 6 3
1965 Ivan Schottel 6 3
1966 Ivan Schottel 4 5
1967 Ivan Schottel 3 6
1968 Ivan Schottel 0 9
1969 Ivan Schottel 3 6
1971 Gladden Dye 4 5
1972 Gladden Dye 7 3 X
1973 Gladden Dye 6 4 X
1974 Gladden Dye 8 2
1975 Gladden Dye 7 3
1976 Jim Redd 8 2
1977 Jim Redd 5 5 1
1978 Jim Redd 0 11
1979 Jim Redd 6 5 X
1980 Jim Redd 2 8
1981 Jim Redd 6 4
1982 Jim Redd 2 7 1
1983 Vernon Thomsen 5 6
1984 Vernon Thomsen 10 2 X 1st Round
1985 Vernon Thomsen 4 6 1
1986 Vernon Thomsen 2 9
1987 Vernon Thomsen 3 8
1988 Harold "Bud" Elliott 2 9
1989 Harold "Bud" Elliott 9 3 1st Round
1990 Harold "Bud" Elliott 2 8 1
1991 Harold "Bud" Elliott 5 6
1992 Harold "Bud" Elliott 6 5
1993 Harold "Bud" Elliott 3 8
1994 Mel Tjeerdsma 0 11
1995 Mel Tjeerdsma 6 5
1996 Mel Tjeerdsma 11 2 X Quarterfinals
1997 Mel Tjeerdsma 12 1 X Quarterfinals
1998 Mel Tjeerdsma 15 0 X Finals-Champ
1999 Mel Tjeerdsma 14 1 X Finals-Champ
2000 Mel Tjeerdsma 11 1 X 1st Round
2001 Mel Tjeerdsma 7 4
2002 Mel Tjeerdsma 12 1 X Quarterfinals
2003 Mel Tjeerdsma 8 3 X
2004 Mel Tjeerdsma 11 2 Quarterfinals
2005 Mel Tjeerdsma 11 4 Finals-Runner Up
2006 Mel Tjeerdsma 14 1 X Finals-Runner Up
2007 Mel Tjeerdsma 12 2 X Finals-Runner Up
2008 Mel Tjeerdsma 13 2 X Finals-Runner Up
2009 Mel Tjeerdsma 14 1 X Finals-Champ
2010 Mel Tjeerdsma 12 2 X Semifinals
2011 Adam Dorrel 11 3 Quarterfinal (3rd round) loss to Pittsburg which had unseated it as MIAA champ.
2012 Adam Dorrel 11 3 Second Round loss to Minnesota State-Mankato
2013 Adam Dorrel 15 0 X Finals-Champ

Coaching death[edit]

On June 5, 2011 Bearcats head coach Scott Bostwick died of an apparent heart attack in Maryville.[12] The 49-year-old Bostwick had been named head coach of the Bearcats in December, 2010 following the retirement of longtime coach Mel Tjeerdsma.[13] Bostwick had been on the Northwest coaching staff since 1994, and most recently had served as defensive coordinator under Tjeerdsma. In 2007 had been voted the American Football Coaches Association Division II Assistant coach of the year.[14]

Notable players and coaches[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]