BY JD PELEGRINO
The Bulldogs went back-to-back with their second win in two weeks. After a compelling 38-13 win against the Valparaiso Crusaders last week, the Dogs carried the momentum to Indiana against Butler. The final score of the contest favored the Bulldogs 27-16.
Quarterback Grant Kraemer completed 27 of 40 passes for 329 yards and two touchdowns. Kraemer’s touchdown passes were hauled in by tight end Connor Ostrander and receiver Steven Doran. Both Doran and Ostrander had over 70 yards receiving, as did wide out,Mitch McFarlane (87 yards) and receiver Devin Cates (71 yards).
Thus far in the season, Kraemer has played some of the best football of his career. Kraemer has thrown for over 300 yards in three games this season and four of five of those games have been multi-touchdown games. The Quarterback is on pace to throw more touchdowns this season than he did last season and has already tied his amount of rushing touchdowns from last year.
Running back Tyler Updegraph got his fair share of touches against Butler, being fed the rock 24 times for 69 yards and one touchdown. There has been a strong offensive presence for the Bulldogs this season that helps the team stay on top of opponents.
A conference championship and a run into the playoffs would be phenomenal news for the Bulldogs and a substantial boost to team moral heading into next season or even into May. In May of 2018, the Bulldogs are set to travel to China.
This season, the Bulldogs have the potential to win conference, however four out of the last five games have either been huge blowouts in favor of or against Drake. Last week against Butler was the first time this year that the score has been relatively close. The Bulldogs host Dayton this week in their second conference game of the season. This is an important game for the Dogs as the Flyers have consistently been a sturdy source of competition.
Zack Clark, a member of the offensive line, cannot wait to experience the change in scenery this upcoming May. Clark has never been to China and does not foresee himself or any members of the football team traveling abroad during the school year anytime throughout their undergraduate years at Drake.
“This is kind of the way we’re able to give the athletes like the football players the ability to do what any other student gets to do. This just happens I get to do it with some of my best friends,” Clark said.
Most student athletes do not have the opportunity to travel abroad throughout college because of their respective seasons, summer camps and offseason programs.
This opportunity is a chance for the athletes to take a step back from football and enjoy the trip. They will also do some type of community service work near the area that they will be living in. Clark relayed that perhaps five or so years ago the Drake Football Team traveled to Africa where they built a football field and played on it with others.
“That’s what they’re trying to do with this trip … Put us into a position to learn about other cultures, to understand people for more than what we already think we know,” Clark said.
Clark expressed his desire to take away more than just a trip to China from this experience. This may serve as a learning experience about the different cultures across the globe. Members of the football team do not yet know too much about the trip such as how long the trip will last, the flight details or the agenda.
This week the Bulldogs (3-2) head into their third conference game of the season against Dayton (1-4, 0-2 in conference) at home. The Dogs are 2-0 in the Pioneer Football League this year, looking to remain undefeated in conference. Kickoff is at 2 p.m on Saturday, Oct. 9.