Football: NMU, SVST face off for Senior Day


Chris Anderson/NW

UP NEXT — NMU will be facing another top 25 opponent this weekend Nov. 5 and will be looking to steal a win against the SVST Cardinals for Senior Day. NMU will be honoring 15 players on Saturday.

Chris Anderson

The second half of the season has proven to be a major challenge for NMU’s men’s football team as they have now lost the last four games. The past four weeks NMU has faced off against three teams that are now ranked in the top five in the country and, with the exception of a close overtime loss to Davenport, the ‘Cats have not fared well.

“To even have a chance to play with those teams, we got to have all our ones up and running and physically our team has been beaten to Hades for the last few weeks,” Head Coach Kyle Nystrom said. “I had two receivers going into the game. I’ve never had that happen to me in my life.”

Last weekend the defending champion Ferris St. Bulldogs traveled to Marquette to face off against the ‘Cats in the Superior Dome. The Bulldogs won the matchup 56-20 and NMU has now allowed 56 points to be scored by the opposing team the past two games in a row. 

“We are way out matched. We got absolutely destroyed in the perimeter in the run game and we couldn’t handle the speed and we didn’t tackle well,” Nystrom said.

NMU’s RB Tyshon King exploded for 178 yards and a touchdown; QB Zach Keen threw for 203 yards, two touchdowns and an interception. Unfortunately, the ‘Cats gave up the ball on downs twice inside their own 40, leading to a huge 2nd quarter for the Bulldogs as they broke open for 42 first half points.

“We should have had those …We messed up a tight end blocking assignment on both plays we had them all blocked. It looked really good except for one guy, and you can’t do that against those people,” Nystrom said.

NMU’s defense did much better in the second half, only allowing 14 points with LB Will Borchert tallying 11 tackles in the game with four other Wildcat players totaling eight tackles each.

“The way you move on from it is you accept where you’re at, and you improve on it and you move forward because you really don’t have time to sit around and dwell on it,” Nystrom said. “Everything happens too fast for the next game.”

NMU will have to move forward quickly as the next game is against yet another GLIAC powerhouse No.17 Saginaw Valley St. The Cardinals will travel to Marquette for NMU’s senior day. This class of 15 has been with Coach Nystrom since 2017 after Nystrom took over the head coaching position in Dec. of 2016.

“They mean the world to us. They’ve been with us the whole time and they’ve gone through some turbulent affairs, to say the least,” Nystrom said. “They’ve had some good things and they’ve had some hard things but they’re top-notch people.”