WAUSAU, Wis. (WSAW) -- The Newman Catholic Cardinals are in full pads preparing for Saturday's matchup against Luck.
Newman eyes first football state title
Newman is looking for revenge after last season's semifinal lost. The team has come a long way from just a decade ago.
"Totally," said Newman quarterback Ben Bates. "Totally. Last year, we kind of ended in a way we didn't want it to end. That loss last year has kind of stuck with us. We don't want that to happen again."
"I mean for this group of kids and for the people that play before," said Newman coach Paul Michlig. "Back in the early 2000, this program was probably on life support and probably inches away from not having a football program. It's for those kids that stuck it out during that 2002 season all the way up until now. They've built the program up. We obviously changed. Back in 2002, I never would have thought that we'd be playing "
When the team looks back on this season, they will remember the dominance of two brothers.
Ben Bates and Thomas Bates.
Ben has thrown for 1,958 yards and his brother has rushed for 1,718 yards as a freshman.
The team wants to bring the Gold Ball home for the first time in Newman football history, but regardless of what happens Sunday, the brotherly love will be remembered forever.
"It's super cool," said Bates, "It seems like it was the other day where we were young and playing in the backyard playing football with friends and neighbors and stuff like that. Just to be out on the field and to playing the real thing, it really means the world. It's not everyday that you get to say you play with your brother on a varsity sport, especially football here. Whenever he scores, it's so awesome. It makes me so happy to see him carry on the legacy at Newman."
"A couple of years ago when he was debating on going for football and stuff like that, and now, he's out there with his brother, and his brother has had a great freshman year," said Michlig. "There can't be any disappointing people in the Bates household."