GOLDEN, Colo. — Colorado school of Mines is on the verge of making history.
They Orediggers have never advanced past the second round in an NCAA Championship. Saturday could be their big moment, when they host the Bemidji State.
“If we win this game, it will be the best season in school history and they all know that,” said head coach Gregg Brandon. “We want to continue our postseason. You know, you hope the kids understand hey this is what we’re here for. We want to play in these games, the playoffs. That’s where we want to be every year at Mines.”
The Beavers won 10 games this year and have Division II's fifth best passing attack (340.4 ypg) and seventh best total offense (480.0).
The Orediggers' offense has been electric this season but the defense has been the real key. The Orediggers have let up just 13 points per game.
“The standard on the defense is dominate every single team we can,” said senior Captain Gabriel Kortz, a Valor Christian alum. “It’s not just win, we want to dominate every single opponent. We just have a lot of guys that buy in.”
Mines’ leadership is special. Six seniors are back from last year’s squad, using the extra year of COVID-19 eligibility. One of them being Kortz.
“I mean I love this. I love the guys. These are the most special group of 120 guys you’ll find anywhere in the country. We always say that you play football to have fun and winning is fun. So I’d say I had a good time this year and it’s been very worthwhile," Kortz said.
The Orediggers and Bemidji State will play at noon on Saturday in the second round of the 2021 DII football championship. A win would send Mines to the quarterfinals.