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Hastings Tigers prepare for new football season
Lloyd Wilson Field in Hastings is one of the best places to watch a high school, or college football game for that matter.
It is the home of the Hastings Tigers who hope to play well there and at the other stadiums they'll play as they look forward to the season that begins next week.
Welcome back students and staff to Hastings High School as Classes will soon be in session.
That means the football team is already at practice with their early opener set August 24th when these Tigers visit the Seward Bluejays.
The Tigers like the way last season ended with a win at Grand Island Northwest and with such players as Quarterback Tyler Ripperger, running back Jake Rossen and several experienced linemen, they feel they have a good chance to better that four win total of last season.
Reminders of the great Tiger championship teams hang in the gym with the banners and in the trophy case. They were Coach Walt Olsen's 93 and 94 title teams. Wide receiver Cori Dreher was one of those outstanding players and now a Tiger assistant coach whose presence is yet another acknowledgement that it can be done.
"It's awesome because we have so much tradition here. We want to live up to it, do our best an keep the reputation of the school up," said lineman Mark Goodin.
Of course when we talk about Hastings we are talking about Tom Osborne, the legendary Nebraska football coaches picture are just outside the gym.
Now the Athletic Director at Nebraska, no one from Hastings High school can go anywhere with someone talking about the school's most famous alum.
"Well, they all know where he came from, you know even if they really haven't been to the town if you bring up Hastings high school. Oh, that's where Tom Osborne's at, you know, or where he graduated from so you get those comments quite a bit," said Coach Rick Ripperger.
Does Tom call you and wish you luck? If not, he should.
No, he'll write a letter once in awhile, but I think he does that for other schools as well, but if he wants to come back and give me some advice I'm more than willing to take it, that's for sure," said Ripperger.
Mark Goodin will certainly be playing with extra incentive this season, his brother and former UNK lineman Steven Goodin is in camp with the Super Bowl champion New York Giants trying to make the team as a free agent. That for Mark is a great incentive.
"Oh, definitely, it's awesome, I never thought my older brother would make it that far, it's crazy how everything turned out," said Goodin.
So as this football season is about to start, it'll be interesting to see if Steven Goodin makes the Giants and if Mark Goodin and his Tiger teammates can make the state playoffs.
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