Football – 2013: Lincoln Northeast


Lincoln Northeast Football 1963

Front: Assistant Coach Max Hester, Mark Holm, Chuck Turek, John Mayfield, Dick McConkey, Bob Scott,. Tom Harris, Doug Campbell, Jack Handa, Ralph Garcia, Head Coach Art Bauer. Middle: George Manske, Dan Cunningham, Roger Woods, Marlin Brodd, Jim Brox, Jerry Morford, Roger Galloway, Rich Bowker, Rod Dewey, Daryl Schuckmann, Dick Johnson-SM. Back: Bob Parker, Dan Ellis, Gary Thompson, Dennis Bargman, Ken Jones, Jerry Egger, Marty Jacobson, Terry Monk, Don Riggert, George Knight, Mike Clinkenbeard.

Football/Basketball – 2011: Polk

In 1946, McCook High School utilized a blend of the speed from a state track championship team and the experience of a talented senior class to win the school’s first and only football state championship (written in 1996).

The Bison went 9-0 and defeated Fremont, 7 to 0, in the Big 10 Conference playoff game in the final game of the year. The prized victory for this team was 40-7 over Grand Island. This victory put McCook in line for the championship because Grand Island later defeated the Lincoln champion Lincoln High, which had defeated Omaha champion Omaha South.

In those pre-football playoff days, comparative scores were the basis for final ratings and state title selections.

McCook also won the Southwest Conference championship and scored 176 points for the year, giving up 26. Coach Russ Sautter’s team usually won easily but in the few close games they had, they showed a knack for the big play.


Dale Allen
Robert Bell
Jack Boyd
Jim Brown
Gary Creasman
Dick Drake
Melvin Drews
Phil Dulaney
Howard Fletcher
Pete Gonzales
Don Hein
Richard Hill
Harvey Hoffinan
Merlin Hoyt
Wallace Keen
Milton Krogh
Dale Lyons
Joe Magrath
Jerry McClain
Jerry McIlmoyle
Leo McKillip
Roger Messinger
Don Payton
Alan Peterson
Bob Porter
Robert Real
Merrill Ream
Richard Schafer
Everett Skillman
Glen Sliger
Ted Sloniker
Allen Strunk
Bob Wallen
Robert Warburton
Stanley Webster
Joe Weiland
Bob Wilcox
Russ Sautter
Asst. Coaches:
James Meader
Lloyd McCullough
Student Managers:
Kenneth Bollerup
Keith Roper
Mary Lou Shubert Drake
Georgine Waugh
Mary Ann Wagner
Lee Avis Coler Rutt

Football/Basketball – 1997: Grand Island Senior High, 1947-48

Grand Island Senior High School’s post-World War II athletic surge produced state championships in both football and basketball in the 1947-48 school year, with the junior class that year being able to boast that their teams won two football championships and two basketball championships while they were in school.

The basketball titles came in 1947 and again in 1948. Football titles came in 1947 (although the mythical state championship had to be shared with Creighton Prep) and again in 1948 when they were unanimously No. 1.

The 1947-48 teams had great coaches in football’s Jerry Lee and basketball’s Aubrey Givens. The football star was Bobby Reynolds and the basketball stalwart was Dale Toft. But they were not one-man teams.

Memorial Stadium was a buzz word for the 1947 football team. They opened the season with the first game in Grand Island’s new high school stadium, called Memorial Stadium, and then played in Nebraska’s Memorial Stadium late in the year, defeating Lincoln High by 25-14 before a crowd some estimated close to 20,000.

The basketball team built a Class A state record winning streak during its 1947-48 school year only to have the streak ended by Hastings in the district finals. In those day, the district champion and runner-ujp advanced to the state tournament so the Islanders moved on to Lincoln.

Once in Lincoln, Grand Island won two easy games and then defeated Lincoln Northeast in the championship game by 50-24. The basketball team’s season record was 22-1. The football team finished 9-0 with its Big Ten Conference playoff win over North Platte.


Jerry Andersen
Larry Andersen
Elgie Armour
Bob Bachman
Eugene Budde
Larry Carney
Ronald Clark
Bob Eck
Don Frei
Don Haack
Bob Hann
Lowell Hayman
Duane Hueneke
Howard Jelinek
Bud John
Bob Knickrahm
Charles LaMoore
Al Lyons
Lyle Martin
R.L. Massey
Wally McMullen
Bob Murray
Bill Noble
Bob Poppert
Bob Reynolds
Jed Ryan
Virgil Sawicki
Max Scheel
Mervin Schroeder
Richard Simpson
Dale Toft
Duane Treadway
Neale Wells
Basketball Coach Aubrey Givens
Football Coach Jerry Lee

Football – 2011: Omaha North

Unbeaten North High had great depth and a versatile backfield which gained a lot of notoriety for its productivity and nickname—the Four Norsemen, a moniker created by The World-Herald’s Don Lee. Bob Churchich, Ricky Davis, Rook Taylor and Dan Miller did gridiron mayhem through the Metro Conference during the Vikings’ 9-0 season. Guard Bert Hetrick and end/linebacker Dave Krause were all-state.


Football – 2007: Lexington


Undefeated (8-0) and The Associated Press Class A state champion, the Minutemen allowed only one touchdown all year. The team included three all-state starters – Dallas Dyer, Monte Kiffin and Mick Tingelhoff.

By BARB BIERMAN BATIE, Lexington Clipper-Herald 09/21/2007

LEXINGTON — There was something special in the crisp fall air in 1957 — something so special that 50 years later, longtime residents still talk about the 1957 Lexington High School football team and their remarkable season.
The team was undefeated and unscored upon until their last game of the season, when North Platte scored on a screen pass in the first quarter.

People would come from surrounding towns just to see the Minutemen, and the stands were packed at every game.

Out of that team, six members went on to play college football, three of the team members played and starred for the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, and two of those went on to play and star in the NFL. One of those is still coaching in the NFL.

Area residents will have a chance to meet and reminisce with members of the 1957 team as they gather this weekend in Lexington for a reunion, which will precede their induction Sunday into the Nebraska High School Sports Hall of Fame as a Golden Anniversary Team for 2007-08.

“Our team reminded me of the movie ‘The Hoosiers,’” said Steve Smith of Toccoa, Ga., who was the starting quarterback that year. “We were only four or five boys over into Class A that year, and we played North Platte, Kearney,and Omaha Westside.”

According to research by Ray Ehlers of Lexington, who nominated the team for the Golden Age Award, Lexington was a member of the Southwest Conference at that time, which ranged in size from Curtis, the smallest at Class C, to Class A schools North Platte, Kearney, McCook and Lexington. Other conference schools were Cozad, Gothenburg and Holdrege, which were Class B.

“Lexington defeated Omaha in a game played at Lexington. What was unique about this game is that the team and 300 Omaha fans rode a special train to Lexington and returned to Omaha in the same manner,” noted Ehlers.

In those days before buses were the norm, the team carpooled to games, recalls Dick Carr of Lexington, who was a senior defensive end for the Minutemen.

Those drives were important for building relationships, recalls Dave Smith of Lexington, who was the sophomore center. In fact, looking back at the upperclassmen, one reason they were so good was all the time they spent together, he said.

“I remember my aunt telling my mom that she was always cooking as there were always five to six boys and sometimes 15 at her house,” said Smith. “They studied together, they spent weekends together, and intuitively they knew what each other was going to do.”

It also helped that the school created an atmosphere of camaraderie with pep rallies every Friday before the games, said Ruth (Snurr) Carr, one of the cheerleaders that followed the team. “We also had a dance after every home game.”

Another reason they were able to win so many games, said Smith, was the coaching.

Head coach Merle Applebee had a reputation for being a tough disciplinarian and making the team adhere to the rules, but he was also ahead of his time in calling the plays.

“We had a triple-option play that we ran the first four games,” said Smith. “We were well scouted but no one could break that play. (Mick) Tingelhoff was the center and I would take the snap, pitch to (Milan) Phelps and he’d act like he was going to run, then pull up and throw the perfect halfback pass.”

Applebee was also ahead of his time in conditioning and nutrition. Players recall running and running and running and Dave Smith remembers the orders, “Don’t drink coffee or Coke.”

“I don’t think I had a Coke until I was well into college,” Smith said.

While the helmets of the era left a little bit to be desired — most only had a one-piece nose guard — by 1957 each uniform had a pretty good set of padding, said Carr.

Another reason they had to be so good was because their uniforms that year were so ugly, said Carr. “We had the ugliest uniform in the state. It was olive green with black and orange stripes,” he said.

“Those uniforms were the first art of camouflage,” said Dave Smith. “No one could see who had the ball.”

While the first string saw most of the action, the second string, or scout team, was down in the trenches, taking the hits and keeping the starters sharp. Earl Brecks of Lexington was the quarterback for the scout team. “We were always black and blue by Thursday,” he recalls.

The second stringers and underclassmen earned the respect of their peers. “What impresses me, looking back,” said Steve Smith, “are the guys who weren’t very big, and day in and day out, they gave everything they had. How tough that must have been, and what grit and determination they had. I have a lot of respect for them.”

“Practices were horribly brutal because we had to scrimmage against each other,” said Steve Smith. “Games were fun in light of those practices.”

Mick Tingelhoff, who was the center and a linebacker on defense, recalls how awesome it was when everything came together during their senior year. The team had lost all its games their sophomore year, then won all but one their junior year.

“We all grew up and we had an outstanding group of guys.”