Division III championship: Mount Union 31, Wisconsin-Whitewater 24
SALEM, Va. ó In his four seasons at Mount Union College, Nate Kmic had run for more yards and scored more touchdowns than any other player in NCAA football history.
There was only one score left for the senior running back to settle, and with plenty of help from his Purple Raiders teammates, that task was taken care of in Saturday’s Stagg Bowl.
Greg Micheli threw two touchdown passes and Kmic rushed for another score ó all in the first quarter ó and Mount Union (15-0) regained its spot atop Division III football Saturday, beating defending national champion Wisconsin-Whitewater 31-26. The victory gave the small Ohio school its 10th Stagg Bowl title, all coming in the past 16 seasons.
And Kmic walked out of Salem Stadium for the fourth and final time with the added satisfaction that the Raiders’ win came over the Warhawks (13-2), the same foe Mount Union has faced in the championship game the past four years and one of only two teams to beat the Raiders during Kmic’s career.
“As a senior, this is the most unbelievable feeling,” said Kmic, who conceded that ending 2007 with a loss made for a long offseason. “I would trade in all of the individual awards and all the other stuff that has happened in my career for this moment right now.”
That’s saying a lot, considering what Kmic has accomplished.
During the five-game 2008 postseason, Kmic broke the Division III records for rushing yards (1,150), touchdowns (16) and points (96). He also became the first running back at any NCAA level to reach the 8,000-yard mark for career rushing yards. The last 88 of those 8,074 yards came on Saturday.