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HomeNewsChippewa Raiders to return to the senior gridiron after nine-year absence

Chippewa Raiders to return to the senior gridiron after nine-year absence

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Football great Deion Sanders once said, “If you look good, you feel good, you play good.”

For the re-born Chippewa Raiders senior football team, thanks to some grassroots fundraising, they certainly look good in their new equipment and uniforms. And thanks to an eager base of parents, committed school officials, and an experienced coaching staff, they feel good about the program’s revival. But, can they, as Sanders once said, “play good?”

Head coach Doug Steringa not only feels that his players, many of whom he guided through the Junior Bulldogs program, can “play good,” he believes that the Raiders can be competitive right away.

Steringa, who is a community coach and does not teach at the school, says the turnout to late August practices has been strong, even better than he anticipated. Despite some rumblings that the Raiders would not have the numbers to field a viable team, Steringa says that everything he has seen so far leads him to believe that conditions are “favourable,” for a strong team to take the field September 15 for the season opener.

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“We will be a very competitive team, and on top of that we will look darn good, too,” says the coach.

The initial infusion of cash to get the program up and running was covered by a few generous donors. As team manager and staff liaison Robyn Colvin points out, it was hard to raise funds for a team that did not exist yet.

Fundraising efforts continue, and Colvin hopes to garner enough financial support from the community to provide a top-notch program for the players not only through this season but for years to come.

For more on Chippewa senior football fundraising, click here.

Colvin is a Chippewa alumnus and is as involved as a teacher with community life at the school as she was as a student. Football and all its life lessons are dear to her. The scarlet and gold runs deep in her family, as her father and brother both played football for the Raiders, and now her son is poised to take the same field as they did before him.

Steringa echoes the value of football in a young person’s upbringing. Football builds character, provides an outlet for players to vent frustrations, and everybody plays football for a different reason, says the coach, adding that the leadership skills football develop and the team-building that fosters respect of others, is invaluable for young people.

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