Ooltewah's Williams Signs With Northwest Missouri

Bearcats Won 2013 NCAA Division II National Title

Tuesday, July 22, 2014 - by Larry Fleming

Ooltewah’s Mike Williams, one of District 5-AAA’s most respected wide receiver threats in 2013, has signed a football scholarship with Northwest Missouri State, the defending NCAA Division II national champion.

Williams chose the Bearcats, members of the Mid-America Intercollegiate Athletics Conference, over Carson-Newman, in Jefferson City, Tenn., and Paine College, in Augusta College, which will return to Division II football in 2014 for the first time in 50-plus years.

The 6-foot-1-inch, 175-pound former Owls standout visited Northwest Missouri in Maryville, Mo., last week and committed to the Bearcats during his trip. He signed scholarship papers on Monday.

“I’m pretty pumped up about going out there,” Williams said Tuesday night. “It’s a nice town, the coaches are nice and they have pretty much Division I facilities. They usually redshirt every freshman they sign, but I want to play my freshman year. If I get out there and they’ve got better players ahead of me I don’t mind redshirting.”

Williams wrapped up his Ooltewah career with sparkling numbers in 2013, grabbing 52 passes for 658 yards and eight touchdowns. He rushed five times for 76 yards and two scores while leading the Owls to a 9-3 record, including a 26-19 loss to district rival East Hamilton in the second round of the Class 5-A playoffs.

For his career, Williams had 89 receptions for 1,358 yards and 18 touchdowns.

Also a defensive stalwart, Williams had three interceptions and blocked 10 kicks in 2013.

“Mike was our go-to guy,” Owls coach Mac Bryan said. “When the defense lined up, offensively we did what they were doing to him. He played great defense in critical situations too. He’s a great kid with a great work ethic, has great character and is a first-class kid.

“He’s going to a football program that’s as good as it gets in Division II. I think he’ll do a great job out there.”

Northwest Missouri went 15-0 last season and defeated Lenoir Ryne, 43-28, in Florence, Ala., for the Division II national title. It was the school’s fourth championship, with the other three coming in 1998 (the Bearcats also went 15-0 that year), 1999 and 2009.

The Bearcats are coached by Adam Dorrel, the 2013 American Football Coaches Association and MIAA Coach of the Year and takes 36-6 overall and 25-4 MIAA records into his ninth season in 2014.

Northwest Missouri’s offense has averaged 45.7 points per game, scored 59 points in eight different games and produced a sixth round draft choice – Brandon Dixon – by the New York Jets under Dorrel, an All-America offensive lineman during his playing days with the Bearcats.

On Nov. 15, the Bearcats will play MIAA rival Washburn in Arrowhead Stadium, their 13th appearance in the home of the Kansas City Chiefs. Northwest Missouri has won nine of those games and seven times the attendance exceeded 20,000.

“Mike’s a good player,” said Bryan, entering his second season with the Owls. “Two years from now he’s going to be a good mid-major receiver. With his work ethic, he’ll do what needs to be done.”

Williams visited Carson-Newman, but his decision to attend Northwest Missouri was basically set in stone last Wednesday during his trip Maryville.

“I committed to them while I was there,” Williams said. “Carson-Newman offered me a pretty good deal, but I had a pretty good feel about Northwest Missouri and felt like that was the best place for me.

“I had a great time at Ooltewah and I’ll miss the teachers, administration and coaches – they all helped me get through and make the opportunity to play football in college happen.”

Williams became academically eligible late and feels that kept him from possibly receiving more serious looks by Division I schools. However, he said he ended up with a 3.25 grade-point average and made all A’s in his core classes prior to graduation.

“I’m very happy about that,” Williams said. “That gives me confidence that I can do all right in college. I almost waited too long to get my grades in order, but coach (Doug) Greene told me what I had to do and I did it.”

When it became obvious his Division I plans would not materialize, Williams sent highlight tapes to about 15 Division II schools and got responses from “three or four.”

Northwest Missouri, which recruited Williams to play wide receiver, was one of those schools.

Williams said he will report to school on Aug. 12.

(E-mail Larry Fleming at larryfleming44@gmail.com and follow him on Twitter @larryfleming44)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



Randy Smith: Butch's Last Stand?

There are some media pundits who may know a lot more than I do that believe this weekend's Tennessee-Georgia game in Knoxville will be the last stand for Vols' coach Butch Jones. The 7th ranked Bulldogs are favored to win the game  Saturday  afternoon at Neyland Stadium, which would snap a two game losing streak to the Volunteers. Unranked Tennessee is coming off of ... (click for more)

Chattooga High Hosts 5th Annual Bobcat Cheer Extravaganza

Nearly 450 cheer athletes of all different ages tumbled, danced and cheered on the mats at Chattooga High School  on Monday  night for the fifth annual Bobcat Cheer Extravaganza, presented and hosted by Georgia Northwestern.  Recreation teams, middle school teams and high school teams, both varsity and junior varsity, performed and competed in three ... (click for more)

Woman Has Unknown Liquid Thrown In Her Face At CARTA; 4 Bystanders Also Taken To Hospital; 15 Fire Companies Respond

A woman had an "unknown liquid" thrown in her face in front of the CARTA headquarters on Sholar Avenue on Tuesday morning, fire officials said. It is neart Wilcox Boulevard and Holtzclaw Avenue. Four bystanders were also taken to the hospital. Police said all those affected were CARTA employees. The incident was caught on video. The Chattanooga Fire Department ... (click for more)

Opportunity Zone Begins Effort To Transform 12 Low-Performing County Schools

The Hamilton County Department of Education announced the new Opportunity Zone team that officials said "will ensure every student is post-secondary ready." The schools in this zone are: Brainerd High, The Howard School, East Lake Middle Academy, Dalewood Middle, Orchard Knob Middle, Barger Academy of Fine Arts, Calvin Donaldson Environmental Science Academy, Clifton Hills ... (click for more)

Titans Hide In The Locker Room

This Sunday, as has been widely reported, the Tennessee Titans and the Seattle Seahawks both chose to remain in their respective locker rooms during the playing of the National Anthem at Nissan Stadium.  Besides the fact that the NFL game operations manual has a rule regarding player behavior during the playing of the National Anthem which requires them to stand at attention ... (click for more)

Roy Exum - Why Al Took A Stand

“Help me, sir!” 18-year-old Jesse Dietrich cried to his lieutenant. “Please sir, I need help …” the Private First Class begged as blood streamed from where the kid had been shot in the chest during an intense Taliban ambush. The platoon leader had just dragged the 18-year-old by his backpack down a dark alley in withering gunfire, all the while returning fire over the fallen soldier ... (click for more)