Conference titles and playoff appearances have become an annual occurence for the St. Ambrose football program and big things are expected, again, this season. The Fighting Bees are the pre-season favorite in the Mid-States Football Association Midwest League and are rated 13th in the N.A.I.A. pre-season poll.
St. Ambrose coach Mike Magistrelli says it’s a great honor to be picked to win, but he says it’s based on what you did a year ago. He led the program to league titles in his first two seasons as coach. A key this year will be on defense where three linemen from last year need to be replaced, but he says they do have some good young kids who can fill the spots.
On offense the line is experienced with the entire five starters back who will be the nucleus of the offense. They will start a new quarterback. Quarterback Will Ducey must be replaced after throwing for nearly three thousand yards and 21 touchdowns in 2008. Magistrelli will turn to a familiar face to take the helm.
Magistrelli says Michael Hayward started at wide receiver last year and will switch back to quarterback this year. St. Ambrose will open the season at home against Trinity International.