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College football: Linton II wows again; Bluejays move to 3-0

WORTHINGTON — Three games into the 2013 football season, the Minnesota West Bluejays have yet to be seriously challenged. Maybe that was why head coach Jeff Linder had that wide grin on his face after handshakes were exchanged Saturday afternoon on Trojan Field.

Moments earlier, the Jays capped off a 38-6 victory over winless Mesabi Range. Linder stated the obvious.

“We played well. We ran the ball well. We didn’t have to throw the ball much,” said the coach.

The Bluejays are not perfect, but a few things are quite obvious. The Jays have a solid stable of running backs led by sophomores Reuben Linton II and Zach Norman. The offensive line opens holes and protects the quarterback. The defense stops the run, harries opposing quarterbacks and covers receivers well.

The team began the season with confidence, and its confidence is growing.

West has yet to hit on all cylinders with the passing game, and on Saturday a rash of foolish penalties marred the second half of the Mesabi Range contest. Those things can be corrected. For now, the Bluejays sit at a comfortable 3-0 heading into their next weekend game on the road against the 1-2 Northland Pioneers.

The biggest West star on Saturday, by far, was Linton II, who —after wowing Jays fans with at least a couple of highlight-reel touchdowns in the season opener —seems to be getting even better each week. 

(For more on this game, see Monday's Daily Globe.)

Doug Wolter

Doug Wolter is the Daily Globe sports editor. He served as sports reporter, then sports editor, news editor and finally managing editor at the Daily Globe for 22 years before leaving for seven years to work as night news editor at the Mankato Free Press in Mankato. Doug now lives in Worthington with his wife, Sandy. They have three children and seven grandchildren. Doug, retired after a lengthy career in fast-pitch softball, enjoys reading, strumming his acoustic guitar and hanging around his grandchildren. He self-publishes original fiction in his spare time. Two of his stories, "The Genuine One" and "The Old Man in Section 129" are being distributed through a national publisher.

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