H.S. Football: Shamokin versus Shikellamy

Shamokin’s Nate Miller catches a pass for a first down in the second quarter of play against Shikellamy during the 2018 season at Kemp Memorial Stadium.

The Colgate University football program seems to be making its rounds through the coal region as of late.

Just weeks after Southern Columbia’s Gaige Garcia received his first football offer from the school, Shamokin Area’s Nate Miller announced on Twitter Sunday that he too had received his first offer from the team.

If the team’s recent success is any indicator — maybe the coaching staff, led by Dan Hunt, is on to something. During the 2018 season, the Raiders powered through Division-I Patriot League competition, winning the conference title in undefeated 6-0 fashion, and made a run through the NCAA Tournament to the quarterfinals before falling to eventual champion, North Dakota State. The team finished the season ranked first in defense in the country.

Miller is being recruited as an outside linebacker by associate head football coach Stan Dakosty, who Miller said has taken a liking to the style of football that often comes out of the coal region.

“Coach Dakosty grew up in Tamaqua and likes the tough, hard-nosed coal-cracker style of football in the coal region and I guess they liked what they saw on film,” Miller said.

Miller had a turbulent senior season, missing the first five games after sustaining an injury during a scrimmage, but was pleased to experience some success during the team’s 6-6 campaign.

“It was tough to miss the first five games, but I think the program has taken a major turn for the better,” Miller said of his team. “Coach Hynoski did a great job turning the program around and I appreciate all he did for me, including in the process of recruiting.”

The experience likely made the offer all the more sweeter.

“Coach Dakosty came to Shamokin on multiple occasions and invited my parents and I up for an official visit this weekend,” Miller said. “(Dakosty) called me on Tuesday and told me they had a spot for me and gave me an offer. It was very exciting and an honor.”

Miller said he never had the specific goal of playing Division-I football when he started his athletic career at Shamokin.

“My goal was to be the best athlete I could be and see what came of it,” he explained.

The senior said he was very excited and honored to get the offer from Colgate.

Miller’s 2017 junior season remains one of the best statistical single-season performances from a Shamokin linebacker in recent memory. He amassed over 150 tackles during the campaign.

Hollenbach gets Michigan offer

Southern Columbia senior quarterback and University of Alabama commit Stone Hollenbach recently announced he had received an offer from the University of Michigan after former Crimson Tide wide receiver coach Josh Gattis took a job with the Wolverines as the offensive coordinator for 2019.

Hollenbach said he remains committed to Alabama as a preferred walk-on and plans on making an official announcement on Wednesday, Feb. 6.

Michigan head coach Jim Harbaugh attended the Southern Columbia boys basketball on Friday at Neumann Regional Academy in Williamsport, where Hollenbach said he received an offer to attend the school in Ann Arbor, Michigan.

“Coach Gattis wanted me to come to the Southern basketball game Friday and wanted me to meet Coach Harbaugh,” Hollenbach said. “Coach Harbaugh told me he wanted me at Michigan.”

Hollenbach said he is under the impression that the offer he received from Michigan is the same as the preferred walk-on offer he got from Alabama.

“Coach Gattis I’m sure told Harbaugh about me and I’m sure it’s the same as what Alabama offered,” he said.

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