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Southern Colubmia’s Big Ten Seniors: Part 2

Landon Stolar sits down with Southern Columbia's four Big Ten recruits: Julian Fleming, Gaige Garcia, Cal Haladay and Preston Zachman. The five discuss their futures in college football and the dominant season they're having with the Tigers.

This is part two of the two part interview.

Landon: Cal, you guys just won the 27th district title in the last 29 years at this school. You're looking to extend your state record with a 10th state title. You can look at the trophies behind us here. There's so much history here. What is the mark you want this senior class to make?

Cal: We just want to go out as the best team in southern history. It's a really high standard that we set ourselves at and we just shoot for the stars, pretty much and then we do it somehow.

Landon: This is probably the best team in school history and while the Southern fans love you, obviously, everyone else kind of sees you as the villain. People hate you, as well. What's that dynamic like for you guys?

Gaige: We're hated everywhere pretty much. Everyone wants to see southern lose. We're not a very liked team, but we like that. We strive with that.

Landon: How much does that inspire you and drive you?

Gaige: The whole team gets a vibe that we're pretty much hated, but we're going to go out there and prove all them wrong and show them that we're the real deal."

Landon: Julian, before the season you said, not bad for a small school smacked in between two corn fields. How are you going to remember this experience with this group of guys?

Julian: It's been something. Like I said, a football field between two corn fields isn't really ideal, I would say. We're a little, AA school in the middle of nowhere, but like I said before, we can produce as much talent as half the schools around and I think we showed that this year.

Preston: We get excited when we have a team that forces us to go to more than two quarters and stuff like that. It becomes more exciting for the big plays, touchdowns and everything like that. I think that's something that we look forward to at the next level.

Landon: I'm very curious how competitive the four of you are going to be. What's that smack talk like now and what's it going to turn into?

Gaige: We were talking smack at bowling the other day, let alone playing college football.

Cal: Yeah, it doesn't matter what we do. It's always going to be competitive. We all hate to lose and when one of us lose, we get real salty, real fast.

Landon: That begs the question, which one of you won at bowling?

Julian: Cal and I did. We beat those two.

Cal: The team. The better team.

Preston: My back was killing me. So...

Gaige: The conditions were not ideal, OK?

Landon: They're competitive in the bowling alley. They're competitive on the football field and you can bet they'll be competitive as they continue and they become rivals next year. Until then, they are still teammates. No one's been able to tame these tigers so far. As Jim Roth says, this really is a "Once in a lifetime" senior class.

Talkback 16 Online Discussion:

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