MARQUETTE, Mich. - Some teams like to have there squad all do the same thing for team unity. A few things that are popular include Mohawks, dying hair blond, growing out beards or mustaches. The 2010 Northern Michigan University football team has gone in a different direction and that is with the flow. The flow is growing your hair out so it can flow out the back of your helmet.
To grow the flow it takes a lot of hard work according to senior kicker Anthony Leandri, who in some minds might just have the best flow in the group.
“This is a group of guys who are sacrificing looks for a short period of time for success in the long run,” said Leandri. “This is a brotherhood, we are the behind the scenes heroes of this team.”
The original flow trailblazers formed back in 2007 with former players Zach Nichols and Dave Reese along with current team members Zach Pierson, Ricky Neaves and Leandri.
“The flow brings swagger, bravado, flash and pizzazz,” said Leandri.
Currently this season with Leandri members of the group include Tyler Kruzel, juniors Eddie Knoblock, Matt Forward, Andy Vasquez, Nathan Linsmeier, Marcus Tribble, Sam Celentino and Joe Veznia. The last member that is a toss up would be sophomore defensive linemen Zach Anderson who some teammates say his is questionable.
Now with growing the flow out people may ask what exactly the point is?
Is it to get some extra cheers from the crowd or even locals when walking around town? Forward makes it sound plain and simple.
“The point is to have your hair flow out the back of your helmet,” said Forward.
Junior offensive tackle Linsmeier has been growing his flow for 16 months and doesn’t plan to cut it until after his senior year.
Linsmeier believes having a flow is sign of dedication for the handworkers on the team.
“The flow has brought us all together in several ways as a team,” said Linsmeier, who plans to donate his hair to locks of love when his career is over along with Forward and Leandri.
The Wildcats look to bring the flow downstate this weekend as they face the number one ranked team (AFCA Poll) in the country, Grand Valley State University. Last season in Allendale the ‘Cats stuck with the Lakers for the whole game. Grand Valley State was able to answer on a couple mistakes made by NMU and pulled away with a (31-19) victory in final minutes of the contest which was a lot closer than what the score shows.
GVSU will bring its top offensive ranking in the conference in against NMU’s second ranked defense. NMU ranks seventh in offense where GVSU defense is a down this year to being ranked 10th.
The ‘Cats all-time record is 16-17-1 against GVSU. NMU last win against Lakers was a 29-28 decision in the Superior Dome back during the 2000 season.
One thing is for sure the ‘Cats are ready to flow down to Allendale with one goal in mind and that is to come home with a victory.
### NMU ###
Story by Michael Levy