Saddler’s return has been huge for Augustana

Augie QB has made the most of his extra season
Published: Nov. 2, 2021 at 12:30 AM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) -He got hurt during Augie’s run to the playoffs two years ago. Last year the season never happened.

So Kyle Saddler decided to come back for one more season as the Vikings quarterback and as Zach Borg tells us, it’s turned out pretty well for the Texas gunslinger and his team!

Quarterbacking under the Friday Night Lights of Texas High School football got Kyle Saddler used to playing in the spotlight. “It was a good experience to be in some bigger stages. Have a little more of that pressure but the pressure is a privilege.” Saddler says.

And the Frisco native was quickly the center of attention again at Augustana in 2017 when Saddler succeeded all-conference starter Trey Heid as starting quarterback two games into his freshman season. “He did get thrown to the wolves. I mean at that point we weren’t planning on playing Kyle at that time. We had some quarterback issues and injuries that happened and he did get thrown in probably before he was ready.” Augustana Head Coach Jerry Olszewski says.

Though he’d end the year throwing more interceptions than touchdowns, Kyle’s confidence didn’t waver. “My freshman year I was just trying to be my best for my squad each and every day, grow as a football player, as a man, and just take it day by day. Learn and be my best every day.” Kyle says.

And the growth would show over the next two years with Saddler throwing for nearly 5600 yards and 43 touchdowns.

Now a fifth year senior after the cancellation of the 2020 season, Kyle is finishing strong, throwing a career best 32 scores. “Incredibly bright young man as far as knowing the scheme. Great decision maker and he’s turned himself into a really super leader. He could be on my staff and that’s part of the joy of the journey. He’s so experienced, and he’s been through so much, and he’s handled it like a man that he’s able to coach the younger guys that ‘hey, I’ve been there, this is what it looks like and here’s how you get out of it.” Olszewski says.

He’s helped lead the Vikings to the top of the NSIC, on the verge of their first outright conference title in more than 60 years, and got Augie fans dreaming of big postseason run. “Enjoy the time with them and just try to maximize each and every opportunity I get with them. Really just do my best to live one play at a time and live one minute at a time I guess you could say.” Saddler says.

Because it looks like Augustana has the right man to meet those expectations.

Zach Borg, Dakota News Now Sports.

Copyright 2021 Dakota News Now. All rights reserved.