Tabor football looking to rebuild, defend title

With the KCAC coaches pre-season poll placing them in first, the media pre-season poll placing them in second and the NAIA pre-season coaches poll ranking them No. 18, the experts are expecting great things from the Tabor football team this fall.

Head coach Mike Gardner will be in his 11th year at the helm, and with an overall 79-32 record at TC and the No. 1 number of wins in college history, he has the stats to earn respect.

Last year’s squad tied for the KCAC championship, just missing out on making the NAIA playoffs.

They also had five KCAC First Team Offensive Players, three KCAC First Team Defensive Players, one KCAC Second Team Offensive Player, three KCAC Second Team Defensive Players, one KCAC Second Team Special Teams Player, six KCAC Honorable Mention Offense Players and five KCAC Honorable Mention Defensive Players, as well as the KCAC Conference Player of the Year.

Top returners include Drevion Cooper, 1st Team All KCAC Running Back, Brad Kistner, 1st Team All KCAC Linebacker, Austin Smith, 2nd Team All KCAC Special Teams, Kicker, and Kaleb Neuschafer, HM All KCAC Linebacker.

The 2018 Tabor College Bluejays will have a lot of new faces as they prepare to defend their string of three consecutive KCAC Championships. New Offensive Coordinator Steve Heimann will have the task of rebuilding an offense that lost many of its starters from last year.

Defensive Coordinator CJ Hill will also see many new faces on his side of the ball. The past 6 seasons TC defense has only surrendered 19.7 points per game. Depth has been a key factor in that stretch.

The specialists are back, but the kicker, punter and long snapper are going to need to be replaced.