Bulldogs brace for Malad

Justin Fogleman

The start of the 2A football playoffs means Grangeville will be seeing more teams that deploy run-heavy offenses: Malad at 1 p.m. this Saturday, Oct. 27, and perhaps the likes of Aberdeen, West Side or Declo in weeks to come.

If not for a non-contact knee injury he sustained during the Bulldogs’ summer camp, linebacker Justin Fogleman — a team captain his sophomore and junior seasons — would have been a key part of Grangeville’s plans to stop those offenses.

“It has been hard not being able to be out there, with the guys, on the field,” he said. “But I never planned to go to college to play football — I was in it for the fun. It’s a small school, and I know all these guys, and we’ve been playing together since fourth grade, and I wasn’t going to run out on them.”

Because of the way it was repaired, his injured knee will eventually be stronger than the other one, he said.

Fogleman would have been one of the loudest on-field pre-snap voices of the GHS defense; this fall, he has been a voice for encouragement and accountability on the sidelines.

“There are times when someone will make a play and we’ll get excited about that,” he said. “It’s a physical sport and you’ve got to play with adrenaline. So we try to get that going on the sideline. When someone makes a bad play, like a personal foul, you don’t get down on them. I’ll say: ‘Get your head straight.’”

The Bulldogs’ bye week was good for team health, he said, and preparation for Malad has focused on small details of run defense.

Kickoff against Malad is at 1 p.m. Saturday at GHS.

This Bulldog of the Week athlete highlight is brought to you by: State Farm Insurance.

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