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Three DWU QBs competing in scrimmage, vying for starting spot

It's a big day for quarterbacks at Dakota Wesleyan University.

Three of the Tigers' four quarterbacks will battle today at the annual fall scrimmage for the starting spot. The scrimmage begins at 10 a.m. at the practice field south of Joe Quintal Field.

"We want to see who can rise to the occasion a little bit," DWU third-year head coach Ross Cimpl said Friday.

Today's scrimmage will showcase three potential starting quarterbacks -- Andrew Paulson, Dillon Turner and Luke Stephens. Austin Buysse is the fourth quarterback on the Tiger roster, but he is redshirting this season.

Paulson, a 6-foot-2, 225-pound junior, transferred to DWU from Mendocino College. Stephens, a 6-foot-2, 186-pound sophomore, is also a transfer.

Turner, a 6-foot-1, 210-pound freshman, came in from Salem, Ark. In high school, he was a three-year starter and completed 89 of 175 passes for 1,204 yards and 11 touchdowns as a senior. He ran the ball 115 times for 904 yards and 17 touchdowns. In his junior and sophomore years as a starter, Turner threw for more than 1,200 yards.

The newcomers are fighting for a spot that was Jon Bane's for four seasons. Bane threw for a school-record 9,224 yards and earned all-Great Plains Athletic Conference honors each of his last three years with the Tigers.

Cimpl said he's ready to get his players game experience.

"We want them to enjoy playing a mock game," he said. "We talked to the guys (Friday) about the mistakes. Let's make mistakes in the scrimmage and be able to fix them before our season starts."

The Tigers kick off the season against the University of Wisconsin-Stout at 1 p.m. Sept. 6 at Joe Quintal Field in Mitchell.

Brooke Cersosimo
Brooke Cersosimo is The Daily Republic's sports editor.