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Kernels' Neugebauer to play football at DWU

On Nov. 4, Mitchell's Spencer Neugebauer gashed Pierre to the tune of 325 rushing yards on 33 carries and four touchdowns in a Class 11AA semifinal win at Joe Quintal Field. It was Neugebauer's final home game as a Kernel.

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Mitchell's Spencer Neugebauer (8) stiff arms Harrisburg's Cole Teigen (4) during the Class 11AA state championship game on Nov. 11 at the DakotaDome in Vermillion. Neugebauer said Saturday he intends to play college football at Dakota Wesleyan. (Matt Gade/Republic)
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On Nov. 4, Mitchell's Spencer Neugebauer gashed Pierre to the tune of 325 rushing yards on 33 carries and four touchdowns in a Class 11AA semifinal win at Joe Quintal Field. It was Neugebauer's final home game as a Kernel.

It will not be Neugebauer's final game at Joe Quintal Field.

The all-state running back verbally committed to play football at Dakota Wesleyan University late Saturday night.

Neugebauer, who guided the Kernels to the 11AA state title this season, visited DWU this past weekend. He said his relationship with DWU head coach Ross Cimpl and the rest of the coaching staff led to his decision, along with staying at home.

"Dakota Wesleyan, I have just always kind of thought about going there, but staying in my hometown in Mitchell, that's going to be something that is really awesome to do and continue to play in front of the Mitchell crowd," Neugebauer said in an interview with The Daily Republic.

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Neugebauer's choices ranged from NAIA to NCAA Division I programs. South Dakota State and the University of South Dakota offered him as a preferred walk-on. He also received interest from NCAA Division II Augustana University and NAIA power Morningside College. He visited all those schools.

Neugebauer, who plans on majoring in agriculture business, said it came down to DWU and SDSU. A new collaborative program between DWU and Mitchell Technical Institute helped sway his decision.

In November, the two post-secondary institutions announced a program that combines MTI's agriculture business degree with DWU's business program.

"That is something that I really liked, too," he said. "That I can still get an ag degree. That was definitely something I wanted to do and have."

On the gridiron, the 6-foot-1, 185-pound Neugebauer said he will play wide receiver for the Tigers.

"I really like being on the offensive side of the ball," Neugebauer said. "Defense wouldn't be a bad deal either, but I still like having the ball in my hands and seeing what I can do."

He did plenty with the ball in his hands for the Kernels.

Neugebauer led the team in rushing yards (2,191), carries (217), yards per game (182.6), rushing touchdowns (38), 100-plus yard games (nine), all-purpose yards (2,460) and total touchdowns (42). He chipped in 204 receiving yards and four touchdowns on eight catches for a team-best 25.5 yards per catch. On defense, he added five interceptions, 4.5 sacks, 12 tackles for loss and 64 total tackles.

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He's also the school's all-time leading rusher (3,658 yards) and set single-season (2,191) and single-game rushing records (325).

Neugebauer set records for single-season scoring (252 points), career scoring (394 points from 2014-16), as well as career touchdowns with 64. His 42 touchdowns in 2016 is the single-season school and state 11-man record.

Among many honors, he was named The Daily Republic's football player of the year. He was also the Class 11AA championship game's most valuable player and most outstanding back in the Kernels' 41-6 title victory over Harrisburg.

Related Topics: KERNELS
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