Injuries mounting for Mavs
Haferman biggest loss among those hurt vs. Mines
The Mavericks lost more than a football game Saturday to the Colorado School of Mines in Golden.
Three more players were injured in Colorado Mesa’s 34-7 loss to the Orediggers.
Quarterback Jason Haferman strained a ligament in his left knee and is doubtful for Saturday’s home game against NCAA Division II’s No. 1-ranked team, CSU-Pueblo.
“The trainers are saying it will probably be two or three weeks,” Martin said.
Redshirt freshman Deke Cisco, who was taking reps in practice at wide receiver and quarterback, likely will start in Haferman’s place. Cisco began the season as the starting quarterback, but he was injured in the third game of the season. He returned two weeks ago in the backup role.
Senior center Matt Mankoff (ankle) tried playing against Mines on an ankle he rolled in practice earlier in the week, but he was pulled at halftime. He was wearing a protective boot Tuesday and didn’t practice. He is day-to-day.
Defensive lineman Justin Brown injured his ankle in Saturday’s game and didn’t practice Tuesday.
Running back Dan Geubelle, who broke his right hand two weeks ago, played against Mines, but he was limited to special teams. His hand was still in a cast Tuesday.
The Mavericks already had lost tight end Drew Holder (shoulder), wide receiver Nate Neville (shoulder) and defensive end Casey Walker (broken leg) to injuries, and all three are doubtful to return this season.
Colorado Mesa’s special teams have performed well this season.
The Mavericks lead the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference in yardage on kickoff returns (25.8 yards per return) and kickoff coverage (41.7-yard average). Opposing teams are averaging 10.8 yards per kick return, and Colorado Mesa has 10 touchbacks on its kickoffs.
“The special teams are getting better and better,” Martin said. “We’ve been keeping people down inside the 25 and on occasion inside the 20. We need to continue to have that and win some of the field-position battle.”
Mesa had a better net punt average than Mines even with the Orediggers’ All-American punter Taylor Accardi averaging 55 yards per punt Saturday. The Mavericks averaged 39.8 net yards per punt to Mines’ 39.0.
CSU-Pueblo (8-0) is ranked No. 1 in the first NCAA Super Region 4 rankings released Tuesday. The region rankings are a basis for determining the NCAA Division II playoff teams. Six teams from each region qualify for the playoffs.
Chadron State (6-2) is ranked third, and New Mexico Highlands (6-2) is 10th.
Super Region 4 includes teams from the RMAC, Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference, the Great Lakes Valley Conference and the Lone Star Conference.
CSU-Pueblo remained No. 1 in the American Football Coaches Association Division II Top 25.
Chadron State received some votes but is not ranked, but the Eagles are 24th in the D2Football.com media poll.
The Mavericks (3-5, 3-3 RMAC) host the No. 1-ranked ThunderWolves (8-0, 6-0 RMAC) at 6 p.m. Saturday at Stocker Stadium.