Lights' McKinley Ready to Carry the Load for MSU Northern - News, Sports and Weather

Lights' McKinley Ready to Carry the Load for MSU Northern

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If the Lights want to switch to a no huddle offense this year, they might have to start with the ground game.

All-Conference running back Zach McKinley was one of two players to average over one-hundred rushing yards per game in 2014. This year they're hoping he'll continue to carry that same workload.

"It's nice to come in as a new head coach and have a guy like Zach McKinley sitting there to hand it to," says head coach Aaron Christensen. " So we're going to rely on him pretty heavily. So hopefully it works out. It's worked out the last couple of seasons with him running the ball."

Zach has blossomed for the lights as a back, even though he was originally recruited as a kicker. One day former head coach Mark Samson decided to challenge Zach to play another position.

"When I came up here coach Samson brought me into his office and said we don't just have kickers on this team," says McKinley. Do you want to play DB or do you want to play Running Back. And I played Running Back all throughout high school, so I said "Running Back."

It was a switch Zach was ready for. He won a state title for CMR in 2009 and he's hoping to add a Frontier Conference Championship to his list of accolades. He's relying on his experience at CMR to help him get there.

"CMR is known for bringing Running Backs into the college level," says McKinley. "What's good about CMR is that it's a college level program at the High School level. "

"He's someone that's not just going to do well in Football," says Christensen. "But he's someone who will probably do well in life too after he graduates."

But before he takes off the pads for one final time, McKinley has two years of eligibility left. That's plenty of time for McKinley and the lights to rush towards that conference ring.

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