Messenger - Vol. 2, No. 2, Page 14
Winter 1993
On Campus
A season to remember

     Quarterback Bill Vergantino says he hopes fans will remember the 1992
Blue Hen football team for its total team effort. Fellow co-captain and
free safety Warren McIntire says he wants the squad known for sticking
together through adversity. Coach Harold "Tubby" Raymond cites the team's
     The 11-3 Fightin' Blue Hens football team, Yankee Conference champions
who advanced to the Division I-AA national semifinals, was the winningest
team since 1982 and the fourth winningest squad in the program's 100-season
     Raymond, Delaware '65M, makes no secret of his admiration for his
Hens. "It's impossible to compare (Blue Hen) football teams because they
all have different personalities," he says, "but this team has got to be
one of the two or three best we've had."
     Vergantino, Delaware '93, a four-year starter who set 24 school
records-more than any other U.D. player-says, "I'd like us to be remembered
as a complete football team, a team that didn't have tons of All-Stars and
All-Americans. It was a team that needed everyone to succeed."
     The coach echoes his quarterback's sentiments. "They all just fit in
so nicely. Everybody did their jobs," says Raymond, who capped his 27th
season by receiving the Scotty Whitelaw Award as the Division I-AA coach of
the year and Kodak Region I coach of the year.
     The season climaxed with the Hens' nearly impeccable playoff wins over
Samford University (56-21) and then No. 1 ranked Northeast Louisiana
University (41-18) in the NCAA quarterfinals. The following week, the Hens
bowed to eventual national champion Marshall University, 28-7. "Samford and
Northeast Louisiana were exceptional games," says Raymond. "They
represented some of the best football we've ever played, both offensively
and defensively."
     "This team was really eager to be successful," says Vergantino, who
quarterbacked big victories over the University of New Hampshire (42-22)
and arch rival Villanova University (21-20). "The year before, we had just
dabbled with it. We went to the playoffs and lost in double overtime."
     The team's backbone was its seniors, who in 1988 made up the first
freshman class eligible to play varsity football in over 30 years. "They
happened to be a very selfless group," Raymond says. "People like Andy
Johnson played three different positions and never complained. I think he
typifies the class."
     McIntire, Delaware '93, a consensus All-American free safety in 1991,
rates the Hens' season a 10 on a 10-point scale, based on its ability to
overcome adversity. "I want fans to remember this team for sticking
together. When things were bad (a 21-20 loss to West Chester University in
September and November's 29-21 loss to the University of Richmond), we
didn't get too nervous. We were always coached to think this way: Bad
things are going to happen; it's just how you come back from it," he says.
     Many of the Blue Hens received individual accolades. Junior defensive
end Matt Morrill was named to the Kodak All-American team for his stellar
season; sophomore offensive lineman Matt Smith was named to the GTE
District II All-Academic football team; McIntire, linebacker Mark Hrubar
and place kicker Steve Leo were all named to the ECAC/Budget Division I-AA
All Star Team; and Hrubar, Morrill and McIntire were awarded All-Yankee
first team honors.
     "It was a consummate team," says Vergantino, who himself was named the
states outstanding athlete of the year by the Delaware Sportswriters and
Broadcasters Association. "Everyone pulled for each other. It was a great
group of guys and I'm really going to miss 'em."
                                        -Bill Clark, Delaware '82.