Throughout an inconsistent Yellowjacket football season, junior running back Daniel Papantonis has provided plenty of highlights. In the team’s season opener on Sept. 3 against Utica, he set the school record for individual rushing yards in a game with 309, adding four touchdowns along the way. The next week: 278 yards in a win against Alfred State. Since then, averaging over 100 yards per game, the single reason total rushing yards school record is in reach. After a narrow loss to St. Lawrence University on Saturday, Oct. 29, the Campus Times was able to interview Papantonis about the season and games to come.
Answers have been lightly edited for grammar, clarity, and/or style.
The team had a close game yesterday, how did you feel after a good performance like that?
It’s always tough to lose a game like that. Especially since we were leading a majority of it. But things don’t always fall your way and I know the guys are gonna be hungry heading into next week against Hartwick.
You had another great game, and a couple of weeks ago you crossed 1,000 yards on the season. Did you expect to have a season like this?
The rest of the guys and I worked so hard since the end of last season to get to the point where we are now. The team’s record right now doesn’t show how dangerous of a team we really are. I know me and the offensive line, who have done a great job all year, make it our expectation to have such a successful rushing attack. The offensive line really has been producing, and when they are all on the same page it opens up so much for me and Will Varney and it really just makes our job easy.
In the season opener, you set the school record for single game rushing yards. At any point did you realize the record was in reach?
I honestly didn’t know what the single game rushing record was and I didn’t know how many yards I was at. The team was just excited that we had an opportunity to open the season up with a chance to win on the road. It wasn’t until after the game that I found out I rushed for over 300. Would’ve traded it for a win any day of the week.
Besides that game, are there any games that stand out to you from the season so far?
So far the game that stands out the most to me is the game yesterday against St. Lawrence. It shows how much our team has progressed since last year. We got blown out at their place last year and this year they came to our turf and we were one play away from winning. With that being said, the recent scores don’t show the potential that this roster has.
Do you or the team have any goals that you can still hit as the season winds down?
A goal that the offensive line and I have is we want to break the single season rushing record which is 1390, so around 270 yards in the next two games. They deserve the record more than anyone. As a team, we want to win out and beat Hobart on the road to end the season on a high note.
The Yellowjackets look forward to a matchup against Hartwick College on Saturday, Nov. 5. A full list of events, along with live stream links can be found on the athletic calendar.