The UR football team, led by second-year coach Scott Greene, starts a new season with very high hopes after finishing 7-4 last year and going on to postseason play for the second time in school history. The Yellowjackets received a vote in the Division III football poll on, giving them reason to believe that this year will show a marked improvement over last year’s talented squad.

Leading the offense will be senior receiver Jay Jay Vanderstyne, a dynamic playmaker who was named Preseason National All-American by Street & Smith College Football Yearbook after hauling in 85 catches for 1128 yards and 11 touchdowns. He will be counted on to carry a passing attack that lost quarterback Aaron Molisani to graduation. The team does have five other starters returning from the offensive side of the ball, including record-breaking senior running back Matt Bielecki, who rushed for a UR single season record 1,390 yards with 14 touchdowns last season. Sophomore Kapps Killingstad, who played in five games last year as a true freshman, figures to get the starting nod at the quarterback position.

The defense returns seven starters, including the top three leading tacklers from last year. They are senior Andy Rape, who had 57.5 tackles and two interceptions, senior Jim Milks, who had 56.5 tackles as well as two interceptions, and junior Matt Stack, who also tallied two interceptions to go along with 52 tackles. Also returning is sophomore kicker Griffin Moar, who nailed 28-33 extra point attempts in his first year with the team.

This year’s schedule does no favors for UR. They play teams that received votes in the Division III poll, including Carnegie Mellon University, St. John Fisher College, Union College, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and Hobart College. The team is going to have to find their groove quickly as they play three of these teams in succession to begin the season.

The ‘Jackets open the season at home in Fauver Stadium against ranked Carnegie Mellon on Saturday.

Maystrovsky is a member of the class of 2009.

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