Imagine coming home one day and your father says to you, “You better read the newspaper.” A little confused but also intrigued, you read it and find out that you have been named a preseason football All-American.
It’s OK. Don’t feel too bad if you can’t imagine that fantasy. Truth is, not many have actually gone through it in real life. Tim Stover is one of the few who has.
It happened as described while the senior linebacker was back in his hometown of Muscatine over the summer.
“I read it and thought, ‘Wow, that’s awesome,'” Stover said. “I was shocked.”
Consensus Draft Services named Stover on its Division III preseason All-American football team this year after he produced 12.3 total sacks per game last season, good for 20th in all of Division III.
He also led the Storm in tackles in 2007 with 123, which put him on his way to second team All-Conference. As far as pressure to perform goes, it’s all positive according to Stover.
“It motivates me a little bit,” Stover said. “I’ll call it good pressure. I don’t think about it too heavily. I just go out and play football.”
New Head Football Coach Jim Glogowski first met Stover last spring when he was hired from his previous job as the Defensive Coordinator at his alma mater, the University of South Dakota, of Division II. He noticed several qualities in Stover immediately.
“He provides leadership and has a great attitude,” Glogowski said. “He understands what it takes at this level. He does the little things that I expect of him and the rest of the seniors. He certainly has the approach of an All-American.”
Glogowski knows a thing or two about being an All-American. In 1995, his senior year at USD, he was named an All-American as a defensive back by the Don Hansen Football Gazette. He says he understands that it is an incredible individual accomplishment, but one that doesn’t mean much unless team success comes with it.
“Whether one guy named him an All-American or what doesn’t matter,” Glogowski said. “His value to our team is what matters. I’ll put it this way: If we are going to be good, a lot hangs on him to have a good season.”
Stover and Glogowski are on the same page. Stover expects a lot from himself as well, but puts team success first. Both are excited to begin a new era of Storm football.
“Our sights are set pretty high,” Stover said. “We’ll take it one game at a time and go from there. We have a shot at being very competitive in the conference.”
Stover credits his success to his coaching staff, as well as hard work in the weight room making him stronger and faster.
The business management major will be managing a Storm defense that returns several starters from a year ago.
One is Stover’s twin brother Luke, who anchors the defensive line. The two work together as Luke occupies offensive lineman, freeing up space for Tim to make plays. Luke Stover is confident in his brother’s abilities.
“He’s a very good linebacker,” Luke Stover said. “I look for him to have a better year this year than last.”
It is understood that there is not a lot of glory in Division III athletics. Tim Stover understands this, which is why he is so pleased to receive such an honor.
“Football’s got to be something you love doing, and it is for me,” Tim Stover said. “When you get your shot, just make the most of it.”