CALDWELL, Idaho — The College of Idaho football team has a pretty special squad this year, and not just because they're the only local college team still undefeated this year. We explain how this team is more family than any that's come before it.
We often hear sports teams talk about being part of a family as the key to their success, but we obviously all know that doesn't mean they were all raised under the same roof. But for three sets of players on the College of Idaho football team, that just isn't the case!
"I mean, it's not really a dream, it kind of just happened...yeah," said College of Idaho offensive linemen Chase and Cole Owen.
Now that sounds like an older brother if I've ever heard one. That's College of Idaho offensive lineman Chase Owen talking about his younger brother Cole joining his college football team this season. The Owens are one of three sets of brothers the team has on it's roster this season.
"It is kind of a unique thing, but I think it fits in with the program and the culture we're trying to build," said College of Idaho Head Football Coach Mike Moroski.
All three pairs can describe having their sibling on the team in one word.
"Fun. A lot of fun, lot of fun. Just this past game, he had a pick-6. I mean it was called back, but I mean, just the moment for me as a brother, I was with him on the field on the same side so I was running right behind him and excited for him and everything like that and there's gonna be plenty more of that coming in the next four years for both of us," said Yotes safety and cornerback Taeson and Dorian Hardin.
Fun while making the literal brotherhood bond even stronger.
“It’s awesome, I mean, we sure spend a lot of time together. Every single day but we’ve just grown, our relationship changing every single day. As the days go by and get better and better just because we’re closer with each other and understand each other even more than we already did," said Yotes quarterbacks Jacob and Nate Holcomb.
But the competition has been there throughout the years and doesn't look to ever end...
"He likes to play video games. He gets pretty competitive about that. Oh yeah," said the Owens.
“It was almost annoying how competitive everything was. Just how every weekend, almost every day, practice for sports. We actually have a basketball hoop in our backyard so we did spend most of our time back there," said the Holcombs.
“No matter what we did, video games, basketball, football, track, always trying to win. Trying to beat them out. Bragging rights, bragging rights," said the Hardins.
“No I’d never say it got pretty heated all. I’d say there was a few times, at least on my end," said the Owens.
But that intense competition is pushing them to be even better on the field they now share.
“Seeing him make plays makes me want to go out there and make plays as well too. Because, you know, you never want to go home talking at the table and he’s making more plays than I am, you never want that," said the Hardins.
On or off the field, the three sets of siblings are happy knowing that these brothers will be right by their side.
“Knowing he was here,it was definitely made it a lot better of a choice for me at least. It’s one thing to have family with you while you’re here, I mean, yeah you make a lot of friends while you’re here but just him being family and growing up around me, it just gives you a sense that you have somebody close to that you can talk to all the time," said the Owens.
The one drawback to this family reunion?
“I’m the only one with a car out here so I got to take him everywhere. That’s the only negative but it’s still fine," said the Holcombs.
If you feel like a little roadtrip, you can catch the Owen, Harden, and Holcomb brothers and the rest of the 6-0 College of Idaho football team in Ashland, Oregon this Saturday as they battle the Southern Oregon Raiders. Kickoff is set for 3PM Mountain Time.