Linebacker Makes Impression On and Off the Field

Junior Olivet linebacker, Caleb Coe from Cedarville, Ohio, received his second MSFA Defensive Player of the Week honor of the season on November 6—the third of his career. Although the game last week was a loss to No. 10 Saint Xavier University (Ill.), Coe closed out with a career-high 25 tackles and an interception for a three-yard run. He currently leads the MSFA and is ranked fifth in the NAIA for tackles per game (10.5).

Photo by Morgan Byers

With statistics like these, it is no surprise that Coe’s athletic achievements make him stand out on the field, especially to coaches like Defensive Coordinator, Greg Youngblood. “Coe’s got quickness; his reaction—his ability to react and see things—makes him really difficult to block…he’s a really good tackler in the open field…those are his athletic gifts, but with it comes high-energy, high-effort on top of all that,” Youngblood says.

The high energy that Coe has brought to this defense is evident in his developing leadership as an upperclassman as well. Fellow ONU linebacker and underclassman, Zach Terrill, (SO/Muncie, Ind.) offered evidence of Coe’s energy and leadership.

“I know that, especially in camp, he’d take time aside just to sit down with a couple of the younger guys that were freshmen and make sure they were getting the playbook, make sure they were understanding their blitz package. He just keeps us fired up; he’s just all the way around a good leader.”

Coe has proven that he is capable of giving coherent direction, as well as taking it and executing. He spoke a bit on how he plans to take that sort of attitude into next season.

Photo by Morgan Byers

“I think the standard [for next season] is national championship or nothing. Our goal is to win conference; our goal is to win playoffs, and I think this year really set the tone for that. We’re just a couple steps from a big jump to being a playoff or national championship contender…we’re going to work to make sure that happens.”

In addition to playing football, Coe is currently pursuing an Exercise Science major in hopes of becoming a physical therapist. Even in his academic pursuits, his passion for guiding and helping others is evident.

“I want to be a physical therapist because I just love interacting with people. I know a desk job wouldn’t suit me the best. I love people and helping them reach their goals, their potential.”

Coe is looking forward to his senior season as are many others who have the privilege of watching and working with him.

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