Carroll College, Helena Montana
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — (Watch Announcement) The National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) is excited to announce that ESPNU will televise the 2014 Football National Championship at 3 p.m. EST on Friday, Dec. 19. Broadcast live and in high-definition from Daytona Beach, Fla., ESPNU is carried in more than 75 million homes. The telecast will also be available on, smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app, and streamed on televisions through Xbox, Apple TV, Roku and Amazon Fire TV.

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BUTTE, Mont. – Senior running back Dustin Rinker ran for 199 yards on 35 carries to break the Carroll College career rushing record and lead the third-ranked Saints to a 20-12 victory over Montana Tech.

The record breaking run was a 3-yard run in the second quarter, a highlight in an otherwise lackluster first half for the Carroll offense.

The Saints turned the ball three times and managed just three points on a field goal with six seconds remaining in the half.

Fortunately for the Saints, the Carroll defense held the Orediggers to just a field goal of their own.

The Saints had the first possession after the half but a promising Saints drive stalled after mac Roche was sacked at the Tech 38-yard line.

The Diggers took the ensuing drive 83 yards but were forced to settle for a field goal after the Saints made the defensive stop at the five yard line. The field goal gave Tech a 6-3 lead.

The Saints answered with a 75-yard touchdown drive capped by a 22-yard touchdown catch by Kyle Griffith. The score gave Carroll a 10-6 lead.

The Saints then forced a three-and-out before taking their next drive 67 yards for another touchdown for a 17-6 lead. Griffith was again on the receiving end of the touchdown pass from Roche, this time for 36 yards.

The Diggers cut the lead to 17-12 on their only touchdown of the game, a 1-yard dive by Pat Hansen, but the two-point conversion failed.

The Saints took a 20-12 lead on a Matt Wiest field goal with 4:15 left in the game. The Diggers had the ball back with time to tie the game up but on the first play of their ensuing drive Clay Cavender threw his only interception of the game on the Tech 36-yard line.

The Saints used Rinker and Jordan Pine to drain the clock and close out the victory.

Rinker’s record-setting performance was his second-consecutive game over 199 yards. Head coach Mike Van Diest is excited to see his senior break the record. He knows that Rinker has put in the work to e a great running back.

"He deserves it, and the offensive line deserves it," Van Diest said. "It's one of those things that if people saw how hard he works, they'd understand the success that he has. The same work ethic that J.J. Lamb had when he played for Coach Petrino, the same work ethic that Chance Demarais has, this kid has it, too. And I just hope that, while he's around, these young running backs take from him what he does off the field to have success on the field."

The Saints are now 6-1 on the season while Montana Tech falls to 1-6. A rivalry game is always a challenge and you won’t see Van Diest taking the victory for granted.

"Montana Tech did a great job. Chuck is a great defensive coach, and their game plan was absolutely fool proof," Van Diest said. "Not every game is going to be won by 30 points. Everybody wants that, but we just want to win. We don't have to be the third-best team in the nation on Saturday; we've just got to be the best team today, on this field. And I thought we did that."

The No. 3 Saints will look to improve their ranking after No. 2 Baker (Kan.) fell to No. 20 MidAmerica Nazarene 35-27 in overtime.



The third ranked Saints travel to Butte to take on Montana Tech at Alumni Coliseum at 1 p.m. Saturday. The Saints and Diggers met on Sept. 12 in Helena. Carroll won that matchup 38-10.

The Saints are 5-1 after defeating No. 4 Southern Oregon 42-40 at Nelson Stadium last week. Carroll Averages 463.7 yards per game on offense and allows an average of 331.3 yards per game on defense.

The Diggers are 1-6 on the season. Their lone win came at home against MSU-Northern (38-24). They have lost games to Montana-Western (38-6), Carroll (38-10), Eastern Oregon (39-13) College of Idaho (41-25), Rocky Mountain 45-39) and at MSU Northern (37-34).


Dustin Rinker ran for 201 yards and two touchdowns on 30 carries to lead the Saints to the 42-40 win over No. 4 Southern Oregon.  Mac Roche was 8-31 for 291 yards and three TDs. Anthony Clarke had eight receptions for 143 yards and a touchdown. 

The Carroll defense held the potent Southern Oregon Offense to just six points in the first half before Austin Dodge got the Raiders on the move. 

Southern Oregon scored 27 points in the fourth quarter including a touchdown with just 22 seconds left in the game to cut the Carroll lead to 42-40. The two-point conversion attempt fell short and the Saints held on to win.


Wide Receiver Alec Bray is one of the top kick returners in the nation. He ranks sixth in punt return yards per attempt at 14.3. He also had five receptions for 39 yards against Carroll in the first matchup.

Redshirt freshman and Helena High graduate Dawson Rear has taken the helm at quarterback for the Diggers. In the last three games he is 53-103 for 751 yards, eight TDs and three interceptions. 

• The Saints defense leads the Frontier Conference with 19.5 points per game allowed in the first six games. 

• Carroll is the top team in the Frontier Conference for total defense with 331.3 yards per game allowed. 

• The Saints are second in the conference for scoring offense at 39 points per game. 

• Carroll is the top team in the conference for Pass Efficiency with an efficiency rating of 175.4.

• The Saints are second in the Conference in Sacks allowed with just 1.1 sacks per game. 

• Carroll is the 14th ranked team in the nation for scoring defense.

• The Saints have outscored their opponents 93-28 in the second quarter. 

• Mac Roche ranks second in NAIA for Pass Efficiency at 175.6.

• Mac Roche ranks eighth in NAIA for Passing yards per game at 271.

• Mac Roche ranks ninth in NAIA for total yards per game at 282.2.

• Dustin Rinker surpassed the 4,000-yard rushing mark against Rocky Mountain on Oct. 20. The senior has 4462 career yards, 12 yards short of Chance Demarais’ career record mark.

• Dustin Rinker ranks ninth in NAIA in rushing yards per game at 126.3. 

• Dustin Rinker ranks sixth in NAIA in scoring per game at 11 points per game.  

• Punter Rhys Felton ranks third in NAIA in Yards per Attempt with 43.2

• Anthony Clarke ranks second in NAIA for receiving yards per game at 137.5 yards per game.

• Anthony Clarke ranks fourth in NAIA in receptions per game at 8.2.

• Anthony Clarke is ranked in the top 15 in the nation in receiving yards, yards per game, total receptions, all purpose yards per game and total receiving yards.

• Head Coach Mike Van Diest has the best winning percentage (.862) of any active college football coach with more than ten years of experience.

• 2014 marks the 100th anniversary of Carroll Athletics. The Saints have tallied 42 conference championships and six national titles.

HELENA, Mont. – Carroll College football held at the No. 3 position in the NAIA Coaches’ Top 25 Poll release today.

Southern Oregon dropped from No. 4 to No. 7 after losing to the Saints 42-40 Saturday in Helena. 

The Saints are now 3-1 on the season against ranked opponents with three of the four games on the road. They fell to then No. 20 Southern Oregon on the road in their first game of the season 38-35, defeated then No. 5 Rocky Mountain on the road 33-8, topped No. 15 Eastern Oregon on the road 55-7 and defeated SOU in the rematch Saturday.

Rocky joins Carroll and SOU as the third Frontier Conference team in the poll at No. 13, up two spots from last week.

Eastern Oregon fell out of the poll after losing to Montana-Western 34-28.

The Saints travel to Butte, Saturday, to play Montana Tech in the second game of the season between the two teams. Carroll defeated Tech 38-10 on Sept. 13 in the first matchup of the season. 

By: Troy Shockley - Independent Record

Austin Dodge and the Southern Oregon offense did their best to discover the breaking point of the Carroll defense Saturday.

After being held in check through three quarters, the No. 4 Raiders closed one of the Frontier Conference's most anticipated games of the season on a tear, reaching the end zone four times in the last 13 minutes -- twice in the final two. The fourth score, with just 22 seconds to play, left the visitors down two but with every bit of momentum available. To set up the potential game-tying two-point conversion play, the Raiders called a timeout.

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Football Questionnaire 

Online Questionnaire

Interested in playing football for Carroll? Fill out this questionnaire, send it in, and let Coach Van Diest know that you're serious about playing for the Saints!

You can also download a PDF version of the questionnaire and send it in to Coach Van Diest as well.