Alliance High seniors Jayce Bauer and twin brother Jayden Bauer signed letters of intent, before class Monday in the AHS gym, to play football for Midland Lutheran University in Fremont, Neb.
Joined by parents Ammie and Ben Bauer and Bulldog Head Football Coach Chris Seebohm the brothers talked about the start of their college athletic careers. Though their immediate focus is qualifying for State Wrestling next week, the athletes have both contributed as starters on the gridiron the past two seasons.
Jayce played running back and outside linebacker for the Bulldogs. Back from a broken leg in 2017, Jayden started this past fall at defensive tackle then moved to defensive end. He played off tackle on the other side of the ball. Against McCook, Jayden recalled, he picked up a ball fumbled by the AHS running back and took it in for a touchdown. He explained nobody, even his brother, believed he put up six points. Jayce said he watched the film later confirming his brother’s feat.
Playing at the same college was not a priority when looking at potential schools. The family visited Peru, Wesleyan, University of Nebraska-Kearney and Wayne State over recent months and had contact with UNL. However, the Bauers agreed, Midland was a good fit. “(Midland) was my favorite right off,” Jayce said.
Midland plays NAIA Div. II football and also fields a junior varsity squad, where Jayce expects to see playing time. He said the team rotates players every other drive. “I would like to play nickel back,” Jayce said, adding the school also employs a “jag,” like a strong safety. He noted the coach (Jeff Jamrog) said he’d “like to see me return punts.”
Jayden said his 2017 injury does not bother him, with some soreness still present. He ices the knee down after workouts.
The brothers are looking at a four-year plan with Jayce planning to major in athletic training and Jayden looking to pursue physical therapy and athletic training. Ben said his sons are moving into the same dorm (not necessarily roommates) and will just try to adapt this fall.
Signing their forms this week the athletes are prepping to conclude their last high school wrestling season with district and state hardware. While finding a sparring partner is never a problem the brothers did not compete against each other for varsity slots. Jayce, saying he can’t gain weight, wrestles at 170 pounds. Jayden is a 195-pound grappler. Beyond the end of winter sports this month neither is sure about taking part in track. Both plan to focus on cross training before arriving at their first Midland practice. “I’m supposed to get the Midland’s workout plan this month,” Jayce noted.