Klepatz chooses Augustana

New Berlin standout will play football and basketball in college

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After an extensive list of schools were hot on his trail, New Berlin Eisenhower's Mike Klepatz finally narrowed it down to one and made Augustana College (a Division II school in Sioux Falls, S.D.) extremely content as he committed to their program Jan. 23.


Klepatz, 6-foot-6, 225 pounds, will join the Vikings in the North Central Conference in not one, but two sports. While many schools including Wisconsin wanted him to play football, he decided to continue his career in basketball and Augustana gave him an offer he could not refuse: play both sports and not have to pay a dime. Besides throwing eight touchdowns for Eisenhower during the football season, Klepatz is also producing on the basketball court with his 17.5 points a game for the 8-5 Lions.


Augustana was the only school that officially offered Klepatz a scholarship, though he expected Northern Michigan to when he took a planned visit. Klepatz, however, decided to forego that trip. Wisconsin wanted him to walk on and greyshirt, while Division II schools St. Cloud State, Nebraska-Omaha, North Dakota and North Dakota State all asked him to walk on.


During the weekend of Jan. 10, Klepatz made a trip to South Dakota to visit Augustana. There were many things that drew him into the program that he will enjoy for the next four or five years.


"I really wanted to play both sports," Klepatz said. "I decided football for sure but then my basketball season was going really well and I did not want to give it up. Both teams have great guys as well as coaches and I enjoyed spending time with the teams."


Once Klepatz arrives next fall he will slowly but surely become acclimated to the football program. He said that the team's plan was to redshirt him as a quarterback his first year and give him the time to learn the system.


The basketball program has a little bit different plan for Klepatz. Head coach Tom Billeter is ready to get Klepatz involved right away and there was talks of him potentially starting next season. The Vikings will be graduating three big men in the spring but according to Klepatz, the team is bringing in two more big guys along with him.


"Our team is going to be young to start but we are building for the future," Klepatz said. "The talent will definitely be there."


With all the pressures of recruiting behind him Klepatz can now ride out the rest of his senior year and anticipate what is to come for him next year.


"I am really looking forward to the great education that Augustana has to offer," Klepatz said. "I'm also excited to be able to compete at that level in both sports."

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