sUMMER 2013 | St. Lawrence University Magazine
The exchange of the football from
center to quarterback often follows a
booming “hut, hut!” This call came
into football in the 1950s, when quar-
terbacks borrowed it from drill sergeants
who had begun yelling “Atten-hut!” to
get troops in order.
The St. Lawrence University football
team used its 2012 season to bring “at-
ten-hut” to the challenges faced by the
Armed Forces, including those stationed
at Fort Drum, an hour from campus
near Watertown, N.Y. The Saints, who
used a University Innovation Grant in
the fall to raise money in support of
the troops in the North Country, were
offered an opportunity that no other
team in America had: They visited Fort
Drum on an early-spring Saturday to
train at the Light Fighters School, 10th
Mountain Division.
We thought this would be a tremen-
dous opportunity to help build our
team and present new challenges,” said
St. Lawrence head football coach Mark
Raymond M’96. “It certainly got our
student-athletes out of their comfort
zones. The challenges on the base made
us work together while understanding
what our servicemen and -women do
every day.”
The day began with a confidence
course that subjected the players to a
rope climb, a cargo net climb, high step-
ping, low crawling, rope swinging to a
higher platform, and many other upper
and lower body exercises. Next came
pugil sticks, heavily padded pole-like
training weapons used in training for
rifle and bayonet combat.
I was really glad we got the oppor-
tunity to come out and train with the
Army,” said Justin DiBernardo ’16. “I
don’t think people know how much
hard work these soldiers put in
every day.”
The football team’s
relationship with Fort
Drum has evolved since
the beginning of the
year. The Saints
hosted “Tribute to the
Troops” in September,
surrounding their game
against the Norwich
Cadets. Earlier in the
week before the game,
the team welcomed
three members of the
Fort Drum community
to campus and hosted
a panel presentation,
Tribute to the Troops:
Fort Drum in the Com-
munity and Health Is-
sues Facing our Military
upon Returning Home.”
The three-person panel
representing Fort Drum
included former Saints
football player Col. (ret.)
Eric Wagenaar '83.
The event included Fort Drum’s 10
Mountain Division band performing
the national anthem and players wearing
commemorative camouflage uniforms
that were sold throughout the game
to raise money for soldiers stationed
at Fort Drum who are facing medical
hardships. T-shirt sales, a 50/50 raffle
and "Touchdowns for the Troops" were
other fundraisers held to support the
cause, which raised more than $7,600.
It was a great honor to meet and
interact with present-day heroes who
protect our freedom every day,” said
Shane Hart ’14 of the team’s day at
Fort Drum. “We left with a feeling
of accomplishment for what we had
achieved, as well as an appreciation for
all those who serve in the United States
The team is planning to continue their
efforts in support of Fort Drum’s troops
in the upcoming season.
Fort Drum 10
Mountain Division
journalist Sgt. Steven Peterson contributed
to this article.
Saints Football Players, Fort Drum Soldiers Train Together
by Joe Keniston ’05, M’07 and Meg Bernier ’07, M’09
The football team’s “spring training” included a session on a military-style confidence course at the Army’s Fort Drum,
about an hour from campus.