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QB Musser bides time at Linfield

Former South Medford High quarterback Curt Musser is biding his timeas a backup quarterback for Linfield College's football team.

I get a little impatient at times, but I'm glad I'm here,says Musser, who is playing behind Brian Higgins. Higgins led the Wildcatsto a 15-14 win over Southern Oregon University in the season opener forboth teams last Saturday night at Raider Stadium in Ashland.

Musser, a 6-foot-3, 190-pound sophomore, got in for one play againstthe Raiders. He was the holder when Andy Ward kicked a 23-yard field goalin the first quarter to give Linfield a 3-0 lead.

It's frustrating, but I just have to wait my turn to play quarterback,says Musser. When you're playing for a program like Linfield, it'sworth the wait.

The offensive coaches told me to stay warm and ready to play inthe game. But I didn't get a chance, mainly because Brian was playing sowell.

Musser says despite not playing much in the game, the outcome of thegame was most important.

It's nice to come back to Southern Oregon and win, he says.Some of my friends and my parents were here. I got to talk to MarkMatteson (a SOU defensive back from South Medford) and Will Salade (a SOUsafety from North Medford) after the game, which was nice. It's fun to talkto old friends after you win.

Musser, a former all-Southern Oregon Conference defensive player forSouth Medford, says he would like to play immediately.

I offered to try out on defense or at receiver just to get on thefield, says Musser. But the coaches told me to be patient becauseI'm going to get my chance to play quarterback. I can't wait for that.

Linfield coach Jay Locey says Musser's future as a quarterback looksbright.

He will be the man here some day, says Locey. If Briangets hurt, we won't hesitate to go to Curt.

He has the strongest arm among our quarterbacks. All he lacks isexperience. He needs to stay ready in each game because he could be in thereat any time.

Linfield, which is on track to move from NAIA Division II to NCAA DivisionIII, is seeking to break the all-time record for consecutive winning seasonsamong colleges and universities in the U.S.

The Wildcats tied Harvard and Notre Dame last season with their 41ststraight winning season, the most among the 669 football schools.

That is our big goal for the year, says Musser. Wewant to add another thing to our tradition by breaking the record. Winningthis game is a good start.

The Wildcats have won five straight games and 16 of their last 20 againstSouthern Oregon.

Jeff Olson, Southern Oregon's interim head coach, has a 4-6 record intwo seasons. Olson will become assistant head coach at SOU next season whencurrent Ashland High head coach Jim Nagel takes over the Raiders' program.

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