Gallaudet football team makes NCAA playoffs for first time in history
WASHINGTON (WJLA) - Those at Gallaudet University are extremely proud of their football team right now. For the first time in 149 years of school history, the Gallaudet Bison have made the NCAA playoffs.
"Everybody has come out and supported us, and it's really nice to see that," said quarterback Todd Bonheyo.
"I am so proud to be making history -- not only for Gallaudet but for the deaf community as a whole," added Adham Talaat.
Students at the school communicate with American Sign Language, and Chuck Goldstein is the driving force behind the rise of the football team – a program that had been mediocre at best before his arrival at the Northeast Washington campus.
The school competes against hearing-capable athletes at other Division III schools, and this year, the team is undefeated.
"We have been building this process for four years now; we've got some good players who have gone through the system, commit, and work hard," said Goldstein.
Following Saturday’s win over Anna Maria College, Gallaudet secured its first ever Eastern Collegiate Conference title, and for the first time, the program is receiving national attention.
"You can see on Twitter, Facebook -- everybody is talking about us and it has really put us on the map," said Mike Weinstock, the university's athletic director.
"When we win we dance," he continued. "We've been doing this for three years and this season we have been dancing more often than normal."