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Falcons product Haglund had memorable career
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Clinton Haglund had a breakout freshman campaign while playing for the Mendocino College football team in 2004. The Ceres Falcons product and Central Catholic High School graduate caught 58 passes for 594 yards and scored four touchdowns en route to earning first-team, all-Bay Valley Conference honors.

He had an even better season as a sophomore.

This year, the 5-foot-8, 155-pound receiver helped guide the Eagles to a share of the BVC championship (3-1) and their first winning season (6-4) since 1999.

Haglund garnered first-team, all-conference honors again. He hauled in 48 passes for 691 yards and scored eight touchdowns in 10 games. Haglund also made the BVC All-Academic Team for obtaining a 3.75 GPA.

“To get all-league two years in a row is great,” he said. “I'm definitely pleased. This year, I missed league MVP by a couple of votes.”

Said Mendocino College coach Tom Gang: “A lot of people didn't think Clinton would do well with us because he is so small. In my opinion, I think he's a Division I receiver. He runs clean, disciplined routes and he's quick. He catches everything that is thrown his way.”

Mendocino College would have extended its season if it won the BVC title outright. Yuba College grabbed a share of the crown and secured a berth bowl by virtue of its 27-7 win over the Eagles on Nov. 12. Haglund had nine catches for 100 yards and one touchdown.

“It hurts,” Haglund said. “It would have been great to play one more game. It would have been great to come to the Graffiti Bowl in Modesto. But we couldn't get it rolling. Penalties were hurting us.”

Haglund did most of his damage in league this year. In four games, he made 25 receptions for 424 yards and eight touchdowns.

Haglund had a career day in a 56-0 win over College of Marin on Oct. 29. He caught eight passes for 93 yards and four scores. Haglund had TD receptions of 7, 8, 18 and 28 yards.

“That was all in the first half too,” he said. “I scored the first four touchdowns.”

In a 52-20 win against Contra Costa College on Oct. 22, Haglund had three catches for 112 yards and two touchdowns.

Haglund had five catches for 119 yards and one score in a 19-16 victory over Solano College on Oct. 15.

“I was scoring touchdowns left and right as soon as conference play started,” he said.

Haglund is weighing scholarship offers from several schools. He sent game film and stats to more than 20 colleges.

“I've talked to a bunch of coaches,” he said. “Right now it looks like I'll be going to the University of San Diego or West Texas A&M University. I'm leaning towards West Texas A&M. It's hard to pass up not having to pay for school.”

West Texas A&M University offered to pay for everything. The campus is located 12 miles south of Amarillo in Canyon, a community of 13,000. The spring semester starts Jan. 19.

The University of San Diego offered to pay for 75 percent of the cost, which is $40,260 annually. The spring semester begins Jan. 26

“I'll make my decision after I visit both campuses in the next two weeks,” he said.

Haglund is in a win-win situation.

“West Texas A&M is a big-time Ag school,” said Haglund, an AgBusiness major. “The (football program) runs a spread offense with four wide receivers. I'd fit in perfect.”

West Texas A&M University finished at No. 15 in the final American Football Coaches Association NCAA-II Coaches Poll. The Buffaloes won the Lone Star Conference championship for the first time since 1986. They went 10-1 overall, losing 41-3 to Pittsburg State in the Southwest Regional Semifinal.

“They average 20,000 fans at their games and they got a big bowl stadium,” Haglund said. “It's top of the line.”

University of San Diego is coached by former Chicago Bears quarterback Jim Harbaugh. He directed the Toreros to a program-best 11-1 record and its first-ever Pioneer Football League title this past season. USD was also the recipient of the 2005 Sports Network Cup, presented to the team that finished as the No. 1 ranked I-AA Mid-Major team in the nation.

“That would be a beautiful place to go and live and play football for two years,” Haglund said.

Haglund enjoyed his two-year stint at Mendocino College. He collected the CDR Perpetual and Offensive Back of the Year awards this season.

“The (CDR Perpetual) award goes to a kid that demonstrates all of those qualities (commitment, discipline and respect),” Gang said. “He's a team captain.”

“It was a lot of fun,” Haglund said. “I'm definitely glad I chose the JC route. It definitely worked out for me. My goal from when I first started playing Pop Warner was to get schooling paid for with football. So far, that's what it's doing.”

“He's going to have a lot of success wherever he goes because of his work ethic,” Gang said. “I really believe that.” - By DALE BUTLER / Staff reporter of the Ceres (Calif.) Courier