VERSAILLES — Versailles senior Nick Campbell signed his letter of intent Tuesday to play for the University of Findlay football team, joining his brother with the Oilers.
Campbell said the presence of his brother, Mitchell, at Findlay was a large influence on his decision to join the Oiler football team.
“I decided to go to Findlay because I want to play football and Soup is already there … Mitchell Campbell, that’s my brother,” Campbell, the son of Rocky and Jane Campbell, said. “And try to continue our family activity like we we do with football.”
The Campbell brothers last played organized football together during the 2011 high school season for Versailles. Both were named first team all-Ohio in Division V that year by The Associated Press with Nick earning the honors as a quarterback and Mitchell earning the honors as a receiver.
“I could only dream about doing that again,” Campbell said about playing on the same team as his brother. “It will be awesome. It will be a dream come true.”
Mitchell Campbell, a 2012 Versailles graduate, now is a defensive lineman for Findlay. After not seeing action in 2012, this past fall he played in all 11 games for the Oilers, recording nine tackles, two sacks and two tackles for a loss.
The younger Campbell, who will study business management plus strength and training in college, was recruited to Findlay as an athlete.
“I could be playing offense, defense, special teams, anything,” Campbell said.
Campbell has been Versailles’ starting quarterback the past three seasons.
As a sophomore under then-head coach Bob Olwin he threw for 2,705 yards and ran for 705 yards in the Tigers’ spread offense to earn first team all-state honors. He also was named the AP’s Southwest District Division V offensive player of the year that season.
The past two seasons Campbell has been named honorable mention all-Midwest Athletic Conference by the league. He also was named second team all-district by the AP in 2012 and honorable mention all-district in 2013.
As a senior Campbell completed 58.9 percent of his passes for 1,717 yards and 20 touchdowns. He also had 280 rushing yards with three touchdowns. On defense he made 30 tackles.
“Nick has been a huge asset to the program,” Versailles football coach Adam Miller said. “He’s done very well, he’s worked very hard, and it’s all paid off for him. Very excited to see him go on and play at the next level. He’s got the opportunity, and it’s always great to see student-athletes taking advantage of the opportunity to go on and play at the next level.”
Campbell said he’ll probably redshirt this upcoming fall as he transitions into the Findlay football program, which is a NCAA Division II program in the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
Campbell’s abilities and worth ethic will help him transition to the college program at whatever position he plays, Miller said.
“I think they’re getting a very well-rounded athlete,” the Versailles coach said. “Nick was the type of person we felt we could put him pretty much wherever and he would succeed. His work ethic will shorten any kind of learning curve if he has to play a new position. Offensively, defensively, I think he’ll be a solid player.”
Since a 1-10 season in 2010, Findlay has improved with a 6-5 record in 2011, a 7-3 record in 2012 and an 8-3 record in 2013.
“It’s on its way up for sure,” Campbell said. “They keep improving. They got a new coaching staff a couple years back, and they’ve only gotten better. So bright future for Findlay, I believe.”
Findlay also is scheduled to open a new football and lacrosse stadium as soon as next spring.
“My brother has been filling me in on what they’re all about,” Campbell said. “The fact that he’s there and what their program has, I like it a lot.”