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2017 Football: Football Kid: Wollan Ready for Second Stint Under Center

Nole Wollan, left, passes on the sidelines with receiver Brandon White (right) during the Bearcats’ jamboree on Aug. 25. Wollan, a senior, took over the starting quarterback role in Chehalis as a junior.

2017 Football: Football Kid: Wollan Ready for Second Stint Under Center

By Aaron VanTuyl


Second-year starting quarterbacks at W.F. West, over the last decade, have traditionally fared pretty well. Ben Ternan, Mitch Gueller, Tanner Gueller and Elijah Johnson all had their best seasons as seniors with a year taking snaps under their belt.

Nole Wollan, a kid who’s had the advantage of watching each of his predecessors play up close, is hoping to continue the trend.

The Bearcat senior (and son of W.F. West coach Bob Wollan) took over the job last season and passed for nearly 800 yards, with eight touchdowns, and added around 400 rushing yards.

“It could have went a lot better. I mean, it went good for my first year, I felt like, but there were a lot of learning moments,” he said. “Everything’s a lot quicker, everything happens a lot faster. The guys are bigger, stronger and of course faster, compared to freshman football and middle school.”

Naturally, his football experience has been a bit different than that of the typical player.

WF West’s Nole Wollan

“There’s maybe some more butt-chewings than some other people, but it helps. I don’t have to worry about watching film on my own — he’s there,” he said with a laugh. “But it’s good. It definitely helps me learn quicker. Being a quarterback, anything helps, and that definitely helps a lot, him being in the house.”

It should be a boon for a Bearcat team that, even more so than most teams, leans on its quarterback in the fall.

“We’re not just handing the ball off from under center. There’s a lot on their plate, for all of them, and there’s a huge learning curve their first year,” Bob Wollan said. “Hopefully this year he can take that knowledge and that experience and just slow the game down in his head.”

A year of experience isn’t the only factor pointing to a more productive senior season. Nole underwent shoulder surgery in December for a torn labrum suffered in the spring of his sophomore year, and the good health shows.

“I throw the ball a lot better now than I did last year,” he said. “It didn’t limit my throwing, it was just there. I could only hit with my right shoulder; it didn’t feel good to hit with my left shoulder. … It’s kind of nice to play with a good shoulder for once.”

His coach, of course, agreed.

“That kind of limited him,” Bob said. “He’s feeling really good right now, feeling whole again, and we’ll excited to kind of turn him loose and let him run it — and maybe play on the defensive side of the ball, too.”

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