Linfield Wildcats

1982 Football
NAIA Division II National Champions

In its eighth NAIA championship tournament, and its third title game, Linfield at last hit the jackpot. The Wildcats dominated William Jewell (Mo.) 33-15 at McMinnville High School’s Wortman Stadium.

It didn’t start out like that. William Jewell scored on an 86-yard pass-and-run 19 seconds into the game. But Linfield was undaunted – it was the eighth time in 12 games the ‘Cats had fallen behind that season. Linfield tied the score in four plays, including a 38-yard kickoff return.

The Wildcats recovered five William Jewell fumbles and intercepted five passes, controlling the rest of the game before a paid crowd of 4,598 and a Northwest television audience estimated at 100,000.

Quarterback Randy Mueller threw three touchdown passes, completing 18 of 33 with no interceptions. The Wildcats set a season record of 39 pass interceptions that still stands.

The NAIA honored as All-Americans center Brad Gilbertson, defensive guard Jim Winston, offensive tackle Dave Lorenz and Mueller.