Colby College’s football season is at the halfway point. The Mules are 0-4, but there are some things coach Jonathan Michaeles saw from his team in the first half that he thinks can be built upon for success over the final four games.

“I feel like we’re like we’re playing better as a team. We’ve had some good opponents. We’re doing some good things at times. We’re just far too inconsistent to beat good teams,” Michaeles said.

Colby’s first four opponents — Trinity, Middlebury, Wesleyan and Amherst — are a combined 14-2. Bright spots for the Mules so far include 400 yards and 23 first downs against Amherst last week, and a 249-yard rushing effort against Wesleyan, in which Jabari Hurdle-Price ran for 202 yards for the Mules, the most by a Colby runner in 12 years.

The Mules now need to string more of that success together, Michaeles said.

“We’ve seen we can play physical football against the best people and produce,” Michaeles said. “So now, it’s about playing physical football combined with great execution. That’s going to produce results, not just produce.”

The schedule gets a little easier for Colby over the second half of the season. The Mules’ final four opponent — Hamilton, Bates, Tufts and Bowdoin — are a combined 4-12, with only Tufts (3-1) currently with a winning record.

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Colby makes the longest trip in the New England Small College Athletic Conference this week, traveling to Clinton, New York to face Hamilton. Round trip, the Mules will drive 895 miles to face the Continentals.

The team will leave early Friday morning, Michaeles said, and stop at Springfield College in Springfield, Massachusetts for a walkthrough practice and lunch, before continuing on to its hotel in Utica, approximately 15 minutes from the Hamilton campus.

“That gets us there around 6:30 (p.m.),” Michaeles said. “We get there, we hunker down, we have some meetings.”

Colby goes to Hamilton every other year, and Michaeles said the long trip is always a good team-bonding event.

“A trip like this is fun. It brings the guys closer together. You spend a lot of time. It really is enjoyable. You get to spend time with these kids. That extended period of time, you get to really get to know them,” Michaeles said.

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Husson will make an even longer trip than Colby this weekend. The Eagles will travel to Washington, D.C. to take on Gallaudet in an Eastern Collegiate Football Conference game.

Husson (4-1, 3-0 ECFC) running back John Smith is ranked 16th in Division III in rushing yards, with 818. Husson’s defense is third in the nation in rushing yards, allowing just 57 yards per game on the ground. In that respect, Saturday’s matchup with Gallaudet is very much in Husson’s favor. Gallaudet (0-5, 0-3) is last in the conference in rushing, averaging just 51.2 yards per game.

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Bates cornerback Brandon Williams had two interceptions in each of the last two games. Williams will have a good chance at more picks this week, when Bates hosts Middlebury. No team in the NESCAC throws the ball as much as Middlebury, which is led by quarterback Matt Milano. The senior leads the conference with 1,163 yards passing and 10 touchdowns.

Bates (0-4) hasn’t defeated Middlebury since 1988.

• • •

You can’t have a much better debut than the one made by Bowdoin freshman quarterback Noah Nelson last week.

In the Polar Bears’ 30-20 win over Hamilton, Nelson, a Falmouth native, threw for 328 yards and four touchdowns, with no interceptions. Nelson completed 65.1 perecent of his passes (28 for 43), and was named NESCAC Co-Offensive Player of the Week.

Nelson and Bowdoin (1-3) play at Trinity (4-0) on Saturday.

Travis Lazarczyk — 861-9242

[email protected]

Twitter: @TLazarczykMTM

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