NA’s German becomes standout back at William Paterson

Photo courtesy of Larry Levanti and William Paterson athletics/ North Arlington native Dawys German has emerged as the main go-to running back for William Paterson this season.


By Jim Hague

It’s said that persistence and patience are virtues.
If that’s truly the case, then Dawys German is a very virtuous young man.
The North Arlington High graduate wanted to get the chance to play college football, but when his days as a Viking were done, he didn’t have the sufficient academic record to head to a college football school right away.
So German headed to Bergen County Community College for a stint – just long enough to get the necessary grades to move on to a four-year school.
German then went to William Paterson University, but soon found out that there wasn’t a lot of playing time for 5-foot-9, 175-pound running backs.
“My first two years at William Paterson, I just tried to get better,” German said. “I tried to get bigger and stronger. I worked hard, waiting for my chance.”
There was one thing working in German’s favor. He had the faith of Jerry Flora, his head coach at William Paterson.
“I knew Dawys was committed,” Flora said. “I could tell, because he was committed in the classroom, determined to get the good grades. To be honest, I also knew he was going to be a good player for us. I recruited him out of high school because I knew Dawys would help us. His high school coach (Anthony Marck) vouched for him. I knew he was a player.”
German spent the first two seasons at William Paterson as a spot starter and special teams contributor. He did manage to collect 448 yards and three touchdowns in 10 games last season. Seeing that there was an opportunity to make a step up this season, German pushed himself in the offseason, trying to seize that chance to become the Pioneers’ main running back.
“After spring ball, I was told that I now had a chance to be a starter,” German said. “So I basically lived in the gym all summer. I prepared for the chance. I put on more muscle (approximately 25 pounds of muscle) and basically stayed in the weight room. I got a little bigger and I was able to keep my speed. I was excited that I was going to get a chance to be a major part of the offense. I actually dreamed about it.”
“I knew that Dawys worked hard to get ready, but I actually challenged Dawys,” Flora said. “I pulled him aside and told him what we wanted from him. I told him that I saw him taking on more of a leadership role being the full-time back. I told him those responsibilities rested on him.”
German was poised for that chance that he waited three years to get.
“I think it all made me mentally stronger,” German said. “I knew I could do it. I wanted the team to be able to count on me to be able to do it.”
Since the start of the 2011 season last month, German has more than grabbed the ball and run with it. He’s become a legitimate college football standout.
In four games this season (the Pioneers have a 2-2 record), German has rushed for 516 yards and three touchdowns, already surpassing last year’s totals. He’s also caught four passes for 71 yards and scored two more touchdowns.
Recently, German had a game to remember in the Pioneers’ big Homecoming win over Brockport. German had 162 yards rushing on 19 carries and a touchdown and caught two passes for 69 yards and two touchdowns in the Pioneers’ huge 35-23 win.
Last Saturday, in a loss to Buffalo State, German had 137 yards on 24 carries, including a 69-yard touchdown run.
Needless to say, German’s patience and persistence paid off. He’s arrived.
“I’m happy for him,” Flora said. “He’s developed into a good leader and a great college football player. I think a lot of it has to do with his commitment. He wanted to be successful. He just took the reins and wanted this.”
Flora believes that the bigger and more powerful German has a lot going for him.
“He has a good level of gravity and has good elusiveness,” Flora said. “He also doesn’t go down easily. That’s a credit to him. Anyone who saw him work out over the summer saw his commitment in weight lifting and power lifting. When he came to camp this summer, he shattered everything we might have had expected for him. I can’t say I’m surprised with what he’s done.”
“I can’t say I’m surprised, because I knew I was capable of it,” German said. “I guess I can say I’m happy. It feels good. Now, I’ve proven I definitely can do it.”
German is majoring in criminal justice at William Paterson, with the hope of eventually becoming a police officer, maybe even in his hometown of North Arlington.
“But I still have some time here,” German said.
German said that he still speaks on a regular basis with high school coach Marck.
“We talk at least once every week,” German said. “We go back and forth. He always believed in me and told me I could do it. He told me that I could do it, that I could be a player on the next level.”
And now, because of his determination, German is proof that a little guy from a small school can become a big star on the college football scene.
“It doesn’t matter if you come from a small school,” German said. “If you want something bad enough, you can get it.”

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