Piqua High School senior Colton Bachman made have had different thoughts headed into his season season.
But, in the end, continuing to play two sports at Wittenberg University was an easy choice for the son of Kirk and Anita Bachman.
“Heading into this year, I was hearing from some small Division I and II schools,” Bachman said. “Once I tore my ACL (in football preseason), they all went away. Wittenberg was there the whole time — both football and basketball, so I knew that was the place for me.”
Heading into his senior year, Bachman was coming off two football seasons where he combined for 575 yards receiving and five TDs on 40 catches — and at 6-foot-4 figured to be a big weapon for quarterback Rupert Delacruz.
Bachman made the decision to play with the injury and caught 10 passes for 65 yards and helped Piqua to its first playoff berth since 2007.
“The stuff he went through in football and basketball this year was just unbelievable,” Piqua football coach Bill Nees said.
Even more amazing was the season Bachman had on the basketball court.
The Indians were coming off their second straight winning season — with Bachman scoring 20.6 points as a junior and 17.2 points as a sophomore, while pulling down more than seven rebounds a game in each season.
He just added to that, despite the fact he not only played with a torn ACL, but a torn meniscus that occurred during the football season.
He averaged 22.1 points, 4.0 rebounds, 1.8 steals and 1.4 assists per game and in Piqua’s second tournament game, he broke Mark Matthews scoring record, finishing with 1,568 career points.
Along with that, he earned All-GWOC North honors for the third straight year.
“I think anybody who went through what Colton (Bachman) did this year can pretty much do anything,” Piqua basketball coach Heath Butler said.
Bachman had the surgery in March, when the torn meniscus was discovered as well.
“There was more damage than they thought,” Bachman said. “Basically, they did three surgeries in one.”
He will redshirt next year before beginning his athletic career at Wittenberg in 2017 in two sports.
“I think Wittenberg is the best fit possible for Colton (Bachman),” Butler said. “They were recently named one of the top schools in Ohio. It is going to give him the opportunity to play two sports — which he wanted — he may have to make a choice at some point, but he may not.”
“It is one of the top D-III schools in football,” Nees said. “They have won a national championship. We have had a number of good players go there and have success. I can’t wait to see him play there and see what he does.”
The 6-foot-4 Bachman is a nice target for quarterbacks.
“That is what I am hoping (to make an impact right away),” Bachman said. “The coach said I am the only tall receiver they have.”
He hopes to make the same impact in basketball.
“It might be tougher,” he said. “I know they have a couple of really good recruits coming in.”
Nothing seems too tough after the last year he has been.
“The doctors told me if I redshirt next year, I shouldn’t eve have a problem with the knee again,” Bachman said. “Everything is going real well. I am down to one crutch. I can’t wait until I can walk again.”
Through it all, Wittenberg never had any doubts — which made Bachman’s college choice an easy one.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.