KIEL, Germany and VIENNA, Austria (GoThunderWolves.com - Jan. 30, 2013) - The ranks of former CSU-Pueblo football standouts playing in the pros just got longer, as two former CSU-Pueblo standouts, Jesse Lewis and Marcial Williamson, have each signed to play professional football in Europe this season.
Lewis, the ThunderWolves career all-purpose yardage leader and a 2010 All-American, has signed to play with the Raiffeisen Vikings Vienna, one of the most dominant American football clubs in Europe. Lewis, who graduated from CSU-Pueblo in 2012 and helped lead the Pack to an 11-0 season and number-one national ranking in 2011, is being billed as one of the club's biggest offseason signings
"This happened to be an opportunity for me to experience a culture, country and many other things outside of my norm," Lewis said. "Getting to pursue my dream of playing football after college and do so in a such a beautiful city is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity I wanted to seize."
Vikings' coach Chris Calaycay said Lewis has the tools to be successful in Vienna.
"We like a running back that acts powerfully and quickly," Calaycay said in a translated statement. "Jesse has the necessary finishing speed and is very mobile. He is a small running back, who hides behind his blockers well, but despite ihis small body size, he can break tackles."
Lewis won't be alone in Europe as just 500 miles away, he will be joined by former teammate Marcial Williamson, who was signed to play wide receiver for the Baltic Hurricanes, hailing from Kiel, Germany.
Williamson was a four-year member of the ThunderWolves, seeing everything from the team's debut in 2008 to its two RMAC Championships in 2011 and 2012. The 24-year-old, who was actualy born in Fulda, Germany while his father was stationed overseas, also has designs on winning a championship abroad.
"Marcial is very versatile and can play different receiver positions." Baltic head coach Patrick Esume said. "Furthermore, his grasp of the game is excellent."
"Playing for Kiel is a great opportunity," Williamson said. "It has an awesome fan base and the coaches are enthusiastic and dedicated to winning games as well as a championship. Also I would like to experience and find out more about the culture and meet new people and possibly make lifelong friends. My hopes for the season are to have great team chemistry, win games and become one of the top if not the top receiver in the game."