BOWLING GREEN - Maybe someone had made an error, maybe someone was pulling a joke. All Jimmy Scheidler was sure of is that he was nowhere near 200 pounds.
But Scheidler wanted an answer. Why was a chart inside the football locker room at Bowling Green State University listing his last name next to such an inaccurate weight? He soon found out there was no mistake. Just another Scheidler.
This was two summers ago, and Josh Scheidler had just joined the Falcons. This seemed strange. Jimmy and Josh hailed from different states and had never crossed paths at a family reunion. And it's not like Scheidler is a common surname like Smith or Turner.
"I thought it was a mistake," said Jimmy, "but it turned out we were like fourth cousins, way down the line."
Now they are roommates, likely to be confused when a piece of mail is addressed to: J. Scheidler.
"It was kind of weird," Josh said. "When my dad and I came here on our visit I noticed on the roster there was another Scheidler. My dad went online and looked it up, and it turned out we're very, very distantly related. It is kind of surprising, but at the same time he turned out to be one of my better friends on the team."
There's another bizarre angle to this story, as the Scheidlers sort of crossed paths coming out of high school in 2005. Jimmy grew up in Indianapolis, where he also excelled in basketball and lacrosse. Josh graduated from Stow High School in northeast Ohio before attending Valparaiso University in Indiana for one year.
"It's not a family relation type thing, because I didn't know him, but he fit in well with my group of friends," Jimmy said.
Now the Scheidlers are trying to fit into the lineup in their junior seasons.
Jimmy (6-4, 243) is getting reps with the first team at fullback, and Josh, a 6-foot, 213-pound linebacker, should soon begin practicing again after suffering an ACL tear in December.
Jimmy's objective is clear.
If he can replicate Pete Winovich, he should see a lot of action in BG's multiple receiver sets. Winovich was mainly used as a blocker last year, but he was so skilled in the trade that the position was essentially tailored for him.
"We'll put him on the move and throw him some passes," BG coach Gregg Brandon said of Jimmy, who is competing for the job with Nick Rieke and Lewis Parks. "The position kind of evolved with Pete because he just got so good that we had to put him in there."
The Scheidlers likely would have never met had they made different choices regarding their respective careers. Josh left Valparaiso after one year because he wasn't enjoying his time with the football program. He hopes that when healthy he can provide depth at linebacker for the Falcons.
"I thought maybe if I could go to a bigger school I could have a better opportunity and have a better college experience on the whole," he said.
Jimmy made a difficult decision of his own. His father, John, played tight end at Ball State in the 1970s, and Jimmy could have done the same. But when the Cardinals offered Jimmy a scholarship he had already committed to BG and the lure of playing about an hour away from home couldn't sway his decision.
"It would have been nice to play for Ball State, but Bowling Green welcomed me in," Jimmy said. "I came up here on a visit and it was great."
It became even greater once he shared the experience with Josh.
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