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Andy Losik ’95 will no longer updated Charger Blue after the end of this season. (Photo: Andy Losik | Courtesy)

When Andy Losik started ChargerBlue.com in 1998, he had to code the website by hand, line-by-line. Since then, the website has tallied more than half a million hits, as Losik spent 10 – 15 hours every week updating the unof­ficial internet home of Charger football.

Now, after 20 seasons of game pre­views, recaps, recruiting updates, and more, Losik, a 1995 Hillsdale graduate and Charger football alumnus, plans to retire Charger Blue at the end of the 2017 season.

“This has just been my way to give back and say thanks to Hillsdale for all that I got,” Losik said. “My days at Hillsdale are so invaluable to me, and the site was just my way to keep giving back and keep pro­moting the program.”

According to head football coach Keith Otterbein, Charger Blue has become an integral part of the program over the past 20 years.

“Andy has done a phe­nomenal job with Charger Blue for a very long time,” Otterbein said in an email. “The website has become a part of our rich football tra­dition and will be greatly missed by our loyal fans.”

For Losik, Charger Blue has been a labor of love, as he wrote or curated all of the content that went on the site. He said the decision to lay the site to rest wasn’t an easy one, but he bids farewell to his beloved site on the best pos­sible terms.

“Twenty is a real nice, round number,” he said. “I’ve done this for a long time, and my daughter is 15 years old, and a lot goes into par­enting, and watching her play her own sports and show her horse.”

Losik started Charger Blue at a time when Charger Football infor­mation was not easily acces­sible on the internet, as the website pre­dates sites like D2Football.com and The Col­legian online. He said he feels that with the addition of these types of resources, and the quality cov­erage done on the official Hillsdale ath­letics website, it’s a proper time to make an exit.

“Charger fans are in good hands,” he said. “Hope­fully over the years I’ve helped show you where to go and get your infor­mation, and you should be just fine.”

Although there is far more infor­mation available then when Losik started, his con­tri­bution and passion will be missed, according to Andy Brown, the voice of the Chargers on WCSR and host of Time Out with Andy Brown.

“Andy’s site has been a unique fixture for Chargers fans for all these years,” he said. “From the time I started calling the games, he has helped get my radio content out there and has been a major part of our Charger preview shows. His enthu­siasm and feel for the program makes his con­tri­bution special.”

Similar to others that have stepped away from large com­mit­ments to Charger football — such as Jim Eck­hardt, who retired from calling games on WCSR in 2015 — Losik plans to remain as avid a fan as ever.

“I feel like I’ve made a con­tri­bution, and it’s just time to just be a fan on Sat­urday after­noons, instead of having to live tweet out every touchdown, inter­ception, and kick return. I can just go and enjoy it,” he said. “I appre­ciate the fact that so many people over the years have made Charger Blue part of their Sat­urday, but it’s time for me to have some time to just enjoy it without the demands and the dead­lines.”

Losik, a teacher in the Hamilton Com­munity School Dis­trict, said he often found himself waking up early before school or before his wife and daughter woke up to work on the site. The ben­efits, however, far out­weighed the work, according to Losik.

“The feedback is the biggest reward of it,” he said. “It’s always been neat to get dif­ferent emails and dif­ferent per­spec­tives of people that have seen it.”

In addition to pro­viding game pre­views and recaps, updating recruiting infor­mation, and keeping tabs on Charger Alums in the NFL, Losik used the site to promote Charger alumni events, the Gridiron Club, and fundraising efforts.

“We had a couple of sit­u­a­tions where members of the Charger family were facing some hard times, and we we’re able to raise some sig­nif­icant amounts of money through the site, just by bringing people together and making them aware of the sit­u­ation,” Losik said.

Losik said he’s thankful the college and the ath­letic department allowed him so much freedom with the project.

“Hillsdale as a whole has allowed me to do this,” he said. “There are a lot of schools out there, even Division II schools, that are really strict about access and what is being said, and use of logos and pub­li­cation, but Hillsdale has been tremen­dously sup­portive.”

The project started as a simple website with links to any available infor­mation about Charger football, but it grew into much more.

“It started off as a little fun project,” Losik said. “Then it became a really huge part of my life.”

Now, 20 years later, anyone con­nected to Charger football under­stands Losik’s con­tri­bution.

“Thank you will never be enough to let Andy know how much his hard work and ded­i­cation means to Charger Football,” Otterbein said.

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Stevan Bennett Jr. is a senior from the pumpkin capital of the world, Morton, Illinois. He is studying economics and journalism, and plans on attending law school after Hillsdale. He has written for the Collegian since 2014 and is the sports editor. His addictions include coffee, the Chicago Cubs, NHL 2015, and miscellaneous adventuring. email: Sbennett1@hillsdale.edu | twitter: @StevanBennett