Bitburg BaronsHead coach: Mike LaueLast season’s record: 8-0, defeated Ansbach 39-18 in D-II title gameKey games: Sept. 15 at Ansbach, Sept 29 vs. International School of Brussels.The three-time defending European D-II champion Barons open the season riding the fifth-longest winning streak in DODDS-Europe history, 22 straight, but face an immediate test on opening day. They’ll start the season Sept. 15 by hosting Ansbach, a program which holds the DODDS-Europe record of 31 straight victories, in a rematch of the 2009 and 2011 D-II title games, both won by the Barons.Ansbach has been pointing to this game since last November, and the Cougars will be taking on a new edition of the Barons, one which said good-bye over the summer to four of its five 2011 all-stars and 34 players in total.Don’t waste too many tears on the Barons, however. As is obvious from the 22 straight victories, Mike Laue’s Barons are an established program that is reloading around senior All-Europe lineman Colton Engelmeier, a 6-foot-1, 290-pound rock, and his experienced classmates, Bryson Randall, C.J. Evans and Evan Less.And although the Barons will start the season with more question marks than they’ve had in recent years, Laue is sanguine about the prospect.“We know we will have some of our young players step up,” he emailed, “and play well.”

2012 schedule(x-non-conference game)Sept. 15: Ansbach-xSept. 22: at SchweinfurtSept. 29: International School of BrusselsOct. 6: at SHAPEOct. 13: at Aviano-xOct. 20: AFNORTH

Sign Up for Daily Headlines

Sign up to receive a daily email of today's top military news stories from Stars and Stripes and top news outlets from around the world.

Sign Up Now