TAG | Bethany
Alfred’s Chuck Beckwith had another fantastic game on Saturday.
Alfred athletics file photo
Let’s see, there’s only a ton of good games from Saturday to talk about, and Pat and Keith try to hit it all in an hour. First of all, four ranked teams lost on Saturday, but that was guaranteed since we had four games between ranked teams. Surprise was, though, that none of them was competitive. Why? That’s discussed.
What was it that made us call the St. John Fisher and Birmingham-Southern upsets? And what do we do with the many teams which are either undefeated or have just one loss and are sitting outside the Top 25? That includes teams such as Waynesburg, and teams that just got into the poll, such as Coe.
Keith started to look at the video of Mount Union destroying Capital and gives us his first impressions. Plus, what the heck has happened to Capital?
Exactly how long has it been since Illinois Wesleyan won at Wheaton? In fact, in order to run the table, IWU must still win at Wheaton, North Central and Elmhurst. Plus, if you are new to the playoff process in Division III, you’ll want to listen for the explanation of how the pools work (apologies to those who have heard it all before).
And then there’s the great shootout that ended the night, with Sul Ross State defeating Texas Lutheran. Keith was watching online and gives us more details. All that and more below. Hit play.
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Here’s this week’s D3football.com reports and highlight packages, including the Coe-Dubuque highlights mentioned in the podcast.
And this week’s photo galleries from our friends at d3photography.com:
Alfred · Bethany · Bethel · Birmingham-Southern · Capital · Coe · concordia (wis.) · concordia-chicago · Cortland State · Dubuque · Elmhurst · Illinois Wesleyan · Louisiana College · Mary Hardin-Baylor · Mount Union · Rowan · Salisbury · St. John Fisher · St. Thomas · Trinity (Texas) · UW-Oshkosh · UW-Platteville · UW-River Falls · UW-Stevens Point · UW-Whitewater · Washington and Jefferson · Washington and Lee · Waynesburg · Wheaton (Ill.)
The rare event this week is a battle of 25′s, as Heidelberg takes on Otterbein.
Heidelberg athletics photo
The saying is that history repeats itself. And we ask ourselves whether certain teams are doomed to stare down another upset.
Pat Coleman, Keith McMillan and Ryan Tipps dive into the past to bring you analysis of the present. We cast a wide net to predict the fall of a Top 25 team, detail the game of the week and pore over some of the unusual nicknames in D-III.
Don’t hesitate to offer your comments below.
Game of the week.
Ryan’s take: No. 25 Otterbein at No. 25 Heidelberg. Nope, that’s not a typo. If you’ve looked at our Top 25 this week, you’ll see these two OAC teams are tied for the 25th spot. They are both undefeated, and with the second-place OAC team often having an inside track to a Pool C playoff bid, this game holds worlds of value — and intrigue.
Pat’s take: No. 9 Bethel at No. 4 St. Thomas. This has been a good game in recent seasons already, with two teams who love to line up and smash-mouth it straight at each other. Ironically, both teams are led by talented sophomore quarterbacks, and Bethel, especially, has opened it up on offense a little more this season. The past three meetings have been decided by 19 points combined, with St. Thomas winning both of the regular season meetings. It’s likely to be another battle.
Keith’s take: No. 13 UW-Platteville at No. 14 UW-Oshkosh. Wow, I pick third, and I still get two no-brainers to choose from. Much to the dismay of two of the most active Twitter followings in No. 2 UMHB and No. 21 Louisiana College, I went to Wisconsin with this one. In WIAC history, the spotlight rarely has shone on Oshkosh and Platteville — You’d have to go back to 1976 to find the last time UW-Oshkosh tied atop the conference, and 1972 to find their last outright title, an undefeated 8-0 WIAC season. For UW-Platteville, go back to 1980 for the tie, 1974 for the outright. Worse yet — before tying for second last season, the teams only had one season each in the past 30 years finishing higher than fourth in the WIAC, each finishing third once (Oshkosh in 2007, UW-P in 1990). In 1997, 1998, 2000 and 2008, the Titans and Pioneers were at the bottom of the standings. So that should put in perspective how big a game it is, with UW-P (4-1, 1-1) just a failed two-point conversion against defending national champion UW-Whitewater from being undefeated, and UW-O 5-0. A Platteville win could make the WIAC three-way tie territory, but either way, UW-Oshkosh at UW-Whitewater the following week is huge. Titans QB Nate Wara has got the name recognition, now let’s see if he delivers in a big game.
Surprisingly close game.
Ryan’s take: Concordia-Chicago at Concordia (Wis.). The Illinois one will pound the rock over and over and over. It’s the only way they’ll find success. The Wisconsin one, on the other hand, should be able to air out the ball, especially against a Cougars team that at 5-0 has nonetheless been prone to giving up some big yards. And both teams like to put up points: The Cougars average more than 38 on the scoreboard, while the 3-2 Falcons emerged from a week of hanging 55 on their opponent.
Pat’s take: No. 5 UW-Whitewater at UW-Stout. I look at a combination of a few factors that will keep this game unexpectedly close. In addition to UW-Whitewater’s struggles on offense, they’re also traveling on the day of the game. That four-hour bus ride, mandated by the WIAC office, might leave them a little slow to start. The question will be whether Stout can put enough points on the board to make it close or if it will be like the Stevens Point/Whitewater game.
Keith’s take: Pacific at Pacific Lutheran. If you just remember the Boxers as the expansion team and the Lutes as the program with the championship pedigree, it might be time to take a closer look at the NWC. Pacific is 2-3, with a three-point loss to Whitworth (5-1) among the defeats. The Lutes’ 2-2 record might be deceiving, since all four of the teams they’ve played are solid (three were in the postseason last year, three are 4-1 or better this season). Kyle Warner is averaging 116 receiving yards per game and Kellen Westering 97, so the Lutes’ air attack will probably be too much for the Boxers, but expect Pacific to show some bite.
Most likely Top 25 team to get upset.
Ryan’s take: No. 11 St. John Fisher. At what point can we excuse an Alfred team’s opening day loss to RPI? Is it after the Saxons beat the team that toppled UW-Whitewater? Check. Is it after they beat an undefeated conference opponent? Check. Is it after they hold an opponent to just 4 rushing yards? Check. Fisher is coming off a punishing game against Salisbury, and Alfred’s hot streak coupled with SJF’s bruises make the Cardinals a target again this week.
Pat’s take: No. 13 UW-Platteville. So many ranked teams are playing each other this week that I feel forced to take a higher-ranked team playing on the road in a game that the rankings suggest is a toss-up. And I like what Bryce Corrigan did last week against UW-La Crosse after getting a full week of reps as the No. 1 starter at quarterback. But UW-Oshkosh is in a position where it can just run it right at Platteville. If you have not seen dual-threat quarterback Nate Wara for Oshkosh, do yourself a favor and watch the live video on Saturday. Defenses are hard pressed to bottle him up.
Keith’s take: No. 16 Birmingham Southern. Eight top 25 teams are playing each other, so toss those out. Two are picked above. The pickins’ are downright slim, and Trinity (Texas) is the only team I can see really pulling a stunner. The Tigers won last season when B-SC was a conference mate, but now that the Panthers have gone and split off, another win could be satisfying. To do it, Trinity QB Nyk McKissic has to keep making good decisions; with 11 TD passes and just one interception, he’s done it so far. Trinity’s D also rebounded with a decent game against Rhodes after allowing 111 points in consecutive weeks, against Sul Ross State and I’m sure I’ll get some silly irate tweet from Alabama saying how wrong this upset pick is, but keep in mind the Panthers have never beaten Trinity. Maybe it’s B-SC who would be pulling the upset, should our rankings hold.
They’ll be on your radar.
Ryan’s take: Washington and Lee. This is about the time of year when we can accurately take stock of what’s happening in the ODAC. The conference is as balanced as they come, and it’s often difficult to stick by early-season predictions. But after starting the season with a loss, W&L is looking like the playoff-caliber team of the past two seasons. Their points have increased with each game (28, 34, 42, 45), but unfortunately for them, so have their opponents’ points. Three of the last five games are probably the toughest on the schedule, starting with this weekend against Randolph-Macon, the only other ODAC team that hasn’t lost a conference game yet. These two teams, plus Bridgewater and Hampden-Sydney, will make for a jumbled race at the top.
Pat’s take: Waynesburg. This has to happen eventually, right? The lack of churn at the bottom of the Top 25 has made it difficult for teams such as Coe, Concordia-Moorhead or Waynesburg to get their due in the Top 25, but I think Waynesburg deserves one of those 20-25 spots. After consecutive 5-5 seasons, Bethany is struggling out of the gate, at 1-4.
Keith’s take: Washington & Jefferson, Concordia-Moorhead and Allegheny. Hey, I’ve got a big radar. The Presidents host Westminster (Pa.), playing their first home game since RB Tim McNerney was killed. The Cobbers shouldn’t have much trouble with Hamline, but I’m curious if they’ll be sluggish after last week’s ending, or sharp. The Cobbers are guaranteed to see two of their MIAC competitors lose, when Bethel and St. Thomas, and Augsburg and St. Olaf play. And Allegheny, following the upset of Wabash, beat Oberlin 15-3 and lost a non-conference game to Chicago, 10-0. I thought this year’s Gators might be a great defensive team keeping scores low, but with the 219th-ranked offense in the nation, that would not seem to be the case. The Gators haven’t exactly seized the opening, but with home games against DePauw and Wittenberg in back to back weeks, the AQ and NCAC title is still there for the taking.
Which upset of the past will have a different outcome this week?
Ryan’s take: Whitworth at No. 3 Linfield. When you go four straight seasons undefeated in conference play, with a national championship sprinkled in, expectations are always high. But at some point, the bubble does burst. That happened in 2006 for Linfield, when a Whitworth team that amassed just 85 yards of total offense — but also forced five fumbles — went on to topple the 15th-ranked home team 17-13. Fast-forward to 2012, and Linfield is earning win after hard-fought win. The Wildcats are coming off a bye week, and the Pirates are following an aching loss to Willamette. This game may be as close as the ’06 matchup, but Linfield will keep its 20-game NWC win streak alive.
Pat’s take: No. 15 Wabash at Washington U. In 2010, Wabash came in unbeaten ranked No. 19, and Wash U came in 2-2, with its wins against Knox and Westminster (Mo.). Nonetheless, Wash U. came away the 24-20 victor. For history to repeat itself, Wabash would have to have significant breakdowns on both sides of the ball, and I don’t see that happening. Wash U has been held to 17 points or fewer by every team not named Kenyon this season in starting off 1-4.
Keith’s take: Trine at Adrian. The Thunder had won 18 MIAA games in a row, won in the playoffs, given UW-Whitewater a challenge and developed a Gagliardi Trophy winner. Then Trine lost, 26-7, at Adrian in last year’s MIAA, and nationally, we kind of stopped paying attention. Trine (4-2) and the Bulldogs (4-1) face off again Saturday, and the stats say Adrian (No. 7 defense in the country) is the favorite this time around. Before you get confused, let’s review: The upset of the past was Adrian over Trine. So this time around, Trine gets some payback. The Thunder hasn’t been a great offense overall, but quarterback Ryan Hargraves has been heating up over the past three games, and Myron Puryear, who had a touchdown on defense last week, is a threat in the return game.
Red, blue or green?
Ryan’s take: Red of Wittenberg. Timed at any other point in the season, and we’re looking at a Chicago team that would be competitive with Wittenberg. But following Witt’s loss at home to Wabash, the Tigers have to know that they need to be perfect from here on out to have any shot at the postseason. Witt will be on a mission and more than ready to put these pesky one-score margins behind them.
Pat’s take: Blueboys, of Illinois College. They’ll get right back on the winning side this week after a loss to Lake Forest in Week 6. Beloit, the Blueboys’ opponent, has been a surprise winless team this season. Not that we expected huge things out of the Buccaneers, considering we ranked them No. 192 in the preseason, but even that was ahead of Lawrence, Cornell and Knox, each of whom have beaten Beloit head-to-head this season.
Keith’s take: Green of … Nope, sorry. Red of Muhlenberg. Hey I looked for some Green Knights I could get excited about, to keep it balanced. I even considered the all-green Plymouth State-Endicott game. But I’d rather give you one extra upset pick, just outside the top 25, and a test of whether it’s important to have the human element in game insight. The computer ratings love Gettysburg. I like the Bullets, but see three of their wins (over start-up Misericordia, hapless Juniata and 0-5 McDaniel) as no great shakes. You’re supposed to beat those teams, and they did, so there’s that. But Muhlenberg brings a lot more defense to the table than most of the Bullets’ opponents so far. The Mules are coming off a loss to Susquehanna, which Gettysburg beat, which makes this pick slightly illogical. But, hey, at least there’s not much riding on it. Just a potential showdown of CC unbeatens next week, oh, and the future of man vs. computer. No pressure, Mules.
An unusual nickname you like.
Ryan’s take: Moravian Greyhounds. Moravian has been a Centennial seesaw team the past few seasons, with records of 8-3, followed by 2-8, then 7-4, and back to 2-8. This season, they’ve already tied last year’s win total, and there is clear potential yet to notch two or three more wins in the books. And that means doing what it can to keep forcing turnovers and pressuring quarterbacks. As of late, Susquehanna has been finding its groove on both sides of the ball, which means Moravian will need to channel the quickness of its namesake in order to come away with a victory. (Want more of the unusual? Check out Moravian’s ambidextrous rugby-style punter in Around the Mid-Atlantic.)
Pat’s take: UW-Eau Claire Blugolds. But do you need me to say something about the game as well? I’m confused. They host UW-La Crosse this week in sore need of a win. In fact, both teams need a win badly, as La Crosse hasn’t lived up to the credit some gave it in the WIAC after it knocked off North Central in Week 1.
Keith’s take: Los Lobos, of Sul Ross State. Mostly I just wanted to name-check the ‘La Bamba’ band. But also we have what could be an epic shootout on deck. Sul Ross State is fourth in the country in total and scoring offense, with 545 yards and almost 49 points a game. Texas Lutheran is 50th in the nation, with a mere (!) 416 and 30. But here’s the real eye-opener. The Lobos are 233rd in D-III in pass defense, and the Bulldogs are 226th. Buckle up.
Adrian · Alfred · Allegheny · Beloit · Bethany · Bethel · Birmingham-Southern · Carnegie Mellon · Chicago · concordia (wis.) · concordia-chicago · Gettysburg · Heidelberg · Illinois College · Linfield · Moravian · Muhlenberg · Otterbein · Pacific · Pacific Lutheran · Randolph-Macon · St. John Fisher · St. Thomas · Sul Ross State · Susquehanna · Texas Lutheran · Trine · UW-Eau Claire · UW-La Crosse · UW-Oshkosh · UW-Platteville · UW-Stout · UW-Whitewater · Wabash · Washington and Jefferson · Washington and Lee · Washington U. · Waynesburg · Whitworth · Wittenberg
Redlands quarterback Chad Hurst led four second-half scoring drives in the Bulldogs’ win.
The opening weekend of the season is exciting enough without all these hear-stopping finishes we had. North Central … Otterbein … Delaware Valley … Mississippi College … Bridgewater … Illinois College. Plus a big Top 25 matchup and much more to talk about.
The Around the Nation Podcast is a weekly discussion between D3football.com Executive Editor Pat Coleman and Deputy Managing Editor Keith McMillan, who writes the Around the Nation column. It’s the first analysis of the week that was. The show tends to run anywhere between 30 and 60 minutes per week — fit it into your lunch hour.
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Alma · Bethany · Bridgewater (Va.) · Central · Coe · Cornell · Delaware Valley · Endicott · Framingham State · Frostburg State · Gallaudet · Geneva · Guilford · Hardin-Simmons · Heidelberg · Illinois College · Lycoming · McMurry · Millikin · Millsaps · Mississippi College · Monmouth · Muhlenberg · North Central · Olivet · Otterbein · podcast · Redlands · Rowan · Salve Regina · Shenandoah · St. Thomas · St. Vincent · Stevenson · Trine · Union · UW-La Crosse · UW-Oshkosh · UW-Stevens Point · UW-Whitewater · Wartburg · Willamette
After last week, the Top 25 got an overhaul as a handful of undefeated teams fell. To top it off, there’s been a lot of shuffling in some of the conferences across the country. The Iowa Conference, Empire 8, the USA South, the Old Dominion — all have featured significant changes in just a week’s time.
The playoff picture in those areas may have gotten a little foggier, if not defied expectations all together.
That’s much of what we do with Triple Take, try to spot the unexpected — a seemingly impossible paradox in and of itself. But there’s a nuance to predictions: finding the statistical mismatch, the key injury, the motivation that could make or break a team. In Week 7, much happened to defy expectations and create a new way to approach a team.
That’s part of the fun of playing the game every Saturday, isn’t it?
Will the eighth week of the season hold as much drama as the seventh did? Pat Coleman, Keith McMillan and Ryan Tipps weigh in.
Game of the Week.
Ryan’s take: Lycoming at No. 9 Delaware Valley. Both teams sit as one-loss teams overall yet are undefeated in conference play. And each of their losses comes against quality opponents, the Aggies especially being just 3:29 from beating Wesley. We all expected DelVal to have a prime year, but Lycoming is somewhat of a surprise. Going now into Week 8, no one takes any team for granted, and Lycoming has rolled through the past six games, sometimes winning by 20-, 30- or even 50-point margins. Both teams have been impressive all year, and the winner on Saturday has the inside track to a game on Nov. 20.
Pat’s take: No. 19 St. John Fisher at Alfred. No longer a battle of unbeatens, but it is a battle of Empire 8 unbeatens. The winner stays on the shortest path to the Empire 8 title, but only St. John Fisher can have aspirations of getting a No. 1 seed and keeping Mount Union away until the national semifinals.
Keith’s take: No. 12 Linfield at No. 22 Pacific Lutheran. So rarely do you go third and get the two best choices. Between No. 20 Bethel at No. 4 St. Thomas and Linfield-PLU, I can’t go wrong. I took the NWC clash because there, the lower-ranked team at least has home-field advantage, and because Linfield has a loss and needs to win to stay on track for the automatic bid, or become a team that went from last year’s final four to probably out of this year’s 32. The Wildcats feature the nation’s fifth most prolific offense, but it’s the defense that’s begun to stand out. Since giving up 47 to Cal Lutheran, the team’s given up 38 in four games, and not all of that has come against the first team. Senior Eric Hedin has 10 sacks in five games, and will get after Jordan Rassmussen and the PLU offense.
Surprisingly close game.
Ryan’s take: Salisbury at Union. Chalk this up more to a feeling than anything else, but Union’s schedule has not been an easy one and yet they’re still able to get a couple scores on the board each week. If the Dutchmen want to stay in this game, it will have to be because of the offense. Union hasn’t done particularly well this season against running teams — and Salisbury is just about the mother of all run teams. If Union finds its groove on offense, this could be a high-scoring affair.
Pat’s take: Carthage at No. 17 Wheaton. Carthage has lost two games, both to CCIW opponents, by the score of 43-8 and 43-16. Counting on a little better performance and some learning curve for the Red Men.
Keith’s take: Rochester at WPI. The nation’s top 15 defenses read like a who’s who of the top 25, with 10th-best defense William Paterson (4-2), No. 13 WPI (3-3) and No. 14 Aurora (4-2) not fitting the group. Rochester, while strangely giving up nearly the same number of points (48) to Merchant Marine as it did to St. John Fisher (49), allowed an average of 15.6 to Case Western Reserve, Union and RPI. And that’s good because the Yellowjackets are 216th in scoring at 12.8 points per game. Against WPI’s defense, that number might not improve, but the Engineers’ offense (185th nationally at 281.5 yards per game) isn’t a juggernaut either. Short story long, this could be surprisingly close by being unsurprisingly low scoring.
Most likely Top 25 team to get upset.
Ryan’s take: No. 6 North Central. The Cardinals have a ton of offensive weapons at their disposal, so a win here for Illinois Wesleyan wouldn’t be easy. But the Titans are coming off a victory against a solid Elmhurst team and should be carrying some momentum into this game. IWU will need to ask for more from its defense — more from Ryan Gresko and the rest of the linebackers and more from the secondary to stop any big plays from happening. With just one in-conference loss, IWU is still in the playoff hunt. But North Central has plenty on its mind, too: A No. 1 seed in the postseason isn’t out of the question.
Pat’s take: No. 10 Thomas More. Alright, it seems unlikely on the face of it, no doubt. Bethany has scored 40 points in each of the past two games and is playing at home. Who knows, perhaps freshman quarterback Matt Grimard won’t know enough to be intimidated, or will simply play the game of his life.
Keith’s take: No. 7 Wittenberg. I don’t know that any of the big clashes, in the CCIW, MAC, MIAC or NWC, will end in upsets. Carnegie Mellon (4-2) is an interesting opponent for the the 7-0 Tigers, though, because it’s had two weeks to prepare, when it’s really Wittenberg that could use the extra week to work on stopping the Wing-T. The Tartans (261 yards/game) are the nation’s No. 12 rush offense, but the Tigers are the No. 8 rush defense (59 yards/game). The UAA-NCAC scheduling agreement gives these two teams as many common opponents as conference rivals would have, and while the comparative scores are inconclusive, it could mean the CMU coaching staff is able to glean some insight from one of them.
They’ll be on your radar.
Ryan’s take: DePauw. The undefeated Tigers are a team I’ve been watching closely all season. But this week, they merit special mention in this category because, with a win against Trinity, DePauw would become the first team in the country to clinch an automatic bid to the playoffs. DPU is the only SCAC team undefeated in conference play. And after the Trinity game, the only conference opponent left that counts toward the AQ is Austin, which already has two losses. Until last season, DPU had never beaten Trinity. Raising the stakes on Saturday is that DPU will have to play their SCAC rival on the road.
Pat’s take: No. 22 Pacific Lutheran. And that’s because win or lose, the Lutes are playoff contenders. Win, of course, and Pacific Lutheran puts Linfield out of control of its own destiny, having to hope for a three-way tie in the NWC (wherein Willamette beats Pacific Lutheran in Week 11) or an upset.
Keith’s take: No. 20 Bethel. If you aren’t in MIAC country, chances are you can’t name two Royals players, because St. Thomas and St. John’s have absorbed all the spotlight. Bethel’s got a suffocating defense that is No. 1 in the nation against the run (33.5 yards per game) and No. 9 overall, and hasn’t given up more than 20 points in a game. The Royals, behind the one player you would have heard of if you’ve been following for long enough, in Logan Flannery (125.8 yards/game), has a potent rushing attack. St. Thomas is similarly dominating, and that’s been well documented. If Bethel performs on Saturday, they’ll be able to sign their names to the nationally recognized register as well.
Which unlikely conference leader is most likely to pick up a loss?
Ryan’s take: Muhlenberg. The Mules have been an impressive surprise this year despite starting with a loss to Delaware Valley. Sophomore Terrence Dandridge has really stepped into the spotlight and made the Mules one of the best rushing teams in the Centennial. But this week, they face a potent passing attack from John Harrison and Franklin and Marshall. Muhlenberg did reasonably well earlier in the season against the strong passing game Johns Hopkins offered, but F&M’s attach can really sizzle when it gets going. Perhaps the question is whether we’ll see the solid F&M offense that showed up against Dickinson or the one that showed up last week against Moravian, where balance was lacking.
Pat’s take: Plymouth State. The Plymouth State game is the first of two games in a row that Western New England will have to win to clinch itself a bid in the NEFC title game. Western New England lost its opening game to Norwich but has been on a roll since, while Plymouth State has been winning with defense.
Keith’s take: Shenandoah. The trip to Ferrum is nothing easy for the Hornets, and trips to the end zone have not been either. At No. 213 in total offense and 190th in scoring offense (16.5 points per game), Shenandoah — like the other 2-4 teams tied with Averett and N.C. Wesleyan atop the USAC — doesn’t fit the profile of a conference co-leader. (Speaking of leaders, as far as unlikely ones, there aren’t many; St. Lawrence [vs. RPI], maybe Benedictine [vs. Maranatha Baptist], but nationally it’s mostly the usual suspects at the top of conferences)
Which team this week will least resemble last week’s performance?
Ryan’s take: RPI. RPI had the best quarter of its year last week, racking up 24 points against Alfred in the first 15 minutes of play. The other 45 minutes resembled the RPI most probably expected to play in that game. I think that’s where they will pick up against Liberty League leader St. Lawrence this week.
Pat’s take: Westminster (Pa.). The Titans will be hosting their first-ever on-campus night game on Saturday, and are playing Thiel to do so. Now, Thiel’s president this week curiously threw down the gantlet and said the following in an e-mail to the student body: “Many of you don’t know this, but Westminster had the nerve to schedule Thiel College for their first ever night game under the new lights at their home football stadium. As you know I am a very competitive person. I don’t want teams scheduling us for their first competitions under new lights, on a new field or court, or anything else like that. Those games are supposed to be scheduled against teams you can beat.” In calling out his school’s PAC rival, he cast a very interesting spotlight on his team, which hasn’t scored more than seven points in a game all year, while allowing an average of just under 30. Westminster lost at Waynesburg last week, 24-23. This will not resemble that. This is a team Westminster can beat.
Keith’s take: Randolph-Macon. It’s back to the life of unranked and off the radar for the Yellow Jackets after a flirtation with the top 20. They’ve got a get-right game against 0-6 Guilford, which has allowed 55.5 points per ODAC game so far, but R-MC also won’t resemble the team that started 6-0 if quarterback Austin Faulkner isn’t back at full strength.
What team with two or more losses is worth watching?
Ryan’s take: Carnegie Mellon. The Tartans have a chance to break out of the .500 streak they’ve been trapped in each of the past two seasons. And this week they’ll line up against Wittenberg, which will test the CMU run game unlike any game to date. The Tartans have a lot of rushers at their disposal, so being able to rotate carries could keep the players fresh against that stout Tigers defense.
Pat’s take: Lewis and Clark. Worth watching in the first place because the team has been putting up points like crazy the past two seasons. On Saturday the Pioneers have a good chance to win a second Northwest Conference game for the first time since 1997. And lest you say that the only reason L&C is in this position is because Pacific added football, I would point out that L&C also beat Menlo in Week 6, and that would have counted last year.
Keith’s take: McMurry. Hal Mumme is working his magic, and the 5-2 _______s (7-letter mascot, not starting with I- or ending with -ndians) are the nation’s most prolific passing offense, behind Jake Mullin and his 34-to-1 TD-to-INT ratio. With at least four TD passes and at least 31 points all but once, “worth watching” does not seem to be a problem.
Alfred · Bethany · Carnegie Mellon · Carthage · Delaware Valley · DePauw · Lewis and Clark · Lycoming · Muhlenberg · North Central · Plymouth State · Puget Sound · RPI · Salisbury · St. John Fisher · Thiel · Thomas More · Union · Western New England · Westminster (Pa.) · Wheaton (Ill.)