Week Six Southland Conference Schedule
Saturday, Oct. 6
Southeastern La. at UAB, 2 p.m.
Stephen F. Austin vs. Sam Houston St.*1, 3 p.m. (SLCTV)
Lamar at Northwestern St.*, 6 p.m. (ESPN3)
Nicholls St. at Central Arkansas*, 6 p.m.
All times Central; 1 at Reliant Stadium, Houston, Texas
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Southeastern Louisiana at UAB, 2 p.m.
Game Notes: Southeastern Louisiana |
BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – Looking to build on a two-game win streak that included its first road win since the 2009 season, Southeastern Louisiana heads back out on the road when it travels to face Conference USA opponent UAB at Legion Field.
Southeastern (2-3) faces its 17th opponent from the Football Bowl Subdivision since resuming football in 2003.
The Lions began their two-game streak with a come-from-behind 25-24 victory at home over McNeese State before snapping a 14-game losing streak in road games last week with
a 31-21 win at Lamar. A victory by Southeastern over UAB (0-4) would be its first over an FBS member since resuming football and would give the Lions their first three-game winning streak since 2004.
Part of the Lions’ recent success has been due their defense, which has held opponents to an average of 305 yards of total offense while forcing six turnovers in the past three
games. In its last contest, Southeastern limited Lamar to 76 yards on the ground while holding a 368-244 advantage in total offense.
“Going into a game like this against UAB, we’re going to have to play great defense,” Southeastern coach Ron Roberts said. “They’ve got some great talent for a team that is
0-4 and has played the schedule that they have. Anytime when you go FCS to FBS, there’s a difference in talent on the field and it’s going to be a huge challenge for us.”
Southeastern set season-highs in points, total offense (368 yards), rushing attempts (51) and rushing yards (165) in its win over Lamar and will look for continued production
against a Blazer unit that ranks fifth overall in C-USA in total defense allowing 444.8 yards per game.
Quarterback Nathan Stanley has paced the Southeastern offense in 2012, going 98-for-180 through the air for 1,069 yards and four touchdowns. Leading the receiving corp is Stanley
Moore who has caught 17 passes on the season followed by Tony McCrea (14), Marquis Fruge’ (14), Michael Chaney (14) and Jeff Smiley (13).
Chaney leads Southeastern in rushing with 123 yards and three TDs with freshman Xavier Roberson coming off a 75-yard effort against Lamar after being converted two weeks ago
from defensive back.
Defensively, Kaleb Muse leads Southeastern with 37 tackles followed by John Graves (32) and Devan Walker (30). All-America candidate Robert Alford has intercepted passes in
his last two games for the Lions while Tyler Stoddard, Drew Misita, Tay Alford and Denzel Thompson have each picked off passes.
UAB, under first-year coach Garrick McGee, will play its third home game of the season after suffering losses to Troy (39-29) and Tulsa (49-42). The Blazers, who have played
one of the toughest schedules in the country to date, have also dropped games at nationally ranked opponents South Carolina (49-6) and Ohio State (29-15).
The Blazers are led by receivers Jackie Williams and Patrick Hearn, who have caught a team-high 20 passes each. Jonathan Perry and redshirt freshman Austin Brown have split
time at quarterback for UAB with Brown tossing for 337 yards and three TDs in his first career start last week against Tulsa.
Linebacker Marvin Burdette leads UAB with 38 tackles, including 3.5 tackles for loss, on the season followed by Greg Irvin (32), Jake Ganus (26) and Calvin Jones (24). Burdette
and Chris Rabb have two sacks each to lead the Blazers while Ganus and Lamar Johnson have each intercepted passes.
Stephen F. Austin vs. Sam Houston State, 3 p.m.
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Game Notes: Stephen F. Austin |
Sam Houston State
HOUSTON, Texas – Stephen F. Austin and No. 9 Sam Houston will meet for the 87th time Saturday when the Battle of the Piney Woods hits Reliant Stadium for the third consecutive season.
The Bearkats hold a 49-35-2 edge in the all-time series after its 45-10 win last year. That win snapped a two-game losing streak to the Lumberjacks, which won 42-3 in 2009
and 31-28 in 2010. The winner of the Battle of the Piney Woods has won the last three Southland Conference championships. Sam Houston has won nine of the 12 games against SFA.
The series became the fourth old continuous college football rivalry in the state of Texas this year after Texas A&M joined the Southeastern Conference ending long-standings
rivalries with Texas and Baylor.
The Bearkats (2-2 overall, 0-1 Southland) entered the season with high hopes after being selected to repeat its conference title from last year. They were picked by many to
not only get back to the national championship game, but to win it. But the Bearkats are 2-2 with losses to Baylor and Central Arkansas after finishing 14-1 in 2011. Sam Houston opened with a win over future Southland rival Incarnate Word and found the win
column again last week with a 50-6 win over Texas Southern at BBVA Compass Stadium in Houston.
Sam Houston is averaging 36.8 points and 480.8 yards per game, while limiting opponents to 21.2 points and 302.5 yards per game. Quarterback Brian Bell has completed 58 of
97 passes for 849 yards and six touchdowns.
Walter Payton Award candidate Timothy Flanders has 375 yards and four touchdowns on 63 carries, helping the Bearkats average 267.5 rushing yards per game. Flanders can become
the 11th player in Southland history to surpass 3,000 career rushing yards. He enters the game with 2,967 rushing yards and has 17 games with 100 yards or more. With 39 career rushing touchdowns he is in hot pursuit of the conference record of 45 held by former
Texas State standout Claude Mathis. Trey Diller is the Bearkats’ top receiver with 16 catches for 235 yards.
Stephen F. Austin, which is receiving votes in both FCS top-25 polls, snapped a three-game losing streak by surprising Central Arkansas last Saturday in Nacogdoches. The Bears
were coming off an upset of Sam Houston a week earlier, but the Lumberjacks (2-3 overall, 1-0 Southland) prevailed 42-37 in their conference opener. SFA opened the year with a win over Southwestern Oklahoma State, but then dropped three road game against SMU,
Montana State and Texas State.
The Lumberjacks are averaging 32.6 points and 482.8 offensive yards per game, and are allowing 37.4 points and 333.6 yards on offense through five games. Quarterback Brady
Attaway has completed 139 of 236 passes for 1,637 yards and 11 touchdowns. Running back Gus Johnson is the conference’s top rusher, averaging 96 yards per game. He has 77 carries for 480 yards and nine touchdowns after he ran for 215 yards and four scores
in the win over Central Arkansas last week.
Cordell Roberson is the top receiver in the Southland. He is averaging 121.4 receiving yards per game with 607 yards and five touchdowns on 48 receptions. He has 192 career
receptions and can become the fourth player in Southland history to top 200 career catches. He needs only 38 more receptions to break the conference record.
This is the third consecutive year that the Southland Conference Television Network has aired the Battle of the Piney Woods that moved to the home of the NFL’s Houston Texans
in 2010. Originally a four-year deal, the schools recently announced an extension that will keep the game at Reliant Stadium through the 2017 season.
Lamar at Northwestern State, 6 p.m. (ESPN3)
Game Notes: Lamar |
NATCHITOCHES, La. – After opening its Southland Conference season with a home loss to Southeastern Louisiana last Saturday, Lamar will look to even its league record when the Cardinals travel to Turpin Stadium to take on Northwestern State. Kickoff is set for
The Demons, who opened conference action with a 30-22 loss at No. 18 McNeese State last Saturday, are also looking to get back to the .500 mark with a victory. Both teams carry
identical 2-3 overall records into Saturday evening’s contest.
"They're a team that's going to be tough to beat,” Lamar coach Ray Woodard said. “They're kind of in the same boat we are. They're coming off a disappointing loss like us.
They don't want to go two down, we don't want to go two down, so it's going to be two teams that really want to get back on track and stay in the middle of this thing (the Southland race)."
This will be the 15th meeting between the two schools as four-year institutions with the Cardinals holding a slim 7-6-1 advantage. Northwestern has won three of the last four
meetings, however, including a 37-17 win last season in Beaumont.
Last year’s matchup featured 903 yards of combined offense with 650 yards coming through the air. Former Lamar wide receiver J.J. Hayes set a school record with 212 receiving
yards. Hayes would finish with 10 catches, including a 40-yard touchdown reception, in the loss.
Lamar quarterback Andre Bevil finished 22-of-43 for 360 yards and two touchdowns, but also threw three interceptions. Northwestern, which led 27-7 at the half, got a 290-yard,
three-touchdown passing performance from quarterback Brad Henderson.
Despite last week’s setback, Lamar still leads the conference in total defense and pass defense. Lamar, which is third in scoring defense at 25.0 points per game allowed, is
giving up 299.0 yards per game and just 162.6 per game through the air.
Junior linebacker Jermaine Longino is coming off a 13-tackle performance against Southeastern Louisiana. The junior college All-America leads the Cardinals with 40 total tackles
and his 8.0 stops per game rank fourth in the league.
Offensively, the Cardinals have not been as effective. Lamar is scoring just 17.0 points per game to rank eighth in the league and the Cardinals are producing 264.8 yards per
Junior quarterback Ryan Mossakowski struggled against the Lions as he threw four interceptions. Mossakowski, who had thrown just one interception before last Saturday’s contest,
is still an impressive 87-of-140 on the year for 795 yards and seven touchdowns.
Sophomore running back Herschel Sims leads the Cardinals’ ground game with 216 yards on 59 carries this season. Sims, who is also third on the team with 10 receptions, also
leads Lamar with a pair of touchdown runs.
"Brad Henderson really makes them go,” Woodard said about the Northwestern offense. “He's kind of the catalyst that makes them go. Their receiving corps, as far as their numbers,
are a lot like us. Henderson really spreads the ball around to a number of people. There's not just one go-to guy with great numbers but they do a good job of getting the ball all over the place. They're very versatile in what they do.
"Defensively, their middle linebacker (Derek) Rose, I'm very impressed with him. Their big tackle Lesley Deamer in the middle is playing well as well as strong safety Jamaal
White. Phillip Harvey may be the best return man in the league. He looks very good on film so they have some weapons they can use."
As a team, Northwestern is ranked sixth in both total offense and scoring offense in the Southland. The Demons are picking up 320.0 yards per game and scoring just under 28
points per game.
The Demons’ defense has yielded over 415 yards per game and is ranked sixth in the conference in points allowed at 31.4. Northwestern ranks last in the league in rushing defense
at 222.8 yards allowed per outing.
Henderson is 91-of-156 for 959 yards on the season. The senior has eight touchdown passes and only one interception and also leads the team with 160 yards rushing. Senior wide
receiver Phillip Harvey leads the team with 15 catches for 251 yards and a pair of touchdowns.
Northwestern has three players with at least 40 tackles, led by junior linebacker Patrick Black with 46. Rose has 45 and senior safety Jamaal White has 41. Safety Cortez Paige
leads the Southland with three interceptions, including returning one for a score.
Nicholls State at Central Arkansas, 6 p.m.
Game Notes: Nicholls State |
CONWAY, Ark. – Central Arkansas is hoping for better weather and a better outcome than last week at Stephen F. Austin when it tees it up Saturday against Nicholls State at Estes Stadium.
The No. 20 Bears (3-2, 1-1) dropped their first Southland Conference game of the season at SFA in a torrential downpour in Nacogdoches. Rain is in the forecast again for Saturday’s
game, but the Bears should be ready for it this time.
The Colonels (1-2, 0-0) are coming off an open date. Their previous outing was a 42-0 victory over Evangel College. Nicholls had its season opener with Oregon State postponed
until December because of Hurricane Isaac.
The Bears grabbed a win over then-No. 3 Sam Houston State in their last home game Sept. 22. The Bears are the top scoring team in the Southland Conference, averaging 40 points
per game. However, UCA actually trails Nicholls in total offense. The Colonels average 413 yards per game to UCA’s 394.6.
UCA is ranked first in the nation in tackles for loss with 9.8 per game. The Bears also have a league-high nine interceptions, more than halfway to their season total of 17
from last season when they played 13 games. UCA is also first in the league in kickoff returns (26.3) and second in punt returns (23.1).
An interesting matchup to watch will be the Southland’s top punt returner in UCA’s Jesse Grandy (21.2) against the league’s top punter in Nicholls’ Cory Kemps (44.1).
Kickoff is set for 6 p.m. at Estes Stadium. The UCA Sports Hall of Fame Class of 2012 will be introduced in a pregame ceremony.