ADRIAN, Mich.--The Adrian College football team has its Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association home opener on Saturday against Olivet College as part of Homecoming Weekend at 3,000-seat Docking Stadium. Here's a preview of the contest:
TEN THINGS YOU NEED TO KNOW
- This marks the 80th football meeting between the schools, with Adrian holding a commanding 47-26-1 lead. The Bulldogs are also 32-22-1 all-time at home against the Comets. Olivet has won in its last three visits to Docking Stadium.
- Jim Deere '89 is 54-32 record (.634) in his ninth season as the Adrian head coach. He has piloted the Bulldogs to MIAA championships in 2012 and 14, and NCAA tournament bids in those seasons.
- Senior running back Emmanuel Stewart ranks second among ACTIVE NCAA Division III career leaders at 4,308 yards and third in all NCAA Divisions; No. 1 is Le'Anthony Reasnover (4,493) from Eureka College. Adrian's career rushing leader, Stewart currently ranks second in the MIAA with 111.8 rushing yards per game, jumping three spots since his last outing. He also is third among active Division III career leaders with 4,993 all-purpose yards.
- The Bulldogs' defensive unit is paced by senior inside linebacker Tim McPhee with 27 total tackles, including nine solo, for 11th in the MIAA. He also has two interceptions and two pass break-ups.
- Senior ILB Nate Conner is second with 24 stops (11 solo) while junior defensive back Shawn Starks leads the team with 15 tackles (23 total) and senior outside linebacker Lawrence Austin has contributed 12 tackles among 19 total.
- Freshman quarterback Jack Wurzer has completed 62.3 percent (48-77) of his pass attempts for 431 yards and 10 touchdowns with three interceptions. He lists ninth in the nation in passing efficiency at 185.1.
- Senior wide receiver Jerron McGaw leads the MIAA in receptions (32), receiving yards (603), yards per catch (18.8) and TDs (8), with NCAA Division III national rankings of 16th (8.0 receptions/game), 7th, 7th and 5th, respectively.
- Adrian rolled up 538 total yards--a season high--in their MIAA debut last week at Kalamazoo, averaging 423 yards of total offense through four games.
- Nationally, the Bulldogs are 25th in third-down conversions at 49.1 percent (28-57) and 21st for the fewest turnovers (4).
- Records: Adrian 2-2 (0-1 MIAA), Olivet 3-1 (1-0 MIAA); the visiting Comets, who were 5-5 and 3-3 last season, were picked to finish (26 points) just behind third-place Adrian (20 points) in the MIAA preseason coaches' poll.
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- The Comets opened MIAA play last Saturday with a 72-7 victory over Finlandia University at the Cutler Athletic Complex in Olivet.
- Eight different Comets found the back of the end zone.
- For the season, the Comets are averaging 471.8 yards of offense -- 272.8 on the ground and 199.0 through the air.
- Matthew Ellis leads the team with 412 rushing yards and five touchdowns. Jamaul Martin has also scored five touchdowns to go along with 399 rushing yards.
- Lane Porter has completed 58-of-84 passes for 725 yards and eight touchdowns. Jacob Jodway has seven catches for a team-high 203 yards. Thomas has hauled in a team-high 15 passes for 174 yards and two touchdowns. Chris Talbott also has two touchdown receptions. In addition, Olivet is the only NCAA Division III school to not commit a turnover this season.
- Defensively, Chase Cavric has a team-high 34 total tackles, including three quarterback sacks. Jacob Jordan and Tyler Mojet are next with 22 tackles apiece. John Adams III tops the secondary with four interceptions.
LAST TIME OUT
- Adrian lost a 31-30 heartbreaker at Kalamazoo despite rolling up a season-high 538 yards of total offense.
McGaw had three touchdown receptions of 79, 13 and 35 yards while going over 200 yards receiving for the second time in 2018.
Wurzer went 19-for-34 with 349 yards and three TDs with two interceptions.
Stewart carried the ball 31 times for 148 yards and a TD. He's gone over the century mark in rushing 20 times during his college career.
Starks had seven solo tackles to lead all student-athletes. He also had a pass breakup.
LAST TIME OUT...vs Olivet
- On Nov. 4, 2017, the Adrian defense produced a season-high six sacks in a 33-22 road defeat of the 2016 MIAA champion Comets.
McGaw led all receivers with 10 receptions and 216 yards plus two touchdowns before leaving the contest with an injury.
Stewart rushed for game highs of 23 attempts and 127 yards.
McPhee led Adrian with seven total tackles (3 solo) and had an interception.
Adrian travels to Alma to play the Scots in a conference battle. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m.
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