Oct 16, 2013, 3:17 PM EDT
Week 7 of CAA Football is officially in the books and we’ve pretty much hit the midway point of the 2013 season. From here on out, each game means a whole lot more due to the significance of league play in relation to the ultimate goal of reaching the FCS Playoffs’ field of 24. There is just one nonconference contest remaining this year and that takes place on Nov. 2 between Rhode Island and Old Dominion.
Looking back at the weekend, Delaware, James Madison and New Hampshire came away with league wins at home versus UAlbany, Richmond and Rhody, respectively. Stony Brook and William & Mary represented CAA Football well in each of their nonconference tilts, with the Tribe improving to 4-2 (1-1) following a 27-14 win over Penn and Stony Brook evening its record to 3-3 on the year with a dominating 27-3 victory at Colgate. Towson and Villanova battled at Unitas Stadium in an exciting game that saw the Wildcats defeat the previously unbeaten Tigers, 45-35. Maine, which had a open week, returns home to face William & Mary this Saturday. The Black Bears (2-0) and Villanova (3-0) are the only remaining unbeaten teams in CAA Football. A reminder that Week 8 only involves eight league members playing with UD, JMU, SBU all in their open weeks.
We bring you more on this weekend’s action on our weekly Sunday Rundown page, featuring our weekly recap video along with stats, videos, photos and more.
UAlbany suffered a tough 33-30 loss at Delaware on Saturday to close out a three-game road trip. Junior RB Omar Osbourne rushed for 142 yards and scored three TDs to lead the Great Danes offensively. Osbourne ranks second in CAA Football with 114 rushing yards per game and has totaled nine TDs through seven contests this season. He’s also registered the second most rushing yards with 800. Redshirt freshman Nic Ketter made his first career catch – his lone grab of the game – for a TD early in the fourth quarter that gave the Great Danes a 23-22 lead.
Delaware senior K Sean Baner made the most of his final kick against UAlbany, nailing a game-winning 42-yarder as time expired to give the Blue Hens the 33-30 win. It was UD’s first victory since 1986 that occurred on the game’s final play — a 33-31 win over West Chester. Senior WR Rob Jones had three catches for 24 yards and one TD and also had a TD run of 71 yards in the third quarter. It was the longest run for a Blue Hen since 2003.
James Madison utilized a big third quarter to run away with a 38-31 victory over Richmond on Saturday. The Dukes outscored the Spiders, 21-3, in the quarter, while junior RB Dejor Simmons opened up the stanza with a 100-yard kickoff return for a TD. It was the first kick return by a Duke for a TD since Scotty McGee did so in 2008. JMU’s defense registered 11 total pass breakups, while Kwe’shon Williams accounted for three of them and also had an interception that he returned 35 yards.
In New Hampshire’s 59-19 win over Rhode Island, sophomore QB Sean Goldrich made his first start of the season, passing for two TDs and running for another. He also totaled a career-high 94 yards rushing. UNH, which leads CAA Football in rushing (242 ypg) finished with a season-high 333 yards on the ground. Junior RB Nico Steriti highlighted the day with 150 yards rushing and two TDs in the win.
Rhode Island receiver Robbie Jackson had a game-high nine catches for 111 yards and two TDs in the loss at New Hampshire. QB Bob Bentsen led the Rams with 220 passing yards and two TDs to go with a team-high 43 yards rushing. Rhody led, 6-0, in the first quarter to become the first opponent to score before the Wildcats this season.
Richmond QB Michael Strauss set two new school records in the Spiders’ setback to JMU. His 41 completions on 61 attempts were the most in the program annals, while his 423 passing yards marked a new career high and the second-highest single-game total in program history. WR Reggie Diggs led the Spiders with 136 receiving yards, while fellow wideout Ben Edwards had 13 catches for 83 yards. Edwards leads the league in receptions with 9.60 per game this season.
Stony Brook outgained Colgate, 351-219, in its convincing 27-3 road victory on Saturday. Since the start of the 2009 season, the Seawolves are 17-4 when allowing fewer than 300 yards of total offense and have also now won 13 straight in the month of October. RB Jameel Poteat scored two TDs and rushed for 54 yards in the win. DB Naim Cheeseboro also returned an interception 54 yards for TD, becoming the first SBU player to accomplish that feat since Oct. 3, 2009.
Towson’s 45-35 loss to Villanova was the team’s first setback in nearly a year and snapped its 10-game winning streak that ironically began with a win over the Wildcats last October. RB Terrance West, who leads CAA Football in rushing (135 ypg) and was held to a season-low 61 yards on the ground, still managed to rush for a pair of scores and also snag six passes for 101 yards. He now has 17 rushing TDs this year and needs just 53 yards for 1,000 on the season. The Tigers outscored Villanova, 21-7, in the second half on Saturday and have outscored foes, 79-7, in the third quarter alone this season.
Villanova quarterback John Robertson was nearly perfect in the Wildcats’ impressive win at Towson. He had just one incompletion – his final attempt of the game in the fourth quarter – to finish 17-of-18 for 182 yards, no INTs and two TDs. The reigning Rice Award Winner also rushed the ball a career-high 32 times for 150 yards and three more scores. Perhaps even more impressive than the Wildcats’ offensive success on Saturday was the play of its defense, which forced three turnovers in the first quarter alone and limited the Tigers to only 11 plays and a time of possession of 4:43 in the first half. Sophomore S Cameron McCurry had a career day, recording an interception, a fumble recovery and a blocked kick in the win.
William & Mary got back to its winning ways with a 27-14 victory over Penn at home. The Tribe utilized a balanced attack on both sides of the ball to top the Quakers. RB Mikal Abdul-Saboor paced the offense with 100 rushing yards on 23 carries and three TDs and WR Sean Ballard added three catches for 107 yards. On Defense, junior DE Mike Reilly had two sacks and two forced fumbles, while classmate Stephen Sinnot had a sack and a fumble recovery. The Tribe also limited Penn to just 2-of-16 conversions on third down.
EYE-OPENING Stats of the week:
- William & Mary holds the No. 7 spot in the FCS for fewest penalty yards allowed per game (35.83). Villanova, meanwhile, ranks eighth in fewest penalties per game (4.50).
- The Tribe also owns the top spot in the FCS in scoring defense, allowing just 11.8 points per contest, and has trailed for just 28 total seconds over its five games against FCS opponents.
- Stony Brook only allows 153.7 yards per game through the air, good for No. 10 in the FCS.
- James Madison’s red zone offense ranks seventh in the FCS with a .923 percent success rate. The Dukes’ defense also ranks sixth in the FCS against the run, allowing a stingy 97 yards per game.
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