Oct 30, 2014, 2:57 PM EDT
CAA Football’s non-conference schedule for 2014 finally came to a close (outside of the playoffs) after the final three contests took place in Week 9. JMU held on for a wild win in Charlotte (48-40), as QB Vad Lee accounted for four TDs passing and two TDs rushing. UAlbany and Villanova both earned wins at home versus Colgate (24-17) and Morgan State (48-28), respectively.
In all, the league finished the regular season with a 24-10 record versus non-league FCS opponents and 25-21 (.543) mark versus all 2014 non-conference foes. There were nine games versus FBS foes previously this season and one contest versus a non-Division I team. *Of course, the record will change more when teams enter postseason play later in the year.
Rounding out Week 9 action in league contests was Maine picking up its second win of the season, beating Rhody late, 20-13. New Hampshire had to battle from a 14-0 first quarter deficit to take down Stony Brook, 28-20, while William & Mary utilized a career-high 37 carries from RB Mikal Abdul-Saboor, who also rushed for a career-high 198 yards and scored twice in a 31-17 win over UD at home. Lastly, Richmond stuck to the ground game versus Elon, scoring three TDs. The Spiders also relied on three field goals to defeat Elon, 30-10. The Spider D held the Phoenix to 17 yards rushing for the game.
In my humble opinion, this is the most important week of the season for CAA Football at this point. Villanova hits the road to Richmond for the first time since 2009 with playoff and CAA Football title implications on the line. William & Mary heads to JMU for a huge matchup between two longtime Virginia natives and upstart UAlbany, currently sitting at 6-2 overall, travels to Durham to face the Wildcats of UNH, who are 29-2 in their last 31 games at home in the Dungeon.
-The last time Villanova played Richmond in Richmond, the Wildcats ended then-No. 1 UR’s 17-game winning streak with a 21-20 victory and eventually went on to win the national title during that 2009 season.
-Did you know, though? Richmond HC Danny Rocco is 21-4 overall as a head coach in the month of November and a perfect 7-0 as the leader of the Spiders. UR went 4-0 last season in November.
-Richmond is 6-0 this year when leading at the half and when scoring 30 points.
-The Spiders allowed just 17 rush yards to Elon last week. That was the fewest rush yards allowed by a CAA Football team this year.
-JMU rushed for 237 yards as a team in its win over Charlotte on Saturday. That’s the sixth time this year that the Dukes have eclipsed 200 rushing yards.
-QB Lee threw four TD passes to four different receivers, while 12 different JMU players caught a pass in all.
-Did you know? JMU’s offense ranks No. 7 in the FCS in first downs with 201 this season. Villanova (200) ranks No. 8.
-Villanova LB Don Cherry leads CAA Football with five forced fumbles this season. He also ranks first in the FCS with 0.63 forced fumbles per game.
-Nova QB John Robertson moved up to No. 2 on the Wildcats’ all-time rushing list behind league legend Brian Westbrook. Robertson now has 2,948 yards and 39 TDs versus Westbrook’s 4,499 yards and 54 TDs.
-Robertson ranks second in the FCS with 25 TD passes this season. He has just one interception. He ranks first in the FCS with 180 points responsible for.
-Maine set season-highs for total yards (362) and rushing yards (211) in the win over Rhody.
-Rhody LB Andrew Bose set a CAA Football single-game high for 2014 with 19 total tackles.
-Rhody Jr. Myles Holmes returned the second half kickoff 100 yards for a TD in the loss to Maine. That was the first kick return for a TD by the Rams in 46 games.
-Stony Brook entered the game versus UNH having allowed just two total rushing TDs all season long. The Wildcats scored two rushing TDs in the second quarter alone and finished the game with three on the ground.
-SBU DE Victor Ochi had four sacks in the game and now needs just one more tackle for loss and two more sacks to become the all-time Stony Brook Division I single-season leader.
-UNH QB Andy Vailas did not throw a TD in the win over SBU, but RB Nico Steriti did. He tossed a halfback pass 73 yards to WR R.J. Harris in the third quarter.
-William & Mary stud DB DeAndre Houston-Carson blocked a punt in the team’s win over UD — his third blocked kick of the year.
-JMU leads the all-time series versus the Tribe, 20-16, and owns an 11-5 mark in games played in Harrisonburg.
-Over the last five games in the W&M-JMU series, the Tribe D has allowed just 100 passing yards per contest and under 300 yards of offense per game. The Dukes, though, have won 12 of the last 15 matchups overall.
-The Tribe lead the FCS with seven blocked kicks this season and lead the FCS with four blocked punts this year.
-UAlbany ranks second in CAA Football in total defense, allowing 322.1 yards per game this year. The Great Danes have also allowed the second-fewest total TDs this season (17) in the league behind Stony Brook (11).
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