DEFIANCE, Ohio - When Defiance hosts Franklin on Saturday afternoon at 1:30 pm, it will mark DC's first home game of the 2010 campaign, after opening the season with three-straight contests away from Justin F. Coressel Stadium.
Scouting Defiance - Defiance has been led
by its defense through the first three games of 2010. The Yellow
Jackets enter play on Saturday ranked atop the Heartland Collegiate
Athletic Conference with a pass defense yielding just 130.3 yards
per showing. DC also ranks among the league's top three in
total defense, scoring defense, sacks and opponent's
third-down conversion. Free safety, Kyle Longsdorf, is off to a
great start in his senior year with a team-leading 40 tackles,
while senior Austin Hedderly and junior Joemese Scott have anchored
the defensive line by combining for 32 hits and six sacks.
Scouting Franklin - The Grizzlies opened the season with a 30-27 loss at Carthage but have rebounded to bounce Valparaiso and Bluffton by a combined score of 98-16 over the past two weeks in a pair of home contests. Franklin boasts the top-rated offense in the HCAC and is putting up 41.7 points per game on 512.7 total yards of offense. Senior quarterback, Kyle Ray, has done much of the damage, by averaging 282.3 passing yards per game and racking up seven touchdowns. Kyle Linville has been FC's top receiving threat, as the sophomore is averaging over 100 yards per game and has already scored a trio of touchdowns.
Last Meeting - The Grizzlies scored a 41-14 win on their home turf on October 3, 2009 in the last meeting between these two programs. The No. 23 Franklin squad put up 348 yards of offense through the air to overcome a 138 to 93 edge on the ground for the Yellow Jackets. DC's Nick Wiedenhoft had a big day by catching 11 passes for 130 yards, while Franklin saw seven different receivers catch at least two passes.
Series History - Saturday will mark the 12th meeting between Defiance and Franklin on the gridiron. The Grizzlies have won the last four games to take a 7-4 series lead over the Yellow Jackets. Rob Taylor is 2-5 in his coaching career against Franklin, including DC's last triumph over the Grizzlies via a 38-23 win at Coressel Stadium in 2005. DC and Franklin have split the last four meetings at Coressel Stadium.
HCAC Honors DC Duo as Players of the Week - DC saw a pair of players honored by the HCAC this week, after they helped the Jackets to a 24-10 win at Hanover. Rick Powell was named the HCAC Offensive Player of the Week, while Tom Foos was selected as the HCAC Special Teams Player of the Week. Powell tallied 309 yards and a pair of touchdowns to become DC's first quarterback to earn the accolade since Hans Vetter did so after a 41-14 win over Bluffton in 2005. Foos set a new DC record with a 70-yard punt, connected on a 37-yard field goal and converted all three of his point-after attempts to net his second weekly honor of the season from the HCAC.
Foos Makes History - Tom Foos broke Rich Thiel's school record with a 70-yard punt in the first quarter of Saturday's 14-point win at Hanover. Foos edged out Thiel's previous school record of 69 yards, set against Ohio Wesleyan in 1998. The record-setting boot led to more history for the Helena, Ohio, native, as Foos claimed his fifth Special Teams Player-of-the-Week accolade from the HCAC, becoming the first HCAC special teams performer to win the award five times in a career.
Taylor's Tally - DC head coach Rob Taylor took over sole possession of second place on the program's all-time wins lists after leading the Yellow Jackets to a 35-0 win against Bluffton in the 2009 season finale. Defiance's 24-10 win at Hanover on Saturday then pushed Taylor to 32 career victories on the sidelines for the Purple and Gold and just four wins shy of tying Malen Luke (1988-1993) for the most victories in program history with 36.
Jackets in the National Rankings - Rick Powell, Tom Foos, Joemese Scott and Kyle Longsdorf enter play on Saturday holding a top-35 ranking in the latest NCAA D-III report. Longsdorf is 14th in the nation in tackles (13.3 tpg), Tom Foos is 22nd in the nation with 1.00 made field goals per game, Rick Powell is rated 33rd with 116.7 rushing yards per game and Joemese Scott ranks 33rd with 1.33 sacks per contest.
Jackets Among the HCAC Leaders - The Yellow Jackets hold several of the top spots in the HCAC statistical rankings through the first three weeks of the 2010 campaign. Rick Powell leads the way with 116.7 rushing yards per game, while also ranking third in total offense (241.0 ypg) and scoring (6.0 ppg) and seventh in all-purpose yards (116.7 ypg). Anthony Sierra has turned into one of the most dangerous return men in the league, ranking first in punt returns (10.0 ypr) and fourth in kick returns (19.6 ypr), while Kyle Longsdorf leads the way with 13.3 tackles per game and Joemese Scott tops the charts with 1.33 sacks per outing.
Around the HCAC - The second wave of Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference games will unfold on Saturday, with Defiance (1-2, 1-0 HCAC) and Franklin (2-1, 1-0 HCAC) taking center stage in the lone battle of two unbeaten teams in league play. MSJ (2-0, 1-0 HCAC) will also look to stay perfect with a game at Bluffton (1-2, 0-1 HCAC). A pair of winless teams will square off in the other 1:30 pm contest, when Anderson (0-3, 0-1 HCAC) travels to Earlham (0-3, 0-1 HCAC), while Rose-Hulman (1-1, 0-0 HCAC) opens its league schedule at Hanover (1-2, 0-1 HCAC) in a 2:30 pm start.
Online Webcasts - Defiance College would like to thank Hubbard Company, Mark Moats Ford, First Insurance and Scotty's for supporting the Yellow Jacket Sports Network for the 2010-2011 year. Each of DC's four home football games in 2010, along with the road games at Adrian and Bluffton will be broadcast live at www.DefianceAthletics.com/video. Past broadcasts will be archived and will also be available by going to that link.
DC to Host a 'Pink Out' on October 23 - Defiance College will team up with the Vera Bradley Foundation to host a 'Pink Out' on October 23. DC will host Anderson at 1:30 pm that afternoon and all proceeds from the event will go towards the fight against breast cancer. Fans can help make the day a success by purchasing a special pink shirt for $10 and wearing it to the game. Shirts are available in youth and adult sizes and can be ordered by contacting Missy Jensen at firstname.lastname@example.org. All order must be turned in by September 30.