October 25, 2012

MIAC Football Preview - 2012 Week 9

ST. PAUL, Minn. -- The MIAC football season is nearing the end and several key questions still remain. Can someone knock off St. Thomas, or will the Tommies capture their third-straight MIAC title? Will the league get more than one team into the Division III Playoffs after only sending UST a year ago? How will the muddled middle of the standings shake out? Which up-and-coming team can pull of a big upset or generate momentum heading into the offseason?

A year ago, Augsburg proved the toughest test for St. Thomas en route to a 10-0 regular season, as the Tommies needed some fourth-quarter heroics to pull out a tight road win on the Auggies' home field. Saturday, Augsburg will take its explosive offense across town to face UST in a highly-anticipated rematch. For third-ranked St. Thomas, Saturday's game is one of many late-season hurdles between the Tommies and another title. For Augsburg, it serves as a great measuring stick, as it has played step-for-step with the league's other elite teams and another convincing performance against UST will definitely prove the Auggies are establishing themselves in the upper echelon of the league.

Though much attention will rightly focus on two of the MIAC's brightest young quarterbacks - St. Thomas' Matt O'Connell and Augsburg's Ayrton Scott are both among the league's top six in both passing and rushing - this game could likely come down to which defense makes the most key stops. The two teams lead the league in points per game (39.4 for St. Thomas, 37.0 for Augsburg) and are also 1-2 in total offense, so whichever defense can slow the other team's momentum more often - or generate some timely turnovers - could be the real key to victory in what could be a shootout in St. Paul.

The Tommie-Auggie showdown highlights a full slate of four MIAC games, with St. Olaf enjoying its bye week. Now ranked No. 19, Concordia looks to continue its great season when it hosts Carleton Saturday, while the Knights nearly pulled off an upset against the Oles Saturday and will continue trying to play spoiler. Saint John's and Gustavus meet in a good matchup of teams both looking for their second MIAC win of the season, and the Collegeville crowd will be a factor as SJU tries to generate some momentum to close the season.

Meanwhile, Bethel hosts Hamline in Arden Hills a week after the Pipers put a first-half scare into St. Thomas, and while both teams have a reputation of running the ball, it was the Royals passing game that did the heavy lifting a week ago. QB Erik Peterson was a remarkable 27-of-29 for 315 yards and three scores, so it will be interesting to see if Bethel airs it out again this weekend.

The rest of the MIAC Football Week 9 Preview contains the complete schedule and links to follow along with this weekend's action, as well as a look at the MIAC in the various national polls, the Athlete-of-the-Week award winners, the top performances in the trenches and some of the top numbers from around the league.

MIAC FOOTBALL WEEK 9 - SCHEDULE AND LINKS
| Scoreboard & Statistics | Standings | Composite Schedule |

(RV) AUGSBURG (5-2, 4-2) AT NO. 3 ST. THOMAS (7-0, 5-0) - St. Paul, Minn. - 1:10 p.m.
On the web: UST Radio: WCCO 830 AM (Listen Live) | Web cast | Live Stats | AUG Audio Web cast |

CARLETON (3-4, 1-4) AT NO. 19 CONCORDIA (6-1, 4-1) - Moorhead, Minn. - 1 p.m.
On the web: Concordia Live Broadcasts/Stats/Blogs | Carleton Radio: KQCL 95.9 FM |

HAMLINE (1-6, 0-6) AT NO. 14 BETHEL (6-1, 4-1) - Arden Hills, Minn. - 1 p.m.
On the web: Bethel Live Broadcast/Stats |

GUSTAVUS (2-5, 1-4) AT SAINT JOHN'S (3-4, 1-4) - Collegeville, Minn. - 1 p.m.
On the web: SJU Radio: WBHR 660 AM (St. Cloud); KOWZ 1170 AM (Owatonna); WLOL 1330 AM (Twin Cities) | Audio Web cast | Live stats | Gustavus Radio: KNUJ 860 AM (New Ulm); KRDS 95.5 FM (New Prague) |

IDLE: ST. OLAF (6-2, 4-2)

MIAC IN THE POLLS
Now the MIAC has three teams among the top 19 in the nation in the AFCA Division III Coaches' Poll. St. Thomas held strong at No. 3, while Bethel moved up a pair of spots from No. 17 to No. 15, and Concordia also jumped two places to No. 19 this week. Augsburg remained in the "Others receiving votes" section with 14 points in this week's poll.

The MIAC also put three teams into the Top 25 in the D3football.com Top 25 after just missing in recent weeks. St. Thomas is still No. 4 in that poll, while Bethel slid up a spot to No. 14. Meanwhile, Concordia had been knocking on the door of the rankings for weeks, and jumped from unranked to No. 22 with its win over Augsburg Saturday to give the MIAC a trio of ranked teams in both polls.

| AFCA Division III Coaches' Poll | D3Football.com Top 25 |

ATHLETES-OF-THE-WEEK
Bethel QB Erik Peterson was named MIAC Offensive Player-of-the-Week after his historic passing day, as he completed a school record 93.1 percent of his passes (27-of-29) for 315 yards and three TDs in a win over Gustavus. Hamline LB Patrick Page earned the defensive award for his incredible stat line of 17 tackles, two INTs, three TFLs and a forced fumble against No. 3-ranked St. Thomas. Special Teams honors went to St. Olaf's Lucas Wainman, who was 3-for-3 on PATs, 2-for-2 on field goals and used his punts and kickoffs to pin rival Carleton inside the 32-yard-line on each kick. Also, Augsburg QB Ayrton Scott was named to the D3football.com Team-of-the-Week for his 500-yard performance and breaking the Auggie single-season rushing record Saturday.

| MIAC Football Athletes-of-the-Week | D3football.com Team-of-the-Week |

IN THE TRENCHES
Though Gustavus didn't come out on top, its offensive line and ground game had a great day against a formidable foe Saturday. The Gusties racked up 184 yards on the ground on 39 carries - a solid 4.7 average - against Bethel's vaunted defense in a 41-21 loss. The Gustavus starters along the line were center David Gschneidener, guards Marcus Kelly and Lyle Opdahl and tackles Wyatt Adams and Brian Grundmeyer.

Though Carleton came up a little short in Saturday's rivalry game against St. Olaf, 27-20, the Knights defense had some serious bright spots in the win. The defensive line did a good job against the run, holding the Oles under 100 yards (92) and allowing just 3.0 yards per carry. The pressure up front also helped Carleton rack up three sacks and six tackles-for-a-loss against its rival. The Knights' starters along the defensive line were tackles Andrew Wolter and Caleb Hyde and ends Jonathan Rowe and Keenan Hartert.

BY THE NUMBERS
19
- The MIAC has three teams ranked 19th or higher in the AFCA Top 25 this week, proving the conference's strength in 2012. St. Thomas is No. 3, Bethel is No. 15 and Concordia is No. 19.

1,034 - Rushing yards this season by Auggie freshman QB Ayrton Scott, which the most in a single season in school history after just seven games.

93.1 - Bethel QB Erik Peterson's completion percentage in Saturday's win, which is a new Royal single-game record. Peterson was 27-of-29 for 315 yards and three TDs.

9 - Receiving TDs by St. Olaf's Stephen Asp, the most in the league and more than one per game.

5 - Hamline LB Patrick Page ranks in the top five in the MIAC in three key defensive categories, total tackles (73), tackles-for-a-loss (7.5) and interceptions (three).

| MIAC Football Home Page |

Sep. 1: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Coast Guard at Anna Maria
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Defiance at Baldwin Wallace
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Washington and Lee at Johns Hopkins
Video
7:30 PM
Trine at Manchester
Live Stats
8:00 PM
Belhaven at Millsaps
Video Live Stats
Sep. 2: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
Mass-Dartmouth at Mount Ida
6:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Wesley
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Muhlenberg at Wilkes
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
N.C. Wesleyan at Stevenson
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Western New England at Springfield
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Fitchburg State at Becker
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Albright at Salisbury
7:00 PM
WPI at MIT
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Salve Regina at Worcester State
7:00 PM
Bridgewater State at Curry
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Morrisville State at St. Lawrence
Video Audio
7:00 PM
Nichols at Westfield State
10:00 PM
Adrian at Pacific
Live Stats
Sep. 3: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Endicott at Framingham State
Video Live Stats
12:00 PM
Washington U. at Carnegie Mellon
Live Stats
12:00 PM
Chicago at Case Western Reserve
Video Live Stats
12:00 PM
Husson at Alfred
12:00 PM
SUNY-Maritime at Maine Maritime
Video
12:00 PM
Cortland at Heidelberg
Live Stats
12:00 PM
Otterbein at Buffalo State
Video Live Stats
12:00 PM
Ursinus at Bethany
12:00 PM
Sewanee at Kenyon
12:00 PM
Alfred State at William Paterson
1:00 PM
King's at Moravian
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Kean at Christopher Newport
1:00 PM
McDaniel at Catholic
Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Lebanon Valley at Franklin and Marshall
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Plymouth State at Castleton
Live Stats
1:00 PM
RPI at Norwich
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Randolph-Macon at Dickinson
1:00 PM
Oberlin at Kalamazoo
Video Live Stats
1:00 PM
Emory and Henry at Ferrum
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Wooster at Washington and Jefferson
Video Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
St. Vincent at Alma
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Concordia (Wis.) at Finlandia
1:00 PM
Olivet at St. John Fisher
Video Live Stats Audio Audio
1:00 PM
Rowan at Widener
Audio
1:00 PM
Hobart at Brockport
Live Stats Audio
1:00 PM
Union at Ithaca
Live Stats
1:00 PM
Susquehanna at Lycoming
Audio
1:00 PM
Utica at Misericordia
1:00 PM
The Apprentice School at Methodist
1:00 PM
TCNJ at UW-Whitewater
Live Stats
1:30 PM
Wilmington at Bluffton
1:30 PM
Monmouth at Hope
Video Audio
1:30 PM
Bridgewater at Gettysburg
1:30 PM
Muskingum at Waynesburg
Audio
1:30 PM
Juniata at Grove City
2:00 PM
Wisconsin Lutheran at Trinity Int'l
2:00 PM
Lakeland at Carroll
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-Stevens Point at St. Norbert
2:00 PM
Austin at Hendrix
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Maranatha Baptist at Martin Luther
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Millikin at Greenville
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Eureka at Knox
Live Stats
2:00 PM
MacMurray at Rockford
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Gustavus Adolphus at Westminster (Mo.)
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-La Crosse at Luther
2:00 PM
Beloit at Lake Forest
2:00 PM
Concordia-Moorhead at Jamestown
2:00 PM
Crown at Hamline
Live Stats
2:00 PM
Carleton at Macalester
Audio
2:00 PM
Bethel at Dubuque
2:00 PM
St. Scholastica at St. John's
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
St. Olaf at Grinnell
2:00 PM
Buena Vista at Mayville St.
2:00 PM
Simpson at UW-Stout
2:00 PM
Aurora at Carthage
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
UW-River Falls at Coe
2:00 PM
Ripon at Concordia-Chicago
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Elmhurst at Loras
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
Huntingdon at Louisiana College
Video
2:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at Robert Morris-Chicago
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Benedictine at Wheaton (Ill.)
Video Live Stats
2:00 PM
John Carroll at UW-Oshkosh
Video Audio Audio
2:30 PM
Southern Virginia at Earlham
Video Live Stats
2:30 PM
Lawrence at Presentation
4:00 PM
McPherson at Nebraska Wesleyan
Live Stats
4:00 PM
UW-Platteville at George Fox
4:00 PM
La Verne at Puget Sound
Video Live Stats
4:00 PM
Central at Whitworth
5:00 PM
Hartwick at Western Connecticut
Live Stats
6:00 PM
Wabash at Albion
Live Stats Audio
6:00 PM
Maryville (Tenn.) at Berry
Video Live Stats
6:00 PM
Augustana at Mount St. Joseph
Live Stats
6:00 PM
Thomas More at Franklin
Video Live Stats
6:00 PM
Hampden-Sydney at Averett
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Denison at Marietta
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
Hiram at Westminster (Pa.)
7:00 PM
Thiel at Allegheny
7:00 PM
Capital at Wittenberg
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Shenandoah at Gallaudet
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Illinois College at Rose-Hulman
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Geneva at Frostburg State
7:00 PM
Greensboro at Guilford
Live Stats
7:00 PM
LaGrange at Birmingham-Southern
7:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Southwestern
Live Stats
7:00 PM
Anderson at North Park
7:00 PM
Ohio Wesleyan at Mary Hardin-Baylor
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at Texas Lutheran
Video Live Stats Audio
7:10 PM
St. Thomas at UW-Eau Claire
Video Live Stats
7:30 PM
Hanover at Centre
Video Live Stats
8:00 PM
Willamette at Rhodes
8:00 PM
Cornell at Iowa Wesleyan
Video Live Stats Live Stats
8:00 PM
Augsburg at Northwestern (Minn.)
Live Stats
8:00 PM
Southwestern Assemblies at Howard Payne
Video Live Stats Audio
8:00 PM
Sul Ross State at UT-Permian Basin
8:30 PM
Redlands at Trinity (Texas)
Live Stats
Sep. 1: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Washington and Lee at Johns Hopkins
Video
Sep. 2: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Wesley
Video Live Stats
7:00 PM
Albright at Salisbury
Sep. 3: All times Eastern
12:00 PM
Cortland at Heidelberg
Live Stats
1:00 PM
TCNJ at UW-Whitewater
Live Stats
2:00 PM
North Central (Ill.) at Robert Morris-Chicago
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
John Carroll at UW-Oshkosh
Video Audio Audio
2:00 PM
Huntingdon at Louisiana College
Video
2:00 PM
St. Scholastica at St. John's
Video Live Stats Audio
2:00 PM
Benedictine at Wheaton (Ill.)
Video Live Stats
4:00 PM
UW-Platteville at George Fox
4:00 PM
Central at Whitworth
6:00 PM
Thomas More at Franklin
Video Live Stats
6:00 PM
Wabash at Albion
Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
East Texas Baptist at Texas Lutheran
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
Ohio Wesleyan at Mary Hardin-Baylor
Video Live Stats Audio
7:00 PM
Hardin-Simmons at Southwestern
Live Stats
7:10 PM
St. Thomas at UW-Eau Claire
Video Live Stats