Manchester University, Mt. St. Joseph square off Saturday

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Mt. St. Joseph College of Ohio visits Carl W. Burt Memorial Field Saturday, Oct. 26, as the 2013 Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference schedule moves into the final four weeks.

Game specifics: Kickoff is 1:30 p.m. … Live audio, video and statistics are available via, the Internet home of Manchester University athletics … Mt. St. Joseph holds a 13-4 edge in the all-time series, but MU claimed a 17-14 win a year ago in Cincinnati to stop a 10-game skid.

Spartan Shorts: MU sits sixth, only a half-game out of fifth and a game behind the top four on the conference standings. Franklin and Rose-Hulman are tied for the conference lead (4-0) going into their showdown at Terre Haute. Mt. St. Joseph trails the first-place tie by a half-game … Three Black and Gold players are within the HCAC's top five statistically. Senior quarterback Nick Williams' (Fort Wayne, Ind.) 129.3 passing yards per game are fifth-highest, while junior running back Austin Adams (Dowagiac, Mich.) is tied for second in rushing touchdowns (four), and senior linebacker Dylin Kennedy (North Manchester, Ind.) is fourth in tackles per game (9.3) ... MU is also in the top 20 of two team and three individual categories on the current NCAA Division III report. Freshman wide receiver/returns specialist Dakota Nelson (Fairfield, Ind.) is fifth in punt return touchdowns (one) and seventh in punt return yardage (17.4 ypr), while Kennedy is ninth in solo tackles per game (7.4). As a team, the Spartans' 18.31 yards-per-punt-return average is fifth-best, and their 10 pass interceptions are ranked No. 20 ... Manchester University is coming off a 41-13 win at Earlham last weekend. A balanced offensive attack produced 346 total yards. The defense also played a big role with five takeaways ... The coaching staff named the following as Players of the Week – senior running back Joe Hunter (Rushville, Ind.) - Offensive; Kennedy - Defensive; Nelson - Special Teams; freshman offensive lineman Kyle Weigold (Columbia City, Ind.) - Gold Offense; and freshman linebacker James Altherr III (Tipton, Ind.) - Gold Defense ... "It was good to see our guys go out and get the win," head coach Shannon Griffith said of last weekend's outcome. "I thought we played well on both sides, especially on defense which has been something that's been a plus throughout the season." In looking at today's game, Griffith remarked that "we'll need to play well against a Mt. St. Joseph squad that is in the mix at the top of the league standings."

Bye Week Ahead: The Spartans break from competition until Saturday, Nov. 9, after this weekend's contest. They take a trip to Hanover College that weekend.