Both teams still seeking first wins of season.
The University of Minnesota Crookston will make their furthest trip South this season as they make the long jaunt down to Fayette, Iowa to face Upper Iowa University Sat., Oct. 19 at 3 p.m., from Harms-Eischeid Stadium.
Both teams are coming into Saturday looking for a win as they boast matching 0-6 (0-6 NSIC) records.
MINNESOTA CROOKSTON (0-6, 0-6 NSIC) AT
UPPER IOWA (0-6, 0-6 NSIC)
SAT., OCT. 19 | 3 P.M. C.T. | FAYETTE, IOWA
Radio: 1260 KROX AM/105.7 (Leo Blavin)
Live Stats: https://portal.stretchinternet.com//uiu/
1. The Golden Eagles are looking for their first win against Upper Iowa. Minnesota Crookston is 0-10 against the Peacocks in NSIC play.
2. The Golden Eagles are the fifth ranked pass defense in the conference coming into the
weekend, as they are allowing just 176.8 yards per game through the air. The Golden Eagles are allowing 8.0 yards per pass and 1,061 yards through the air overall.
3. The Golden Eagles scored their first defensive touchdown of 2019 as LaDerek McCray returned an interception 36 yards to pay dirt last weekend against University of Sioux Falls. Minnesota Crookston will look to turn turnovers into points this weekend at Upper Iowa.
4. Minnesota Crookston ranks tied for seventh in the NSIC for sacks with 15. The Golden Eagles have already surpassed their total for sacks in a season from last year, as they ended with 14. Minnesota Crookston is on pace to set the school record for sacks in the Division II era. The best season for sacks in recent history came with 18 in 2016. Austin Steele and Joe Warner are tied for the team lead with three sacks. Ben Branscom has added two sacks, while Tysen White, Trevor Long, Jr., Osayi Onaghinor, Skyler Quinn, and Dylan Wheeler have also added sacks for Minnesota Crookston.
5. The Golden Eagles have continued to utilize two quarterbacks this season with Jalin Scott and Tristan Robbins. Robbins did take more snaps against Sioux Falls. Robbins is 42-of-73 for the year for 567 yards with four touchdowns and four interceptions. Scott has completed 35-of-73 for 505 yards with four touchdowns and four interceptions. On the ground, Scott leads the way with 68 carries for 191 yards, while Robbins has rushed 69 times for 155 yards.
6. Alex Folz had a unique stat line last Saturday, as he caught an 11-yard touchdown pass,
recovered a fumble on special teams, punted nine times for 35.8 yards with three inside the 20, and returned a kickoff for 22 yards. Folz will continue to be a swiss army knife for the Golden Eagles heading into this weekend at Upper Iowa.
7. The Golden Eagle wide receivers have made big play after big play this season. Jonattan Mudd has led the group with a strong senior season. Mudd has 28 catches for 361 yards and four touchdowns. Nathan Coy has also made an impact with 18 grabs for 263 yards. Andy Groebner has chipped in 11 catches for 168 yards.
8. Will Cross and Trevor Long, Jr. have continued to rise on the charts for tackles for the Golden Eagles. Long has 232 career tackles, while Cross has 208 career tackles. Both players have been integral to the defense throughout their career, and will look to etch their names in the record books for Minnesota Crookston.
8. The linebacking corps has been crucial for the Golden Eagles. Will Cross has been huge for Minnesota Crookston, as the senior captain missed most of last year due to injury. Cross has missed the last two weeks due to injury. He is tied for the team lead with 39 tackles. He has added four tackles for loss, and also has a half sack. Austin Steele has also been integral this season with 37 tackles, 6.5 tackles for loss, three sacks, and two forced fumbles, while Long has 30 tackles with 1.5 tackles for loss and a sack.
10. Freshman Tysen White has been the biggest impact freshman for the Golden Eagle. White has continued to show improvement and make plays for the Golden Eagles. White is tied for the lead with 39 tackles. He has added 1.5 tackles for loss and a sack. White had a season-high 11 tackles against
11. Minnesota Crookston is looking for a road win for the second-straight season. The Golden Eagles won 29-21 over Minot State on the road on Sept. 22, 2018 for their last road win.
12. Alex Folz has taken over the punting duties recently for the Golden Eagles. Folz is averaging a 35.6 yards per punt with four inside the 20 and a long of 49. Nathan McRoberts has also punted with an averaged of 34.8 yards per punt with seven inside the 20. In the kicking game, Jared McLemore is 2-of-4 with a long of 34.
13. The Golden Eagles are averaging 273.8 yards per game on offense and allowing 414.3 yards per tilt to the opponents. Minnesota Crookston has less penalties than their opponents with just 36.2 yards per game of penalties compared to 68 yards of penalties per game for their foes.
14. Minnesota Crookston has stayed in games throughout the 2019 season. Now the key is getting over the hump and getting in the win column. The Golden Eagles have improved their margin of defeat from 35.2 to just 24.7 this season, showing great gains this year.
UPPER IOWA NOTES
1. Upper Iowa enters the weekend with an 0-6 mark. The Peacocks have been close in several games, losing four games by a combined 20 points. Upper Iowa is allowing 372.3 yards per game to opposing offenses. Offensively, they are racking up 319.0 yards per game.
2. Upper Iowa has utilized three quarterbacks on the season. Zach Reader got most of the snaps last weekend against UMary, going 19-of-34 for 201 yards with three touchdowns and one interception. He also rushed 17 times for 82 yards. The Peacocks have also utilized Myles Herrera and Jake Schuman. Herrera is 44-of-77 for 497 yards with five touchdowns and six interceptions. Schuman is 41-of-76 for 432 yards with three touchdowns and two interceptions.
3. On the ground, the Peacocks are averaging 130.8 yards per game. They look to Levon Bellamy, who has 352 yards rushing with two touchdowns. Matt McDonald has added 213 yards for an average of 3.6 yards per carry. Through the air, Alexander Stevens leads the way with 28 catches for 350 yards with six touchdowns. Bralin Simon has added 23 catches for 296 yards and two touchdowns.
4. Upper Iowa’s defense has been led by the pass rush of Erik Hansen with nine tackles for loss and 5.5 sacks. Isaac Barrett leads the defense with 44 tackles. Daniel Ruffin, Jr., and Mitchel Siech have each notched an interception on the season.
1. Can the Golden Eagles force mistakes from the quarterback utilizing the pass rush?
2. Can the defense limit running back Levon Bellamy?
3. Can the Golden Eagles get the ground game going?
4. Can Minnesota Crookston limit big plays?
5. Can the Golden Eagles come home with a win?