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OPENING KICKOFF: Today's Centennial Conference (CC) game marks the 47th meeting between McDaniel (1-5, 1-4 CC) and Dickinson (2-4, 2-3 CC) in a series that dates back to 1904. The Green Terror leads the all-time series 36-31-1 but the Red Devils have won seven of the last eight meetings, including by a 38-31 margin in overtime last season in Westminster.
WHEN LAST WE MET: Dickinson scored the final 17 points of the game to defeat McDaniel 38-31 in overtime last season. Joe Rollins (Temple Hills, Md./Surrattsville) led the Green Terror on offense with 216 yards on 38 carries to go with three touchdowns. Zach Martin added the fourth touchdown, returning his own blocked punt 18 yards for a touchdown. Martin chipped in 11 tackles, including a sack and pass breakup. Cole Ahnell paced the Red Devils with 107 yards passing and 83 yards rushing, including engineering the 78-yard game-tying drive in the final three minutes of the fourth quarter.
LAST TIME OUT: Franklin & Marshall scored a touchdown in each quarter to defeat McDaniel 28-9 last Saturday. Aqil Tweedy (Fredericksburg, Va./Colonial Forge) led the Green Terror on offense with 61 yards receiving on six catches and a touchdown. E.J. Schneider led the Diplomats with 151 yards rushing and another 172 yards passing. He accounted for all four touchdowns, running for two and throwing for two.
WITH HONORS: Aqil Tweedy and Mike Cousar (Easton, Pa./Easton Area) were named to their respective CC Weekly Honor Rolls last week. Tweedy was named to the offensive list after leading the Green Terror with 61 yard receiving on six catches that included his first career touchdown grab in the second quarter. Cousar earned the defensive nod after recording nine tackles, including one for a loss that resulted in a first-quarter safety.
LEADING THE WAY: Mike Cousar, Derrick Miles (Glen Mills, Pa./Bayard Rustin), Mike Oliveto (Robesonia, Pa./Conrad Weiser), Joe Rollins and Pat Tighe (Point Pleasant Beach, N.J./Point Pleasant Beach) will captain the squad in 2013. All five are first-time captains and mark the most since 2009.
SAFETY HATS: The Green Terror was able to record its first safety in nearly eight seasons on Saturday. On the first play after Nick O'Melia (Taneytown, Md./Francis Scott Key) downed a Brett Haas (Laurel, Md./Atholton) punt at the one-yard line, Mike Cousar recorded his lone tackle for loss in the game, resulting in a safety and 2-0 lead. For McDaniel, it was the first safety since Nov. 12, 2005 against Johns Hopkins when the snap on a third-quarter punt went through the back of the end zone.
FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING: Aqil Tweedy had a big impact on the pass game on Saturday. The sophomore made six catches for a team-high 61 yards. Among those catches was his first career touchdown grab. One play after Mike Hoyt elected to take three points off the board and accept a running-into-the-kicker penalty to set up first-and-goal from the five-yard line, Tweedy made his coach's decision pay off with a five-yard grab to make it a 14-9 game in the final 28 seconds of the first half.
RUNNING WITH THE DeLUCA: Senior RB Neil DeLuca (Freeland, Md./Hereford) saw his first significant action of his career at McDaniel on Saturday. DeLuca had his first six carries, rushing for 28 yards as the backup tailback.
FINALLY HAPPY RETURNS: It took until the fourth quarter of week six but McDaniel finally has punt-return yardage on the board. In the final four minutes of the game, Franklin & Marshall punted from its own 30 yard line. Joe Rollins haled in the ball at the Green Terror 32 and recorded a 15-yard return. It was the first time in 17 punt attempts by opponents this season that resulted in a positive return. Rollins had one other return attempt that netted zero yards. Marty Windisch (Manchester, Md./Manchester Valley) was officially credited with one return for zero yards when he recovered a blocked punt in the end one for a touchdown at Ursinus. Of the other 14 punts, four were fair caught and one was a touchback.
AIRING IT OUT: Ryan Yamada (Brookeville, Md./Good Counsel) threw a career-high 44 passes on Saturday – the most attempts in a Green Terror game since the 2010 finale at Johns Hopkins. The sophomore completed 24 of those attempts. In addition to being a career high, it was the most completions for a McDaniel signal caller since Tom Massucci completed 28 of his 44 attempts at Gettysburg on Nov. 7, 2009. Yamada threw for 184 yards on Saturday, marking the third time in six games this season he has thrown for 175 or more yards.
SPREAD THE LOVE: Eight different Green Terror players caught a pass from Ryan Yamada on Saturday. The eight players to catch a pass matches a season high for McDaniel. However, the percentage of eligible receivers who caught a pass was at its highest point of the season. With only 11 eligible receivers taking a snap for the Green Terror, Yamada connected with more than 72 percent at least once. Mike Oliveto was the favorite target, catching seven balls while Aqil Tweedy made six grabs for a team-best 61 yards.
RUN WATCH: Joe Rollins enters this week's game needing just 88 yards for his third career 1,000-yard season. He enters play today with 4,179 career rushing yards, which ranks sixth in CC history. Rollins ripped off 118 yards last week for his fifth 100-yard rushing day of the season and the 19th of his career.
YOUTH MOVEMENT: The Green Terror enters this week's game with a roster of 94 players. Of those 94 players, 63 are either freshmen or sophomores. McDaniel will have a freshman class of 42 in 2013 – by far its largest class on the roster.
TERROR TIDBITS: Joe Rollins enters today's game with 5,510 all-purpose yards, which is sixth in CC history. He needs 174 yards to pass Rob Johnson for second on the Green Terror's all-time list… McDaniel has been flagged for a CC-high 41 penalties this season and drawn a CC-high 42… The same 22 Green Terror players have not been the starters in any two games this season… Freshman LB Matt Quattrone (Carlisle, Pa./Carlisle) will oppose his father this afternoon. Joel Quattrone is the Dickinson defensive coordinator.
COACHES' CORNER: Mike Hoyt is in his second season at the helm of the Green Terror, entering today's game with an overall record of 1-15, picking up his first win on Sept. 14 – a 21-14 victory over Moravian. He spent the previous eight seasons as the defensive coordinator, culminating with being a finalist for the American Football Coaches Association Assistant Coach of the Year award in 2011. In his first season at Albright, his defense went from allowing an average of 235.4 yards per game to 175.1 yards per contest, helping to guide Albright to an ECAC South Atlantic championship. His tenure as defensive coordinator was marked specifically by stout run defense, ranking in the top half of the Middle Atlantic Conference in rush defense, total defense and scoring defense in four of his last five seasons. His 2008 defense led the conference and ranked 33rd nationally, allowing just 16.9 points per games and appeared in the ECAC South Central Bowl… Darwin Breaux is in his 21st season guiding the Red Devils. He has compiled a 123-87-1 record and guided Dickinson to the five post-season appearances, including a 2006 NCAA appearance after winning the CC championship and an ECAC appearance in 2008. The 123 wins are the most by any Red Devil mentor.
THE WORD ON DICKINSON: The Red Devils enter today's game off a 42-17 loss at No. 13 Johns Hopkins. The game was knotted at 7-all after the first quarter before the Blue Jays scored back-to-back touchdowns to take a 21-7 lead and never looked back… Cole Ahnell led Dickinson, rushing for 92 yards on 27 carries while going 8-for-19 through the air for 60 yards… The Red Devils were outgained 510-275 on the night… Shawn Wilson leads Dickinson this season with 498 yards rushing while Ahnell has ran for 473… Ahnell is completing 62.4 percent of his passes for 738 yards. Ahnell has accounted for eight of the Red Devils' 14 touchdowns this season – four running and four passing… Michael Miller leads the defense with 58 tackles and an interception.