UAM Hosts Arkansas Tech Seeking Third Win

Courtesy of
Brian Ramsey

tv Sports reflection 10dbMONTICELLO – The University of Arkansas at Monticello football team will face off against a team from Arkansas for the first time this season this Saturday, Oct. 5 when the team hosts Arkansas Tech with both teams looking for their third wins of the 2013 season.

   Saturday’s kickoff is set for 3 p.m. at Willis “Convoy” Leslie Cotton Boll Stadium. The game will be covered on the UAM Sports Network with the radio broadcast at KHBM-FM 93.7 in Monticello and live audio and video streaming available at uamsports.com. Live statistics will also be available at uamsports.com.

   Both teams enter Saturday’s contest with an even 2-2 overall record. The Boll Weevils are also 2-2 in Great American Conference games this season after most recently suffering a 35-17 loss to Southwestern Oklahoma State last Saturday on the road. The Wonder Boys stepped out of GAC action last Saturday and was defeated on the road by NCAA Division I-FCS member Nicholls State by a final score of 44-34. ATU is 2-1 in GAC games this season.

   UAM head football coach Hud Jackson’s weekly coach’s report can be viewed at the following link: http://youtu.be/Ta3_dUpuZgk.

WEEK 5 STORYLINES

DEFENDING HOME TURF

   The Boll Weevils are back in Monticello this Saturday looking to remain unbeaten at home this season and capture the team’s third Great American Conference victory of the year against in-state foe Arkansas Tech.

THE BOLL WEEVILS

   UAM enters Saturday’s game with an even 2-2 record with the same mark in GAC games following a 35-17 loss to Southwestern Oklahoma State last Saturday on the road in Weatherford, Okla… The Weevils currently rank ninth in the league in scoring (25.8 points per game), eighth in total offense (364 yards per game), and seventh in total defense (435.8 yards allowed per game)… Offensively, UAM has used three quarterbacks throughout the first four games. Sophomores Colton Morrison and Cody Trimble have taken the majority of the snaps, with freshman Brett Courville making a relief appearance in each of UAM’s two home games. Trimble took most of the snaps in last Saturday’s loss to SWOSU, but Morrison still leads the team with 792 yards on 91-of-143 passing with five touchdowns and three interceptions. Junior Rod Smith emerged as the team’s leading rusher last Saturday and now has 149 yards on 44 carries, including a pair of rushing touchdowns. Junior Skyler Scott turned in his second triple-digit performance of the season in the loss to SWOSU and now has a total of 24 receptions for 345 yards with four touchdowns. Junior Keith Reynolds ranks second in the GAC with a total of 38 tackles throughout the first four games, averaging 9.5 stops per game.

THE WONDER BOYS

   Arkansas Tech enters Saturday’s game against UAM with an even 2-2 overall record and a 2-1 mark in GAC games following a 44-34 non-conference loss toNicholls State last Saturday on the road in Thibodaux, La… ATU ranks fifth in the league in scoring (34.5 points per game), seventh in total offense (415.5 yards per game) and fourth in total defense (352.5 yards allowed per game).Quarterback Luke Halpin is 86-of-123 for 830 yards with four touchdowns andrunning back Ketrich Harmon has 38 carries for 373 yards with four touchdowns. Linebacker Wesley McKinney leads ATU with 26 tackles.

A CLOSER LOOK AT THE NUMBERS

   UAM ranks in the top 25 nationally in four different statistical categories. The team ranks 16th nationally and third in the GAC in fourth down defense with an opponent conversion rate of 20 percent. The Weevils rank 15th nationally and first in the GAC in fumbles recovered with six throughout the first four games. UAM ranks 25th nationally and third in the GAC in tackles for a loss with an average of 8.5 per game. Finally, UAM ranks 16th nationally and second in the league in turnovers gained at 11… Individually, freshman kicker Jamie McGee ranks seventh in the nation and second in the league with an average of 1.8 made field goals per game. McGee missed his first field goalattempt of the season in the loss to SWOSU with a blocked 41-yard attempt. Keith Reynolds ranks 24th in the nation in solo tackles at an average of 6.3 per game. Junior Shittu Salami ranks 24th in the nation in tackles for a loss with an average of 1.9 per game.

LAST TIME OUT: SWOSU 35, UAM 17

   Southwestern Oklahoma State outgained UAM 233-25 in the fourth quarter leading to a 35-17 win over UAM last Saturday in Weatherford, Okla. The teams were tied at 14 at halftime, and only one SWOSU touchdown in the third quarter separated the scoring heading in the final period. Jamie McGee made a 38-yard field goal at the start of the fourth quarter for UAM’s final score of the game to trim SWOSU’s lead to 21-17. The Bulldogs took over from that point scoring two more touchdowns to finalize the scoring. Cody Trimble led the UAM passing attack going 17-for-25 through the air for 140 yards including a two-yard touchdown pass to senior Jamal Nixon and a 47-yard scoring strike to junior Skyler Scott. Scott turned in his second triple-digit performance of the season with nine catches for 142 yards in the loss. Junior Rod Smith carried 18 times for a season-high 81 yards, averaging out to 4.5 yards per carry.

THE LAST MEETING: UAM VS. ATU

   UAM quarterback Damon Wicker fumbled on a goal-line dive with 15 seconds remaining in regulation to allow the Wonder Boys to secure 24-21 victory over the Weevils last season in Russellville. UAM outgained ATU in most statistical categories, including a 495-269 advantage in total offense and a 25-17 lead in first downs. However, Wicker’s fumble at the goal line was UAM’s third turnover of the game to give ATU a 3-2 advantage in the giveaway category. Wicker completed 34-of-46 passes for 408 yards in the loss, with his favorite target Jamal Nixon catching 14 passes for a career-high 212 yards, including touchdown connections of 35 and 58 yards.

BREAST CANCER AWARENESS MONTH DECALS

   The Boll Weevils will be switching out their blue prostate cancer awareness helmet decals for pink breast cancer awareness decals during the month of October. This is the third straight season the Weevils have participated in National Breast Cancer Awareness Month with pink helmet decals. To learn more about NBCAM, visit http://www.nbcam.org.

THE COACHES

   UAM is led by third-year head coach Hud Jackson, who has compiled a 8-18 record in the Green and White since taking over the programprior to the 2011 season. Before joining UAM, Jackson had served six seasons as associate head coach at Central Arkansas following a 13-year high school coaching career in the state of Louisiana, most recently the head coach and athletic director at Central Catholic High School in Morgan City… There is a new face on the Arkansas Tech sidelines this year, following the resignation of the program’s all-time winningest coach and UAM graduate Steve Mullins at the end of the 2012 season. Replacing Mullins is Raymond Monica, a south Louisiana native who spent the last seven seasons as the head coach at Kutztown University in Pennsylvania. While there, Monica led the Golden Bears to a 45-34 record and two NCAA Division II playoff appearances.

RECOGNIZING THE 1950s DYNASTY

   This Saturday at UAM’s home game against Arkansas Tech, the university will recognize Weevil lettermen from the 1950s, the winningest decade in the progam’s history. UAM, then known as Arkansas A&M, won five Arkansas Intercollegiate Conference championships during a six-year period, winning titles in 1953 and 1955-58. The 1953 team was led by Jim Benton, and all four championships from 55-58 were under the leadership of Convoy Leslie. The Weevils were 59-28-3 during the 50s.

UP NEXT

   The Boll Weevils are back on the road next Saturday, Oct. 12 with a trip to Searcy, Ark. to face off against the Harding University Bisons. Harding (2-1) meets Southern Arkansas this Thursday night in a nationally televised game covered by the CBS Sports Network. Next Saturday’s game against Harding is scheduled for a 2 p.m. kickoff at First Security Stadium.

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