Gridiron Weevils Seek Road Win In Oklahoma

Courtesy of
UAM Sport Information

MONTICELLO – The University of Arkansas-Monticello football team seeks its first win of the season and its first road victory since 2010 this Saturday in tv Sports reflection 10dbAlva, Oklahoma against Northwestern Oklahoma State.

Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. at Ranger Field. The game can be heard live on the UAM Sports Network at KHBM-FM 93.7 in Monticello and online at uamsports.com. Live video and live stats of Saturday’s game will be provided by the NWOSU Athletics Department. All links to live coverage can be found at http://www.uamsports.com/coverage.aspx.

WEEVILS MAKE FIRST GAC TRIP TO ALVA, LONGEST SINCE 2010
Exactly like last week’s visit to Southeastern Oklahoma State, the UAM football program is making its first trip to Alva, Oklahoma since joining the Great American Conference to face off against Northwestern Oklahoma State. The Rangers have made back-to-back trips to Southeast Arkansas the past two years. NWOSU won the first meeting since1994 with a 38-35 victory over UAM in Monticello in 2012, while the Weevilsevened the series since becoming conference foes with a 22-20 win in last year’s match up at Convoy Leslie Cotton Boll Stadium. This Saturday’s trip to Alva, Oklahoma is by far the longest journey UAM has made to play a conference game since joining the GAC in 2011. According to Google Maps, UAM will tally a round-trip total of 1,092 miles this weekend. It is the longest trip for UAM since traveling 1,344 miles to and from Valdosta, Georgia in 2010.

THE UAM-NWOSU SERIES
1993: @UAM 14, Northwestern Oklahoma State 10
1994: UAM 33, @Northwestern Oklahoma State 10
2012: Northwestern Oklahoma State 38, @UAM 35
2013: @UAM 22, Northwestern Oklahoma State 20

SCOUTING THE RANGERS
Northwestern Oklahoma State enters Saturday’s GAC tilt with an 0-2 overall record with the same mark in Great American Conference games. The Rangers opened the season with a 33-14 loss at Arkansas Tech before falling at home this past Saturday to Harding 45-7. The Rangers rank third in the GAC in pass defense, giving up an average of 175.5 yards in the air per game. NWOSU ranks sixth in the league in total defense(387.5). Offensively, NWOSU ranks near the bottom in the league in all categories, including last in total offense (228.0), last in pass offense (133.5) and last in turnover margin (-6). NWOSU was picked the finish 10th in the GAC this season after posting a 2-9 overall record last year with a 2-8finish in the league.

THE LAST MEETING: UAM 22, NWOSU 20
UAM kicker Jamie McGee accounted for 10 of UAM’s 22 points to lead the Weevils to their second straight victory in a two-point win over NWOSU last year at home. McGee tied a single-game record with three made field goals, including what ended up being the game-winner, a career-long 43-yarder with 10:03 remaining in regulation to finalize the scoring. Despite the loss, NWOSU out-gained UAM 399-324 in total offense. UAM had a slight edge in pass offense at 249-244, while the Rangers held the margin in rushing 155-75. Each team was forced to punt seven times, which led to a back-and-forth field position battle resulting in 16 possessions each. Safety Anthony Hughes was a key force for the UAM defense with a total of 13 tackles, one pass breakup and one key blocked punt at the goal line that set up a UAM touchdown on the next play. The UAM defense sealed the victory by forcing two consecutive turnovers on NWOSU’s final offensive possessions of the game.

LAST TIME OUT: SOUTHEASTERN OKLA. 52, UAM 49
Trailing by three touchdowns in the first half, UAM fought back force a 42-all tie midway through the fourth quarter in what turned out to be an offensive shootout. In typical shootout fashion, the last teamwith the ball ended up winning as Southeastern’s Jake Walters made a 19-yard field goal as time expired to give the Savage Storm the win. There was nearly 1,200 yards of total offense combined between the two squads in the game. Southeastern finished with 616 yards (304 passing, 312 rushing). UAM had 557 yards (400 passing, 157 rushing). It was the first time UAM has gone over 500 yards in total offense since posting 546 yards against Northeastern State during the 2011 season, and the most yards recorded since a 593-yard outingagainst Harding in 2009.

WEEVILS LEAD THE NATION IN RED ZONE OFFENSE
UAM leads all of NCAA Division II with a perfect percentage of scoring once inside the red zone. UAM went 4-for-4 (2 TD, 2 FG) inside the 20 in the opener against ECU and went 5-for-5 (5 TD) against Southeastern.

LEPPERT SHINES IN RETURN
After missing the entire 2013 season recovering from his third knee injury, quarterback Hunter Leppert sparked UAM’s offense in his return to the gridiron this past Saturday coming off the bench against Southeastern Oklahoma State. Leppert accounted for 409 yards of total offense in the loss, throwing for 345 yards with three touchdowns and rushing for 64. He completed 72 percent of his passes after not taking a single snap since the fourth week of the 2012 season. He was UAM’s early-season starting signal-caller in the 2011 and 2012 seasons, both years ending early with knee injuries. The Minden, Louisiana native has earned the starting spot this week against NWOSU.

BORDELON, LEPPERT FIND RHYTHM
Junior receiver Cody Bordelon and quarterback Hunter Leppert were an effective pass-and-catch combo in the loss to Southeastern. Bordelon turned in his second career 100-yard receiving performance with nine catches for 122 yards with two touchdowns in the loss.

SMITH BREAKS PERSONAL RECORD FOR ALL-PURPOSE
Senior running back Rod Smith set a new career-high in all-purpose yards in the loss to Southeastern with 90 rushing yards and 48 receiving yards for a total of 138, breaking his previous best of 125 last year against Arkansas Tech. The Dumas, Arkansas native had two rushing touchdowns in the loss, including a 33-yard score late in the third quarter to bring UAM to within one score. He added another to force a 49-all tie with just under six minutes remaining in the fourth quarter.

CURRY, EVERETT LEAD DEFENSE
With over 100 tackles recorded in last week’s loss to Southeastern Oklahoma State, the Weevils now have a total of nine defensive players with at least 10 tackles. Senior Louis Curry and junior Marshall Everett are currently tied for the team lead with 14 tackles each. Curry leads the team with 3.5 tackles for a loss, while also adding one sack and one forced fumble.

HUD JACKSON SHOW, WEEKLY LUNCHEONS, OPEN PRACTICES
The Hud Jackson Show airs each Monday night from 6-7 p.m. at La Terraza Restaurant in Monticello. The show is broadcast live at KHBM-FM 93.7 and online at uamsports.com. The weekly UAM football luncheon is each Tuesday at noon at the Monticello Country Club. The public is invited to attend both sessions. La Terraza’s full menu is available during the show, and there is a buffet lunch available at the Monticello Country Club for $10 per person… Most of UAM’s practices are open to the public. The team practices from 7-9 p.m. on Monday nights and 4-6 p.m. Tuesdays-Thursdays. Friday’s walk through times vary and the team does not practice on Sundays.

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