Posted: Nov 27, 2019
|NCAA SECOND ROUND - #2 MOUNT UNION VS. #5 NORTH CENTRAL|
|Date & Time||Saturday, Nov. 30 | 12 p.m.|
|Location||Mount Union Stadium | Alliance, Ohio|
|Ticket Information||$8 (gates open at noon - all seats are reserved)|
|Live Stats||LIVE STATS|
|Live Tweets||@purpleraiders | @MountUnionFB|
|Mount Union Info||Game Notes | Record Book|
|North Central Info||Website|
|AFCA Top 25||Rankings - Final Regular Season|
The Matchup: No. 2 ranked University of Mount Union hosts No. 5 ranked North Central College in the second round of the 2019 NCAA Division III Football Playoffs Saturday, Nov. 30 at 12 pm at Mount Union Stadium.
The Purple Raiders are 11-0 overall, and won their 30th Ohio Athletic Conference title to claim one of 27 automatic bids to the tournament. Mount Union has an 104-17 record in NCAA Playoff games and the Raiders have advanced to the Stagg Bowl 21 times since 1993 with a record 13 National Championships.
Mount Union has now made the tournament a record 31 times and 28 years in row. The Raiders beat Hanover (Ind.) 65-14 in a first round game at home.
North Central, located in Naperville, Illinois, is 10-1 overall and making its fourth straight and 12th NCAA Playoff appearance with a 14-11 record .
The Cardinals finished second in the College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin (CCIW) and earned one of five national at large bids. North Central defeated Wabash (Ind.) 51-15 at home in a first round game.
The Series: It will be the second-ever meeting between the teams with Mount Union winning the previous meeting 41-40 in a 2013 NCAA national semifinal at Mount Union Stadium. The game played in a snow storm, had six lead changes with the last of those coming with 1:07 to play when Mount Union quarterback Kevin Burke hit Mike Collichio on a 26-yard touchdown pass.
Up Next: The winner of this game will take on the winner of a matchup between No. 11 Wesley (Del.) and No. 9 Delaware Valley (Pa.) in an national quarterfinal game next Saturday, December 7 at noon at a location to be announced.
Bracketology: For the 15th year, the NCAA Division III Football Championship consists of a 32-team field.
For perspective, in Mount Union's first appearance in the playoffs in 1985, the field was 16 teams.
This year's field breaks down like this: automatic bids were given to 27 conference champions and the other five spots are national at-large bids.
Each team is allowed to only dress a total of 58 players for a playoff game.
Team Captains: Mount Union has nine team captains in 2019 in fullback Joe Fornaro (Chesterland / West Geagua), quarterback D'Angelo Fulford (Miramar, Fla.), wide receiver Justin Hill (Circleville), linebacker Mitch O'Hara (Avon / Lakewood St. Edward), offensive lineman Brendan Klaus (Brighton, Mich.), defensive linemen Adam Pastor (Mantua / Walsh Jesuit) and Andrew Roesch (Avon), offensive lineman Sean Sherman (Springboro / Bishop Fenwick) and linebacker Trey Williams (Cardington / Cardington-Lincoln).
On the Air: All Mount Union football games will be broadcast on the radio on WDPN 1310 AM and WRMU 91.1 FM and simulcast online along with a LIVE STATS game tracker. You can also hear the WRMU 91.1 FM feed on any phone by calling 563-999-3112.
Scouting the Cardinals: North Central leads the nation in total offense and is second in scoring offense while Mount Union is second in total offense and leads in scoring offense. The Cardinals have won seven straight games since losing to Wheaton, 35-21 in the "Little Brass Bell" game.
Senior quarterback Broc Rutter is the three-time CCIW Player of the Year and the senior has completed 73-percent of his passes for 3,350 yards with 42 touchdowns to just two interceptions. He is second rated qb in college football behind Mount Union's D'Angelo Fulford. His top target is junior Andrew Kamienski, who has 94 catches for 1,432 yards with 21 touchdowns. On the ground, sophomore Ethan Greenfield is third nationally at 8.8 yards per carry and has 22 touchdowns. Up front, junior Sharmore Clarke was named CCIW Offensive Lineman of the Year.
The defense is led by All-CCIW first teamers in junior linebacker Ben Wong and junior defensive back Jake Beesley. Wong has a team-best 62 tackles while Beesley has three interceptions, 12 passes defended and 9 pass breakups. The Cardinals have 87 tackles for loss and senior linebacker Bryan Beauchamp has a team-high nine.
Cannonball Run: Senior quarterback D'Angelo Fulford (Miramar, Fla.) Fulford is the just the second player in OAC history and first since Muskingum's Bill "Cannonball" Cooper from 1958-60 to win the offensive back of the year award three times. He is the nation's highest rated quarterback with a 229.5 rating as he has completed 73-percent of his passes for 2,569 yards with 39 touchdowns to just one interception.
Three-Peat: Senior wide receiver Justin Hill (Circleville) is the first three-time winner of the OAC's top receiver award since it began in 1988. Hill has 73 catches for a nation's best 1,460 receiving yards and his 22 touchdowns is second-best nationally. He has had over 100 yards receiving in eight of 11 games so far this season.
Gimme Five: Junior running back Josh Petruccelli (Perry) has rushed for over 100 yards in five-straight games including a 15-carry, 118-yard outing last week.
Built Ford Tough: Junior Kordell Ford (Massillon / Massillon Washington) won the OAC's defensive back of the year award as he is third on the team in tackles and second in tackles for loss along with an interception, a fumble recovery and a pair of sacks.
Line Items: Senior Sean Sherman (Springboro / Bishop Fenwick) was named the OAC's lineman of the year. He has started every game this season at left tackle and anchored an offensive line that is third in the nation in tackles for loss allowed for an offense that leads the nation in scoring at 55.5 points per game.