VALPARAISO (1-3, 0-0 PFL North) at AUSTIN PEAY (1-3, 0-0 PFL South)
WHEN: Saturday, October 1, 2005, 1 p.m. CDT.
WHERE: Governors Stadium (10,000), Clarksville, Tenn.
RADIO: Valpo Sports Radio Network (WVUR, 95.1-FM, Valparaiso; WAKE, 1500-AM, Valparaiso; Relevant Radio 1270-AM, Gary; and WE-FM, 95.9-FM, Michigan City). Also available on the web at www.valpo.edu/athletics. Todd Ickow will handle the play-by-play with Brent Whitlock providing the color commentary.
THE COACHES: Valparaiso is led by Stacy Adams, who is in his 1st season as the Crusader head coach. He is 1-3 overall and at Valpo. Austin Peay is led by Carroll McCray, who is 7-19 in his 3rd season overall and with the Governors.
SERIES RECORD: Valparaiso leads the all-time series with the Governors 5-2. Valpo is 2-1 all-time in Clarksville.
LAST MEETING: Valparaiso scored ten points in the third quarter to break a 14-14 halftime tie on the way to defeating the Governors 24-14 on September 11, 2004 at Brown Field. Joe Milazzo was 14-of-24 passing for 214 yards and rushed for 77 more in the win for Valpo. Chris Fletcher rushed for 100 yards for Austin Peay.
After playing back-to-back games at Brown Field, Valparaiso takes to the road on Saturday afternoon to face Austin Peay. The Crusaders are looking to end a three-game losing skid after dropping last week's game against Davidson 48-17.
DIALING LONG DISTANCE: Valparaiso had not had a pass completed for more than 25 yards during the first three games of the season. Last week against Davidson, the Crusaders connected twice for big gains. Ryan Doerffler tossed a 59-yard touchdown strike to Joe Blahowicz early in the fourth quarter and also had a 47-yard completion to Dustin Shamburg in the second quarter that led to a Valpo field goal.
BLAHOWITZ CONTINUES TO SHINE: Joe Blahowitz had another solid outing for the Brown and Gold last week. The senior caught four passes for a team-high 88 yards and a touchdown while also punting six times for a 45.7 yard average. He had three punts of more than 50 yards, including a long of 54 and landed two kicks inside of the 20.
HOWARD MASTERS TACKLES FOR LOSS: Doug Howard has already recorded 5 1/2 tackles for loss in just four games for the Crusaders this season. He has 3 1/2 sacks, has broken up a pass, forced a fumble, and recovered a fumble, proving to be a force on the defensive line.
THIRD DOWN CONVERSIONS TOUGH TO COME BY: The Crusaders have struggled converting third downs this season, keeping drives alive just 9-of-47 (19.1%) times through four games.
McCAWLEY NEARLY PERFECT THIS SEASON: Andrew McCawley has made nearly every kick he has attempted thus far this season. The redshirt-junior is a perfect 5-of-5 on extra points and is 4-of-5 on field goal attempts, including a long of 46 yards at South Dakota State.
ONE LAST MEETING: Valpo and Austin Peay are meeting for the final time as members of the PFL. The Governors are leaving the conference for the Ohio Valley next season.
VALPO PLAYERS OF THE WEEK:
9/3 - Jeff Horton
9/10 - Joe Blahowicz
9/17 - Ryan Palonka
9/24 - Steve Ogden
9/3 - Mike Jones
9/10 - Brandon Sturman
9/17 - Brandon Sturman
9/24 - Andrew Akinpelu
9/3 - Sal Washington
9/10 - Andrew McCawley
9/17 - Andrew Akinpelu
9/24 - Joe Blahowicz
9/3 - Rob Clark
9/10 - Brett Maynard
9/17 - John Coffey
9/24 - James Stokes
9/3 - Steve Lyons
9/10 - Daniel Engelhardt
9/17 - Josh Bintzler
9/24 - Dave Daniels
DOWN THE ROAD: Valparaiso will return to Brown Field for the annual Homecoming football game next Saturday, October 8 as the Crusaders entertain Saint Joseph's (Ind.). The game is the only time in the next four weeks Valpo will be at home, as the Brown and Gold head to Butler and Dayton the following two weeks.