VALPARAISO (2-8, 1-3 PFL North) at AURORA (5-4, 5-2 Illini-Badger)
WHEN: Saturday, November 12, 2005, 1 p.m. CST.
WHERE: Aurora University Field (1,750), Aurora, Ill.
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 2-8 overall and at Valpo. Aurora is led by Rich Duncan, who is 5-4 in his 1st season overall and with the Spartans.
SERIES RECORD: Valpo leads the all-time series between the two schools 10-2. The Crusaders have won the last two meetings.
LAST MEETING: Rob Giancola caught two touchdown passes from Ryan Doerffler as Valparaiso closed out the 2004 season with a 33-0 victory at home over the Spartans on November 13. Giancola caught six passes for 119 yards in the game while Jeff Horton rushed for 91 yards for the Brown and Gold. Daniel Whalen led the way for Aurora with 106 yards on the ground. Valpo held the Spartans to just 12 yards passing for the game.
The 2005 football season comes to a close for Valparaiso University on Saturday afternoon as the Crusaders head to Aurora looking to snap a two-game losing skid.
HORTON SINGLE SEASON RUSHING RECORD: Jeff Horton became just the second Valparaiso Crusader to surpass the 1,000-yard rushing mark on Saturday afternoon, and in the process set a new school single season rushing record. The junior has racked up 1,172 yards on the season (5.2 per carry), breaking Dave Newnam's 1977 mark of 1,009 yards.
McCAWLEY ADDS THE POINT: Andrew McCawley kicked his 82nd career extra point against Drake, setting a new career record. He broke Norman Arnold's (1949-1952) mark of 81 PATs. McCawley is also the only kicker in the PFL who is perfect on PAT attempts, making all 19 he has tried this year.
ARNOLD STEPS IN: Freshman quarterback Warren Arnold came in in relief on Saturday afternoon and completed 10-of-12 passes for 95 yards. He also hooked up with Jeff Horton for his first collegiate touchdown toss.
HORTON 5TH IN All-PURPOSE YARDAGE: Jeff Horton ranks fifth in the nation in all-purpose yardage this season. The junior averages 159.1 yards per contest, including his 117.2 yard average on the ground and 27.4 yard average receiving. He has also returned punts and kickoffs to add to the average.
STURMAN LEADS THE DEFENSE: Brandon Sturman recorded a team-high ten tackles on Saturday against Drake. The senior has recorded 56 tackles this season, and has 116 for his career. All four years he has worn the Brown and Gold he has made at least 50 tackles.
GOING FOR IT: Valparaiso is third in the PFL in fourth down conversions this season. The Crusaders have converted 60% of their fourth down tries, making 12 of the 20 attempts.
HORTON HAS RECORD-SETTING NIGHT: Junior running back Jeff Horton set a new Valparaiso single game rushing record on Saturday at Wisconsin Lutheran with 253 yards on 34 carries. Horton shattered Ozzie Young's 1994 record of 226 yards against Evansville. His total of 253 yards is the fifth most in NCAA Division I-AA this season.
CARRYING THE LOAD: Jeff Horton was a busy man October 15 at Butler. The junior running back carried the ball a school record 41 times for 212 total yards, the second time this season he has rushed for more than 200 yards. Horton broke Dave Newman's 1977 record for carries in a game. Newman rushed 35 times against Evansville.
BEGINNING OF A NEW ERA: Stacy Adams took over as the head coach of the Crusaders this season after 16-year head coach Tom Horne resigned in late July. Adams is the 15th head coach in Crusader history and just the sixth since 1946. He was Valpo's offensive coordinator for the past eight years and has been on the Crusader sidelines since 1991.
JONES EARNS PFL HONORS: Mike Jones was named the Pioneer Football League's Defensive Player of the Week on October 10 after turning in some big numbers against Saint Joseph's (Ind.). The senior made ten tackles, forced a fumble, recovered two others, and had a pass breakup for the Brown and Gold.
HORTON NAMED PFL OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE WEEK: Jeff Horton was named the Pioneer Football League's Offensive Player of the Week on November 8 for his performance on Saturday against Drake. Horton rushed for 227 yards and two touchdowns while adding a third on a pass reception. He finished the day with 292 total yards.
HORTON FOURTH ON VALPO'S ALL-TIME RUSHING LIST: Jeff Horton has tallied 1,982 total yards for his three-year career with the Crusaders and has moved into fourth place all-time. He needs 344 yards to Joe Pahr's 1949-1951 record of 2,326 yards.
THANK YOU SENIORS: Saturday's game at Aurora marks the final appearance for 20 seniors in a Brown and Gold uniform who have contributed to the Valpo program over the past few seasons.
VALPO TABBED FOURTH IN PFL NORTH: Valparaiso was picked to finish in a tie for fourth place with Butler in the Pioneer Football League's North Division in the preseason poll of the league's head coaches. Drake is the preseason favorite in the division, while Morehead State was tabbed the favorite in the South Division.
PFL GOING BACK TO ONE DIVISION IN 2006: The Pioneer Football League is going back to one division for the 2006 season. With Austin Peay returning to the Ohio Valley Conference after this season, the eight PFL teams will play a seven-game round robin league slate next year. There will be no championship game next season.
TEAM PLAYERS OF THE WEEK...
9/3 - Jeff Horton
9/10 - Joe Blahowicz
9/17 - Ryan Palonka
9/24 - Steve Ogden
10/1 - Mike Schilling
10/8 - Wade Overton
10/15 - Sal Washington
10/22 - Steve Ogden
10/29 - Jeff Horton
11/5 - Offensive Line
9/3 - Mike Jones
9/10 - Brandon Sturman
9/17 - Brandon Sturman
9/24 - Andrew Akinpelu
10/1 - Matt Mancl
10/8 - Xavier Freeman
10/15 - James Riker
10/22 - Matt Watkins
10/29 - Bryan Kuehn
11/5 - Brandon Sturman
9/3 - Sal Washington
9/10 - Andrew McCawley
9/17 - Andrew Akinpelu
9/24 - Joe Blahowicz
10/1 - Joe Blahowicz
10/8 - John Schaekel
10/15 - Andrew McCawley
10/22 - Andrew McCawley
10/29 - Scott Schulz
11/5 - Andrew McCawley
9/3 - Rob Clark
9/10 - Daniel Engelhardt
9/17 - John Coffey
9/24 - James Stokes
10/1 - Erik Lindamood
10/8 - Trevor Jaskiw
10/15 - Ben Faulkner
10/22 - John Medina
10/29 - Vince Faso
11/5 - Trevor Jaskiw and Nicholas Henton
9/3 - Steve Lyons
9/10 - Brett Maynard
9/17 - Josh Bintzler
9/24 - Dave Daniels
10/1 - Jordan Allodi
10/8 - Andy Jackson
10/15 - Pat Ryan
10/22 - Seung Hwan Ro
10/29 - Brett Maynard
11/5 - Tristan Manvilla
AURORA NOTES: Aurora concludes its regular season on Saturday and the Spartans have won four of their last five games. Aurora posted a 21-14 victory over MacMurray last Saturday at home, closing out the Illini-Badger Conference schedule with a 5-2 mark.
Quarterback Andrew Hornung has completed 57.6% of his passes on the year for 1,637 yards and 17 touchdowns. Joe Folliard has been Hornung's favorite target, catching 36 passes for 698 yards and eight scores. Travis Paro has led the ground attack, carrying the ball 96 times for 472 yards.
Defensively, Kyle Dentino and Robbie Perry lead the way for Aurora. They both have 58 tackles on the year, with Dentino recording 14.5 tackles for loss. Perry has broken up nine passes.