Brevard, N.C. - It will be a battle between teams searching for their first South Atlantic Conference victory on Saturday afternoon as the Tornados travel to Greeneville, Tenn. to take on the Tusculum College Pioneers at Pioneer Field in the Niswonger Sports Complex.
Brevard (3-5, 0-4 SAC) returns to the road this week after suffering a loss this past weekend to Wingate University. The Tornados offense was back on track this week, due to the addition of a healthy Neville Bryce to the roster. The preseason All-SAC selection had been hampered this year by turf toe and ankle injuries, but made up for lost time, setting single game Brevard records in rushing yards (224), carries (35) and rushing touchdowns (4) against the Wingate defense. The Tornados held a 20-2 lead in the game, but Wingate’s balanced offensive attack behind 158 rushing yards by Nelson Woods and 379 passing yards by Cody Haffly brought the Bulldogs back and gave them the 44-37 victory.
Tusculum (4-4, 0-4 SAC) returns home after falling on the road to SAC opponent Lenoir-Rhyne this past weekend, 34-31. Quarterback Bo Cordell went 42 of 62 in the game, throwing for 421 yards and three touchdowns and Deonte’ Gist and Rashaad Carter each had more than 10 catches and 100 yards through the air. Tusculum jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter, but Lenoir-Rhyne rallied back through four Colin Corpe field goals and Andrew Courman found the end zone twice in leading the Bears to the 34-31 victory.
This will be the seventh meeting all-time between the teams and fifth since the Tornados football program was reinstated in 2006, with Tusculum holding the 4-2 advantage. Brevard lost the first matchup, 33-0, while in 2007, the Pioneers defeated the Tornados 30-7. 2008 and 2009 saw a pair of close, high-scoring affairs as Tusculum defeated Brevard in Greeneville in 2008, 55-42, while Brevard returned the favor in 2009 at Brevard Memorial Stadium, 27-24 in overtime.
Brevard comes into the game boasting the fourth-best rushing attack in the NCAA, averaging 299.9 yards per game, led by freshman slot Kelvin Jeter. Jeter set the BC single season rushing record last week in the game against Wingate and is currently third in the SAC and 27th in the NCAA, averaging 103.1 yards per game. Bryce returned to the lineup last week and is currently averaging 76.7 yards per game on the ground, while Michael Crumbaker leads the team with seven rushing touchdowns on the year.
Crumbaker leads the Tornados aerial assault on the season, completing 24 of 61 passes for 426 yards and three touchdowns. Eric Watts is the go-to receiver for Brevard on the year, catching 12 passes for 187 yards and two touchdowns, while Justin Fleming and Derek Church have had a hand in the passing game, each catching three passes, including both having receptions last week against Wingate.
Defensively, Trey Jenkins leads the Tornados and is in the top 10 in the SAC with 60 tackles on the season, averaging 7.5 per game. Fellow linebackers C.J. Wilson and Prince Simunyu are also among the team leaders in tackles with 45 and 44 respectively. Salonik Amos leads the team and the South Atlantic Conference with 11 passes defensed on the season to go with 49 tackles, while Rufus Jenkins leads Brevard with 5.5 tackles for loss. Demarcus Allen is the team leader in sacks with 2.5 on the season and also leads the Tornados with two fumble recoveries to round out the BC defensive efforts on the season.
Tusculum quarterback Cordell leads the nation in passing, averaging 417.5 yards per game, and also in total offense (412.75 ypg) and completions (36.13 cpg) in leading the Pioneers offense on the season. The 2010 Harlon Hill Trophy candidate is also second in the country in total passing yards (3,340), third in points responsible for per game (23.00 ppg) and 46th in pass efficiency (138.00).
Cordell spreads the ball out among a number of receivers with three Pioneers ranked in the top 50 in the NCAA in receptions per game, while a fourth is ranked in the top 50 in receiving yards per game. Deonte’ Gist (9.00 rpg-4th), Rashaad Carter (7.50 rpg-14th) and Michael Rodriguez (6.88 rpg-24th) are among the reception leaders, while Gist is also 23rd in receiving yards per game (101.25 ypg) and 18th in total receiving yards (810). Carter is 30th in receiving yards per game (94.25 ypg) and 27th in total receiving yards (754), while senior Calvin Britt is 39th in receiving yards per game (85.50 ypg) and 37th in total receiving yards (684).
Tusculum has run the ball 197 times on the season, with Brian Marshall receiving the majority of the carries, toting the ball 65 times for 244 yards. Chad Blakely has carried the ball 30 times for 109 yards on the season, while Fred Jones has found the end zone twice from the backfield. Cordell has also carried the ball 68 times on the season and crossed the goal line five times.
Zachary Norman leads the Pioneers defense on the season with 50 tackles, while David Little and Terrence Smith each have more than 10 tackles for loss on the year with Little leading the team with 13, while Smith has recorded 11 tackles behind the line of scrimmage. Little is also the sack leader on the team with six quarterback drops on the year, while in the secondary, six different Pioneers have recorded interceptions.
Kickoff at Pioneer Field on the campus of Tusculum College is set for Saturday, October 30th, at 1:30 p.m.
You can catch the game via live broadcast brought to you by the "Voice of the Tornados" Dwayne Summers over the radio at WSQL 1240 AM or over the Internet at www.wsqlradio.com. You may also visit the Brevard College Athletics website at www.BCTornados.com.
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