Oct. 27, 2010
Weekly Game Notes
GRAND FORKS, N.D. - Fresh from observing the open date in its 2010 schedule, the Lamar University football team will swing back into action Saturday with a noon game against North Dakota in the 13,283-seat Alerus Center.
Coach Ray Woodard's Cardinals are 3-4 and eager to make amends for their 26-0 loss to undefeated South Alabama in their most recent outing on Oct. 16. North Dakota, which lost a heartbreaker, 22-21 at Cal Poly last week, is 2-5 on the season and 2-1 at home.
In the Fighting Sioux, the Cardinals will be facing a team that has displayed offensive explosiveness such as in victories of 55-14 over Northeastern State and 49-24 over Northwestern State. Just last week, the Sioux fell behind Cal Poly 13-0 in the early going but fought back with three touchdowns in the middle quarters to take a 21-13 lead.
Freshman wide receiver Greg Hardin helped lead the charge by hauling in touchdown passes of 43 yards from quarterback Jake Landry and 25 yards from running back Josh Murray, who scored the other TD on a 5-yard run.
Hardin, a 5-foot-11, 166-pounder from Bellevue, Neb., finished the Cal Poly game with six receptions for 136 yards, and he's the team's leading receiver on the season with 33 catches for 661 yards and nine touchdowns.
Murray, a 5-11, 209-pound junior from Pepin, Wisc., leads the Fighting Sioux in rushing with 527 yards on 82 carries, and he has scored three touchdowns. The 6-3, 220-pound Landry, a hometown boy from Grand Forks Central High School, has completed 110 of 178 passes 1,328 yards and 11 TDs while throwing six interceptions.
Meanwhile, the Cardinals hope to regain potency in their passing attack that saw quarterback Andre Bevil post the two-best, single-game totals in school history (429 yards against McNeese State and 417 yards vs. Southeastern Louisiana). Against South Alabama, however, the Cardinals threw for only 104 yards, a season low.
The 6-1, 180-pound Bevil, a junior from West Orange-Stark, has 1,811 passing yards on 139-of-254 accuracy for 54.7 percent and has thrown 13 touchdown passes and been intercepted 11 times.
Bevil will likely be aided by the return of split end J.J. Hayes, who sat out the Cardinals' previous two games with an injury. Through Lamar's first five games, the 6-3, 210-pound junior from Diboll snared 31 passes for 372 yards and five touchdowns. Junior flanker Marcus Jackson of Tyler Lee is the Cardinals' No. 2 receiver with 30 catches for 598 yards and five TDs.
Junior running back Octavious Logan, who had a career-high 96 yards on 12 carries in the Cardinals' 14-0 homecoming victory over Langston University, is the team's leading rusher with 158 yards on 36 carries. Lumberton junior Cody Hussey, who missed the South Alabama game but is expected back this week, is right behind with 154 yards on 41 carries.
The 5-8, 180-pound Logan, who reeled off a season-best 74-yard kickoff return against Sam Houston State, enters Saturday's game with 530 yards on 22 returns. That puts him 36 yards shy of the Lamar record of 566 kickoff return yards set by Herbert Harris in 1982.
As an unclassified member of the Football Championship Subdivision this season, Lamar is ineligible for team or individual ranking in either the SLC or NCAA FCS weekly statistical reports. If that was not the case, however, the Cardinals would have one second-place and one third-place team ranking in this week's SLC stats, and they would have one individual first-place and three second-place rankings.
The Cardinals' 261.2-yard passing average would rank second among the other eight league members, and their 121.08 passing efficiency rating and would rank third.
Defensive end Jacody Coleman's average of 0.29 fumble recoveries per game would be tied for the best in the league. The Cardinals' would-be second-place rankings are Bevil's marks of 258.6 passing yards per game and 254.6 yards per game of total offense and Jackson's average of 85.4 receiving yards per game.
Next up for the Cardinals will be another air-travel game to Atlanta to play Georgia State in the 71,250-seat Georgia Dome on Nov. 6. Their next home game will be against South Dakota on Nov. 13.