College Sports

5 state college football storylines


The Citadel, which is on a two-game winning streak, gets an idea of where it stands in its Southern Conference opener against No. 10 Appalachian State. The Bulldogs, who are the last SoCon team to play a league game, have thumped Princeton and Presbyterian after a season-opening loss to North Carolina. If they're going to have a chance against the Mountaineers, the passing game will need to be in full gear. Last week QB Bart Blanchard completed 20 of 30 passes for 263 yards and a conference record-tying six touchdowns, four to All-American receiver Andre Roberts, who snagged 12 passes for 184 yards. Appalachian State has won 14 of the past 15 games with The Citadel.


Early-season Southern Conference supremacy is on the line when Elon (3-1) visits Furman (3-1). Furman is 2-0 and No. 12 Elon is 1-0 in the league. A victory for the Paladins would put them in the driver's seat until Appalachian State comes to town on Halloween. Look for a high-scoring affair since these two are the top scoring, passing and offense teams in the conference. Furman looks for some revenge after Elon snapped an eight-game losing streak to the Paladins last season, 31-10. Furman QB Jordan Sorrells has thrown for for 899 yards and six touchdowns in four games, but it is not going to be easy today against a Pheonix defense ranked No. 1 in the FCS.


After dropping a tough 23-20 decision on the road to Carson-Newman during a torrential downpour in the SAC opener, Newberry (2-2, 0-1) must win at Catawba to keep its conference championship aspirations and Division II playoff hopes alive. Catawba (3-1, 0-1) is in the same situation after a loss to Mars Hill. Newberry hopes for another big game from senior receiver Kelton Tindal, who caught four passes for 103 yards and a touchdown last week. Catawba is well-aware of Tindal's ability after he caught two passes for 143 yards and two TDs against the Indians last season. No doubt both teams are hoping for dry weather today.


What's going on at Wofford? The Terriers are off to a 1-3 start, their worst since 2006, when they managed to rebound and finish the season at 7-4. The three losses have been by 29 or more points, which is not a good sign. And last week's output of nine points against Chattanooga in the conference opener was the team's lowest since 2006. The offense managed only 226 yards and had three turnovers in the 38-9 drubbing. Georgia Southern (2-2, 1-1) comes to town looking to repeat last season's win. While it is the first time Wofford has fallen out of the rankings since 2006, the focus must remain on getting a win today.


Presbyterian has its best shot at its first win since it is not playing a Southern Conference team. After losses to Furman, Elon, Chattanooga and The Citadel, the Blue Hose travel to play a Big South foe in Stony Brook (N.Y.), which is 1-3. It is the first meeting between the most recent Big South additions, and it is also the furthest distance PC has traveled for a Division I game. The Blue Hose are 3-14 in road games since moving up a level in 2007. New coach Harold Nichols is still looking for his first win. But he is in familiar territory north of the Mason-Dixon line, having coached at Rhode Island and Bucknell prior to this most recent stint at PC.

- Neil White