Bluffton at Defiance preview
By Ben Risinger, SID
November 10, 2003
When: Saturday, November 15, 2003
Where: Defiance , Ohio - Justin F. Coressel Stadium
On the Radio: Listen live to Bluffton College football on WDOH 107.1 FM.
The Bluffton Beavers enter the contest with a 2-7 overall record. Defiance is 3-6 for the season. Bluffton is 1-3 on the road this season, with Defiance posting a 1-3 home record.
Bluffton coach Greg Brooks is 2-7 on his career entering the 2003 season finale. Brooks is no stranger to the Bluffton program having been the offensive coordinator for the past 23 years. He is a 1977 graduate of Ohio University where he was a quarterback and a four-year letterman for the Bobcats.
Defiance is led by first-year coach Robert Taylor (Albion '96) who is 3-6 on his career. Taylor spent the last six years as an assistant coach for the Yellow Jackets. Prior to becoming the head coach he was the defensive coordinator/head assistant for Defiance .
Defiance leads the all-time series 39-37-2. Bluffton has won the matchup two out of the last three years, with Defiance winning last season's game 29-6. The Defiance/Bluffton matchup is the sixth longest Ohio Division III rivalry that is still running.
This Year's contest
Bluffton will enter the contest at 2-7 (0-5 HCAC). Defiance is 3-6 (2-3 HCAC). The Yellow Jackets have won their last two games, with the Beavers looking to finish the season strong and break their current losing streak.
Last game for Bluffton and Defiance
Bluffton hosted Manchester and lost 33-25 in triple overtime. Both teams seemed to have difficulties in the overtime periods as there was a fumble, missed field goal, interception and another fumble during the end of the game. The Spartans scored in the third overtime, to give Bluffton the ball. The Beavers were denied as a fumble ended the game. Ben Dodds led the team as the offensive weapon for Bluffton. He posted 31 rushes for 139 yards and two touchdowns along with five receptions for 41 yards. Dodds also returned the ball three times for 53 yards on kickoffs. Quarterback Jared Owens went 19-9-1 for 78 yards on the day. Scott Steiner led the defense by posting 16 tackles (7 solo, 9 assisted), 1.5 tackles for a loss for 4 yards and 2 pass deflections on the afternoon.
Defiance was idle last week, but faced Manchester on November 1 at home. The Yellow Jackets narrowly won the contest 20-16. Quarterback Corey Minnfield went 36-18-0 for 187 yards and 2 touchdowns on the day. Receiver Casey Johnson had 7 catches for 31 yards, with Aaron Schmidt posting 4 catches for 73 yards and a touchdown. Leading the defensive attack for Defiance was Scott Heighland with 13 tackles (11 solo, 2 assisted), 2 TFL's for a loss of 21 yards, 7 pass deflections and an interception.
Leading the Beavers on the year
Quarterback Jared Owens enters the contest with 1242 yards on the season with two touchdowns from the air. Owens is 179-105-7 for a completion percentage of 58.7 %. Ben Dodds leads the rushing attack with 968 yards on 229 carries (4.2 avg. per carry) and is on the top of the receiving column with 31 catches for 242 yards (7.8 avg. per carry). Dodds currently leads the HCAC in All-Purpose yards, averaging 188.4 ypg. Mark Gable is second in the receiving category with 30 catches for 444 yards (14.8 avg. per carry). Defensively, Chris Sommers posts 105 tackles (39 solo, 66 assisted) with four pass break ups, three tackles for a loss and one forced fumble for the year.
Leading the Yellow Jackets on the year
Quarterback Corey Minnfield is 295-155-12 for the season. He has thrown 1785 yards (198.3 yards per game) for 11 touchdowns and a completion percentage of 52.5. Jason Gendron leads the running attack with 1115 yards (123.9 yards per game) and nine touchdowns (4.5 avg. per carry). Aaron Schmidt posts 512 yards receiving off of 41 catches (12.5 avg. per carry) with 6 touchdowns on the season. Casey Johnson has 367 yards off 35 receptions (10.5 avg. per carry) with a single touchdown. The Yellow Jacket defensive leader is Ryan Ditty with 89 total tackles (51 solo, 38 assisted), 3.5 TFL's for 15 yards, one quarterback sack and one fumble recovery.
Bluffton in the Heartland Conference
As a team the Beavers lead the HCAC in rushing offense, averaging 195.3 yards per
game (1758 total yards). In the passing offense category the Beavers are seventh,
averaging 143.6 ypg. Bluffton ranks fifth in total offense averaging 338.9 ypg. The
Beavers defense ranks second in HCAC rushing defense allowing opponents only 103.7
ypg on the ground, they are seventh in pass defense, allowing 291.6 ypg. In total
defense Bluffton is sixth, allowing opponents a total of only 395.2 ypg. The Beavers
are fifth in scoring offense, averaging 19.3 ppg.
Beaver individuals in Heartland Conference
Ben Dodds continues to lead the HCAC in all purpose yards for the sixth straight week, averaging 188.4 ypg (1696 yds. total). He is first in the conference in scoring, averaging 7.3 points per game and also leads in touchdown scoring with 11 touchdowns for the year. Dodds currently ranks third in the conference in rushing with 968 total yards (107.6 ypg) with Jared Owens following at sixth in the league in rushing with 393 total yards (43.7 ypg). From the air Owens currently ranks seventh in passing with 1242 total yards (138.0 ypg). In total offense Owens ranks fifth, averaging 181.7 ypg. Chris Sommers leads the conference defensively with 105 tackles for the season (39 solo, 66 assisted).
Last Season Overall
Bluffton finished the 2002 campaign at 3-7 (1-5 HCAC). Defiance ended 3-7 (1-5 HCAC).