GAME PREVIEW CAPSULE
Central Washington (6-4, 6-3) at Dixie State (4-6, 4-5), today, 6 p.m., Hansen Stadium, St George, UT
Previous Meeting: Wildcats 27, Red Storm 24 (Wildcats win on last-second FG October 12, 2013 in Washington)
Broadcast: ESPN SportsRadio 106.1 FM; CEC-TV
Head coach: Scott Brumfeld (4th year, 10-31 overall)
Offense: Pistol, Pro Set
Defense: Pro 4-3
Last Game: Lost at Azusa Pacific University 23-20
Players to watch: Quarterback Griff Robles will be facing the top defense in the conference. In his last game against the Wildcats Robles was held to 362 yards passing, but even more importantly only 11 yards rushing. CWU kept one and sometimes two linebackers in just to contain Robles. Coach Brumfeld can probably plan on a similar game plan this weekend. Dixie is coming of a heart-breaking loss to conference leader Azusa Pacific. They will now have to face a defense that is very opportunistic. CWU continually finds ways to win despite being outperformed on the offensive side of the ball. RB Myles Burton will look to repeat his 100-yard performance in the earlier match. Joe Don Duncan and Mitch Frei also had over 100 yards receiving in the earlier matchup. On the defensive side, Jake Duncan, Robert Metz and Nick Largent will need to put Robles in good field position and try to get him on the field as much as possible.
Head Coach: John Picha (1st year, 6-4)
Defense: Pro 4-3
Last Game: Lost at Western Oregon 32-26
Players to watch: The Wildcats are led by running back Jordan Todd who is averaging 110 yards per game rushing. Quarterback Jake Nelson has returned as the starter but only averages 129 yards per game passing. The offense has relied on the defense to put them in good field position and has capitalized enough to eke out wins. The CWU defense have several players that make plays. They are led by top GNAC defensive player Isaiah Davis who has 6 interceptions this season.
This is a match-up between GNAC’s top offense (Dixie) versus GNAC’s top defense (CWU). Both teams are coming off close losses to the two conference leaders. CWU’s four losses this season have come when the opposing team has figured out how to run against them. If the Wildcats have success shutting down the run, they have capitalized on opposing teams’ turnovers to get their offense good field position. The Wildcat defense has scored four touchdowns. But they have also turned over the ball to their offense in the red zone six other times where CWU has scored touchdowns, arguably responsible for 10 of the 28 touchdowns scored. As good as they are in getting turnovers, their offense gives it up more. Dixie won the turnover battle in the first game and led most of the game.
STGnews Prediction: Red Storm 31, Wildcats 20
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