BUCKHANNON -- West Virginia Wesleyan's football team currently sits in fourth place in the 11-team Mountain East Conference. They control their own destiny in two areas; they need a win over the visiting West Virginia State Yellow Jackets to secure sole possession of that fourth spot, and two, an opportunity to produce the program's first winning season in six years.
Bobcats and Jackets Battle For Winning Season
Nov 09, 2017
In an interview earlier in the week, head coach Del Smith addressed the significance of this weekend's game.
"We have some big goals right in front of us," Smith said. "A fourth place finish would be our highest since the formation of the Mountain East...that would be something positive to hang our hat on."
Wesleyan's defense and special teams have been the key to the Bobcat success. Defensively, the Bobcat defense is currently second in the Mountain East in points allowed (18.1 ppg). Linebacker Brandon Grayson leads the team with 87 total tackles (61 solo, 26 assist), and is tied for the league lead with three fumble recoveries.
Jujuan Linzy leads the special teams with his explosive returns. He leads the league in both kickoff returns (25.0) and punt returns (18.1). The special teams have produced four touchdowns while the defense has produced three on fumble returns.
Wesleyan faces a West Virginia State squad that is coached by former WVU receiver and Wesleyan assistant John Pennington. The high powered State offense is averaging 36.8 points per game and 464.1 total yards. Quarterback Matt Kinnick has passed for 2654 yards this year, and is only 70 yards shy of 10,000 for his career.
Devin Montgomery is the leading Wesleyan runner with 516 yards in a season where injuries have limited his touches. Freshman Kenny Lewis Jr. leads the receiving corps with 40 receptions for 468 yards.
Kickoff is set for Saturday afternoon at 1:00 PM.
( Photo Courtesy Sam Santilli )