Texas A&M-Commerce Lions (5-2, 3-0)
# 9 Incarnate Word Cardinals (7-1, 2-1)
When: Saturday, October 29, 2 PM
Where: Ernest Hawkins Field at Memorial Stadium, Commerce, TX
Weather: Showers and 61 Degrees at Kickoff, Winds North at 9 MPH.
Listen: Lion Sports Network – KETR 88.9 FM, Commerce (http://www.ketr.org) Charlie Chitwood (Play BY Play) Brock Callaway (Color/Analysis) BJ Laudermilk (Sidelines and Studio/Scores)
LIVE VIDEO: ESPN+ | https://www.espn.com/espnplus/catalog/01209caa-9a9a-4275-b784-c8cdff2fbd7c/southland-conference#bucketId=29804$$sourceCollection=Browse_By_Conference_%28ESPN+%29
LIVE STATS: http://statb.us/b/410405
- WR Andrew Armstrong-The Lions Wideout has emerged as one of best wideouts in the entire country. He is on pace to break multiple receiving records that have not been touched in a while. Records aside, if he shows himself to be as good as he has been all year, that will open up seams for other recievers to get open, and possibly open up the running game.
- LB Michael Noble-The Big play Linebacker could create real havoc for a potent UIW offense.
- DB Darius Williams-The hard hitting DB leads the Lion secondary against their biggest test this year.
- QB Eric Rodriguez-The Lion signal caller has a chance to show himself to be one of the best QB’s in the entire FCS. He needs to keep the offense on the field and score points.
- Punter Mitchell McGarry-If he is needed, his punting needs to give UIW long fields to work with.
Storylines-Incarnate Word has only had a football program for 14 years. The Lions have played the Cardinals three times, all as members of the Lone Star Conference, and the Lions lost all 3 games to them. This game has implications so much bigger than ANY of those other matchups have. The Cardinals come in as the top ranked offense in the Southland to face the top ranked Defense in the Southland, owned by the Lions Blue Gang Defense. If the Lion defense can continue its stellar play by preventing the big play, which UIW thrives off of, and the Lion offense can move the ball and keep the Cardinals off the field, that will present a very good opportunity to take this one from the Cardinals and tighten their grip on first place in the Southland Conference. It also pits one of the best and most experienced Texas College coaches in David Bailiff against UIW’s GJ Kinne, once a schoolboy passer phenom for Canton and Gilmer, before staying briefly at Texas and then moving to Tulsa where he started from 2009-11 and spending some time in the NFL and CFL before going into coaching. Bailiff faced off against Kinne when he was at Rice and Kinne was Tulsa’s Quarterback, Kinne winning all 3 matchups. It will be defense versus offense in the biggest game The Hawk has seen since the Division II Semifinal in 2017 against Harding. A win almost clinches a conference title in year one for the Lions, something that has hardly ever been done by any school transitioning to higher Divisions. This game will be another measuring to stick to see how far we have come and how far we have left to go, and the biggest test on all sides of the ball for the Lions.