Week 5 CAA FCS Football Game Breakdowns

George Hammond

Week 5 Colonial Athletic Association Game Breakdowns

"One of the ways that we will be able to help lift our football program upward is through scheduling marquee matchups that expand our brand nationally," Towson coach Rob Ambrose said this summer. It’s a safe bet that No. 3 LSU (4-0) qualifies as a “marquee matchup” for the Tigers. After dismantling St. Francis (Pa.) 46-17 on Saturday, the Towson Tigers head south this weekend for a contest with perennial national power LSU. You read that right – LSU. "To play a perennial national contender is just another building block in the foundation being laid for the future, “Ambrose added. Towson will be paid $510,000 to play in the game, the largest payout in school history, a Towson athletics official said. And director of athletics Mike Waddell calls it a "once-in-a-lifetime opportunity" for his players. It's not the first time Towson has scheduled a quality FBS opponent. The Tigers have faced Navy, Northwestern and Indiana since 2008, and they play Maryland in October. But LSU, which survived an upset bid from Auburn on Saturday, and its 92,000-seat stadium, is something Towson doesn’t see in the CAA. ESPNU will televise the contest that begins at 7 p.m. The Towson-LSU contest isn’t the only intriguing game this weekend. After an impressive victory in Williamsburg, Va., Delaware (4-0) heads north to take on always-tough New Hampshire in a key contest. The Wildcats will try to recover from a wild 64-61 loss to Old Dominion while the Monarchs and record-setting quarterback Taylor Heinicke travel to take on rival Richmond.


#21 DELAWARE at #17 NEW HAMPSHIRE (Noon Saturday at Cowell Stadium, Durham, N.H.)

The Hens (4-0) travel north for a key game against New Hampshire (2-2). Delaware is off to its best start since 2007 when quarterback Joe Flacco led the Hens to the FCS national championship game against Appalachian State. The teams haven't met in the regular season since the Wildcats' 35-30 victory over the Hens on October 6, 2007 in Durham although they did meet in the playoffs two years ago when the Hens prevailed 16-9 at Delaware. The Hens lead the all-time series 20-10 dating to 1953. On Saturday, Andrew Pierce ran for 112 yards and two touchdowns to key the Hens’ 51-21 victory over winless William & Mary. Delaware dominated as it built a 27-7 halftime advantage. Meanwhile, the Wildcats were involved in one of the most-talked about contests of the weekend as they saw Old Dominion rally for a stunning 64-61 triumph behind quarterback Taylor Heinicke’s record-setting 730 passing yards. New Hampshire quarterback Andy Vailas wasn’t too shabby as he threw for 336 yards and five touchdowns. Expect the Hens to try to utilize Pierce to keep New Hampshire’s offense off the field. This is a tough call – especially in Durham.

Projected score: Delaware 31-28


VILLANOVA at MAINE (3:30 p.m. Saturday at Alfond Stadium, Orono, Maine)

Maine will try to regroup this weekend after falling to the University of Albany 30-20 on Saturday evening at Alfond Stadium. Maine is now 1-2 while Albany goes to 3-1.The Great Danes now own a 4-2 series advantage over Maine and a 7-5 record against Colonial Athletic Association opponents. Albany joins the CAA in football next season. Meanwhile, Villanova (3-1) cruised to a 24-8 win over Penn (0-2) with strong performances on both sides of the ball at Franklin Field on Saturday afternoon. Redshirt freshman quarterback John Robertson threw for a career high 213 yards and a touchdown and also had 55 rushing yards and a score to pace the Villanova offense, which surpassed 200 yards through the air and on the ground. This marked the fourth time in as many games this season that the Wildcats have surpassed 200 rushing yards but was the first time in 16 games dating to 2010 that Villanova threw for more than 200 yards.

Projected score: Villanova 24, Maine 20


#5 OLD DOMINION at RICHMOND (3:30 p.m. Saturday at Robins Stadium, Richmond, Va.)

After an opening-game loss to Virginia, the Spiders (3-1) have won three straight including Saturday’s 35-14 triumph against Georgia State in Atlanta. Senior quarterback Jon Laub finished 12-of-25 for 223 yards in the air and one passing touchdown besides his career-high 73 rushing yards on 12 carries and three rushing touchdowns. The competition gets tougher this weekend as Taylor Heinicke brings his high-flying Monarchs to town. All ODU did last week was rally to beat New Hampshire 64-61 in the highest-scoring game in CAA history. Heinicke completed 55 passes for a record-setting 730 yards.

Projected score: Old Dominion 45, Richmond 20


RHODE ISLAND at BOWLING GREEN (3:30 p.m. Saturday at Doyt Perry Stadium, Bowling Green, Ohio)

Rhode Island (0-3, 0-2 CAA) gave powerhouse James Madison (3-1, 1-0) plenty to worry about for three quarters before eventually falling 32-7 Saturday in Kingston, R.I. One bright spot for the Rams was wide receiver Brandon Johnson-Farrell, who became the sixth player in school history to eclipse 4,000 all-purpose yards in a career. Johnson-Farrell reached the mark with a 56-yard touchdown catch in the first quarter and finished with 108 all-purpose yards. He now has 4,032 yards. Meanwhile, Bowling Green was shut out for the first time since 1998 as it fell to Virginia Tech 37-0. A 21-point surge in the second quarter for Virginia Tech broke the contest open as the Falcons couldn’t manage much offense against the powerful Hokies. The loss dropped Bowling Green’s record to 1-3 with other losses coming to Toledo and Florida in the season-opener.

Projected score: Bowling Green 31, Rhode Island 13


GEORGIA STATE at WILLIAM & MARY (7 p.m. Saturday at Zable Stadium, Williamsburg, Va.)

Something’s got to give Saturday night as both teams are looking for their first victory. After three heartbreaking losses to open the season, William & Mary (0-4, 0-2) struggled on Saturday against visiting Delaware as it bowed 51-21. Although W&M (0-4, 0-2) outgained Delaware (4-0, 1-0), 362-359, the Blue Hens scored touchdowns on an interception, a fumble recovery and a blocked field goal. Sophomore wide receiver Tre McBride led W&M offensively with a career-high seven catches for 137 yards. Georgia State (0-4, 0-1) fell to Richmond 35-14 as the Panthers continue to struggle. In four games, the Panthers have been outscored by a combined 157-47. Running back Donald Russell did rush for 119 yards and added five receptions for 51 yards.

Projected score: William & Mary 34, Georgia State 17


#8 TOWSON at LSU (7 p.m. Saturday night at Tiger Stadium, Baton Rouge, La.)

Sophomore Terrance West scored three touchdowns in the 46-17 win over St. Francis as he broke the school record for career rushing touchdowns. In 14 career games, he has now scored 34 touchdowns. Towson rushed for a season-high 262 yards on 45 attempts. It marked the second consecutive game that Towson ran for more than 200 yards. In three games, the Tigers are averaging 196.3 rushing yards per game. Sophomore Derrick Joseph had a big night against the Red Flash as he returned two kickoffs for 148 yards, one a 99-yarder to tie the game at 7-7. Unlike LSU’s previous three games this season, nonconference routs that were over in the third quarter, Saturday’s 12-10 victory at Auburn didn't end until LSU cornerback Tharold Simon intercepted quarterback Kiehl Frazier's pass near midfield on the game's final play. Even though the Tigers are ranked in the top five nationally, they’ve done it quietly as their first three victories came against North Texas, Washington and Idaho.

Projected score: LSU 48, Towson 10


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