Week 6 CAA FCS Football Game Breakdowns

George Hammond

Week 6 Colonial Athletic Association Game Breakdowns

“We didn’t come here to pick up a check,” said Towson safety Jordan Dangerfield, who finished with seven tackles and a fumble recovery. “We came here to try to win and shock the world.”   And the Towson Tigers came pretty darn close Saturday night in Baton Rouge, La.   Before #4-ranked LSU had survived a 38-22 scare, the announced crowd of 92,000 (although because of rain the stadium was far from full) likely saw visions of Appalachian State-Michigan in their heads as the hometown Tigers heard a few boos and groans from the partisan crowd.

“I’m extremely conflicted,” Towson coach Rob Ambrose said to reporters after Saturday night’s contest. “You don’t line up to lose. With that being said, as a head coach, as an alum, as a father, I don’t think it’s humanly possible for me to be more proud of these players.”

Five of LSU’s first six drives ended with three punts, a fumble and a missed 51-yard field goal attempt, keeping Towson in the game. In fact, Towson led 9-7 in the second quarter before LSU scored 24 unanswered points.  Still, Towson controlled the ball for 34:42 and had more first downs (19-18) than LSU. Towson also forced three turnovers and outgained LSU on the ground, 188 to 158 yards. The Towson defense also recorded a season high four sacks.

For College Sports Madness’ #8 Tigers (2-2), however, the season’s biggest game is Saturday afternoon in Harrisonburg, Va., against #4 James Madison. Towson needs this game because it still has dates with Old Dominion, Delaware and a trip to Durham, N.H., not to mention an improving Villanova squad.  But looking ahead, don’t forget those New Hampshire Wildcats (1-1, 3-2). Their victory over Delaware on Saturday was huge and with a favorable schedule approaching (at Georgia State, Richmond and at Maine), #13 New Hampshire figures to be not only in the CAA race, but the race for a FCS playoff berth, too. 


# 8 TOWSON at # 4 JAMES MADISON (1 p.m. Saturday at Bridgeforth Stadium, Harrisonburg, VA)

Both teams are unbeaten in the conference, having won their only league contests. If you go by history, JMU has a big edge, but we all know this isn’t the Towson team of old (see LSU game). Towson hasn’t beaten JMU since 1992, hasn’t won in Harrisonburg since 1983 and is 5-17-1 lifetime against the Dukes. Plus, Towson is 0-7 against James Madison in CAA play. The two teams obviously have playmakers on both sides of the ball, but this one might rest on how well JMU’s defense can stop Towson running back Terrance West. The Dukes are eighth in the country in scoring defense, ninth in rushing defense and seventh in total defense. They held West Virginia to 42 points three weeks ago, which doesn’t sound like much until you consider WVU put up 70 last week against Baylor!

PROJECTED SCORE: James Madison 28, Towson 27


BROWN at RHODE ISLAND (1 p.m. Saturday at Meade Stadium, Kingston, RI)

It’s the battle for the Governor’s Cup, and the Rams would love to get their first victory in this in-state rivalry. Rhode Island (0-4) fell to Bowling Green 48-8 on Saturday while Ivy League member Brown (2-1) put on an impressive showing in the nation’s capital with a 37-10 victory over Georgetown. Senior tailback Spiro Theodhosi ran for 142 yards and a touchdown to lead the Bears’ offensive effort. Brown and Rhode Island have met 96 times, dating to 1909, with the Bears holding a 68-26-2 series advantage. Brown’s defense forced five URI turnovers in a 35-21 triumph last year, intercepting three passes and recovering two fumbles.

PROJECTED SCORE: Brown 24, Rhode Island 16


MAINE at #19 DELAWARE (3:30 p.m. Saturday at Delaware Stadium, Newark, DE)

Despite their 4-0 start, there have been skeptics among the Blue Hen faithful throughout the early season. Those skeptics might have been correct. Trailing by seven at halftime, New Hampshire erupted for 34 unanswered points in the second half Saturday as the Wildcats defeated Delaware 34-14. The Blue Hens scored with 34 seconds remaining. The Hens (4-1, 1-1) managed just 234 total yards to 472 for New Hampshire. If the Hens are to even think about making the playoffs this season, Saturday’s contest against Maine is a must win as is their next game against Rhode Island on Oct. 20. Last year, Delaware lost to both teams. Meanwhile, the Bears (1-3, 0-1) fell to Villanova 35-14 on Saturday. Maine allowed seven sacks in the contest.

PROJECTED SCORE: Delaware 31, Maine 10


#13 NEW HAMPSHIRE at GEORGIA STATE (3:30 p.m. Saturday at the Georgia Dome, Atlanta)

Quarterback Andy Vailas led the Wildcats’ (3-2, 1-1) second-half rally against Delaware. Vailas had two touchdown passes to R.J. Harris and rushed for another score. He was 23-of-36 for 315 yards. Harris, who was named CSM’s Offensive Player of the Week for the CAA, finished with seven receptions for 129 yards. Meanwhile, Georgia State (0-2, 0-5) continues to struggle. The Panthers have been outscored 192-50 this season with their latest loss, a 35-3 defeat to William & Mary, coming Saturday night in Williamsburg. Georgia State had seven turnovers. Donald Russell did have 134 yards rushing (his second-straight 100-yard effort).

PROJECTED SCORE: New Hampshire 42, Georgia State 14


WILLIAM & MARY at PENN (3:30 p.m. Saturday at Franklin Field in Philadelphia)

The Tribe got its first victory Saturday night when it defeated Georgia State 35-3. Keith McBride ran for 163 yards and two touchdowns as William & Mary (1-4, 1-2) outrushed Georgia State 312 yards to 92. After Georgia State took a 3-0 advantage in the first quarter, William & Mary scored 35 unanswered points. Twenty-eight came off four of Georgia State’s seven turnovers. Tribe quarterback Raphael Ortiz scored on two short rushing touchdowns while Darnell Laws’ 26-yard run in the third quarter put William & Mary up 21-3. This will be the first meeting between Penn and William & Mary in 17 years, and the contest marks the first time the Quakers have played host to the Tribe at Franklin Field since 1992. Penn (1-2) has a victory over Dartmouth while it lost to Villanova and Lafayette.

PROJECTED SCORE: William & Mary 27, Penn 20


RICHMOND at VILLANOVA (6 p.m. Saturday at Villanova Stadium, Villanova, PA)

Don’t look now, but this has become a significant contest in league play. Thanks to its 35-14 victory over Maine, Villanova (2-0, 4-1) is tied in the early going with Old Dominion for first place in the CAA. Kevin Monangai ran for 192 yards and two touchdowns to help Villanova against the Bears. And it got solid play from linebacker Devon Bridges, who was named CSM’s Defensive Player of the Week for the CAA, with two sacks, six tackles and a pass block. Villanova used a heavy dose of Monangai and strong defense to dominate the second half. Meanwhile, the Spiders (3-2, 1-1) got #5 Old Dominion’s attention in a 45-37 loss on Saturday. Quarterback John Laub had 339 passing yards and two touchdowns; however, the Spiders struggled on the ground, recording just 52 yards on 25 attempts.

PROJECTED SCORE: Villanova 24, Richmond 17


See All FCS Games of the Week Breakdowns