Homecoming game for MU sprint football
The Mansfield University Mountaineers will return to the friendly confines of Karl Van Norman Field for the first time since the season opener when they host the Eagles of Post University in a CSFL Homecoming tilt this Saturday afternoon.
The game is also the 13th Annual Josh Palmer Pigskin Classic with the winner taking home the coveted Palmer Cup.
Kickoff is set for 1 p.m. at Karl Van Norman Field. The game will be streamed lived by ESPN Radio Williamsport with Shane Wilbur handling the play-by-play chores. A streaming link, as well as a link for live stats, will be available at GoMounties.com.
Now in its 13th year, the Josh Palmer Pigskin Classic was established as a fund raising and awareness raising project for the Josh Palmer Fund. The Josh Palmer Fund was established by former Mountaineer football player and assistant coach Josh Palmer who overcame Hodgkin's disease and return to the gridiron.
The Josh Palmer Fund is a support organization for local cancer patients and their families in the battle against cancer. More than $900,000 has been raised through the JPF since its inception.
Fans can help support the Josh Palmer Fund by buying a Josh Palmer Pigskin Classic at the front gate of Van Norman Field. The shirt also gets you free admission to the game. In addition, a raffle of more than 25 NFL, MLB and collegiate items will be held including game tickets to Army, Syracuse and Penn State games along with other items of special interest. Raffle tickets will be available at the front gate prior to the game.
After winning the season opener 24-14 over Princeton before a CSFL record of more than 6200 fans at Van Norman Field, the Mountaineers have suffered back-to-back setbacks at Penn (42-14) and at Navy (41-0) last week. It was the first time the Mountaineers have been shut out in a game since the 2009 season.
Post is 2-1 on the season after beating Princeton 54-14 at home last week. Post opened the season with a 21-10 win over Cornell followed by a 38-6 loss to defending CSFL Champion Army.
A young Mountaineer team has been plagued by injuries early in the season with five starters from the season opening win over Princeton out for the Navy game including two of top offensive players in running back Jeremy Estremera and wide receiver Casey Huff.
The Mountaineer offense ranks 6th in the CSFL in scoring (12.7 ppg) and 8th in total offense (195.7 ypg) through the first three games of the season.
Mansfield is hopefully to have Estremera back in the lineup after missing the Navy game. The junior running back ranks third in the CSFL in rushing averaging 93.0 yards per game and has scored all four of Mansfield's touchdowns on the year.
Sophomore quarterback Ben Pepper is a threat both passing and running the ball. For the season, Pepper has completed 21-of-43 passes for 202 yards while running for 115 yards on 37 carries. Sophomore Joe Bucek has been the top receiver, catching seven passes for 67 yards. Levi Eck and David Wallace each have three catches on the year.
The offense line of seniors Blaine Wainwright and Josh Stone along with juniors Brendan McDermott, Jared Berken and Kyle Sadler have shown steady improvement.
Mansfield ranks 7th in scoring defense (32.3 ppg) and total defense (345.0 ypg). The Mountaineers have been more effective stopping the run ranking 6th in the CSFL (146.7 ypg).
Senior Jake Myers is one of the top defensive players in the league, ranking third overall with an average of 10.0 stops per game. Sophomore Mike Bucek and senior Jonathan Keller both rank among the top 20 tackles in the league.
Post has shown a productive offense through the first three games averaging 27.0 points and 265.0 yards per game. Most of that yardage has come on the ground with the Eagles ranking third in the league in rushing averaging 163.7 yards per game.
Much of that yardage has come through freshman running back James Harrington who ranks second in the CSFL in rushing averaging 112.3 yards per outing. The Eagles also have a pair of freshmen quarterbacks in Javon Martin and Greg Volpe. Post has two veteran receivers in Jay'Len Mahan and Daniel Awwad who have combined for 11 of Post 16 receptions on the season for 184 yards and two touchdowns.
Mansfield is back at Van Norman Field next Saturday to take on Army for Military Appreciation Day.