DATE: Saturday, Nov. 6, 2010 -- 2 p.m. (CDT)
Dwight T. Reed Stadium – Jefferson City, Mo.
THIS WEEK: For the third straight week Azusa Pacific is on a plane, this time heading to the state of Missouri where the Cougars will visit Lincoln University Saturday (Nov. 6) in a 2 p.m. (CDT) game in Jefferson City.
SERIES NOTES: This is the first-ever meeting between the NCAA Division II independent Lincoln and the NAIA independent Azusa Pacific.
vs. NCAA DII: Since 1996, Azusa Pacific is 13-16 vs. NCAA Division II teams. Until 2008, the Cougars had taken 7 of 9 meetings and 8 of 11 vs. DII teams. However, they have now dropped 10 straight since beating Dixie State, 30-20, on the road in 2007.
IN THE SHOW ME STATE: Azusa Pacific has made one other trip to Missouri. The Cougars opened the 2007 season at the inaugural First Down Classic in Platte City, Mo., just north of Kansas City, and fell to MidAmerica Nazarene University, 59-38. After rallying from 18 down to tie the game at 31-all early in the fourth quarter, Azusa Pacific surrendered 3 touchdowns in less than 4 minutes to lose to the Pioneers.
IS THIS IT? For 8 Azusa Pacific seniors this could be their last game in a Cougar uniform. Or will it be? Two weeks ago the Cougars figured their postseason possibilities were dim at best. However, back-to-back victories combined with successive losses for Webber International University have catapulted the Cougars back to the top of the NAIA independent heap and in contention for a postseason berth. If the Cougars beat Lincoln, and get some help over the next 2 weekends, they could be playing again on Nov. 20 in the opening round of the NAIA playoffs at a site to be determined.
NATIONAL RANKING: After 1 week out of the NAIA Coaches Top 25 Poll, the Cougars bounced back in this week, checking in at No. 22 for their seventh appearance in the Top 25 in the past 8 weeks. Additionally, Azusa Pacific is ranked No. 24 in the Victory Sports Network Poll.
ON THE INTERNET: Azusa Pacific’s student-run KAPU radio is not traveling to Jefferson City, Mo., for the game. However, the game can be heard live through the Lincoln broadcast at www.klik1240.com.
PLAYERS OF THE WEEK: Azusa Pacific’s John van den Raadt and Jake Jones were named the NAIA Independent Players of the Week for their rolls in the Cougars’ victory at Southern Oregon last Saturday. Van den Raadt accounted for 308 yards of total offense and recorded his fifth 100-yard rushing game of the season. He completed 15-of-25 passes for 171 yards, throwing 2 TDs of 33 and 29 yards, and he ran for 137 yards on 13 carries (10.1 avg.). His 80-yard TD run, the longest run from scrimmage by a Cougar since 2003, put Azusa Pacific up 21-6 in the second quarter.
Jones registered a career-high 3 sacks with another tackle for loss, and he finished with 9 tackles (6 solo). He accounted for 28 lost yards in Azusa Pacific’s most lopsided win ever at Southern Oregon. He led a Cougar defense that held SOU to just 47 rushing yards, and the Raiders’ 220 yards of total offense was the lowest for a Cougar opponent this year.
BEEN HERE BEFORE: In 2000, Azusa Pacific had to win its last regular-season game (a 38-6 verdict over Chapman) to move its record to 6-3 and then had to wait 2 weeks, including a bye week, for the final NAIA Coaches Poll to find it out it had indeed qualified for the postseason play, falling to MidAmerica Nazarene in a first-round game.