Posted: Oct 18, 2019
Capital Crusaders (0-5, 0-4 OAC) at #2 Mount Union (5-0, 4-0 OAC)
Saturday, October 19, 1:30 pm | Mount Union Stadium (Alliance, Ohio)
SCOUTING THE PURPLE RAIDERS
D'Angelo Fulford returns under center and he so far has a line of 86-120-1386 with 22 touchdowns to zero interceptions. His favorite target is senior WR Justin Hill, who has hauled in 31 catches for 694 yards and 12 of the team's 24 passing touchdowns. Josh Petruccelli leads the rushing attack behind 538 yards and six touchdowns on 76 carries (7.1 ypc). He is one of six Purple Raiders to have over 100 yards rushing on the year. The defense, which allows less than nine points per game, spreads the numbers around well. Junior DB Kordell Ford leads the team with 23 tackles, five for a loss, and two sacks. The defense has tallied seven interceptions, all by different players. Sophomore DB Derrick Bradley leads the team with six passes defended.
THE LAST TIME THEY MET ...
... the Purple Raiders built a 49-0 lead heading into halftime after scoring five touchdowns in the second quarter. Capital trailed just 14-0 coming out of the first frame but Mount Union scored three times on plays from five yards or fewer, one pick-six, and one 45-yard passing play. From there, MTU cruised to a 77-3 victory. Capital's lone points came off the boot of placekicker Blake Middleton, who converted a 26-yard field goal in the middle of the third quarter.
HISTORY WITH MOUNT UNION
Capital seeks its first win over Mount Union since the 1987 season when they defeated the Purple Raiders 26-25 en route to becoming OAC Champions. Mount Union has won the last 32 meetings and holds a 40-12 advantage over Capital in the all-time series.
CAP'S LAST TIME OUT
Capital hosted John Carroll University last week but was beaten 90-0 by the Blue Streaks. The Crusaders had a promising opening drive cut short just outside of the red zone by a JCU interception. The Blue Streaks began to roll with four touchdowns before halftime, three on plays of 55 yards or more. JCU came back to score 31 points in both the third and fourth quarters while keeping Cap off the board. CU was held to just 141 yards of total offense while JCU compiled 605 yards.
THE SWITCH FOR SMITH
Sophomore Mike Smith quietly made a position switch in the offseason. Smith came to Cap from Ohio Dominican University (Division II) as a safety but missed much of his first year due to injury. He returned to camp and made the switch to wide receiver. After his game against Baldwin Wallace, we'd say it was a successful one. Smith elevated up the depth chart after an injury to David Barnett took him out of the game. Smith went on to lock on with QB Mitch Machock and made six catches for 68 yards, his longest a 21-yard strike.
TAKING THE SNAPS
Capital has been looking for its replacement under center and has had three different players take snaps this season. Junior Andrew Ray began the season as QB1. Junior Mitchell Machock played in the opener as well, and then supplanted Ray on the depth chart for Week 2. However, Machock's climb to the top was stalled by an injury sustained in the first half of the Marietta contest. Freshman Justin McClelland has taken snaps late in all three games. Machock returned against BW on Oct. 5 and started last week against JCU. Here are their breakdowns through three games in 2019:
Ray: 40-69-352-1-7 (24)
Machock: 48-104-482-2-5 (23)
McClelland: 7-16-44-0-1 (15)
JUST A REMINDER, IT'S NOT OVER YET
While Capital's record may not be what was desired coming into this week, need we remind you that last year the Crusaders finished the 2018 season with three straight wins to end the season? Capital lost seven straight but after a 49-46 loss to Ohio Northern, Cap rattled off wins at Otterbein (23-19), vs. Wilmington (38-17), and at Muskingum (33-28). They can very well do the same in 2019!
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