College Football: St. Xavier at St. Francis
September 26, 2013 6:56PM
Updated: October 28, 2013 7:38AM
No. 5 St. Xavier (2-1) at No. 22 St. Francis (2-1)
When: 5 p.m. Saturday at Joliet Memorial Stadium
Coaches: Mike Feminis, St. Xavier; Joe Curry, St. Francis.
Previous meeting: St. Xavier won 31-3 at home Sept. 8, 2012.
St. Xavier preview: The Cougars are coming off a 41-10 win Saturday over then-No. 22 Robert Morris. The St. Xavier offense has been clicking with redshirt freshman John Rhode at the helm. RB Nick Pesek got going after a slow start to the season, running for 92 yards and two touchdowns on 13 carries in Saturday’s win. ... LB Zach Dolph, a Joliet Catholic product who has a team-high 30 tackles, returns to his former home stadium. ... “With so many players knowing each other from the area, that always adds some spice to this game,” said Feminis, a St. Francis alum. “I’m sure it’ll be very competitive.”
St. Francis preview: The Saints suffered a heartbreaking 41-39 loss Saturday to Trinity International, falling on a field goal with 16 seconds left in the game. ... Saturday will be the home opener for St. Francis, which went 4-2 in Joliet last season. ... With QB E.J. White leading the way, the Saints rank fifth in the NAIA, averaging 537 yards per game offensively. ... White is tops in the nation in passing yards per game (364) and total offense per game (438 yards). ... White’s top targets include De La Salle alum Troy Torrence (19 catches, 243 yards, 3 TDs), Elliot Allen (11, 257, 1) and Trace Wanless (19, 237 3).
What Feminis said: “St. Francis is a scary team, especially offensively. They have a lot of playmakers, and White is a big threat with his arms and legs so our defense will have its hands full.”
Next week: St. Xavier hosts No. 7 Grand View (Iowa). St. Francis visits Concordia (Mich.).