EMORY, Va. - After a week off, the Emory & Henry College Football Team (1-2, 0-0 ODAC) opens up Old Dominion Athletic Conference play at Washington and Lee University (1-2, 0-0 ODAC) this Friday in Lexington, Virginia. In their last game, the Wasps fell by a 43-36 score to long-time rival, Maryville (Tenn.) College (2-1, 0-0 USA South). Although the E&H offense outgained Maryville 552-318, the Wasps' five turnovers and 121 penalty yards were a major factor in the outcome of the game.
Last year, the Generals defeated the Wasps by a 42-14 score at Fred Selfe Stadium, racking up over 500 rushing yards. At that time, W&L was the number-18 ranked team in the country and was leading the nation in rush offense. Overall, Emory & Henry leads the all-time series, 29-16.
Emory & Henry
Emory & Henry is currently averaging 464.7 yards per game which is good for third in the conference. The team is also putting up 34 points per game thus far. Those numbers can certainly be attributed to wide receiver Jesse Santiago (Yorktown, Va.). The sophomore leads the ODAC with 383 receiving yards and is second in the conference with four touchdowns. Santiago is averaging 127.7 yards per game, nearly 30 yards per contest more than the next closest receiver. One of the negatives for the Wasps is the number of penalties and turnovers committed so far this year. The Wasps have committed the most penalties in the league and also are minus-five in turnover margin. Despite those mistakes on the offensive side of the ball, the offense averages more yards and points than it did a year ago.
The Wasps' defense has been dominant at getting to the quarterback this year. E&H leads the ODAC with 10 sacks through three games so far. The Wasps have registered a sack on 12.5 percent of opponent's drop backs. Considering that only five Division I FBS schools have a higher sack rate, E&H is getting to the quarterback at a high rate. Sophomore defensive end Davon Keith (Columbia, S.C.) leads the ODAC in sacks (four) and tackles for loss (seven). As a whole, the Emory & Henry defense leads the ODAC in third-down conversion defense at 28.3 percent.
Washington and Lee
After winning the ODAC with a 10-0 record last year, the Generals come into Friday's game with a 1-2 record. The Generals once again have a potent rushing offense this season, ranking sixth in NCAA Division III in rushing offense at 332.7 yards per game. W&L is led by quarterback Charlie Nelson, who has run for 226 yards on the ground and thrown for 220. The squad has six backs who have rushed for at least 100 yards thus far. Defensively, Washington and Lee is giving up 416 yards and 31 points per game. The Generals boast the highest turnover margin in the ODAC at +2. The key to a win and starting the conference schedule off right is containing the triple option rushing attack.
The Wasps and Generals will kick things off at Wilson Field in Lexington, Virginia Friday at 6:30 p.m.