MOUNT PLEASANT – Iowa Wesleyan College will welcome the alumni back once again when it plays the 85th Homecoming football game in school history when it faces Quincy (Ill.) University on Saturday at 1 p.m. at Mapleleaf Stadium.
The Tigers will look to stay ahead of a Quincy team that is currently below IWC in the Mid-States Football Association Midwest League standings. The Hawks come into Saturday’s game 0-2 in league play and losers of their last five games after a season-opening win.
Iowa Wesleyan comes into the game 2-5 overall, 1-3 in the MSFA Midwest. The Tigers lost last week to rival William Penn by a 44-14 score. The Statesmen rushed for 353 yards and hit over the top for several big plays in the passing game. Wesleyan gained 161 yards of offense and had several chances to make it close in the second half, but Penn put the game out of reach in the second half.
Quincy lost last week to Grand View by a 39-16 score. The Hawks were victimized by six turnovers as the Vikings pulled away with 21 points in the third quarter. Three quarterbacks played for Quincy and combined to complete just 16 of 38 passes with five interceptions.
THIS WEEK’S OPPONENT – Under veteran Head Coach Bill Terlisner, Quincy has been a program on the upswing in the MSFA the past few years with three straight winning seasons, but this year has been a struggle. The team’s season has paralleled that of the Tigers in some ways. The Hawks appeared set for a big year when they opened against NCAA I-AA Indiana State, came back from a 17-0 deficit and defeated the Sycamores 26-20 in overtime. It’s been tough sledding since, though, as QU has lost five straight, many by lopsided margins, including a 72-3 loss to I-AA SE Missouri State and a 51-0 defeat by NAIA nationally ranked St. Francis (Ind.).
The Hawks have most notably had issues at the quarterback position, where four different players have started and seen significant time in their spread offense in six games. Turnovers have been an issue (-4 turnover margin) and Quincy has been singed in the passing game, ranking 15th in the MSFA in that category. QU does feature the top kicker in the MSFA in Alex Beard, who has twice tied the school record of 10 made field goals in a season, including already tying the record this year in just six games.
SERIES HISTORY – IWC and Quincy have met eight times before, with the Hawks winning seven of those meetings, including the last seven. Wesleyan’s lone win in the series came in 1987, a 10-0 win in the first meeting ever between the two. Last year’s game was probably the most exciting one in the series, with QU holding on for a 35-28 win. The Tigers gained 517 yards of total offense, including 375 yards of total offense by quarterback Bryan Abihider. Lawrence Moore also caught 11 passes for 188 yards and Jaren Maybin rushed for 114 yards on 19 carries, but Quincy scored 22 points in the third quarter including a 72-yard punt return by Josh Mitchell for a touchdown.
HOMECOMING HISTORY – IWC’s Homecoming game has been played every year but two since the first Homecoming football game, a 7-0 loss on Oct. 19, 1923 to State Teachers College (now the University of Northern Iowa). Wesleyan did not play a Homecoming game in 1943 and 1944 during World War II, when the school did not field complete 11-man teams.
The Tigers are 42-38-4 all-time on Homecoming, losing their last three and 11 of their last 12. The last Homecoming win for IWC was Oct. 8, 2005, a 24-17 win over Olivet Nazarene. Last year the Tigers lost to Olivet Nazarene 28-12 in front of the alumni, and Wesleyan has faced Quincy one other time for Homecoming, a 34-15 loss to the Hawks on Oct. 14, 2006.
LEADERS FROM PENN – Few may have expected it going into the year with a pair of MSFA all-conference honorees (Moore and Greg Fields) at the receiver spots, but through seven games the top game by a Wesleyan receiver has come from freshman Qadeer Stewart. The Morena Valley, Calif., native had five catches last week for 66 yards, the most yards receiving in a game thus far this season by a Tiger wideout.
Several players also had strong games on defense last week. Linebacker Chris Owens was all over the field and finished with 11 tackles, while Nate Washington and Darious Watson added 10 tackles each. Freshman Deonte Fletcher had the biggest play of his young career, a 51-yard fumble recovery and return for a touchdown, and Matthew Palmer-Newton continues to make plays and recovered his second fumble of the year.
NEEDING A HOT WIRE? – The first quarter of Saturday’s game will be especially intriguing to watch when considering neither team has gotten off to particularly good starts in their games this year. IWC has been outscored 59-20 in the opening 15 minutes of its games this year, though the Tigers’ worst quarters have actually been the third and fourth quarters so far. That 39-point differential in the first is nothing compared to the struggles of the Hawks this year, though. Quincy is scoreless in the first quarter this year, having been outscored by a whopping 85-0 in the opening quarter of its games. The Hawks haven’t been much better in the second quarter, where they have been outscored 73-19.
RUNNING BACK BATTLE – Another point to watch will be the running back position, which will feature two of the MSFA Midwest League’s best. IWC features Maybin, the fifth all-time rusher in school history, while Quincy counters with senior Corey Williams. Williams is the third-leading rusher in school history with 2,380 career yards. Interestingly, neither player had much of an impact in his team’s game last week. Maybin was held to three yards rushing on just eight carries against William Penn, while Williams gained 41 yards on nine carries against Grand View.
ON THE AIRWAVES – Iowa Wesleyan College will be broadcasting online again for Saturday’s game as well as for the rest of the Tiger football games throughout the season. An online broadcast will be available at www.iwc.edu/onlinemedia. IWC football redshirt Kenrick Lawson will be calling the game. The game will also be broadcast by WGEM-AM 1440 out of Quincy, with Broc Hampsmire providing play-by-play. A Web stream of that broadcast also will be available at www.wgemradio.com.
For more information regarding the IWC football program or any of the Tiger athletic teams, contact sports information director Adam Glatczak (319-385-6306 phone; 319-385-6384 FAX; firstname.lastname@example.org e-mail) or log on to IWC's athletics web site at www.iwc.edu/athletics.
IWC-Quincy Complete Game Notes