Nov. 3, 2011
The Game: Johns Hopkins (8-0, 7-0 Centennial) welcomes Franklin & Marshall (3-5, 3-4 CC) to Homewood Field for the Blue Jays’ final regular season home game. Note that kickoff has been changed to noon (originally set for 1 pm) as Johns Hopkins is also hosting the Centennial Conference men’s and women’s soccer championships at Homewood Field this weekend.
The Teams: Johns Hopkins improved to 8-0 overall and 7-0 in the Centennial Conference as the Blue Jays knocked off Ursinus, 37-9, in the rain, sleet and snow at Homewood Field last Saturday. The Diplomats slipped to 3-5 overall and 3-4 in the Centennial Conference with a 40-14 loss at home to Susquehanna. The F&M-Susquehanna game was played in a steady snow.
Centennial Conference Champions: Johns Hopkins clinched at least a share of its third straight Centennial Conference title with last week’s 37-9 win over Ursinus. This is the seventh Centennial Conference title for the Blue Jays since 2002.
Just to Clarify: Johns Hopkins clinched only a share of the Centennial title with last week’s win over Ursinus. The Blue Jays can clinch the outright title with a win this week against Franklin & Marshall.
Playoff Bound: Johns Hopkins secured the Centennial Conference’s automatic bid to the upcoming NCAA Playoffs with the victory last Saturday vs. Ursinus. This will be JHU’s third trip to the NCAA Playoffs. Hopkins first qualified for the NCAAs in 2005, when the Blue Jays fell to Thiel in the first round. The Blue Jays returned to the NCAAs in 2009 and made a stunning run to the NCAA Quarterfinals. Seeded sixth in the South Region, the Blue Jays stunned third-seeded Hampden-Sydney (23-7) and second-seeded Thomas More (31-29) on the road in the first two rounds before falling in the South Region Championship Game, 12-0, at Wesley.
The Coaches: Johns Hopkins is coached by Jim Margraff, who is now in his 22nd year as the head coach at JHU and sports a 145-78-3 (.648) record. He is the all-time winningest coach in school history and is also the all-time winningest coach in Centennial Conference history with 99 all-time league victories. He can become the first Centennial Conference head coach to reach 100 league wins with a victory this week against Franklin & Marshall. Franklin & Marshall is coached by John Troxell, who is now in his sixth season as the head coach at F&M and enters this week’s game against Johns Hopkins with a record of 29-31 (.483).
Honoring the Seniors: This week’s game will be the final regular season home game in the careers of the seniors on the 2011 Johns Hopkins football team. By many standards, this is the class by which all future classes will be measured at Johns Hopkins. Consider:
• Johns Hopkins has compiled a record 34-9 since the current seniors arrived in 2008. The JHU record for most wins by a class is 36 (2005).
• The Blue Jays have earned at least a share of three straight Centennial Conference titles.
• Johns Hopkins will make its fourth straight post-season appearance this season (two NCAA, two ECAC). Only JHU’s class of 2005 also qualified for the post-season all four years.
• Success has come at home and on the road for the seniors. The Blue Jays are 16-4 (.800) at Homewood Field and 18-5 (.783) on the road in their career.
These are the Facts: The win against Ursinus improved JHU’s all-time record to 479-473-58 (.503). Johns Hopkins moved its all-time record over .500 for the first time since 1912 with the 41-0 victory at Moravian on September 17.
About the 8-0 Start: Johns Hopkins is 8-0 for the first time in school history. JHU had previously won its first seven games of a season three times (1892, 2003, 2005), but had never won eight straight to open a season before this year.
Streaking: Johns Hopkins closed the 2010 season with five straight wins and has run that streak to 13 with eight wins to open the 2011 season. The 13-game streak is the longest in school history, surpassing 11-game streaks that bridged the 2002-03 and 2004-05 seasons. JHU has outscored the opposition 569-131 during the winning streak.
The 13-game winning streak is also the second-longest in Centennial Conference history. Dickinson won 14 straight games from 1987-88.
More Streaking: JHU’s 13-game winning streak is the second-longest active Division III streak in the nation. Two-time defending national champion Wisconsin-Whitewater has currently won 38 straight games.
A Final Streak: In addition to boasting the second-longest active Division III winning streak in the nation, the Blue Jays also boast the third-longest active overall winning streak in college football (NCAA). Wisconsin-Whitewater’s 38-game run is the longest, while Stanford currently has a 16-game run. Johns Hopkins is one of two teams (Colorado State Pueblo - Division II) that has an active 13-game winning streak.
Ok, One More: Johns Hopkins’ current 11-game winning streak in Cenntennial Conference games is the longest in school history and is tied for the fourth-longest in league history.
Poll Position: Johns Hopkins is ranked 11th in this week’s AFCA Poll and has been ranked in the top 25 in each of the seven weeks since the poll debuted for the 2011 season. The Blue Jays opened at #23 on September 19 before moving up to 20th, 16th, 15th, 14th and then 12th last week.
Johns Hopkins is also ranked 14th in this week’s d3football.com poll. JHU was among the teams listed as receiving votes for the first four weeks of the d3football.com poll before moving into the top 25 on September 25.
The Johns Hopkins Office of Athletic Communications uses the AFCA Poll to reflect JHU’s official ranking at the time of a game. The AFCA Top 25 can be found on page five (5) of this release.
More Poll Position: Johns Hopkins checks in at number four in this week’s Lambert Meadowlands Football Poll. The Blue Jays were ranked eight in the first Lambert Poll of the season and have steadily jumped to sixth, fifth and now fourth this week. The poll ranks teams in the East in all four Divisions of NCAA Football (FBS, FCS, Division II, Division III) and the team at the top of the poll at the end of the season is awarded the prestigious Lambert Cup. Johns Hopkins’ highest finish in the Lambert Poll came in 2009, when the Blue Jays finished second.
Offense Rolling: The Blue Jays rank either first or second in the Centennial Conference in every major statistical category. Entering this week’s game vs. Franklin & Marshall, JHU ranks first in passing offense (311.2), scoring offense (46.2) and total offense (506.0). The Blue Jays also rank second in rushing offense (194.8).
More Offense: In addition to ranking first or second in the Centennial in every major statistical category, the Blue Jays also rank second in the nation in total offense (506.0), third in scoring offense (46.2) and 12th in passing offense (311.2).
Offense Rolls During Win Streak: Johns Hopkins has been consistent on both sides of the ball during the current 13-game winning streak. The Blue Jays have scored 24 or more points in all 13 games and have rolled up at least 381 yards in each of the wins as well. On the flip side, JHU has held 11 of those 13 opponets to less than 17 points and 285 yards of total offense.
By Air or Ground: Johns Hopkins has scored a school-record 52 touchdowns (previous record of 51 came last season) in eight games this season and those 52 are pretty well distributed. The Blue Jays have 26 rushing touchdowns, 22 passing touchdows, two via interception return and two on fumble returns.
Rigaud, Fazio Fuel Ground Attack: Junior Jonathan Rigaud and senior Nick Fazio are leading a ground game that is averaging 194.8 yards and more than three touchdowns per game.
Rigaud has rushed for a career-high 674 yards on 103 carries (6.5 yards/rush) and ranks fifth in the CC at 84.2 yards per game. He also counts 10 rushing TDs to his credit and recently became the 22nd player in school history to top 1,000 career rushing yards (1,349). Rigaud fueled JHU’s 37-9 win over Ursinus with a career-high 166 yards and two touchdowns on just 12 carries. He matched his career-long with a 69-yard touchdown run and added a 16-yard scoring run as well.
Rigaud became the first player in school history with two 60+ yard rushing touchdowns in a game as he scored on runs of 68 and 69 yards in the third quarter of the game vs. Susquehanna.
Fazio has rushed for 215 yards on 61 carries with six touchdowns. His two scoring runs against Dickinson give him 18 in his career, which ties him for ninth on JHU’s career rushing touchdowns list.
Balanced Receiving Tough to Contain: There are currently five players in the Centennial Conference with 38 or more receptions on the year and three of those five wear the Columbia Blue and Black.
While 2010 Centennial Conference Offensive Player of the Year Sam Wernick will draw most of the attention from defenses throughout the season, the Blue Jay receiving corps is deep and talented and trying to take away Wernick only leaves more space for others to operate.
Wernick ranks second on the team with 56 receptions for 497 yards and seven scores and currently ranks third in school history in receptions (213), receiving yards (2,876) and career 100-yard receiving games (10). He also ranks second in JHU history in career TD receptions list (29) and third in school history in career all-purpose yards (3,983).
Sophomore Dan Wodicka counts a team-high 57 receptions on the year with his going for 898 yards and five scores. He ranks second in the league in receiving yards per game (112.2) and receptions per game (7.12). He enjoyed one of the finest games of his career against Dickinson as he tied his career-high with 11 receptions for a personal-best 202 yards and a career-best 246 all-purpose yards. He did himself one better vs. Gettysburg as he tied the Johns Hopkins single-game record for receptions (15) and totaled 217 receiving yards and one touchdown. The 217 receiving yards rank fourth all-time at JHU and he is the first player in school history with consecutive 200-yard receiving games.
Rounding out JHU’s three primary receivers is junior Scott Cremens, who counts 38 receptions for 488 yards and a team-high eight TDs to his credit. He ranks seventh in the Centennial in receptions per game (4.75) and ninth in receiving yards per game (61.0). He had a career-high three TD receptions on six catches for 92 yards at Gettysburg.
In all, 16 different players have at least one reception for the Blue Jays thus far and 10 of those 16 players have at least five receptions to their credit.
Tomlin Continues Assault on JHU, Centennial Record Books: Senior Hewitt Tomlin returned to action vs. Dickinson after missing two games and picked up right where he left off - assaulting the Johns Hopkins and Centennial Conference record books with his performance against the Red Devils. He took that effort up a notch in the 83-21 win at Gettysburg.
One week after throwing for 390 yards vs. Dickinson, Tomlin was 39-of-52 for 501 yards and seven touchdowns against the Bullets. His marks for completions, yards, TD passes and total offense (505) are all school records. His seven TD passes also tied the Centennial Conference reccord. He was selected as the Centennial Conference Offensive Player of the Week for the third time this season for his efforts.
Tomlin is 141-of-209 for 1,756 yards with 19 TDs against just two INTs on the year. He currently leads the Centennial in passing yards per game (292.7), total offense (291.2) and pass efficiency (166.13).
For his career, Tomlin is 767-of-1,250 (.614) for 9,554 yards and 69 TDs. All of those marks are school records, as are his 28 career 200-yard games, 11 career 300-yard games and 9,739 yards of total offense.
Matey Leads JHU Past Muhlenberg, Juniata: With senior Hewitt Tomlin held out against Muhlenberg and Juniata with an injury, the quarterbacking duties fell to sophomore Robbie Matey, who took full advantage of his opportunity.
Matey was 25-of-31 for 251 yards with one touchdown to lead JHU to a crucial 27-17 victory over Muhlenberg on September 24. He followed that with a 17-of-31 showing for 161 yards and two touchdowns at Juniata.
His efforts continued his strong play on the year as he is now 61-of-84 (.726) for 598 yards with three touchdowns and one interception.
Piatek Tops Career Active Tackle Chart: Senior LB Ryan Piatek returned to his old form in last week’s win vs. Ursinus as he posted a season-high eight tackles to fuel a defense that held the Bears to 132 yards and nine points. Piatek, who missed JHU’s games against Juniata and Dickinson with an injury, is JHU’s career active leader in tackles with 227. He was named the Centennial Conference Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts in the win over Susquehanna as he had a career-high two interceptions, including one in the first quarter that he returned 34 yards for a touchdown to give JHU a 7-0 lead.
Eagleson Among Career Leaders: Senior CB Sam Eagleson’s fourth quarter interception vs. Muhlenberg moved him into sole possession of fourth place on JHU’s career interceptions list with 14. The Johns Hopkins career record for interceptions is held by Brian Hepting (20), while Matt Campbell (16) and Chad Van Den Berg (15) also sit ahead of Eagleson.
Maciow Tops Tackle Chart: Playing on a defense that is loaded with seniors, it is junior Taylor Maciow that sits at the top of the tackle charts for the Blue Jays. Maciow posted 10 tackles in last week’s win against Ursinus and currently has a team-high 54 tackles to his credit. He also ranks second in tackles for loss (4.0) and sacks (3.5) and is tied for the team-lead with four pass breakups.
Milano Honored: Senior safety Michael Milano was named the Centennial Conference Defensive Player of the Week for his efforts in last week’s win over Ursinus. Milano posted seven tackles, including a sack, and had two pass breakups to lead a defense that held the Bears to 132 yards and nine points.
Sweeney, Schweyer Just Behind Maciow: Senior DE Kale Sweeney and junior OLB Adam Schweyer rank second and third, respectively, on the team in tackles. Sweeney ranks second with 46 tackles and leads the team with 8.5 tackles for loss and 4.5 sacks. Schweyer is just behind with 45 tackles and has two sacks, one interception and one fumble recovery to his credit.
Defense Fuels Victories: While the Johns Hopkins offense has grabbed attention with the points and yards it has put up, the Blue Jay defense is also enjoying a solid season as well. Consider:
• JHU currently leads the Centennial Conference in scoring defense (9.2), total defense (196.6), passing defense (106.6) and rushing defense (90.2).
• In addition to sitting at or near the top of the Centennial Conference in all categories, JHU also ranks first in the nation in pass yards allowed per game (106.6), second in pass efficiency defense (75.30 rating), fourth in total defense (196.9) and sixth in scoring defense (9.2).
• The Blue Jays’ first eight opponents have had 113 combined possessions against JHU - only seven have resulted in touchdowns. Two of the nine overall TDs JHU has allowed have been scored by the opposition’s defense/special teams.
• The Blue Jays forced two turnovers vs. USMMA and three vs. Susquehanna, Moravian and Muhlenberg before coming back with two more vs. Juniata and Dickinson and three vs. Gettysburg. Hopkins has forced two or more turnovers in 28 of its last 33 games.
• JHU has forced at least one turnover in 33 of its last 35 games.
• JHU has at least one interception in 28 of the last 34 games.
• JHU is allowing an average of 3.1 yards per play. Muhlenberg ranks second in the CC in yards allowed per play (4.2).
• Hopkins held Susquehanna to 179 yards of total offense and Moravian to just 194. This is the first time since late in the 2009 season that JHU has held consecutive opponents to less than 200 yards of total offense.
Offense Rolls in Victory at Gettysburg: The Johns Hopkins offense was nearly unstoppable in the 83-21 victory at Gettysburg on Oct. 22. The Blue Jays set school records for total offense (731), passing yards (545), plays from scrimmage (100), pass attempts (56), completions (43), touchdown passes (7) and first downs (39). The 39 first downs are one shy of the NCAA Division III single-game record.
Where The Points Rank: The 83 points Johns Hopkins scored last Saturday are the most ever by a Centennial Conference team (since league was formed in 1983) and the second most in school history. Only an 87-point showing against Loyola in 1924 sits ahead of the 83 points JHU hung on Gettysburg.
Defense Shines at GC as Well: While the eye-popping numbers Johns Hopkins posted at Gettysburg are sure to jump out at people, the Blue Jay defense was nearly as effective against one of the top offensive units in the nation. The 21 points Gettysburg scored were half of the Bullets’ season average entering the game (42.2), while GC’s 335 yards of total offense were nearly 200 less than the Bullets had been averaging (525.3). Of note, Gettysburg totaled just 77 rushing yards after averaging 253.8 through the first six games.
The Blue Jays also forced three turnovers at Gettysburg to run their season-opening streak of consecutive games forcing two or more turnovers to seven. That streak came to an end against Ursinus (0 forced).
JHU Rolls Up 1,363 Yards vs. Dickinson & Gettysburg: Johns Hopkins rolled up a then season-high 632 yards of total offense against Dickinson (10-14) only to follow that with a school-record 731-yard performance at Gettysburg. Those two totals rank among the top four single-game totals in school history.
In addition, the 443 yards passing by the Blue Jays against the Red Devils ranked third in JHU history for one week until it was bumped to fourth by a school-record 545-yard effort at Gettysburg.
A Program First: Johns Hopkins rushed for 269 yards and passed for 290 yards in the win against Susquehanna (9-10-11). This marked the first time in school history that JHU has rushed and passed for more than 250 yards in a game. JHU has gone over 200 yards passing and rushing 29 times, but the game against Susquehanna was the first time the Blue Jays went for 250-250 in a game.
Another First: One week after generating 290 yards rushing and 269 passing vs. Susquehanna, the Blue Jays got 269 yards passing and 202 rushing at Moravian. This marks the first time in school history JHU has ever had consecutive games with 200 or more rushing and passing yards.
Road Warriors: JHU is 22-6 on the road since the start of the 2007 season and 44-15 on the road since the start of the 2001 season.
Sustained Success: Since the start of the 2002 season the Blue Jays sport a 79-28 (.738) record. Taking it back farther the Blue Jays are 85-31 (.733) since the start of the 2001 season and 90-36 (.714) since the beginning of the 2000 season. The 74 wins the Blue Jays amassed from 2000-09 are the most wins in a decade in school history. Johns Hopkins had never won more than seven games in a season prior to this decade. In the decade completed in 2009, the Blue Jays averaged more than seven wins per season (7.4).
Seven’s Heaven: Since the beginning of the 2003 season the Blue Jays are 70-19 (.787) when scoring more than seven points and 0-7 when they have been held to seven points or less.
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