The Vegas betting lines closed on Saturday with FCS Bethune-Cookman listed as three point road favorites against FBS Florida International. The Wildcats’ narrow 14-12 victory didn’t quite cover the Vegas point spread or much resemble the 34-13 drubbing they put on FIU a season ago but it thrilled BCU’s coaches, players and fans nonetheless.
“All I can say is thank you. The Good Lord was on our side tonight. My hat goes off to this FIU team (they are) majorly improved” a relieved Brian Jenkins exclaimed at the end of the contest.
The Wildcats’ stifling defense limited FIU to just 186 yards of total offense and was largely to blame for the win. Erik Williams led the defensive charge accounting for 3 sacks, 3 tackles for loss, and 8 total tackles in the winning effort. “Erik is a tremendous player. He has had to fight back through two shoulder injuries. He is back and I think he has proven that he can play at a dominating level. I am glad that he is playing for us” Jenkins stated.
On the other side of the ball, BCU’s offense found it difficult to find its rhythm for large portions of the evening. Quentin Williams got the start at quarterback and helped the Cats sustain a nice opening drive.
However, the Wildcat offense failed to convert the opening drive into points and remained pedestrian until early in the 2nd quarter when Williams connected with Michael Jones on a 46 yard screen pass on 3rd and 15. After a 17 yard Williams to Darian Baker pass and run, Jones capped the drive with a 1 yard td run to give BCU an early 7-0 lead.
FIU return specialist Richard Leonard set the Panthers up with nice field position after returning the ensuing kickoff 54 yards. The Panthers registered their first points of the season 6 plays later when Austin Taylor successfully converted a 25 yard field goal.
Taylor converted his second 25 yard field goal of the contest near the end of the 2nd quarter and cut BCU’s lead to 7-6 heading into the half.
The Wildcat offense continued to struggle in the 2nd half. In fact, BCU only crossed midfield once in the 3rd and 4th quarters. Thankfully for the Cats, the lone 2nd half venture into FIU territory ended with a 55 yard touchdown toss from Williams to redshirt freshman receiver Frank Brown with 12:26 remaining in the 4th. Williams was forced to scramble to his right on the play to avoid multiple FIU defenders. He spotted Brown breaking free of coverage up the left seam and gave his receiver a chance to make a play on the ball. Brown outleaped one defender, made a 2nd defender miss and outran everyone for BCU’s go ahead score. The td catch was Brown’s first ever collegiate reception.
“I dreamt the last three nights that I would score in this game on a big play so when the ball was in the air I just attacked it like my coaches taught me.” “Right before the game, my (position) coach told me this is your first college game, make your first big play. That stuck with me throughout the game“ Brown stated. “(Crossing the goal line) felt great.”
FIU threaten late when Leonard made another spectacular return, this time on the end of a Jonathan Cagle punt. The 71 yard return gave the Panther’s 1st and goal from the BCU 7 yard line. FIU punctuated the drive when Alex McGough connected with TJ Lowder on a 5 yard slant on 4th and 5 to cut the BCU lead to 14-12. But that was as close as FIU would get.
Bethune’s defense stood strong once again and held the Panthers’ on the 2 point conversion attempt.
The Panthers had one last opportunity to secure the victory after assuming possession at their own 39 yard line with 2:29 remaining. After converting a 4th and 13 and tacking on an additional 15 yards for roughing the passer, FIU was primed to seal just its 2nd victory since the 2012 season.
FIU lined up for what would have been a game winning 46 yard FG attempt with 5 seconds remaining. However, the snap was botched and BCU held on for the victory.
The Cats have a bye week next Saturday before playing hosts to Grambling State in their home opener on September 13th.
Team Stat Comparison
|3rd Down Conversions||5-16||1-16|
|4th Down Conversions||1-2||3-5|
|TD||11:26||Michael D. Jones 1 Yd Run (Haden Hoggarth Kick)||7||0|
|FG||9:02||Austin Taylor 25 Yd Field Goal||7||3|
|FG||3:27||Austin Taylor 25 Yd Field Goal||7||6|
|TD||12:26||Frank Brown 55 Yd pass from Quentin Williams (Haden Hoggarth Kick)||14||6|
|TD||5:16||T.J. Lowder 5 Yd pass from Alex McGough (Two-Point Pass Conversion Failed)||14||12|
After months of thumbing through newspaper articles, trolling social media sites, and generally chasing rabbits, Wildcat fans can now take their first official peek at the 2014 edition of the Fighting Wildcats football squad.
There are quite a few number changes (e.g. Quentin Williams has switched from #14 back to #3, the number he wore in high school at Tampa Jefferson). The bigger surprise is the unveiling of the bevy of highly regarded transfers/non-freshman additions to this year’s squad.
Jaime Wilson (2012 MAC Freshman of the year at Western Michigan University) and University of Miami running back Danny Dillard were commonly known to be enrolled at Bethune-Cookman already. What wasn’t know is that over 20 additional transfers/non-freshman additions will join Wilson and Dillard as first year BCU players. These players include former South Carolina State defensive lineman Jonathan Yearwood, 6’6″ defensive lineman David Perry from U of M and former Hurricane signee Jeremy Davis. 2012 USF signee Kameron Davis (OL), former Duke defensive back Michael Westray, and former Alabama and FSU recruit Jason Smith are also listed on the online roster.
The fresh look Wildcats kickoff the 2014 season in less than 24 hours when they travel to Alonso Field to take on FIU. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00.
The Miami-Dade Alumni chapter has graciously agreed to host HailWildcats.com fan bus travelers at what they are calling “one of the largest tailgates south of the boarder.” The low cost of $40 covers the cost of transportation to and from FIU stadium as well as a tailgate meal provided by the Miami-Dade Alumni chapter.
There are two pick-up locations for bus travelers. The first pick-up will take place in the Home Depot parking lot on Lee Road in Orlando, Florida. The bus will depart at 10:00 a.m. Saturday morning. The address is 5351 Diplomat Circle, Orlando, FL 32810.
The second pick-up location is on the campus of Bethune-Cookman University in Daytona Beach between the Facilities building and the Band Hall. The bus will depart from campus at 11:00 a.m.
Roughly 10 seats remain so act quickly. $40 for transportation and lunch is the best deal going so be sure to contact Darold Williams at 904-351-8381 in the Daytona Area or Jerry Bell at 407-494-5302 in Orlando to secure your seat(s) before they are sold out.
We suggest you bring a light jacket, sweater or blanket for the bus. Also, you are strongly encouraged to bring a foldable lawn chair for the tailgate. Drinks and snacks are permitted on the bus so feel free to bring your own refreshments.
10:00 – Depart from the Lee Road Home Depot in Orlando.
11:00 – Depart from B-CU campus in Daytona Beach.
3:00 – Arrive at FIU Stadium and join the B-CU Tailgate hosted by the Miami-Dade Alumni Chapter (Meal included with the $40 transportation cost).
7:00 – Kickoff B-CU at FIU (FIU Stadium – Miami, FL).
After the Game – Stop for a light dinner en route back to Daytona and Orlando.
Payments may be made in person with cash only or online through PayPal. Checks are NOT accepted. If you have any questions, please call or text Jerry Bell at 407-494-5302 in the Orlando Area or Darold Williams at 904-351-8381 in the Daytona Area.
DAYTONA BEACH — When Quentin Williams arrived at Bethune-Cookman University in 2011, he was used to being the Big Man On Campus.He came in with flashy accolades as Florida’s Mr. Football. He was fresh off guiding Tampa Jefferson to a Class 3A state championship. He had gaudy numbers and high expectations that he would be the next B-CU star.But high school was over. He quickly found out that tucked between the streets bordering B-CU, avenues named after Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King Jr., was a patch of land known as the Land of Jenkins. This was where head coach Brian Jenkins laid down the law, and Williams’ first season was met with frustration.
Continue reading: http://touch.orlandosentinel.com/#section/-1/article/p2p-81164293/
The Wildcats were selected as preseason favorites to win the 2014 conference crown and will surely look to position themselves for another playoff run.
Eastern Washington garnered top honors in the poll and the most first-place votes with 82. Second ranked North Dakota State, #3 Southeastern Louisiana and fourth ranked New Hampshire each received at least one first-place vote.
|The Sports Network FCS Top 25|
|College Football Poll|
|Team (First-place votes)||2013 Record||Points||Previous Rank|
|1.||Eastern Washington Eagles (82)||12-3||3589||3|
|2.||North Dakota State Bison (62)||15-0||3540||1|
|3.||Southeastern Louisiana Lions (2)||11-3||3300||6|
|4.||New Hampshire Wildcats (1)||10-5||3090||5|
|6.||Jacksonville State Gamecocks||11-4||2634||10|
|7.||Coastal Carolina Chanticleers||12-3||2461||7|
|8.||McNeese State Cowboys||10-3||2277||11|
|9.||Northern Iowa Panthers||7-5||2197||NR|
|10.||South Dakota State Jackrabbits||9-5||2154||13|
|15.||Tennessee State Tigers||10-4||1448||17|
|16.||Eastern Illinois Panthers||12-2||1375||4|
|17.||Sam Houston State Bearkats||9-5||1345||14|
|18.||Montana State Bobcats||7-5||1170||20|
|19.||William & Mary Tribe||7-5||1151||NR|
|23.||Northern Arizona Lumberjacks||9-3||429||15|
|24.||Youngstown State Penguins||8-4||405||18|
|25.||Maine Black Bears||10-3||330||12|
|Others receiving votes: Southern Illinois 305, Liberty 223, South Carolina State 219, Delaware 213, Wofford 186, James Madison 180, Samford 142, Cal Poly 112, Southern Utah 100, Princeton 81, Charleston Southern 53, Harvard 43, Central Arkansas 36, Alcorn State 34, Lehigh 25, Gardner-Webb 22, Sacred Heart 14, Lafayette 13, Southern 12, North Carolina A&T 7, Northwestern State 6, Illinois State 6, Alabama State 6, Western Illinois 5, Missouri State 5, Penn 5, Sacramento State 4, Eastern Kentucky 2, Stony Brook 2, Prairie View A&M 2, San Diego 1, Indiana State 1, Duquesne 1. …|
Bethune-Cookman debuted at No. 23 in the first Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) coaches poll which was released on Monday afternoon. The Wildcats finished 10-3 and ranked 16th in the final FCS coaches poll in 2013.
Three time defending National Champions, North Dakota State, earned the top spot in the preseason poll. Eastern Washington, Southeastern Louisiana, New Hampshire and Montana round out the Top 5. Tennessee State (No. 17) joins B-CU as the only other HBCU program ranked in the Top 25.
The Wildcats kickoff the 2014 campaign on August 30th against in-state foe Florida International in Miami.
Preseason FCS Coaches Poll (August 4, 2014)
Team (First-Place Votes) 2013 Record Points 2013 Final
1. North Dakota State (18) 15-0 636 1
2. Eastern Washington (6) 12-3 615 3
3. Southeastern Louisiana (1) 11-3 542 6
4. New Hampshire 10-5 510 5
5. Montana 10-3 505 8
6. Coastal Carolina 12-3 447 7
7. Towson (1) 13-3 438 2
8. Jacksonville State 12-2 425 12
9. McNeese State 10-3 424 9
10. South Dakota State 9-5 332 14
11. Eastern Illinois 12-2 314 4
12. Fordham 12-2 305 10
13. Villanova 6-5 287 NR
14. Sam Houston State 9-5 277 13
15. Northern Iowa 7-5 263 NR
16. Chattanooga 8-4 238 25
17. Tennessee State 10-4 237 17
18. Furman 8-6 188 21
19. Montana State 7-5 170 20
20. Maine 10-3 169 11
21. Youngstown State 8-4 162 19
22. William & Mary 7-5 159 NR
23. Bethune-Cookman 10-3 136 16
24. Richmond 6-6 118 NR
25. Northern Arizona 9-3 116 15
Others receiving votes: Samford 95, Southern Illinois 59, Harvard 42, Charleston Southern 39, James Madison 30, Princeton 24, Southern Utah 20, Alcorn State 16, Liberty 16, Delaware 15, South Carolina State 15, Cal Poly 14, Missouri State 12, Sacred Heart 10, Wofford 8, Central Arkansas 7, Alabama State 6, Lehigh 6, Eastern Kentucky 4, Holy Cross 1, Illinois State 1, Jacksonville 1
You are cordially invited to hop onboard the HailWildcats.com ‘Road to the Championship’ Fan Bus as we support our guys in their quest to have another successful season. Our Fighting Wildcats will travel to Miami, Florida on Saturday August 30th, 2014 to take on Florida International University, kickoff at 7:oo p.m.
The low rate of $70.00 will guarantee you transportation to and from the game, a game ticket, and lunch, a tailgate meal provided by the Miami-Dade Alumni chapter, the Miami-Dade Alumni chapter has graciously agreed to host the HailWildcats.com fan bus travelers at what they are calling “one of the largest tailgates south of the boarder.” . If you already have a game ticket, you can secure your transportation to and from FIU Stadium and the tailgate meal for just $40.00.
We will depart Daytona Beach at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday morning and arrive at FIU Stadium around 3:30 pm to participate in the Wildcat Tailgate Festivities. We will stop for dinner on the return trip.
Seats are available on a first come, first serve basis. No seats are guaranteed until final payment has been received. All sales are final!
We encourage the use of PayPal for a fast, safe, and convenient method of securing your seat. We have attached the PayPal links/options below for your convenience. You do NOT need a PayPal account to complete your transaction. If you prefer to pay with cash or with Credit/Debit card in person or over the phone, please coordinate with Jerry Bell or Darold Williams at the numbers below. Checks will NOT be accepted.
Seats are filling up quickly, so be sure to lock yours in today.
DAYTONA BEACH, FL -Bethune Cookman University -11:00 AM Between the Facilities building and the Band Hall
ORLANDO, FL – Home Depot Lee Rd. – 10:00 AM 5351 Diplomat Cir, Orlando, FL 32810
If you have any questions, please call or text Jerry Bell at 407-494-5302 in the Orlando Area or Darold Williams at 904-351-8381 in the Daytona Area
Norfolk, VA—The Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) unofficially kicked off its 2014 football season at this past Friday’s Annual Press Luncheon. To the surprise of few, the league’s coaches and sports information directors predicted Bethune-Cookman would defend their crown and finish the season atop the league standings.
Under the guidance of fifth year head coach Brian Jenkins, the Wildcats have established themselves as a perennial MEAC power and FCS Top 25 program. BCU enters the season looking for its third consecutive MEAC crown and seventh (7th) MEAC title overall.
2013 Co-Champions, South Carolina State, were predicted to finish 2nd in the league. North Carolina A&T, Howard, and Delaware State round out the Top 5.
Four Bethune-Cookman student-athletes received First Team All-MEAC recognition, two more were named to the All-MEAC Second Team, and one Wildcat picked up Third Team honors. Howard quarterback Greg McGee was selected as Offensive Player of the Year while Norfolk State linebacker/defensive end Lynden Trail picked up Defensive Player of the Year honors.
BCU will kickoff the 2014 campaign in South Florida on August 30th against in-state foe Florida International. Kickoff is scheduled for 7:00 PM.
|2014 Predicted Order of Finish
(First Place Votes in Parenthesis)
1. Bethune-Cookman 487
2. South Carolina State 457
3. North Carolina A&T 338
4. Howard 309
5. Delaware State 229
6. Norfolk State 225
7. Hampton 200
8. North Carolina Central 187
9. Morgan State 148
** Florida A&M and Savannah State are not eligible for post season competition therefore is not listed on the above prediction order
2014 Football All-Conference Preseason Teams
Offensive Player of the Year: Greg McGhee, Howard Defensive Player of the Year: Lynden Trail, Norfolk State
Great article on former B-CU catcher and MEAC player of the year Peter O’Brien.