The Pioneer Football League Report: Week 9

Monday, October 22, 2018
by Cody Bush, PFL Media Relations


Four teams are in the hunt for the PFL regular season title but only league-leading San Diego will play at home with the second-place trio of Drake, Marist and Stetson each on the road during Week 9… San Diego owns the FCS’ longest home win streak (19 games) and longest conference win streaks (25 games) after Week 8 action with both streaks on the line when Jacksonville heads cross country… All eyes at Torero Stadium will be on quarterback Anthony Lawrence who will look to move into the No. 2 spot on the PFL’s career passing yardage list… But those same eyes will get a glimpse at Jacksonville signal caller Calvin Turner Jr., who enters Week 9 with 946 rushing yards to his credit, averaging a PFL best 157.7 yards per game… The PFL’s No. 2 and No. 3 rushers – Davidson’s Wesley Dugger (907 yards) and William Wicks (676 yards) – will host a Stetson team that features the league’s No. 3 passing offense thanks to Colin McGovern, who ranks second in passing efficiency (162.1) this season… Marist is on the road at Morehead State in a game that will pit the Red Foxes’ No. 5 ranked passing offense (247.0 ypg) against the Eagles’ No. 3 ranked rushing offense (206.8 ypg)… Valparaiso return specialist Bailey Gessinger has a kick return touchdown in each of his last two games, giving the Crusaders’ the PFL’s No. 1 ranked kickoff return unit (24.7 ypr) but Drake is accustomed to keeping the kickoff game in check, boasting the league’s No. 1 ranked kickoff coverage unit (41.9 net ypr)… Dayton makes the trip west on I-70 to meet Butler with the Bulldogs offense trending upward the past three weeks, including a 402-yard showing last week that was its second-best outing in 2018 while the Flyers hit the road after being held to a season-low 297 offensive yards last week.

All times Eastern. 

Dayton at Butler, Noon
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
Stadium: Sellick Bowl
Series: DAY leads, 30-12-1    Streak: DAY, four wins
Last Meeting: Dayton def. Butler, 27-22

Stetson at Davidson, 1 p.m.
Location: Davidson, North Carolina
Stadium: Richardson Stadium
Series: STE leads, 5-4    Streak: STE, two wins
Last Meeting: Stetson def. Davidson, 28-17 (2017)

Marist at Morehead State, 1 p.m.
Location: Morehead, Kentucky
Stadium: Jayne Stadium
Series: MAR leads, 3-2    Streak: MAR, two wins
Last Meeting: Marist def. Morehead State, 38-31 (2017)
Video: ESPN+

Drake at Valparaiso, 2 p.m.
Location: Valparaiso, Indiana
Stadium: Brown Field
Series: DRA leads, 22-3    Streak: DRA, 14 wins
Last Meeting: Drake def. Valparaiso, 38-13 (2017)
Video: ESPN+

Jacksonville at San Diego, 4 p.m.
Location: San Diego, California
Stadium: Torero Stadium
Series: SAN leads, 6-4    Streak: SAN, one win
Last Meeting: San Diego def. Jacksonville, 63-10 (2017)

Complete news and notes available in PDF version

PFL IN NFL UPDATE | Five PFL alumni have seen action in the NFL this season… Jason Myers (New York [AFC] via Marist) hit seven field goals in the Jets Week 6 victory against Indianapolis, but was called on just once in a Week 7 loss to Minnesota, nailing a 55-yard field goal… Eric Saubert (Atlanta via Drake) has played in all six games for the Falcons in 2018 and made his first professional reception in a Week 5 loss at Pittsburgh… Jamal Agnew (Detroit via San Diego) ranks 11th among all NFL kick returners averaging 27.8 yards per kickoff return this season and recovered a fumble on kickoff coverage against Green Bay in Week 5… Donald Payne (Jacksonville via Stetson) has seen action in all seven games for the Jaguars this season, primarily on special teams… Ross Dwelley (San Francisco via San Diego) has appeared in each of the 49ers last two games on special teams.

SAN DIEGO’S PFL RECORD WIN STREAK NOW FCS’ LONGEST | San Diego extended its PFL record win streak in conference-only games to 25 games with its win at Butler, Oct. 20. The Toreros now have the FCS’ longest conference win streak after Ohio Valley Conference member Jacksonville State saw its streak stopped at Southeast Missouri in Week 8. San Diego’s last PFL loss was a 13-12 loss to Dayton on Oct. 10, 2015 in Dayton, Ohio, which it followed with back-to-back 8-0 PFL campaigns in 2016 and 2017.

TOREROS OWN NATION’S #1 HOME WIN STREAK | With James Madison’s home loss, Oct. 6, San Diego has become the FCS team with the longest home win streak. The Toreros own a 19-game home winning streak that dates back to a 2014-ending loss (Cal Poly). San Diego will put that streak on the line this weekend when Dayton visits the west coast.

USD’s LAWRENCE NEARS PFL PASSING RECORD | San Diego’s Anthony Lawrence will have an opportunity to move into No. 2 on the PFL career passing list, entering Week 9 needing just 281 yards to pass Jacksonville’s Josh McGregor (11,230 yards). The PFL career mark also sits within reach, Lawrence needing 969 yards to break the record set by Morehead State’s Austin Gahafer. Lawrence was the second San Diego quarterback to reach the 10,000-yard milestone, joining Mason Mills (10,204 yards, 2010-13). Entering Week 9, he has 10,950 career passing yards – second among FCS active career leaders.

RED FOXES’ CHRISTIAN SEEKS PFL RECEIVERS RECORD | Marist wideout Juston Christian is on his way to setting the PFL record for most career receiving yards, entering Week 9 with 3,791 yards receiving – taking over the FCS lead among active career leaders. He needs just 14 receiving yards to break the record set by Valparaiso’s Rob Giancola (3,804 yards, 2001-04). He is only the sixth receiver in league history to amass 3,000 career receiving yards.

CAN TEMPLE JOIN RECEIVING RANKS? | While the 3,000 career receiving yard club only has six members currently, Butler’s Pace Temple seeks to join the group. With 2,872 career yards entering Week 9, he stands a good chance of becoming lucky number seven.

DAYTON’S YINGER 12TH MEMBER OF PFL 3,000-YARD CLUB | Dayton running back Tucker Yinger became the 12th PFL runner to record 3,000 career rushing yards, reaching the milestone in Week 7 action at San Diego. With 3,068 career rushing yards, he joins Connor Kacsor (3,528 yards) as the only Dayton runners to breach 3,000 career rushing yards.

DAVIDSON’S DUGGER HITS 2,000 YARDS IN 19TH GAME | Sophomore… yes, sophomore… Davidson running back Wesley Dugger ran past 2,000 career rushing yards in his 19th career game, ending Week 8 with 2,038 career rushing yards.  He is 25th on the FCS’ active career leaders list and needs just 93 yards to record his second-straight 1,000-yard rushing season.