CI Week 4 Football Highlights

Every year, there are a few weeks during the college football season where something truly special happens. Recently, CI coaches have been at the center of those moments more often than not. In 2017, Howard and Head Coach Mike London (@CoachMikeLondon) opened the season by pulling off the biggest upset in college football history when they went into Las Vegas and shocked UNLV as a 45-point underdog. This week, Old Dominion and Head Coach Bobby Wilder (@ODUCoachWilder) posted the biggest upset between FBS teams in a non-conference game since 2013 when they stunned Virginia Tech as a 29-point underdog. While the Monarchs' win was the most dramatic, it was hardly the lone bright spot for the CI Family. In a week that marked the start of conference play for some teams while others finished up the non-conference portion of their schedules, several CI coaches posted big wins. Please find more highlights from Week 4 below.

In stunning upset, Old Dominion knocks off Virginia Tech for biggest win in school history
Moments after DE Marcus Haynes sacked Virginia Tech QB Ryan Willis to put an exclamation point on the Monarchs' 49-35 upset of the 13th ranked Hokies, Wilder told a reporter that the win was one of the biggest moments in Hampton Roads sports history and arguably the biggest moment in Old Dominion history. In a profession filled with hyperbole, Wilder's comments were more likely understating the significance of the occasion. How did the Monarchs do it? The first step for Wilder and the rest of the ODU coaching staff was getting their players to believe they were capable of playing with the star studded Hokies. Any concerns that this would be an issue were quickly put to rest when QB Blake LaRussa connected with WR Jonathan Duhart for a 14-yard touchdown midway through the first quarter to level the score at 7-7. LaRussa and Duhart checked in on the score sheet again just before halftime, this time on a 4-yard pitch-and-catch to tie the game at 14-14. Having established that they belonged, the Monarchs slowly started wearing down Virginia Tech's defense with their uptempo pace. Defensively, DE Oshane Ximenes and Safety Justice Davila combined to make a key third-down stop early in the fourth quarter to keep the score knotted at 28-28. On the ensuing possession, RB Jeremy Cox scored on a 15-yard run to give ODU its first lead of the day at 35-28. Cox would later add a 40-yard touchdown run to put the icing on the cake. For the game, Cox rushed for 130 yards while LaRussa threw for a career-high 495 yards including four touchdowns. Wide receivers Duhart and Travis Fulgham also had monster games, combining to post 330 receiving yards and four touchdowns. Huge credit on the historic win goes to Wilder and all of his staff, in particular the following CI coaches: Assoc. Head Coach/OffCoor Brian Scott (@ODUOC), Defensive Coordinator/LB Rich Nagy (@rich_nagy), Asst. Defensive Coordinator/Safeties Kermit Buggs (@KBuggs4), Asst. Head Coach for Offense/QB Ron Whitcomb (@ronwhitcomb), Special Teams Coordinator/RB Charles Bankins(@FBCoachBankins) and OL Coach Chris Malone (@cmalone51)!

Winnipeg Blue Bombers end slump with win over Montreal Alouettes
Entering Friday night's clash versus the Alouettes, the Blue Bombers had their backs against a wall having dropped their previous four contests. While Winnipeg sat at the bottom of the East Division standings, this designation hardly painted an accurate picture of the team's potential considering they had outscored their opponents by a combined score of 365-316, the second best margin in the division. This potential was on full display against Montreal as kicker Justin Medlock got things started with a 50-yard field goal to give the Blue Bombers a 3-0 lead that they never relinquished en route to a 31-14 victory. For the game, Winnipeg QB Matt Nichols completed 18-of-25 passes for 256 yards and one touchdown while WR Kenbrell Thompkins hauled in five receptions for 94 yards. On special teams, Medlock converted all three of his field goal attempts in addition to scoring a single on a 59-yard punt. With the win, the Blue Bombers remain in a dead heat with BC for the crossover playoff position. Congratulations to Winnipeg Special Teams Coordinator Paul Boudreau (@bouqb2) who is in his third season in Winnipeg following a four-year stint as the assistant special teams coach for the St. Louis Rams. Boudreau also has experience coaching quarterbacks, wide receivers and running backs during 16 seasons coaching at the college level.

Purdue throttles No. 23 Boston College
In West Lafayette, Purdue notched its first win over a ranked opponent in seven years with a 30-13 dismantling of Boston College. In his postgame remarks, Purdue Head Coach Jeff Brohm credited his defense for the win, saying "Our defense was lights out. It took away the run, it made them throw more than they wanted to and that's not their game." Specifically, the Boilermakers shut down Eagle RB A.J. Dillon who entered the game among the nation's top five in rushing yards after racking up 432 yards in his first three games. Against Purdue, Dillon was limited to just 59 yards on the ground. After bottling up Dillon, the Boilermakers feasted on the Eagles' passing game, forcing four interceptions and recording four sacks. Individually, LB Markus Bailey led the way with 10 tackles, two tackles-for-loss, one sack and one pass breakup. Congratulations to Purdue Assistant Coach (Defense/Special Teams) Kevin Wolthausen (@kwolthausen) on the win! Wolthausen is in the second year of his second stint at Purdue after having coached the Boilermaker defensive line in 2012. A coaching veteran with over 30 years of experience, he spent the previous three years at UConn and has also served on staffs for the Atlanta Falcons, Louisville, Arizona State, Oklahoma, USC and Arizona.

Defense delivers as Chippewas notch first win against Maine
Despite an 0-3 start, the Central Michigan staff had remained optimistic about the season, and for good reason. In the first three weeks, the Chippewas faced two teams from Power 5 conferences and their third opponent, Northern Illinois, was tabbed to win the MAC West Division. The Chippewas had battled in all three games and ranked near the top of the conference in several defensive and special teams categories. Looking for a jumpstart on offense, CMU handed the reigns to Tommy Lazzaro who made his first career start at quarterback against the Black Bears. Lazzaro did just enough to keep the offense moving which, combined with another strong effort from the defense and special teams, allowed the Chips to secure their first win of the season. Malik Fountain and Da'Quaun Jamison each intercepted passes for a CMU defense that recorded a total of 15 tackles-for-loss in the 17-5 win. On special teams, kicker Ryan Tice converted a 41-yard field goal and both extra points while Jonathan Ward blocked a Maine field goal attempt. Congratulations to Tony Coaxum (@CoachCoax17) who is in his first season as the special teams coordinator and cornerbacks coach for CMU. Coaxum spent the 2015 and 2016 seasons as the assistant special teams coach for the Broncos where he helped the team win Super Bowl 50. He spent the 2014 season as a special teams intern with the Ravens following a seven-year stint at Army where he coached linebackers and cornerbacks.

Testaverde sparks Albany to 35-28 win over St. Francis
With the weekly grind of CAA conference games approaching, Albany knew getting to 2-2 was essential going into its bye week. The Great Danes were able to do just that with a series of clutch plays down the stretch. In a back-and-forth affair that featured three ties and six lead changes, the key sequence came early in the fourth quarter when St. Francis intercepted a pass giving the Red Flash possession at Albany's 37-yardline in a 28-28 game. The Great Danes' defense held firm and forced an errant field goal attempt. From there, the hosts went on a 10-play, 70-yard drive that culminated when QB Vinny Testaverde connected with WR Dev Holmes on a 24-yard scoring strike to restore Albany's lead. St. Francis had two more possessions to try to mount a rally, but could only muster one first down the rest of the way. LB Eli Mencer sealed the game when he broke through the SFU line to record a sack on fourth down with just over a minute remaining. Up front defensively for the Great Danes, DT Antoine White led the way with five tackles. Congratulations to DL Coach Delbert Cowsette (@coachcowsetteua) who is in his fifth season at Albany. After playing seven years in the NFL, Cowsette began his coaching career as an assistant strength and conditioning coach at Maryland before going on to Hampton where he served as defensive coordinator and defensive line coach over two separate stints. In 2011, he won the UFL Championship as the assistant defensive line coach for the Virginia Destroyers.

Stetson moves to 3-0 with 19-14 win over Marist
For the first time since 1951, Stetson will enter its fourth game of the season with an undefeated record. That stat may be somewhat misleading considering the school didn't field a football team from 1956-2013, but that won't dampen the spirits of Defensive Coordinator Brian Young (@coachbkyoung) or any of the other Hatters. Saturday's victory over Marist was especially rewarding considering the circumstances. In the schools' previous five meetings, Stetson had only won once and last year suffered a three-touchdown defeat to the Red Foxes in Poughkeepsie, NY. Similar to Albany's win over St. Francis, the turning point for Stetson came in the form of a defensive stand following an interception. With Stetson clinging to a five-point lead and less than five minutes remaining in the fourth quarter, Marist intercepted a pass and returned it to Stetson's 22-yardline. The Red Foxes advanced the ball to the 6-yardline but that's where the Hatters stood tall. On fourth-and-goal, Marist reached into its bag of tricks with a halfback pass back to the quarterback, but Stetson LB Colby Duncan sniffed it out and broke up the pass to wrap up the win. That play was a fitting finish for Duncan who led the team with six tackles, two tackles-for-loss and one quarterback hurry to go along with the game clinching pass breakup. Congratulations to Young who is in his sixth season coordinating the Stetson defense and working with the team's safeties. From 2013-16, he worked with four-time All-American DB Donald Payne who is currently with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Young previously coached defensive backs at Cornell and also served as the defensive coordinator at Mississippi College.

Quick Hits
  • Who did it best? Three of the best catches you'll see all year happened in Week 4 and all three helped propel CI head coaches to victories: ODU's Jonathan Duhart in the Monarchs' win over Virginia Tech; Howard's Jequez Ezzard in the Bison's 41-35 win over Bethune-Cookman; and Kansas Wesleyan's Trenton Poe-Evans in the Coyotes' 70-24 win over Ottawa. Congratulations to Wilder, London, Kansas Wesleyan Head Coach Matt Drinkall (@DrinkallKWU) and their staffs!
  • Florida TE Coach Larry Scott (@UFCoachLScott) was able to exact a measure of revenge against his former employer as the Gators defeated Tennessee, 47-21. Florida TE R.J. Raymond caught a touchdown pass in the win.
  • Michigan State TE Matt Dotson caught a touchdown pass in the Spartans' 35-21 win over Indiana. Congratulations to Co-Offensive Coordinator/TE Jim Bollman (@CoachJimBollman)!
  • Rod Johnson ran a kickoff back 94 yards for a touchdown with less than a minute to play to give The Citadel a 38-31 road win over Mercer. Congratulations to Defensive Coordinator/LB Blake Harrell's (@Coach_B_Harrell)!
  • Stony Brook WR Donavin Washington caught seven passes for 96 yards and one touchdown in the Seawolves' 36-10 win over Richmond. Congratulations to WR Coach Darren Paige (@WRcoachPaige)!
  • Campbell defeated Shaw 42-0 marking the second time already this season that the Camels have scored over 40 points. Congratulations to Offensive Coordinator David Marsh (@CoachDmarsh)!

One more CI coach will be in action tonight when the Buccaneers host the Steelers. Good luck to Tampa Bay LB Coach Mark Duffner!

Get In Touch With Us

1317 F Street, NW Suite 920 Washington, DC 20004 | P 800.974.7957 F 888.762.5151 |