CI Week 5 Football Highlights

In the past week, the Mountain West and PAC-12 became the latest two conferences to release their fall schedules with the former set to kickoff on October 24 while the latter will begin on November 7. The MAC is also scheduled to begin playing on November 4 with a full schedule set to be released shortly. We look forward to seeing more CI coaches have the opportunity to take the field after months of uncertainty. Meanwhile, the CI coaches who are playing have gotten off to a great start! Keep reading for highlights from Week 5
Ole Miss rallies for wild win over Kentucky in OT
It wasn’t always pretty, and the Landsharks gave up more rushing yards than DL Coach Deke Adams (@CoachDekeAdams) would have liked, but in the end Ole Miss will savor every minute of Saturday’s thriller against Kentucky. The Rebels rallied from a 28-14 deficit to force overtime and then capitalized on a missed extra point by the Wildcats to escape Lexington and even their record at 1-1. Rush defense issues aside, Ole Miss defensive linemen contributed to the win with several big plays both early and late. The first game changing play came on Kentucky’s opening drive. After the Wildcats had advanced to the 1-yard line, Ole Miss LB Ashanti Cistrunk forced a fumble that DL Ryder Anderson pounced on. Then in the fourth quarter, Anderson came up with a huge tackle-for-loss to help preserve a 28-28 tie. Congratulations to Adams on the win and Anderson’s performance! Adams is in his first season in Oxford after spending the 2019 campaign on the other side of the Egg Bowl rivalry as the defensive line coach at Mississippi State. He spent two seasons in the same role at North Carolina and previously coached the defensive line at South Carolina, where he worked with two First Team All-Americans, Jadeveon Clowney and Kelcy Quarles. Adams has participated in six bowl games and was a member of the Southern Miss staff that won the 2011 C-USA Championship.
Gore tops 100 yards, Southern Miss beats North Texas
It’s not uncommon for coaching staffs to deal with adversity during the course of a season, but most don’t have to deal with it to the extent that Southern Miss and OL Coach Ryan Stanchek (@CoachStanchek) have in such a short period of time. Just one game into the season, the Golden Eagles were forced to scramble when Jay Hopson was dismissed as head coach along with another full-time coach. Already short-staffed, Southern Miss has also been hit hard with player absences. Entering Saturday night’s game at North Texas, the Golden Eagles were down to 56 scholarship players and one of Stanchek’s starting linemen was out after having an emergency appendectomy earlier in the week. Undeterred, Southern Miss jumped out to a 17-3 lead in the first quarter and cruised to a 41-31 victory. Stanchek’s offensive line paved the way for RB Frank Gore Jr. to rack up 130 rushing yards and one touchdown on 23 carries (5.7 ypc). Backup RB Darius Maberry also benefitted from the line’s efforts, scoring two touchdowns of his own in the fourth quarter to put the game away. Congratulations to Stanchek on the big win! Stanchek is in his second season in Hattiesburg after spending the previous five seasons at Alcorn State, including one as offensive coordinator. He helped guide the Braves to a division title in each of his five seasons and multiple top 10 national rankings in Rushing Offense. Prior to arriving at Alcorn, Stanchek served in off-field roles at Florida State and Indiana.

Houston Baptist holds off Eastern Kentucky, 33-30
The last few months have been a whirlwind for Houston Baptist DL Coach Issac Mooring (@CoachMooring). Mooring left Grand Valley State in June to accept the position at HBU not know what the Huskies’ fall schedule would look like. Within the next few months, HBU put together arguably the most challenging schedule for any FCS program, complete with games against FBS members North Texas, Texas Tech and Louisiana Tech. The Huskies came close to upsetting the Red Raiders, dropping a 35-33 decision, but ultimately found themselves entering their fall finale against Eastern Kentucky in search of their first win. The game was in doubt until the final whistle, but HBU ultimately ended its fall on a high note, thanks in large part to one of Mooring’s defensive linemen. The Colonels pulled within one point with four minutes to play, but on the extra point attempt, DL Segun Ijiyera blocked the kick and DB Tra Fluellen ran it back 98 yards for a two-point conversion to give HBU a 33-30 win. The Colonels had one more drive to pull even or take the lead, but DE Philip Ossai sacked EKU QB Parker McKinney and forced a fumble that HBU DB Patrick Wolfe recovered to seal the win. Congratulations to Mooring on the win and big plays from Ijiyera and Ossai! Mooring spent the 2019 campaign on the offensive side of the ball as the RB Coach at Grand Valley but has coached defensive line for the bulk of his career with stints at Texas State, Garnder-Webb and North Greenville.

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