WILBERFORCE, Ohio – Seven games into the 2021 campaign, the Golden Tigers football program will leave Alabama for the only time when it makes a 600-plus mile journey to Central State against its SIAC West rivals.
What You Need to Know
- Time and Date: Saturday, October 16 (12 pm CT)
- Records: Tuskegee (2-4, 1-2 SIAC) | Central State (1-5, 0-3 SIAC)
- Location: Wilberforce, Ohio – McPherson Stadium
- Series History: Tuskegee Leads 6-1
- Last Meeting: October 19, 2019 | Tuskegee 21, Central State 10 | Cleve L. Abbott Memorial Alumni Stadium (Tuskegee, Alabama)
- Winning Streak: Tuskegee (W1) | Central State’s Last Win: October 27, 2018 (40-36)
- The TU offense is predicated on a clock chewing running style and a chunk-play producing passing game. Tuskegee averages just over 32 minute of possession per game to rank in the nation’s top-30 while the quarterback duo of Williams and Williams (Bryson and Louis) are in the same realm in terms of passing yards per completion (14.47).
- Ivonte Patterson has emerged as one of the most complete running backs in the SIAC and all of Division II, leading the league in rushing yards (506) and yards per game (84.3) while placing second in touchdowns on the ground (6).
- Steven Hodges, member of the 1,000 career receiving yards club, has been the favorite target of both signal-callers with 319 yards, the fourth-highest mark in the conference. After the Morehouse game, Hodges has 1,143 receiving yards in a Golden Tiger uniform.
- Taurean Taylor is one huge performance away from a milestone, currently residing at 846 rushing yards during his TU tenure, just 154 yards short of 1,000 for his career.
- Skegee’s defense is top-50 in the NCAA regarding total defense (318.8), rush defense (117.8) and interceptions (6).
- Northern Illinois transfer Woodly Appolon has been a revelation in the linebacker corps, coming off a career-best 16 tackles against the Maroon Tigers, he currently averages 8.5 tackles and five solos a contest, both top-three totals in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.
- Kevin Scott has personified the mentality of right place, right time as he’s one of just 51 players across the nation with multiple fumble recoveries (2).
- Ryan Duff has garnered back-to-back SIAC Special Teams Players of the Week accolades, contributing 12 punts for 437 yards (36.42 average) with half of those pinning the opposition inside its own 20 and zero touchbacks.
- Devarens Valcin has been outstanding fielding kicks, ranking fifth in the SIAC for kickoff return average (20.3), second in average punt return yardage (5.5) and third regarding combined kick return yards (308).
- Discipline has been a big asset for Coach Slater’s troops, slotting in at 45th or better nationally in penalties per game (5.50), penalty yards per game (52.50) and fewest penalties total (33).
Scouting The Opponent: Central State Marauders
CSU opened the season with a loss during the Classic for Columbus, defeating Lincoln-Pennsylvania (19-7) before dropping four straight to Shaw, Miles, Allen and Fort Valley State.
The Marauders have been unforgiving on defense placing fourth in the NCAA for fumble recoveries (9), 12th in red zone defense (0.594), 21st for sacks a game (3.17), fifth in tackles for loss per contest (9.5) and 26th in turnovers forced (13).
Offensively, Central has been fantastic at securing the football, losing only two fumbles all year.
As a unit, the home squad from Ohio is one of the few teams better-disciplined than TU, ranking 16th in Division II at 43.17 penalty yards per game.
Jamal Holloway has been a nightmare for opposing offensive coordinators in 2021, averaging 6.7 tackles (5.3 solo), 1.8 tackles for loss, and a sack per contest plus forcing a fumble every other game.
CSU had two players apiece on the All-Conference First and Second Teams as Dalane Brown II and Kailen Abrams composed the former while Donta Marshall and Derell Williams are apart of the latter.
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