The MissouriSouthern football team will look to move to 6-1 for the first time since 1991when the Lions play host to fourth ranked Missouri Western this Saturday at 6pm in Fred G. Hughes Stadium.
Game7: Missouri Southern State University Lions (5-1, 4-1 MIAA) vs. #4 Missouri Western StateUniversity Griffons (6-0. 5-0 MIAA)
Date: Saturday, October19, 2013 Kickoff:6 pm Location: Joplin, Mo. • Fred G. Hughes Stadium/Robert W. Plaster Sports Complex (7,000) Media Coverage: Audio: 97.9 FM (Mike McClure-play by play | Tom Cox-color commentator) -Live video: www.mssulions.com
TheSeries:Missouri Southern holds an all-time record of 23-20 against the Griffons,including a 14-9 mark at Fred G. Hughes Stadium and 9-11 in St. Joseph. The Lions have won three of the last four against the Griffons, includinga huge fourth-quarter comeback against then 12th ranked Western two years agoin St. Joseph and another fourth-quarter comeback last season in St. Josephagainst then fourth-ranked Western. Southern dominated the series with theGriffons early on, winning the first five meetings in a row, and ten out of thefirst 13. But the series is nearly split in the last nine meetings with Westerntaking five and the Lions, four.
Avictory vs. Western would: be the fourth time in the last fivemeetings between the two schools. It would also be the third time the Griffonswere ranked in the top ten and Southern had knocked them off. It would also bethe first time Southern had started the season 6-1 since the 1991 season wherea loss at 11th ranked Portland State was the only blemish on the Lions'schedule through the first seven games.
BigWins:The Lions' 31-30 win over No. 4 Missouri Western last season was thehighest-ranked division II oppenent Southern has ever defeated. It tied therecord for the highest-ranked opponent all-time as the Lions defeated No. 4ranked Northwestern Oklahoma (NAIA Poll) in 1985 and No. 4 ranked MissouriWestern (NAIA Poll) in 1981.
NationalLeaders: After six games, the Lions second in rushing offense with 377 per game.The Lions also rank fifth in fewest sacks allowed, while ranking eighth inpassing efficiency. Southern ranks 23rd in total offense, while ranking 33rd inscoring offense and 35th in red zone offense.
MIAALeaders: The Lions lead the MIAA in both sacks and rushing offense. Southern rankssecond in fewest sacks allowed, while ranking fourth in passing efficiency,total offense and rushing defense.
SackNation: The Lions are leading the MIAA in sacks this year and had five in thegame against Southwest Baptist, including three on three consecutive plays.Southern has 15 sacks through six games and is on pace for 27.5 sacks in theseason. The school record for sacks in a season is 30, set in both 1991 and2005.
1993MIAA Championship Reunion: When the Lions face off with MissouriWestern this week, the Southern athletic department will remember the 20thanniversary of the 1993 MSSU MIAA Championship. Players from that team will behonored on field during the game.
WinningSeasons:The Lions are attempting to post back-to-back winning seasons for the firsttime since the 1995, 1996 and 1997 seasons. A win this weekend against MissouriWestern would guarantee a winning season for Southern.