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No. 7 Gorillas to Host Rangers in Hall of Fame Game Saturday - KOAM TV 7

No. 7 Gorillas to Host Rangers in Hall of Fame Game Saturday

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Press Release: PSU 

The Pittsburg State University football team, the No. 7 ranked team in NCAA Division II, will return to the friendly confines of Brandenburg Field/Carnie Smith Stadium for the first time in four weeks Saturday (Nov. 2) to host NCAA Division II Super Regional Three foe Northwestern Oklahoma State University.

Kickoff is set for 2 p.m. (CDT) at Carnie Smith Stadium.

Pittsburg State, the winningest all-time NCAA Division II program, brings a 7-1 overall record into Saturday's contest. The Gorillas bounced back from their first loss of the season on Oct. 19 with a 34-14 road win over previously unbeaten and fourth-ranked Missouri Western State University last Saturday (Oct. 26).

NWOSU, a member of the Great America Conference (GAC) and a regional opponent in NCAA Division II Super Region Three, claimed its first win of the season with a 25-21 decision over Southeastern Oklahoma State University at Alva, Okla., last Saturday (Oct. 26).

The Coaches
Tim Beck has compiled a 33-11 (.750) career record in his fourth season as head coach at Pitt State.  

Beck led his alma mater (PSU, '88) to the 2011 NCAA Division II National Championship two seasons ago, earning national coach of the year honors from Liberty Mutual, the Don Hansen Football Committee and FieldTurf™.

Beck became the school's 14th all-time head football coach in December 2009, after serving for 23 seasons as an assistant coach for the Gorillas including 16 years as the team's offensive coordinator from 1994-2009.

In his first season leading the Gorillas, Beck guided Pitt State to a 6-6 record and a victory in the 2010 Mineral Water Bowl.  In 2011, Beck led the Gorillas to the program's second NCAA national championship and the school's fourth national title overall in a 13-1 campaign. Pitt State captured the MIAA Championship and ultimately the NCAA-II National Championship with a 35-21 victory over Wayne (Mich.) State on Dec. 17, 2011.

Last year, the Gorillas opened the season 5-0 before finishing the year 7-3 overall.

During his 16 seasons as offensive coordinator, the Gorilla offense consistently ranked among the finest units in NCAA Division II.

In 2008, Beck was selected the inaugural NCAA Division II Coordinator of the Year by FootballScoop.com, following a vote of his coaching peers.

In 2004, Beck's offensive unit established itself as the most prolific squad in the history of NCAA football.  PSU shattered a 118-year-old scoring record, scoring an amazing 837 points (55.8 ppg).  His squad also set the NCAA all division records for rushing (5,320 yards) and total offense (8,976 yards).

Beck's teams led Division II in scoring in two of the last six years (2004, 2006) and ranked in the top two nationally in total offense three times in the last six seasons (2004, 2005, 2006).  His squads ranked among the national rushing leaders every season, leading Division II in 1995 (318.8 ypg) and 2004 (354.7 ypg).  Beck's "multiple choice" option attack also compiled 16,483 passing yards (216.9 ypg) and 143 aerial touchdowns during the last six years.

Pitt State averaged a staggering 38.8 points and 442.5 yards of total offense per game during his tenure as offensive coordinator.

Prior to assuming the offensive coordinator's role, Beck served two years as Pitt State's defensive coordinator (1992-93).  He became a full-time assistant on the Pitt State staff in 1989, after serving first as a student assistant (1987) and then as a graduate assistant (1988).

This will be Beck's first meeting vs. Northwestern Oklahoma.

NWOSU's Alan Hall is in his second year leading the Rangers. Hall (Charter Oak State, '93) has compiled a 4-14 (.222) record in his short tenure at NWOSU. Hall was a back-up quarterback on the University of Miami's 1991 national championship football team. His previous coaching stints include stops at Independence CC, Dodge City CC and Division II Newberry (S.C.). This will be his first meeting vs. Pitt State.

The Pitt State-Northwestern Oklahoma Series
This will be the first meeting between the Gorillas and the Rangers.

Hall of Fame Game
Saturday's match-up between the Gorillas and the Rangers will be Pitt State's Hall of Fame Game.  Six inductees will be enshrined as members of the Class of 2013 during a formal banquet Saturday morning (Nov. 2) at the Overman Student Center. The group also will be recognized at halftime of Saturday's football game.

The Class of 2013 includes three former Pitt State football student-athletes – Frank Crespino (1951-54), Chuck Shelton (1959-60) and Aaron McConnell (2000-03) – and former Pitt State football coach Charley Morgan (1936, '38-48).

PSU's Regular Season Success
Pitt State has won 263 of its last 310 regular season games, posting a phenomenal 263-45-2 (.851) mark during the past 29 seasons (1985-2013). PSU is 144-14-1 at home, 115-22-1 on the road and 4-9-0 at neutral sites in the regular season during that span.

Pitt State in the AFCA Top 25 Poll
Pitt State has been ranked in Division II's top 10 100 times in the last 186 polls and the Gorillas have been ranked in the top 25 poll in 160 of 186 weeks overall (dating back to the 1999 season).

Gorillas At Home
Pitt State holds a 332-118-12 (.732) record in 462 games inside Carnie Smith Stadium (including postseason). The Gorillas are 70-13 (.843) at home  since 2000.

NWOSU is 2-13 (.133) on the road since 2011, including an 0-4 mark in games played away from Alva, Okla., this year.

All-Time Winningest Football Programs
Pittsburg State is the all-time winningest NCAA Division II football program.  The Gorillas, who are in their 105th season of intercollegiate competition, have compiled a 670-330-48 overall record, winning 66.2 percent of their 1,048 all-time games.

Pittsburg State is one of just 18 NCAA Division II institutions to have recorded 500 all-time victories and the Gorillas are just one of three schools to have reached the 600-win plateau.  Tuskegee is second on the all-time list with 647 victories, followed by Hillsdale (607), Central Oklahoma (592) and Texas A&M-Kingsville (590).

Ground Game PSU's Bread and Butter…
Pitt State's success can be directly linked to its ability to rush the football.

Since the 1986 season, PSU has rushed for 200-plus yards in 282 of 337 overall games.  The Gorillas have posted a 251-30-1 (.892) record when they eclipse 200 yards rushing.  Pitt State is an even more impressive 137-6-0 (.958) when it eclipses 300 yards rushing.

By contrast, PSU is just 25-31-1 (.447) in the handful of games when it has been held below 200 yards rushing.
Since 1986, PSU has rushed the ball for the highest yardage total among all NCAA Division II programs, with 96,845 yards (including postseason competition) for an average of 287.4 yards per game.

The Gorillas currently rank 23rd nationally in rushing, averaging 234.9 yards per game on the ground. Pitt State has rushed the ball 319 times for 1,644 yards (5.2 ypc) and 20 touchdowns on the season.

… But Don't Overlook PSU Passing Attack
While it's no secret Pitt State's offensive success has been predicated on running the football, the Gorillas have unleashed a potent passing attack to compliment their stalwart running game.

Since the start of the 2004 season, the Gorillas have passed for 25,075 yards and 186 TDs, averaging 228.0 passing yards and 1.7 touchdown passes per game in the last 110 outings.

In 2012, quarterback Tony Abenoja established a new single-season passing record, averaging 233.0 passing yards per game.  Also, against Lincoln on Sept. 28 Abenoja established new school single game records for passing yards (442), passing touchdowns (5) and total offense (463 yards).

The Gorillas have averaged 261.4 passing yards in their first eight games with 19 touchdowns and five interceptions.
    
Quick Strike Offense
The Pitt State offense has exhibited a penchant for being a "quick strike" unit.

During the last nine seasons (2005-13), the Pitt State offense has generated 579 scoring drives (494 TDs, 85 FGs) and averaged just 2:52 of elapsed time per drive. [Overtime scoring drives not included in elapsed time figures.]

2005    97 scoring drives (86 TDs, 11 FGs)    2:40 elapsed time
2006    79 scoring drives (72 TDs, 7 FGs)    2:14 elapsed time        
2007    64 scoring drives (55 TDs, 9 FGs)    3:02 elapsed time
2008    69 scoring drives (61 TDs, 8 FGs)    3:23 elapsed time        
2009    49 scoring drives (44 TDs, 5 FGs)    3:21 elapsed time    
2010    41 scoring drives (34 TDs, 7 FGs)    3:04 elapsed time
2011    78 scoring drives (60 TDs, 18 FGs)    2:54 elapsed time
2012    51 scoring drives (40 TDs, 11 FGs)    2:58 elapsed time
2013    51 scoring drives (42 TDs, 9 FGs)    2:53 elapsed time

The Gorillas have been highly successful when they are quick out of the gates.  Pitt State has scored on its opening drive 50 times (42 TDs, 8 FGs) in the last 104 games, posting a 47-3 (.940) record in those games. By contrast, Pitt State is 29-25 (.537) in games it doesn't score on its opening drive during the same span.

Pitt State Displays Prolific Offense
The Pitt State offense has asserted itself as one of the top units in NCAA Division II the past 10 seasons (2004-13).

Pitt State's high octane "multiple choice" offense ranked either No. 1 or No. 2 nationally in both scoring and total offense in three of the last seven seasons.

In 2004, PSU staked its claim as the most prolific offense in the history of NCAA football, leading Division II in scoring (55.8 ppg), rushing (354.7 ypg) and total offense (598.4 ypg).

Pitt State broke the NCAA's 118-year-old all-time all division scoring record with 837 points, besting the old mark of 765 points set by Harvard in 1886.  The Gorillas also broke the all-time NCAA all division records for rushing (5,320 yards) and total offense (8,976 yards) in 2004.

Oklahoma set the previous rushing record (5,196 yards) in 1971, and Texas Tech held the previous total offense mark (7,576 yards) in 2003.

In 2005, Pitt State ranked second nationally in scoring and total offense, averaging 46.8 points and 536.0 total yards per game.  The Gorillas also ranked seventh nationally in rushing, averaging 295.2 yards a game.

In 2006, Pitt State led NCAA Division II in scoring and ranked No. 2 nationally in total offense, averaging 44.8 points and 454.8 total yards per game in 2006.

In 2007, the Gorillas ranked 21st nationally in scoring and 19th nationally in total offense, averaging 37.4 points and 454.2 total yards per game. In 2008, Pitt State ranked 18th nationally in scoring (35.5 ppg) and 21st in the nation in total offense (432.6 ypg).

In 2009, the Pitt State offense averaged 29.4 points and 434.4 total yards per game, while the Gorillas averaged 22.8 points and 357.7 total yards per game in 2010.

In 2011, the Gorillas ranked sixth nationally in scoring (40.2 ppg) and 19th in the country in total offense (448.5 ypg). In 2012, the Gorillas ranked 24th nationally in total offense (454.4 ypg) and 27th in the country in rushing offense (204.6 ypg).

This season, Pittsburg State is currently ranked 15th nationally in scoring (42.0 ppg), 20th nationally in rushing offense (240.5 ypg) and 16th in total offense (501.9 ypg).

Dreiling Approaching Tackle Records
Senior linebacker Nate Dreiling continues to climb both the Pitt State and MIAA career tackles charts. Dreiling (6-4, 226) has posted double-digit tackles in 27 of 44 career games for the Gorillas.

The Hutchinson/Victoria, Kan., native now has 457 (10.4 pg) career tackles. He needs 14 stops to become PSU's all-time tackles leader.  Dreiling trails only former All-American Chris Brown (470) on the career list.

Dreiling also needs three tackles to take over fourth place on the MIAA's all-time tackle chart and he can climb as high as third on the list by passing Brown for the Pitt State record with 14 tackles. Truman's Marti Rave (1977-79) holds the MIAA career tackle mark (489).

For the season, Dreiling has made 75 tackles with 7.0 tackles-for-loss, 1.0 quarterback sack, an interception and four pass breakups.

PSU Career Tackles    Total    MIAA Career Tackles    Total
    1.    Chris Brown, 1992-95    470        1.    Marti Rave, Truman, 1977-79    489
    2.    Nate Dreiling, 2010-pres.    457        2.    Zach Watkins, WU, 2006-09    473
                    3.    Chris Brown, PSU, 1992-95    470
                    4.    Grant Gould, WU, 2002-05    459
                    5.    Nate Dreiling, Pitt State, 2010-pres.    457

Abenoja Ranks Ninth in Nation in Passing Efficiency
Junior quarterback Tony Abenoja currently ranks ninth in NCAA Division II with a 169.7passer rating. He also ranks 26th nationally in completion percentage (.643) and 32nd in points responsible for (16.0 ppg).

Abenoja (6-3, 210) has completed 135 of 210 passes for 2,047 yards (255.9 ypg) and 18 touchdowns with five interceptions.  The Overland Park, Kan., native also has rushed the ball 80 times for 239 yards (3.0 ypc) and three touchdowns.

Abenoja established a trio of new Pitt State single game records against Lincoln, passing for 442 yards with five touchdowns and compiling 463 yards of total offense

For his career, Abenoja has completed 319 of 490 passes (.651) for 4,641 yards and 36 touchdowns with 15 interceptions.  He's also rushed 173 times for 451 yards (2.6 ypc) and six TDs, compiling 5,092 yards of total offense. Abenoja already holds the school record for complettion percentage (.651). He ranks fifth on PSU's career passing yards, sixth in career passing touchdowns lists and he also broke into the top 10 list in total offense at 10th as well.

Abenoja also improved to 14-4 (.778) as the Gorillas starting quarterback.

Brown Continues to Make History
Senior wide receiver/return specialist John Brown captured Pitt State's all-time receiving record with a nine-catch, 237-yard performance in the Gorillas' game against Lincoln on Sept. 28.

Brown (5-11, 170) scored five total touchdowns in the contest to tie the PSU single game scoring record (30 points) and he compiled 294 all-purpose yards, earning MIAA Offensive Player of the Week honors.

His 237-yard receiving total ranks second on Pitt State's single game chart and fifth in MIAA single game history.

The Homestead, Fla., native now holds both the Pitt State career receptions record (170) and the Pitt State career receiving yards mark (3,004 yards). He passed Ronnie West, the only wide receiver in Division II history to win the Harlon Hill Trophy in 1991, atop the list, in his 28th game – the same number of games West played in 1990-91.

Brown now needs 46 yards to carve his name in the MIAA career receiving top 10 list.

For the season, Brown has 46 catches for 815 yards (17.7 ypc) and nine touchdowns, averaging 101.9 receiving yards per game.

PSU Career Receiving    G    Rec    Yards    YPG                
    1.    John Brown, 2011-pr.    32    170    3004    93.9         
    2.    Ronnie West, 1990-91    28    123    2521    90.0                                            

MIAA Career Receiving    Rec    Yards
    1.    Jamaica Rector, NW, 2001-04    289    4497
    9.    Michael Dritlein, WU, 1992-95    170    3103
10.        Andre Rector, NW, 2002-05    213    3049
        John Brown, PSU, 2011-pres.    170    3004

PSU Career All-Purpose    Rush    Rec    PR    KR    Yards
    1.    Ronald Moore, 1989-92    5776    318    0    1084    7178

    3.    Monte Weathers, 1984-87    3852    295    686    1932    6764    
    4.    John Brown, 2011-pr.    362    3004    999    1260    5625

Seybold Approaching 1,000-Yard Season
Sophomore running back Jeff Seybold, Jr. garnered MIAA Offensive Player of the Week honors Monday (Oct. 26) after rushing for 179 yards and three touchdowns against Missouri Western.

Seybold (5-11, 208) now has 910 rushing yards, on 141 carries, on the season, averaging 113.8 yards per game.  The Lincoln, Neb., native has 16 touchdowns – 15 rushing, 1 receiving – to lead the MIAA and rank sixth nationally in scoring (12.0 ppg).

On Sept. 28, Seybold carried the ball 20 times for a season-high 187 yards and two touchdowns against Lincoln.  He has five 100-yard rushing games on the season.

Scouting the Rangers
As a team, the Rangers are averaging 289.5 yards per game of total offense, including 160.6 yards per game through the air and 128.9 yards per game on the ground. Norhtwestern Okla. also are averaging 13.0 points per game through their eight contests.

Senior running back Javari Liggins (5-10, 213) has paced the Rangers rushing attack with 359 yards on 112 (3.2 ypc) carries with two touchdowns through eight games. Jarion Tudman (5-6, 179) is second on the team with 284 yards on 50 (5.7 ypc) carries. The redshirt freshman also has accumulated two touchdowns on the year.

Redshirt freshman quarterback Reid Miller (6-3, 220) has completed 73 of 159 (.459) passes for 765 yards with four touchdowns and six interceptions. Freshman L.T. Pfaff (5-10, 170) also has seen time under center for the Rangers. Pfaff has completed 36 of 64 (.562) passes for 510 yards with three touchdowns and one interception.

Sophomore wide receiver Mervin Stewart (6-0, 180) has been the go-to receiver to date. The Lakeland, Fla., native has caught 23 passes for 240 yards and two touchdowns.

Northwestern Oklahoma's defense is led by sophomore linebacker Alex Hemberger (5-10, 200). The Argonia, Kan., native has recorded 60 tackles, including 6.0 tackles-for-loss with two interceptions. Hemberger recorded 12 tackles with 3.0 tackles-for-loss in the win last week over Southeastern Oklahoma.

Kollin Retter (5-1, 202) has tallied 59 tackles, with 4.0 tackles-for-loss and two interceptions. The Yukon, Okla., native racked up 14 tackles in NWOSU's victory last week.  

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