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No. 8 Gorillas Set to Host Tigers for Family Day - KOAM TV 7

No. 8 Gorillas Set to Host Tigers for Family Day

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PRESS RELEASE PSU:


The Pittsburg State University football team, the No. 8 ranked team in NCAA Division II, will return to the friendly confines of Brandenburg Field/Carnie Smith Stadium Saturday (Sept. 27) to host MIAA rival Fort Hays State University in the Gorillas' Family Day game.

Kickoff is set for 2:07 p.m. (CDT).

Saturday's game will be televised live locally on The Cox Channel KS – channels 22, 122, 2022 (HD) and 2122. Additionally, the game will be available on a host of outlets (see list below) across the MIAA geographical footprint, including KSMO-TV in Kansas City and KGCS-TV in Joplin, Mo.

Pittsburg State, the winningest all-time NCAA Division II program, improved to 3-0 on the young season with a 42-0 road win over Washburn University last Saturday (Sept. 20) at Topeka. The Gorillas blanked Northeastern State University, 37-0, in their season opener in Pittsburg on Sept. 6, before posting a 38-7 victory over Lindenwood University at St. Charles, Mo., on Sept. 11.

Fort Hays State brings a 2-1 record into Saturday's action. The Tigers dropped a 27-6 decision to the University of Central Oklahoma in its season opener on Sept. 4, but FHSU has since notched a 48-13 road win over Northeastern State on Sept. 13 and a 20-7 home win over Lindenwood last Saturday (Sept. 20).


Another Home Sellout?
Saturday's anticipated crowd at Brandenburg Field/Carnie Smith Stadium should represent the ninth sellout in the last 12 home games since the start of the 2012 season. All reserved seats and general admission tickets have been sold and the school has begun to sell "standing room only" tickets for the game.

The official attendance will be announced in the third quarter of Saturday's action, but, based on early ticket sales, the crowd could challenge the school's all-time top single figure of 11,910 fans.

Pitt State has averaged 10,113 fans in 7,950-seat Carnie Smith Stadium in the last 11 home games, including four of the top single-game attendance figures in school history.

The Gorillas' last two Family Day contests have averaged 10,784 fans with 10,788 fans watching last year's 59-7 victory over Southwest Baptist on Sept. 21 and 10,779 fans watching the Sept. 22, 2012 59-17 over Lincoln.

Top Home Game Attedance    Total
    1.    vs. Missouri Western, Oct. 20, 2012    11,910
    2.    vs. Northwest Missouri, Oct. 13, 2001    11,862
    3.    vs. Abilene Christian, Oct. 5, 2013    10,981
    4.    vs. Northeastern State, Sept. 6, 2014    10,814
    5.    vs. Southwest Baptist, Sept. 21, 2013    10,778

The Coaches
Tim Beck is in his fifth season as head coach at Pitt State. He has compiled a 39-12 (.765) career record.  

Beck led his alma mater (PSU, '88) to the 2011 NCAA Division II National Championship three 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.

In 2013, the Gorillas opened the season 5-0 before finishing the year 7-3 overall, while last year Pitt State posted the program's 20th all-time 10-win season during a 10-2 campaign.

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 third meeting vs. the Tigers.  He is 2-1 vs. FHSU.

Chris Brown is in his fourth season as head coach at Fort Hays State. Brown (Pitt State, 1996) has compiled a 17-18-0 (.472) record leading the Tigers. Brown, a three-time All-America free safety for the Gorillas from 1993-95, came to FHSU after serving as defensive coordinator at Washburn University from 2002-10. This will be his third meeting vs. his alma mater. Brown is 0-2 vs. Pitt State.

The Pitt State-Fort Hays State Series
This will be the 73rd all-time meeting between the Gorillas and the Tigers in a series that dates all the way back to the 1915 season.

Pitt State holds a commanding 45-18-9 advantage in the series.  The Gorillas are 24-8-3 vs. the Tigers in Pittsburg all-time, including nine straight home wins.

Pitt State is 19-0-1 in its last 20 meetings against Fort Hays State, including eight straight victories.  The last FHSU win over Pitt State happened in a 35-30 decision at Hays on Oct. 14, 1978.

The two in-state rivals did not meet in 2012 or 2013. Pitt State posted a 38-18 victory over FHSU at Hays in the last match-up on Oct. 8, 2011.

PSU's Regular Season Success
Pitt State has won 268 of its last 316 regular season games, posting a phenomenal 268-46-2 (.851) mark during the past 30 seasons (1985-2013). PSU is 146-15-1 at home, 118-22-1 on the road and 4-9-0 at neutral sites in the regular season during that span.

Gorillas At Home
Pitt State holds a 336-121-12 (.729) record in 469 games inside Carnie Smith Stadium (including postseason). The Gorillas have won 137 of their last 153 regular season home games, posting a 137-15-1 record (.899) over the last 30 seasons.

FHSU has compiled a 9-8 (.529) road record since 2011 when head coach Chris Brown took over the Tigers' program.

Pitt State in the AFCA Top 25 Poll
Pitt State has been ranked in Division II's top 10 107 times in the last 193 polls and the Gorillas have been ranked in the top 25 poll in 167 of 193 weeks overall (dating back to the 1999 season).

The Gorillas, the preseason No. 9 team in NCAA Division II, held steady at No. 8 in this week's poll released Monday (Sept. 22).

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 286 of 344 overall games.  The Gorillas have posted a 255-30-1 (.893) record when they eclipse 200 yards rushing.  Pitt State is an even more impressive 139-6-0 (.959) when it eclipses 300 yards rushing.

By contrast, PSU is just 27-32-1 (.458) 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 98,419 yards (including postseason competition) for an average of 286.1 yards per game.

… But Don't Overlook Pitt State 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 26,890 yards and 206 TDs, averaging 229.8 passing yards and 1.8 touchdown passes per game in the last 117 outings.

In 2013, quarterback Anthony Abenoja established a new single-season passing record, averaging 246.2 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 averaged 247.7 passing yards with 31 touchdowns and five interceptions last year.

This year, Abenoja has become the school's all-time passing yards leader (6,431) and he's averaging 294.3 passing yards with eight touchdowns and no interceptions.

Quick Strike Offense
The Pitt State offense has exhibited a penchant for being a "quick strike" unit.

During the last 10 seasons (2005-14), the Pitt State offense has generated 628 scoring drives (535 TDs, 93 FGs) and averaged just 2:47 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    2010    41 scoring drives (34 TDs, 7 FGs)    3:04 elapsed time
2006    79 scoring drives (72 TDs, 7 FGs)    2:14 elapsed time    2011    78 scoring drives (60 TDs, 18 FGs)    2:54 elapsed time
2007    64 scoring drives (55 TDs, 9 FGs)    3:02 elapsed time    2012    51 scoring drives (40 TDs, 11 FGs)    2:58 elapsed time
2008    69 scoring drives (61 TDs, 8 FGs)    3:23 elapsed time    2013    83 scoring drives (70 TDs, 13 FGs)    2:29 elapsed time
2009    49 scoring drives (44 TDs, 5 FGs)    3:21 elapsed time    2014    17 scoring drives (13 TDs, 4 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 55 times (45 TDs, 10 FGs) in the last 111 games, posting a 52-3 (.945) record in those games. By contrast, Pitt State is 30-26 (.536) 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 11 seasons (2004-14). 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 eight 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), while the Gorillas ranked 24th nationally in total offense (454.4 ypg) and 27th in the country in rushing offense (204.6 ypg) in 2012. Last year, Pitt State ranked third nationally in scoring (46.5 ppg) and 10th in the country in total offense (499.0 ypg).

The Gorillas are averaging 39.0 points and 474.7 yards of total offense this season.

All-Time Winningest Programs
Pittsburg State is the all-time winningest NCAA Division II football program.  The Gorillas, who are in their 107th season of intercollegiate competition, have compiled a 676-331-48 overall record, winning 66.4 percent of their 1,055 all-time games.

Pittsburg State is one of just 17 NCAA Division II institutions to have recorded 500 all-time victories and the Gorillas are just one of four schools to have reached the 600-win plateau.  Tuskegee is second on the all-time list with 650 victories, followed by Hillsdale (610), Carson-Newman (600) and Central Oklahoma (597).

Pitt State Defense Leads Country in Points Allowed
The Pittsburg State University defense has allowed just one touchdown in the Gorillas first three games, a scant 2.3 points per game average.

Pitt State has posted two shutouts – 37-0 over Northeastern State in Pittsburg on Sept. 6 and 42-0 over Washburn at Topeka on Sept. 20 – and currently leads NCAA Division II in scoring defense.

The Gorillas last posted two shutouts in a season in 2007. That squad posted three shutouts during an 8-3 campaign.

Pitt State's seven points allowed is the lowest three-game total since 1971, when the Gorillas also allowed seven points in their first three games (including two shutouts).

The 1961 Gorillas posted five straight shutouts to open their National Championship campaign. That squad allowed just seven points in their first eight games, with seven shutouts, and ended the season allowing just 45 points in 11 games (4.1 ppg).

Lowest PSU Three-Game Opponent Scoring Total to Open a Season
    1.    0    1924; 1927; 1946; 1961
    2.    6    1925; 1952
    3.    7    1932; 1943; 1971; 2014

Since joining NCAA Division II in 1989, Pitt State has recorded 33 shutouts. The Gorillas recorded one or more shutout in every year between 1989 and 2007, except 1998.

No MIAA team has recorded more shutouts in the last 26 seasons (1989-2014) than Pitt State. Central Missouri has the second-most shutouts with 19, while NW Missouri State is third with 13.

This marks the 10th time since joining NCAA Division II that Pitt State has posted two or more shutouts in a season (1989, 1991, 1993-94, 1996, 1999, 2001, 2003, 2007, 2014).

Abenoja Among Nation's Top Quarterbacks
Senior quarterback Anthony Abenoja is in his third year directing the high-powered Pitt State offense.

Abenoja (6-3, 217) has compiled a 20-5 (.800) record as the Gorillas' starter under center.

The Overland Park, Kan., native became Pitt State's all-time passing leader on Sept. 11 against Lindenwood, when he completed 20 of 31 passes for 323 yards and three TDs.
He garnered MIAA Offensive Player of the Week honors last Saturday (Sept. 20) when he completed 19 of 33 passes for 330 yards and four TDs against Washburn.

For the season, he has completed 57 of 87 passes (.655) for 883 yards (294.3 ypg) and eight touchdowns with no interceptions.

He currently leads the MIAA and ranks sixth in NCAA Division II in passing efficiency with a 181.1 rating. Abenoja also ranks 16th nationally in passing yards per completion (15.5 ypc), 19th in completion percentage (.655), 22nd in total offense (319.3 ypg) and 29th in points responsible for per game (18.0 ppg).

For his career, Abenoja has completed 424 of 685 passes (.621) for 6,431 yards and 56 touchdowns. He also has rushed for 627 net yards to compile 7,058 yards of total offense.

Abenoja has recorded three of the top four single-game passing totals in school history, including a 442-yard passing performance against Lincoln as a junior in 2013. He already holds the school's career completions record, and he also ranks fourth on Pitt State's career total offense list with 7,058 yards.

PSU Career Passing Yards    Comp-Att    Yards
    1.    Anthony Abenoja, 2011-pr.    424-685    6431

PSU Career Passing Touchdowns    TDs
    1.    Neal Philpot, 2001-04    61
    2.    Anthony Abenoja, 2011-pr.    56

PSU Career Total Offense    Pass    Rush    Total
    1.    Neal Philpot, 2001-04    5831    4337    10168

    3.    Mark Smith, 2005-08    5190    2367    7554
    4.    Anthony Abenoja, 2011-pr.    6431    627    7058

Seybold Fuels Ground Game
Junior running back Jeff Seybold, Jr. continues his pursuit of Pitt State's top 20 rushing list.

Seybold, who rushed for 1,434 yards (119.5 ypg) and 22 touchdowns during an All-American sophomore campaign in 2013, has scored a team-leading five touchdowns to date – two rushing scores and three receiving.

Seybold (5-11, 199) has carried the ball 30 times for 164 yards (5.5 ypc) on the season. He also has caught 11 passes for 145 yards (13.2 ypc) out of the backfield.

For his career, the Lincoln, Neb., native has rushed the ball 294 times for 1,897 yards and 26 TDs.  He needs 179 yards to crack Pitt State's top 20 rushing list.
Seybold also has 37 career receptions for 330 yards (8.9 ypc) and four touchdowns.

PSU Career Rushing Yards    Carries    Yards
    1.    Germaine Race, 2003-06    941    6985

    19.    Albert Schmidt, 1968-71    442    2152
    20.    Jeff Moreland, 1991-95    564    2075
        Jeff Seybold, 2012-pres.    294    1897


Bausby Climbs PBU List
Senior cornerback De'Vante Bausby intercepted a pass in the Pitt State end zone to thwart a scoring drive and also recorded a pass break-up in the Gorillas' season opener against Northeastern State. For the season, Bausby (6-2, 179) has made 14 tackles (nine solo), including 1.0 TFL and 0.5 quarterback sack. He also has an interception and two PBUs to his credit.

The Kansas City, Mo., native now has 23 career pass break-ups, ranking in fifth place on PSU's career list. He also has eight career INTs.

PSU Career Pass Break-ups    PBUs
    1.    Ted Adams, 1986-89    40

    4.    Donnie Johnson, 1985-88    25
    5.    De'Vante Bausby, 2011-pres.    23

Frazell Steady in Kicking Game
Senior place kicker Connor Frazell has provided a steady leg to Pitt State's kicking game the past three seasons.

Frazell (6-0, 183) booted three field goals – from 26, 35 and 36 yards – in the Gorillas' season-opening win vs. Northeastern State.  He added a 24-yard kick against Lindenwood on Sept. 11.
The Iola, Kan., native established a new PSU record by making 14 consecutive field goals – he made the final 10 field goal attempts of the 2013 season and his first four tries in 2014.

For his career, Frazell has converted 28 of 37 (.757) field goals and 122 of 125 (.976) PATs to tally 206 career points (8.2 ppg).

PSU Career Field Goals    FGs
    1.    Josh Barcus, 1995-98    44

    3.    Nathan Alleman, 2003-06    29
    4.    Connor Frazell, 2012-pr.    28
                    
PSU Career Kick Scoring    Points
    1.    Nathan Alleman, 2003-06    401

    4.    Jared Witter, 2007-10    211
    5.    Connor Frazell, 2012-pr.    206

Scouting the Tigers
Fort Hays State has compiled a 2-1 record through its first three games. The Tigers dropped a 26-7 decision to Central Oklahoma in its season opener, but FHSU has since posted a 48-13 win over Northeastern State and a 20-7 victory over Lindenwood.

The Tigers are scoring 25.0 points per game and averaging 291.3 total yards (163.3 rushing, 128.0 passing).

Junior quarterback Treveon Albert (6-0, 195) has completed 27 of 58 passes (.466) for 257 yards (85.7 ypg) and three touchdowns with one interception. He also has carried the ball 24 times for 86 net yards (3.6 ypc) and two scores.

Senior running back Edward Smith (5-10, 190) has carried the ball a team-leading 30 times for 174 yards (5.8 ypc) and two TDs, while sophomore running back Kenneth Iheme (5-8, 165) has 24 carries for 144 yards (6.0 ypc) and one TD.

Senior wide receiver Ed Williams (6-2, 195) has a team-leading 12 catches for 200 yards (16.7 ypc) and one touchdown.

Defensively, the Tigers are allowing just 15.3 points and 372.3 total yards per game (117.7 rushing, 254.6 passing).
Junior linebacker Justin McPhail (6-1, 225) has made 25 tackles (15 solo) with a team-leading 4.5 TFLs (3.0 QB sacks) and two INTs. Junior linebacker Brock Long (5-11, 200) leads the squad with 27 tackles (12 solo).

Sophomore DeAndre James (5-10, 185) has returned six kickoffs for a 31.2-yard average, including an 89-yard touchdown. He currently ranks 17th in NCAA Division II in kickoff return average.                 






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