GLENVILLE - Concord University will celebrate homecoming at 2 p.m. Saturday when visiting Glenville State comes to town as the Pioneers look to improve to 3-0 in West Virginia Conference action.
The defending conference champion Mountain Lions of head man Garin Justice had just one WVIAC setback a year ago and that came at Glenville State, 14-3.
Although the G-men are just 2-3 overall, they must continue to pile up the wins as they hope to win a conference championship. Concord, 2-3 overall and 1-2 in the WVIAC, is coming off a 20-6 setback at Shepherd, which is the only other conference team unbeaten heading into play this weekend.
"They are probably the best Division II team we've faced," GSC head coach David Hutchison said of the Mountain Lions. "You can see they are very talented across the board.
"They've got a very athletic defense. After losing their quarterback (Zack Grossi), you can see they are starting to find their identity on offense. They moved the ball up and down the field on Shepherd like it was no big deal."
The only problem for Concord, which is now under the reigns of signal-caller Albert Rose, was the fact the Mountain Lions couldn't find their way into the end zone enough versus the Rams.
Glenville State (2-3, 2-0)
at Concord University (2-3, 1-2)
Game time: 2 p.m. Saturday
Last year: GSC 14,
Rose hit 30 of 50 passes for 376 yards versus Shepherd, but was picked off four times, while Concord was stuffed to the tune of 41 yards rushing on 25 attempts.
"Shepherd played that eight-man front as they want to force you to throw the football and it's tough to run on them," Hutchison noted of how Concord tried to execute its offense last week.
"If you watched it all the way through, Concord had their chances. They had the ball inside the 10 on two drives in the fourth quarter and they just didn't finish the deal."
Coach Hutchison understands his squad can't have any letdowns in conference play and is hoping his team puts forth a better showing than last week's narrow 17-14 victory at West Liberty.
"For us, we have to win the battle up front," Hutchison said of the key to playing spoiler for CU's homecoming. "We have to take care of the football and execute.
"Our defense played their butts off (last week) and the special teams played great, but we didn't take care of the ball with five interceptions. We left a lot of points on the field and against this Concord team, we can't afford to do that stuff."
Concord is averaging less than 18 points a game, but is led defensively by Jake Lilly (51 tackles) and Silas Armstrong, whose 11 tackles for loss has him tied for for fifth nationally. Concord's Brad Cox, ranked 18th in D-II, leads the WVIAC in punting while G-men punter Tanner Collins is currently 37th in the country.