Nov. 7, 2013
The Game: Eighth-ranked Johns Hopkins (8-0, 7-0) welcomes Franklin & Marshall (5-3, 5-2 CC) to Homewood Field for the Blue Jays' final regular season home game of the 2013 season.
A Look Back: Johns Hopkins ran its winning streak to eight games with a 24-18 victory against Ursinus last Saturday. F&M bounced back from a loss at Moravian two weeks ago with a 41-36 victory against Susquehanna last Saturday at home.
Poll Position: Johns Hopkins is ranked eighth in this week's AFCA Division III Coaches Poll and 12th in this week's D3football.com Poll. The Blue Jays also check in at number two in this week's Lambert Poll. The Johns Hopkins Athletic Communications Office uses the AFCA Poll to reflect the team's official national ranking at the time of a game. All three polls and JHU's week-by-week rankings can be found on page five.
One Away From 500: Johns Hopkins moved to within one win of victory number 500 as the Blue Jays improved their all-time record to 499-476-58 (.511) with the win against Ursinus. JHU is bidding to become the fourth Centennial Conference team to reach the 500-win mark (F&M-595, Gettysburg-550, McDaniel-515).
Margraff to Coach 250th Game: This week's game against Franklin & Marshall will be Jim Margraff's 250th as the head coach at Johns Hopkins. Margraff carries a 165-81-3 (.669) record in 24 seasons at Homewood.
Series History: This week's game will be the 65th all-time meeting between Johns Hopkins and Franklin & Marshall with the Diplomats holding a 35-27-2 advantage in the series. The complete series history can be found on page 2.
Seniors Playing Final Regular Season Home Game: The seniors on the 2013 Johns Hopkins football team will be honored prior to Saturday's game against the Diplomats as this will be the final regular season home game in their career.
The Blue Jays have enjoyed great success since this group arrived in 2010. During the careers of the current seniors, Johns Hopkins has posted a 36-6 record, won three Centennial Conference titles, made two trips to the NCAA Playoffs and won an ECAC Championship.
On a Roll: Johns Hopkins is 31-1 in its last 32 regular season games dating back to late in the 2010 season. The only team to top the Blue Jays duirng that run? Franklin & Marshall, which topped the Blue Jays, 14-12, last November.
At Home at Homewood: Johns Hopkins picked up its 17th straight regular season home victory with the 24-18 win against Ursinus last week. The Blue Jays last lost a regular season home game on October 2, 2010 against Muhlenberg (30-27). That remains the only regular season home loss for the seniors on the 2013 team. Overall, the current seniors are 19-2 in the home blacks.
Road Warriors: Johns Hopkins has been nearly as strong on the road in recent years as it has been at home. Dating back to late in the 2010 season, the Blue Jays are 15-1 in their last 16 regular season road games. Taking it back farther, JHU is 27-6 (.818) on the road since the start of the 2008 season (regular season and post season games included).
Balanced Success: Since the start of the 2001 season, Johns Hopkins is 53-17 on the road and 52-17 at home.
November Reign: Entering this week's game against F&M, Johns Hopkins is 11-1 in its last 12 regular season games in the month of November dating back to 2008. Including the post-season, the Blue Jays are 14-4 in their last 18 games in November (also dating to 2008).
More November: Johns Hopkins is 14-1 in its last 15 regular season home games in the month of November. Since the start of the 2001 season, JHU's only loss at home in the regular season in November came in 2007, when F&M took a 19-11 decision.
Bidding for 9-0: Johns Hopkins is looking for just the second 9-0 start in school history. Only in 2011, when JHU went through the regular season undefeated (10-0), did the Blue Jays win their first nine games of a season. The three straight 8-0 starts the Blue Jays have to their credit matches the Centennial record for most consecutive eight-game winning streaks to start a season (McDaniel/1997-99).
The Race for the Boot: Johns Hopkins clinched no worse than a share of its fifth consecutive Centennial Conference title with last week's 24-18 victory against Ursinus. The Blue Jays can clinch the title outright and earn the CC's automatic bid to the upcoming NCAA Playoffs with a win in either of their last two games. With two games remaining, three other teams have a chance to grab a share of the title as well. Below is a summary of those teams' path to a share of the championship and the league's automatic bid:
Franklin & Marshall: The Diplomats need two wins and two losses by Johns Hopkins to share the title. F&M could get the league's bid to the NCAAs with two wins, two losses by JHU and at least one loss by Ursinus.
Ursinus: UC gets a share of the title with two wins and two losses by Johns Hopkins. Ursinus cannot get the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Playoffs.
Muhlenberg: The Mules get a share of the title with two wins and two losses by Johns Hopkins. Muhlenberg cannot get the league's automatic bid to the NCAA Playoffs.
Move Those Chains-I: Johns Hopkins has amassed 228 first downs through eight games. JHU has rolled up at least 26 first downs in seven of its first eight games and you really can't get more balance; of the 228, 120 have come by rushing, 102 have come by passing and six were on penalties. JHU's 228 first downs rank second in the nation (Greenville - 236).
Move Those Chains-II: JHU punched up 34 first downs against Gettysburg, the fourth-highest single-game total in school history. The 35 first downs JHU accumulated vs. Randolph-Macon in the season opener are the third-highest total in school history with the top four totals coming in JHU's last 25 games dating back to 2011. The school-record of 40 first downs came last season against Moravian. The 40 first downs vs. the Greyhounds last season are one shy of the NCAA Division III record.
Under Pressure: The Johns Hopkins defense has been dialing up the pressure this season as the Blue Jays have racked up a Centennial-high 33 sacks and 65 tackles for losses through eight games. JHU is tied for first in the nation in sacks per game (4.13) and ranks 35th in tackles for losses per game (8.1).
Junior Michael Longo leads the way with 6.0 sacks on the year, while Matthew Connery (5.5), John Arena (5.0) and Andy Laychur (4.0) have all gotten to the quarterback at least four times.
In all, 17 different players have been in on at least one sack and 23 different players have at least one tackle for a loss.
Defense Boasts Impressive Numbers on the Field: While much of the attention is focused on Johns Hopkins' prolific offense, the Blue Jays also feature one of the top defenses in the nation. Entering this week's game, the Blue Jays rank 18th in scoring defense (13.6), 21st in total defense (282.4) and 18th in rushing defense (96.1).
Defense Boasts Impressive Numbers in the Classroom: In addtion to posting some impressive numbers on the field, the starting defense for the Blue Jays has been equally impressive in the classroom. JHU's primary starting 11 on defense boasts a combined cumulative GPA of 3.33. Five of the 11 starters have over a 3.6 cumulative GPA, including senior SS John Arena, who will graduate in December with a degree in Neuroscience and boasts a 4.0.
Double Your Pleasure-I: Johns Hopkins rushed and passed for more than 200 yards in each of its first four games - the first time a JHU team has ever done that - and then turned the trick against Gettysburg as well. JHU now ranks fourth in the nation in total offense (529.2).
That's a First: Johns Hopkins punched up more than 500 yards of total offense in five straight games before notching 429 against Ursinus. This was the first time in school history that the Blue Jays topped the 500-yard mark in five consecutive games. In addition, JHU's six 500-yard games tie the school single-season record (2012). Johns Hopkins is 32-1 all-time when punching up 500+ yards.
Wodicka, Cherry Reach Milestones: Senior wide receiver Dan Wodicka and sophomore running back Brandon Cherry helped fuel the 24-18 win over Ursinus last week and each hit personal milestones in the victory.
Wodicka had five receptions for 65 yards and a pair of fourth-quarter touchdowns to rally JHU from an 18-10 deficit. His final catch of the day - a 16-yard touchdown catch that gave the Blue Jays the lead - pushed him past 3,000 career receiving yards (3,008). He is just the third player in JHU history and the fourth in Centennial Conference history to reach 3,000 yards.
Cherry posted his third consecutive 100-yard rushing game in the victory against the Bears and, in the process, became the 24th player in school history to top 1,000 career rushing yards. He now has 1,021 yards, including a team-high 769 this season.
Double Your Pleasure-II: Sophomore Brandon Cherry rushed for 154 yards and freshman Stuart Walters added 124 yards and two touchdowns to lead a 360-yard rushing attack for the Blue Jays in the 42-17 win against Dickinson. It didn't take long for the duo to turn the trick again as Cherry went for a career-high 176 yards and one TD and Walters punched up a personal-best 130 yards and a TD of his own at Gettysburg. This marked the 17th & 18th time in school history that JHU has had two players rush for 100+ plus yards in one game (JHU is 18-0 in such games).
For the Record: With Brandon Cherry and Stuart Walters' recent 100-yard rushing games, JHU has now had three different players turn that trick this season as senior JD Abbott totaled 125 against Susquehanna earlier this season. This is the first time Johns Hopkins has had three different players rush for 100+ yards in a game in one season since 2003 (Adam Cook, T.J. Lyons, Mark Nesbitt).
Walters Within Striking Distance: Stuart Walters rushed nine times for 66 yards last week against Ursinus and is within striking distance of the Johns Hopkins record for rushing yards by a freshman. With two regular season games remaining, Walters has 531 yards and four touchdowns to his credit. The school record for rushing yards by a freshman is 753 by Hari Lymon in 1992.
Matey Ranks Second in Career Wins: Senior quarterback Robbie Matey may not end his career as JHU's all-time leader in any single-season or career statistical category. However, with a 20-2 all-time record as JHU's starting quarterback, he's done one thing at a higher rate than any other QB in school history; win. His 20 wins as JHU's starting quarterback are the second highest total in school history, while his career winning percentage (.909) is by far the highest.
Matey enjoyed one of the best games of his career in the recent win at Juniata as he was 23-of-26 for 408 yards and six touchdowns. The 408 yards and six TDs are both career highs. His completion percentage against the Eagles (.885) is the highest in JHU and Centennial Conference history by a quarterback with 25 or more attempts. Matey enters this week's game against F&M ranked third in the nation in completion percentage (.734) and 15th in pass efficiency (160.42) as he is 171-of-233 for 1,920 yards with 15 TDs against just four INTs on the year. He has also rushed for 245 yards and four TDs.
With his 425th career completion at Gettysburg, Matey also qualifies for the NCAA career completion percentage rankings, which he currently tops among quarterbacks in all divisions. Sitting just behind him is reigning Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel of Texas A&M.
Abbott & D'Orazio Reach 1,000: Senior JD Abbott became the 23rd player in school history to reach 1,000 career rushing yards with his 86 yards against Muhlenberg. Abbott's career rushing total is now 1,119 yards and he ranks 21st on JHU's career rushing list. In addition, he is now tied for ninth on JHU's career rushing touchdowns list with 19.
Classmate Bob D'Orazio joined the 1,000-yard receiving club one game after Abbott joined the 1,000-yard rushing fraternity. D'Orazio had four receptions for 108 yards and three TDs at Juniata and, in the process, became the 21st player in school history to reach 1,000 career receiving yards. He now has career totals of 80 receptions for 1,070 yards and eight TDs. He ranks 20th in school history in receiving yards and 19th in receptions.
Many Happy Returns: The Johns Hopkins return game has gotten a boost with the arrival of freshmen Bradley Munday and Adrian Trammell. Munday is averaging 8.6 yards on his 17 punt returns this season, which ranks him third in the Centennial Conference, while Trammell is averaging 24.1 yards on his 12 kickoff returns through eight games to rank fourth in the Centennial as well.
For Starters: Freshman place-kicker Nick Campbell has enjoyed a productive beginning to his career through eight games as he has been good on 39-of-40 extra point attempts and all eight of his field goal attempts. His streak of consective successful XPs was stopped at 25 at Juniata when his sixth attempt was blocked. He made one field goal in each of JHU's first five games this season and nailed two (21, 28) in the win at Gettysburg.
Carbone Enjoying Solid Season: Senior Richie Carbone has been forced to punt just 26 times through eight games, but he has again shown improvement in his average this season. After averaging 34.5 yards as a sophomore, he bumped that up more than two yards per attempt last season to 36.6 yards on 34 punts. Through eight games this season he is averaging a career-high 36.7 yards per punt. He has dropped 10 of his 26 punts inside the 20-yard line with several of his punts sacrificing distance for field position.
Carbone is also a member of the Blue Jay baseball team and helped JHU to the Centennial Conference title and a berth in the NCAA Mid-Atlantic Regional last spring. He played in 26 games with 19 starts in the outfield and also had four relief appearances on the mound as well.
Wearing Them Down: Johns Hopkins holds solid scoring advantages in the first (52-35) and third quarters (68-38) through eight games, but it's the second and fourth quarters where the Blue Jays have really excelled. JHU holds a 111-16 scoring advantage in the second quarter and an equally impressive 93-20 buldge in the fourth.
JHU Ties Victory Record: Johns Hopkins posted a 10-2 record in 2012 and tied the school record for victories in a season. Only three times previously - 2003, 2009 & 2011 - had Hopkins won 10 games in a season. Johns Hopkins had never won more than seven games in a season prior to 2002, but the Blue Jays have posted eight or more wins 10 times in the last 12 years (including this season).
Margraff Ranks Second on State Victory Chart: Johns Hopkins head coach Jim Margraff sports a career record of 165-81-3 (.669) entering this week's game vs. F&M. He is just the second college football coach in Maryland state history to win 160 career games. Only Morgan State's Eddie Hurt, who won 174 games from 1929-59, has won more games as the head football coach at a college or university in the state of Maryland than Margraff.
Sustained Success: Since the start of the 2002 season the Blue Jays sport a 99-31 (.762) record. Taking it back farther the Blue Jays are 105-34 (.755) since the start of the 2001 season and 110-39 (.738) since the beginning of the 2000 season.
Seven's Heaven: Since the beginning of the 2003 season the Blue Jays are 90-21 (.811) when scoring more than seven points and 0-7 when they have been held to seven points or less.
Additional information, including player notes of interest, available in PDF version above.