/seasons/2017/contrib/20171011axzild

North Central Week 6 Preview vs. Wheaton

More news about: North Central (Ill.)

Complete Game Notes (PDF)

Oct. 14:
 North Central College Cardinals (5-0, 3-0 CCIW) at Wheaton College Thunder (4-2, 2-2 CCIW)

Kickoff: 7 p.m., McCully Stadium
Video: livestream.com/WheatonThunder
Radio: 89.1-FM WONC
Live Stats: sidearmstats.com/wheaton/football
Game Updates via Twitter: @NCC_Athletics
Series History: Wheaton leads, 51-42-3

Setting the Scene: The Cardinals put their undefeated record and the Little Brass Bell on the line this week, making the short trip to McCully Stadium for an always-difficult matchup with the Thunder.

Series History: This is the 97th football meeting between the two institutions. Wheaton owns a 51-42-3 advantage in the all-time series, which is North Central's most extensive football rivalry.

The teams played twice last season. North Central won possession of the Little Brass Bell, the traveling trophy between the two teams, with a 35-25 victory on Oct. 15. The Cardinals owned a 24-3 advantage before Wheaton rallied to get within a single touchdown. Liam Crotty's 25-yard field goal with 2:01 to play wound up sealing the victory.

A rare postseason rematch occurred on Nov. 26 in the second round of the NCAA Division III Football Championship. The Thunder scored 17 unanswered points after halftime and prevailed, 31-14.

The teams have played for the Little Brass Bell annually since 1946, with Wheaton owning a 47-20 edge in those contests.

National Rankings: North Central is ranked No. 4 nationally this week by D3football.com and the American Football Coaches Association. 

Scouting the Thunder: Wheaton suffered a second straight loss on Saturday, dropping a 35-31 decision at Millikin despite owning a 21-7 advantage at halftime.

The Big Blue scored three touchdowns in the final 12:54, though Wheaton did score on a two-yard touchdown pass from Curtis McWilliams to Phillip Nichols with 1:58 remaining to take a 31-28 lead.

Millikin drove 83 yards on 10 plays and scored the winning touchdown on a two-yard run by quarterback Nicco Stepina with 31 seconds on the clock.

The Thunder enter this week's game as the CCIW leaders in scoring offense (38.8 points per game), rushing offense 211.7 yards per game) and quarterback sacks (27).

Tailback Sola Olateju leads Wheaton's ground game with 616 yards and four touchdowns while Spencer Peterson, primarily taking direct snaps out of the wildcat formation, has run for 305 yards and four TDs of his own. McWilliams is completing 62.4 percent of his passes with eight touchdowns and six interceptions.

Defensive ends Chase Greenlee and Austin Hoover pace the Thunder's pass rush with eight and six quarterback sacks, respectively.

This Week for the Cardinals: North Central posted its first shutout victory in four years on Saturday, dominating throughout a 33-0 victory over North Park.

The Cardinals allowed only 92 yards of total offense, breaking the previous single-game school record of 97 yards allowed against Benedictine in 2006.

Austin Breunig scored two touchdowns and gained 170 all-purpose yards, gaining 105 yards on 20 rushing attempts and catching four passes for 65 yards. Broc Rutter completed 16 of 23 passes for 231 yards, hitting Andrew Kamienski six times for 110 yards and another touchdown.

North Central recorded seven quarterback sacks in the game, three of which were recorded by freshman defensive end Talha AyhanTommy Sora and Matt Sutherland shared the team lead in tackles with Ayhan, as each recorded six.
 
CCIW Player of the Week: Sutherland was named the CCIW Special Teams Player of the Week, also blocking a punt which resulted in a safety. North Central has received one of the CCIW's Player of the Week Awards following each game this season.

Millikin's Nicco Stepina and Illinois Wesleyan's Jordan Hassan were selected as the CCIW Players of the Week on offense and defense, respectively.
 
Stepina was 26-of-48 for 271 yards and two touchdown passes in Millikin's win over Wheaton. He also finished with 15 carries for 69 yards and two rushing touchdowns.
 
Hassan totaled 13 tackles (12 solo), 3.5 tackles-for-loss and two sacks in a 28-10 win at Augustana.

This Week in the CCIW: Elmhurst travels to Carthage this week, while Carroll visits Illinois Wesleyan and Millikin plays at Augustana. North Park is idle this week.

CCIW Statistical Rankings: North Central is currently leading the CCIW in first downs (115), average time of possession (32:57), red-zone offense (93.1%), net punting average (37.5 yards per punt), third-down conversion percentage (51.4%), fewest quarterback sacks allowed (8) and punt return average (17.7 yards per return).

Breunig is leading the CCIW in all-purpose yards (157.2 per game), while Muoghalu ranks first in total touchdowns (9) and Crotty leads in points scored by kicking per game (9.2). 

North Central Career Rankings:  Rutter ranks fourth in North Central history in career touchdown passes (47), passing yards (4,575) and pass completions (326). 

Breunig ranks fourth all-time in all-purpose yards (3,430) and rushing yards (2,512) and fifth in rushing touchdowns (25), and Crotty sits fifth in extra-point kicks made (78) and field goals made (17).

Pat Cravens ranks fourth in school history in punt return yards (621), 13th in interceptions (8) and 15th in pass breakups (15). Justin Stuursma and Sora rank seventh (222) and 11th (192) in total tackles, respectively. 

???????Stuursma also  currently ranks 11th tackles for loss (30.5), while DJ Warkenthien sits 13th (26.5), and Billy Douds is 10th in quarterback sacks (13.5).

'Red Zone' Returns in 2017: Once again, fans of North Central College football can get an insider's look at the Cardinals' football program, as 'The Red Zone' highlight show returns for its 10th season on Naperville Community Television, Channel 17.

The show airs each Thursday at 7 p.m. and 10 p.m., Friday at 12:30 a.m., 8:30 a.m. and 8 p.m. Saturday at 8:30 a.m. and 7 p.m., and Sunday at midnight. It will feature interviews with coaches and players, highlights of the previous week's game, and a look ahead to the upcoming opponent.

Each show is viewable online at nctv17.com and is archived at youtube.com/northcentralsports as well as at northcentralcardinals.com.

Aug. 30: All times Eastern
6:00 PM
Alma at Baldwin Wallace
Live stats
7:00 PM
Frostburg State at Stevenson
Live stats
7:00 PM
University of New England at Coast Guard
Live stats
7:00 PM
Randolph-Macon at Johns Hopkins
7:00 PM
Hamline at Buena Vista
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
LaGrange at Birmingham-Southern
7:00 PM
Trinity (Texas) at McMurry
7:30 PM
Manchester at Trine
7:37 PM
Rowan at Widener
8:00 PM
Millsaps at Belhaven
8:00 PM
UW-Platteville at East Texas Baptist
Live stats
Aug. 31: All times Eastern
7:00 PM
Utica at St. Lawrence
7:00 PM
Delaware Valley at Wesley
Live stats
7:00 PM
WPI at Anna Maria
Live stats
7:00 PM
Western New England at Springfield
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Nichols at Westfield State
7:00 PM
Millikin at Hope
Preview Live stats
7:00 PM
TCNJ at FDU-Florham
7:00 PM
Becker at MIT
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Albright at Salisbury
Live stats
7:00 PM
Dean at Curry
Video Live stats
8:00 PM
St. Olaf at Crown
Sep. 1: All times Eastern
TBA
Brevard at Davidson
TBA
Southern Virginia at Christopher Newport
TBA
Augustana at Coe
12:00 PM
Endicott at Framingham State
Live stats
12:00 PM
Morrisville State at Norwich
12:00 PM
Buffalo State at Bridgewater State
Live stats
12:00 PM
Ursinus at Bethany
12:00 PM
Salve Regina at Worcester State
Live stats
12:00 PM
Sewanee at Kenyon
12:00 PM
SUNY-Maritime at Maine Maritime
Video
12:00 PM
Thomas More at N.C. Wesleyan
Video Live stats
1:00 PM
Merchant Marine at Misericordia
1:00 PM
Husson at Union
Live stats
1:00 PM
Apprentice at Greensboro
1:00 PM
RPI at Allegheny
1:00 PM
Wabash at Hiram
1:00 PM
Cortland at Fitchburg State
Live stats
1:00 PM
King's at Moravian
Video Live stats
1:00 PM
Westminster (Pa.) at Wittenberg
Video Live stats Audio
1:00 PM
Washington and Lee at Dickinson
1:00 PM
Hobart at Brockport
1:00 PM
McDaniel at Catholic
Live stats
1:00 PM
Huntingdon at Guilford
Live stats
1:00 PM
Gallaudet at Alvernia
1:00 PM
Mass-Dartmouth at Alfred State
Live stats
1:00 PM
Shenandoah at Methodist
Live stats
1:00 PM
Thiel at Alfred
1:00 PM
Emory and Henry at Ferrum
Live stats Audio
1:00 PM
Susquehanna at Lycoming
1:00 PM
Washington and Jefferson at St. John Fisher
1:00 PM
Oberlin at Kalamazoo
1:00 PM
Hartwick at Wilkes
1:00 PM
St. Vincent at Ithaca
1:00 PM
Concordia (Wis.) at Finlandia
1:00 PM
Lebanon Valley at Franklin and Marshall
Video Live stats
1:00 PM
Plymouth State at Castleton
Live stats
1:00 PM
UW-Oshkosh at Carthage
1:00 PM
Grinnell at Lawrence
1:30 PM
Muskingum at Waynesburg
1:30 PM
Juniata at Grove City
1:30 PM
Wooster at Bluffton
1:30 PM
Bridgewater at Gettysburg
1:30 PM
Albion at Defiance
Live stats
2:00 PM
Wilmington at Earlham
Live stats
2:00 PM
John Carroll at UW-Stevens Point
2:00 PM
Eureka at Knox
2:00 PM
Wisconsin Lutheran at Lake Forest
Live stats
2:00 PM
Ripon at Augsburg
2:00 PM
Aurora at St. Norbert
2:00 PM
Nebraska Wesleyan at Concordia-Moorhead
2:00 PM
Gustavus Adolphus at Martin Luther
2:00 PM
MacMurray at Rockford
2:00 PM
UW-La Crosse at Luther
2:00 PM
Monmouth at Wheaton (Ill.)
2:00 PM
Minnesota-Morris at UW-River Falls
2:00 PM
Lakeland at Carroll
Live stats
2:00 PM
UW-Stout at St. John's
2:00 PM
UW-Eau Claire at Loras
Audio
2:00 PM
Bethel at Simpson
Video Live stats
2:00 PM
Beloit at Concordia-Chicago
2:00 PM
Southwestern Assemblies at Austin
2:10 PM
Trinity Int'l at St. Thomas
3:00 PM
Puget Sound at Claremont-Mudd-Scripps
Live stats
4:00 PM
La Verne at Whitworth
6:00 PM
Adrian at Ohio Northern
Live stats Audio
6:00 PM
Maryville (Tenn.) at Berry
Live stats
6:00 PM
Capital at Mount St. Joseph
6:00 PM
Hampden-Sydney at Averett
Live stats
6:00 PM
Benedictine at Franklin
6:00 PM
Central at Northwestern (Minn.)
6:00 PM
Willamette at Simon Fraser
7:00 PM
Geneva at Marietta
7:00 PM
Rochester at Case Western Reserve
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Hanover at Centre
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Rose-Hulman at Mount Union
Live stats
7:00 PM
Ohio Wesleyan at Otterbein
7:00 PM
Olivet at Heidelberg
7:00 PM
UW-Whitewater at Dubuque
7:00 PM
Illinois College at Rhodes
7:00 PM
Chicago at Washington U.
Video Live stats
7:00 PM
Anderson at North Park
8:00 PM
Lyon at Hendrix
8:00 PM
Greenville at Wartburg
8:00 PM
Cornell at Iowa Wesleyan
8:00 PM
Denison at Southwestern
8:00 PM
Carleton at Macalester
10:00 PM
Pacific at Chapman
Live stats
10:00 PM
George Fox at Redlands
10:00 PM
Sul Ross State at Arizona Christian
Dec. 9: All times Eastern
Final
Mount Union 43, at UW-Oshkosh 40
Box Score Recap Recap Photos
Final
at Mary Hardin-Baylor 24, Brockport 0
Box Score Recap Photos
Dec. 15: All times Eastern
Final
Mount Union 12, at Mary Hardin-Baylor 0
@ Salem, Va.
Video Box Score Recap Photos