Sept. 9, 2013
Colorado State (0-2, 0-0) hosts Cal Poly from the Big Sky in its home opener. The Rams, who lost a heartbreaker to Tulsa on Saturday, are looking for their fi rst victory of 2013. Kickoff is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. MT on Sept. 14, 2013. Saturday's contest between the Rams and Mustangs will be the first meeting, and it will be a memorable game for CSU fans. At halftime, the athletics department will honor former safety Greg Myers by displaying his uniform number 3 on the press box. Myers will be the third player to have his number displayed at Hughes Stadium (48 - Fum McGraw, 21 - Eddie Hanna). For more information on Myers please see page 3.
WHERE TO FIND THE GAME: Saturday's game between Colorado State and Cal Poly will be the first Rams football event to be streamed on the new Mountain West Network. The MWN offers free access to live events for fans across the world. Fans can find the event on TheMW.com or on CSURams.com. During the game the audio call from the newly revamped Colorado State Radio Network will be streamed to accompany the video. CSU fans can still listen to the action on the Colorado State Radio Network with new Voice of the Rams Gary Miller alongside Brian Roth (analyst) and Kevin McGlue (sideline).
On the airwaves, fans will now be able to listen to the game across the state on: KJAC-FM 105.5 ESPN, KREL-AM 1580 ESPN (Colorado Springs), KSIR-AM 1010 (Fort Morgan), KRFD-FM 94.5 (Sterling), and KNZZ-AM 1100 (Grand Junction).
NOTES IN 140 | #CSURamsNotes | #MWFB | #1TTD
- Sept. 1 loss to CU marked the first collegiate season-opening loss for @CoachMcElwain since 2004 when he coached at Michigan State
- #CSURams carry into 2013 3 consecutive home victories, the longest home win streak since 2005 when the Rams won 4-straight
- Six true freshmen made their collegiate debut on Sept. 1 vs. CU, including WR Rashard Higgins who caught 6 passes for 57 yards
- Temperature was 98 degrees at kickoff in Tulsa, the hottest game the Rams have played in at least 13 years
- .@CPMustangs are coming off a road loss against MW foe Fresno State, 41-25
- The last @BigSkyConf opponent @CSUFootball faced was Northern Colorado on Sept. 10, 2011. CSU won 33-14
- The last time CSU won its home-opener was Sept. 10, 2011 vs. Northern Colorado, who like Cal Poly is a member of the Big Sky
- Saturday will mark the 43rd time @CSUFootball has played an opponent from the current @BigSkyConf. In those games the Rams are 35-5-2
- RS-SO RB Kapri Bibbs has rushed for 153 yards, 8th best in #MWFB
- Bibbs' 6.4 average per rush is sixth best in #MWFB Bibbs set a career high in rushing on one drive when he racked up 72 yards.
- The sophomore RB finished with 83 yards rushing SR RB Chris Nwoke's 56-yard scamper at Tulsa is the third longest of 2013 in #MWFB
- RS-FR WR Jordon Vaden hauled in a 52-yd reception at Tulsa, the 4th longest reception of the year in #MWFB
- WR Joe Hansley set a career-best with eight receptions against the Buffaloes CSU's offensive line starters have a combined 96 starts, which ranks 12th in #NCAA according to @philsteele042
- JR QB Garrett Grayson's 39 pass attempts on Sept. 1 vs. CU was the third-highest total of his career
- Higgins' 6 receptions vs. Colorado are the most by a CSU freshman since Chris Nwoke's 8 at Utah on Oct. 23, 2010
- JR WR Charles Lovett has a catch in 12 straight contests in which he has played Lovett's last game without a catch was Nov. 19, 2011 at TCU, 654 days ago
- S Kevin Pierre-Louis racked up 15 total tackles on Sept. 1 vs. CU, the 4th-most single-game tackles in #MWFB
- Pierre-Louis' 14 assisted tackles is the highest total since LB Ricky Brewer's 12 at Utah on 10/23/10
- After allowing opponents to convert 48 percent of their third-down tries last season, the #CSURams have reduced the rate to 33 percent
- Shaquil Barrett's 5.0 TFL tied for the highest total in #MWFB and tied for 4th nationally
- RS-SO DB Trent Matthews picked off his second career pass at Tulsa. Matthews is tied for second in #MWFB with his lone interception
- Freshman punter Hayden Hunt's 69-yd punt vs. Colorado is the longest in #MWFB. It is also the 4th-longest in #NCAA
- Hunt's punt average of 44.2 is good for third in the Mountain West
- The Rams have fashioned a net punting average of 40.2 in 2013, up nearly 5 yards per punt over last year's figure of 35.6.
- WR/KR Thomas Coffman leads #MWFB with a kickoff return average of 32.5 yards and his long return of 84 yards also leads the MW
- Coffman's kickoff return average ranks ninth in #NCAA and is the only player in top-10 with six-plus returns
- WR/PR Joe Hansley is one of two #MWFB players with a punt return TD DB/PR Tyree Simmons, who is averaging 20.3 yards/return, is the only freshman in the top 50 in NCAA punt return average
- The Rams are averaging 20.9 yards per punt return compared with a 9.5 average in 2012 Opponents avg. just 6.3 yards/punt return after averaging 12.0 a year ago, and 19.8 yards/kickoff return compared to 23.5 last year
- .@LouGrozaAward candidate Jared Roberts is 4-for-4 on the year and has now connected on 10 straight field goals
- Roberts' average of two field goals per game ranks first in #MWFB and 12th nationally
- Long snapper Tanner Hedstrom has a streak of 34 consecutive games without an errant snap
HONORING A LEGEND
Saturday the Rams will hang the number 3 on the press box, honoring former defensive back Greg Myers. Myers, who is now an anesthesiologist in Denver, played at Hughes Stadium from 1992-95 where he picked off 14 interceptions. Dr. Myers is the only Western Athletic Conference athlete to earn first-team all-conference honors four years in a row. Nationally, Myers won the 1995 Jim Thorpe Award, given to the best defensive back in the nation.
A SPECIAL UNIT
Colorado State's special teams units have improved dramatically in several statistical categories through two games. The punt return and punt coverage units are most notable. The Rams are averaging 20.9 yards per return compared with a 9.5 average in 2012. WR Joe Hansley averaged 30.7 yards on three returns with a long of 74 yards in Week 1, while CB Tyree Simmons averaged 20.3 yards on three returns with a long of 32 yards at Tulsa a week later. Both coverage units are much improved. Opponents are averaging just 6.3 yards per punt return after averaging 12.0 a year ago, and 19.8 yards per kickoff return compared to 23.5 last year. Among other special teams notables, K Jared Roberts is perfect on four field-goal attempts and six PATs this season. He has missed just one fi eld goal in his two-year career, a 51-yarder vs. Utah State (9/22/12), and has now made 10 in a row since. For his career, Roberts is 13-13 on fi eld-goal attempts inside 50 yards.
NEW PUNTER Redshirt-freshman P Hayden Hunt has been outstanding in his first season replacing All-MW performer Pete Kontodiakos. Behind Hunt's power and directional punting prowess, the Rams have fashioned a net punting average of 40.2, up nearly 5 yards per punt over last year's fi gure of 35.6. His gross average of 44.2 is just a shade under the 2012 average of 44.6. Hunt has had no touchbacks and placed three of his 16 punts inside the 20, with four fair catches and four punts of 50 yards or longer.
In his first collegiate appearance, the freshman punter booted the ball seven times for an average of 49.7 yards per punt, including a 69-yard bomb from the back of his own end zone. Hunt's 69-yard punt is the longest kick by a Colorado State punter in his collegiate debut. It is also the longest punt in the Mountain West in 2013 and ranks as the sixth-longest nationally.
BARRETT IS IN THE BACKFIELD Senior LB Shaquil Barrett has already amassed 5.0 tackles for loss for the Rams, which ranks first in the Mountain West and fourth nationally. Through just two games he is two-thirds of the way to his career-best total of 7.5 set last year, and has already surpassed his 2011 total of 4.5. He is nearly halfway to Cory James' 2012 team-leading total of 10.5. Barrett now has 17.0 tackles for loss in 24 career games for the Rams. Barrett entered 2013 with more tackles in the last two seasons than any returning player in the Mountain West.
The 2012 honorable mention All-Mountain West selection made 166 tackles in the 2011 and '12 seasons combined, as has scored three touchdowns in his two-plus seasons as a Ram after transfering from Nebraska-Omaha.
Week 1 vs. Colorado - Sophomore WR/PR Joe Hansley, Punt Returner co-Performer of the Week by College Football Performance Awards.
Week 1 vs. Colorado - LB Shaquil Barrett, TE Kivon Cartwright, DB Trent Matthews and OL Weston Richburg
Week 2 at Tulsa - OL Jared Biard, DB Bernard Blake, LB Aaron Davis and TE Crockett Gillmore
KICKING AROUND `EM
In the season opener vs. Colorado, sophomore WR/PR Joe Hansley returned a punt 74 yards for a score, the first punt return touchdown by a Ram since 2006 when Damon Morton housed a punt from 58 yards out. After that the Buffs did not kick to Hansley. Junior WR/KR Thomas Coffman returned a kick in the third quarter 84 yards before being dragged down on Colorado's 16-yard line. It was the longest kickoff return by a Ram since John Mosure scored on a 90 yard return against the Buffaloes on Aug. 31, 2008. As with Hansley, the Buffs no longer kicked to Coffman. Hansley, who missed the Rams first road game at Tulsa, has a punt return average of 30.7 yards per return. Coffman's kick return average of 32.5 yards leads the conference.
RAMS vs. MUSTANGS
All-time, overall: First meeting
All-time, in San Luis Obispo: - First meeting
All-time, in Fort Collins: First meeting
First official meeting: Sept. 14, 2013
Last meeting: - N/A
Last meeting in Fort Collins: - N/A
Series streaks: CSU and Cal Poly meet for the first time.
COACHES CAPSULES: CSU -- Jim McElwain: 4-10, second year overall as head coach
Cal Poly -- Tim Walsh: 27-20, fifth year overall as head coach
Head-to-head: First meeting | Against opponent: McElwain First Meeting vs. Cal Poly; Walsh first meeting vs. CSU
• Tim Walsh, offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach at the United States Military Academy for two seasons, was named Cal Poly's 16th head football coach on Jan. 9, 2009, and, after guiding the Mustangs to a 4-7 mark in his first campaign, turned it around with three consecutive winning seasons, a Great West Conference title in 2011 and, in his fourth year at the helm of the Mustangs, a share of the Big Sky Conference crown and an NCAA Division I Football Championship Subdivision playoff berth in 2012.
• Under Walsh's guidance, Cal Poly finished 7-4, 6-5 and 9-3 in his last three seasons at Cal Poly.
• Saturday's home opener at Hughes Stadium will feature four players from Fresno, Calif., the hometown of Colorado State defensive lineman Josh Lovingood.
• Former high school teammates, Nick Januska (CSU) and Dylan Gutierrez (Cal Poly) both played on the defensive unit for Ventura High School.
• Cal Poly's offensive quality control coach Joe Harper was an assistant at Colorado State under Don "Tuffy" Mullison in 1961. Haper went on to become the Mustangs' all-time winningest coach.
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