LEWISBURG, Pa. – The Bucknell football team will wrap up its campaign by taking on Fordham in the Bronx on Saturday, Nov. 18 at noon. The Bison will look to ride the momentum from their Senior Day shutout of Georgetown into their 2017 finale as they look to secure a winning season.
When: Saturday, November 18 – 12 p.m.
Where: Jack Coffey Field – Bronx, N.Y.
Internet Video: Twitter or Patriot League Network
Radio: Eagle 107 (107.3 WEGH)
Internet Radio: BucknellBison.com
Live Stats: FordhamSports.com
Follow on Twitter: @Bucknell_FB
With a victory the Bison would...
• secure their first winning season since 2014
• finish above .500 for the third time in the past five seasons
• finish at least .500 in Patriot League play for the fourth time in the past five seasons
• win their season finale for the first time since 2013
• win their final two games of the season for the third time in the past 20 seasons (previous 2013 and 2004)
• snap a four-game losing slide to Fordham
• defeat Fordham in the Bronx for the first time since 2011
Inside the Georgetown Box Score
• The Bison sent their 19-man senior class out in style by scoring a Senior Day shutout of Georgetown. They held the Hoyas to 214 yards of total offense and didn’t allow them to reach the red zone en route to their 12-0 victory.
• It was Bucknell’s first shutout since Sept. 5, 2015, a 17-0 whitewashing of Marist at Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium.
• CB Colin Jonov led the stifling Bison defense with a career-high nine tackles. He finished with more solo tackles (8) than his previous career high in tackles (6).
• DL Abdullah Anderson registered two sacks for a loss of 12 yards, putting him one away from entering Bucknell’s top 10 in the career annals entering the 2017 finale.
• Offensively, the Bison used two field goals booted by K John Burdick to stake themselves a 6-0 lead early in the third quarter. With eight seconds remaining in that frame, QB John Chiarolanzio connected with TE Marcus Ademilola for a 36-yard touchdown while under pressure to bring the score to 12-0.
• RBs Joey DeFloria and Chad Freshnock split Bucknell’s carries and finished with 97 and 78 yards respectively. DeFloria’s total was his second highest of the 2017 campaign behind a 99-yard outing at Cornell on Oct. 14.
• P Alex Pechin played a key role in flipping the field in the Bison’s favor, averaging 43.7 yards per punt. He dropped five of his seven punts inside the 20.
• Burdick’s pair of field goals gave him 11 on the season, which is tied for sixth in program history. This is only the 12th time a Bison kicker has reached the double digits in field goals in a single season; 10 kickers combined for those 12 efforts, with Steve Barimo (1987, 1989) and Ross Coleman (1997, 1998) each doing so twice. The most recent kicker to accomplish this feat was Derek Maurer (11) in 2014.
• Georgetown was the first team Bucknell did not allow to reach the red zone in 2017.
• The Bison finished .500 at Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium in 2017, at 3-3. They last posted a record of at least .500 at home in 2014 (3-2).
• This was Bucknell’s first Senior Day victory since 2013, a 17-7 win over the Hoyas.
• With the win, the 37th of his Bucknell career, head coach Joe Susan tied Bob Odell for sixth in program history.
Bucknell at a Glance
• Bucknell is 5-5 (2-3 Patriot League) on the season and currently owns the Patriot League’s second-best overall winning percentage.
• The Bison went 3-2 in non-conference action. This is the sixth time in Joe Susan’s tenure as head coach Bucknell posted a winning record in non-conference play.
• The Bison, who placed fourth in the Patriot League with a 3-3 record a year ago, were picked to take fifth in the 2017 preseason poll.
• Bucknell returned 39 of its 59 letterwinners from 2016. That group includes 15 seniors, 14 juniors and nine sophomores. Six seniors—DL Abdullah Anderson, S Connor Golden, CB Trey Johnson, TE Andrew Podbielski, LB Mark Pyles and LB Ben Richard—are three-time letterwinners.
• Anderson, RB Joey DeFloria, Pyles and Richard are team captains. DeFloria was added to the leadership group in week four.
• Bucknell boasts two Preseason All-Americans: Anderson (STATS, Third Team) and CB Bryan Marine (College Sports Madness, Third Team). In addition, Anderson, Marine and Richard were honored on the Preseason All-Patriot League Team while Anderson was named to the Reese’s Senior Bowl’s 2018 Watch List.
• Bucknell ranks in the FCS’s top 15 in the following statistical categories: net punting (5th, 39.60), defensive touchdowns (t-5th, 4), passing defense (7th, 153.9), team passing efficiency defense (10th, 107.62), fewest penalty yards per game (11th, 41.30), total defense (12th, 300.7) and blocked kicks (t-14th, 4).
• The Bison have excelled at stopping the passing game, allowing an average of just 153.9 passing yards per game. They held nine of their 10 opponents under 200 passing yards, including four under 150 in Marist (130), William & Mary (105), Lafayette (90) and Georgetown (79). Notably, they limited Lehigh QB Brad Mayes, who entered the game second in the FCS in passing yards per game (341.5), to just 193 yards.
• CB Colin Jonov ranks in the FCS’s top two in both interception return yards (2nd, 159) and interception return touchdowns (t-2nd, 2). Other Bison in the FCS’s top 25 in their respective statistical categories include P Alex Pechin (punting, 5th, 44.2) and S Drew Newcomb (interception return touchdowns, t-7th, 1).
Fordham at a Glance
• Fordham is currently 3-7 (2-3 Patriot League). The Rams, who are coming off their bye week, fell to Holy Cross 42-20, in their most recent game on Nov. 4.
• During their contest against the Crusaders, RB Chase Edmonds broke the Patriot League’s career rushing record of 5,621 and career all-purpose yards record of 7,121. He enters the 2017 finale with 5,677 rushing yards and 7,184 all-purpose yards.
• Edmonds, the 2017 Patriot League Preseason Offensive Player of the Year and a 2016 consensus All-American, has been slowed by injuries. He is currently second on the Rams to RB D’Angelo Palladino (475) with 392 rushing yards in six games.
• Palladino’s total was bolstered by a 297-yard, three-touchdown outing in Fordham’s 45-35 victory over Lehigh on Oct. 28.
• LB Glenn Cunningham, who leads Fordham with 75 tackles (47 solo) and ranks fifth in the Patriot League in tackles per game (8.3), was added to the STATS FCS Jerry Rice Award Watch List. That award is presented to the FCS Freshman of the Year.
• Fordham, the 2016 Patriot League runner-up with a 5-1 record, was selected to again finish second in the 2017 preseason poll.
The Bucknell/Fordham Series
• Bucknell leads the all-time series, 18-14, but Fordham has won the past four games.
• In three of those contests, the Rams’ margin of victory was less than 10 points. The 2014 meeting was decided in overtime (30-27) while Fordham blocked a last-second field goal to win the 2013 game (21-23).The Rams were ranked in the nation’s top 10 at the time of both of those meetings.
• A year ago, Fordham spoiled Bucknell’s Senior Day with a 36-22 victory. RB Chase Edmonds ran for 181 yards and three touchdowns while QB Kevin Anderson completed 17 passes for 327 yards and two touchdowns.
• For Bucknell, RB Chad Freshnock rushed for 95 yards while DL Abdullah Anderson recorded 3.5 tackles for a loss and 2.5 sacks, career highs that stands to this day.
• The Rams won the 2015 meeting in the Bronx by a 24-16 margin. The Bison pulled within one, at 17-16, with 1:44 remaining in regulation but had their two-point conversion attempt intercepted. Fordham ultimately recovered the on-side kick and tacked on a touchdown with six seconds left to play.
• With a victory on Saturday, the Rams will match the longest winning streak posted during the all-time series, set by Bucknell from 1993 to 1997.
• Bucknell is 51-69-11 (.431) all-time in season finales.
• Under head coach Joe Susan, the Bison have faced Bryant, Colgate (three times), Holy Cross, Fordham and VMI in the season’s final week.
• Susan is 2-5 in season finales at Bucknell.
• In the past 10 years, the Bison are 5-5 (.500) in their season finale. They also stand .500 (10-10) in their past 20 season finales.
Inside the Bucknell Depth Chart
• Nine seniors, three juniors, five sophomores and five freshmen are expected to start.
• Bucknell’s 11 projected starters on offense have made a combined 131 starts; five have reached the double digits in career starts, with one over 20.
• Bucknell’s 11 projected starters on defense have made a combined 163 starts; five have reached the double digits in career starts, with four of those over 20.
• DL Abdullah Anderson missed his first career game at Cornell on Oct. 14, 2017. Before that, he had started every game during his time as a Bison, a streak of 38 in a row. He returned to the lineup at Lafayette and started his 40th game at Colgate.
• CB Trey Johnson is the only senior who has played in all 43 games. He, Anderson (42) and LB Mark Pyles (41) are the only seniors who have played in at least 40.
• Pyles became the third Bison senior to start his 30th career game against Georgetown, joining Anderson (42) and Richard (33). With a start at Fordham, TE Andrew Podbielski will become the fourth.
• LB Ben Richard (32), Pyles (19) and OL Chase Watkins (13) are Bucknell’s leaders in consecutive starts.
• Entering the 2017 finale, only six Bison have started every game: WR Alan Butler, DE Trevor Fennimore, Pyles, Richard, OL Noah Stephenson and Watkins. Stephenson is that group’s lone underclassmen; he became the first sophomore to reach the double digits in starts with his start against Georgetown.
• Anderson and CB Colin Jonov are the only players on the 2017 roster who have started every game they played in while at Bucknell. Jonov, who missed the 2016 campaign and the Monmouth and Cornell games due to injury, owns 24 career starts.
• There are 15 players on the roster who have started at least 10 games: Anderson (42), Richard (33), Pyles (30), Podbielski (29), Jonov (24), Marine (24), S Connor Golden (20), Butler (19), Watkins (19), RB Joey DeFloria (17), S Joe Lauro (17), TE/FB Andrew Owers (15), Fennimore (11), WR Jack Horan (11) and Stephenson. OL Pat Finn will become the 16th with a start at Fordham.
Patriot League Leaders
• K John Burdick: Field Goals (11), Field Goals per Game (1.10)
• CB Colin Jonov: Interception Return Touchdowns (2), Interception Return Yards (159)
• P Alex Pechin: Punting (44.2)
• As a team, Bucknell leads the Patriot League in total defense (300.7), pass defense (153.9), pass defense efficiency (107.62), defensive touchdowns (4) and net punting (39.60).
• If the Bison can maintain their lead in total defense, this will be the sixth time in the past seven seasons they have led the Patriot League in this statistical category.
• They took first in 2011 (301.5), 2012 (347.5), 2013 (324.5), 2014 (302.4) and 2015 (338.7), also ranking in the FCS’s top 15 three of those seasons. A year ago, Bucknell finished second to Colgate; the Raiders gave up an average of 344.1 yards to the Bison’s average of 366.2
Milestones Met in Game 10
• K John Burdick: Reached double digits in field goals; enters final game with 11, which is tied for sixth in school history
• LB Ben Richard: Made his 250th career tackle; enters final game with 251
• DL Abdullah Anderson: Needs one blocked field goal to claim sole possession of Bucknell’s career record
• DL Abdullah Anderson: Needs one sack to crack Bucknell’s top 10 in career sacks
• K John Burdick: Needs one field goal to move into Bucknell’s top three in single-season field goals; with three, would tie Ryan Korn’s (2003) school record
• RB Joey DeFloria: Needs 174 yards to crack Bucknell’s top 10 in career rushing yards
• RB Joey DeFloria: Needs one 100-yard rushing game to move into a tie for eighth in school history; needs four to become the seventh Bison with at least 10 in his career
• CB Colin Jonov: Needs 20 interception return yards to claim Bucknell’s career record; needs 25 to claim Bucknell’s single-season record
• P Alex Pechin: Currently averaging 44.2 yard per punt, putting him on pace to break own school record in single-season punting average (42.1)
• P Alex Pechin: Needs eight punts to crack Bucknell’s top three in single-season punts
Head Coach Joe Susan
• Joe Susan, the 26th head coach in program history, is in his eighth season at the helm and currently ranks third in career games (87) and tied for sixth in career victories (37).
• Susan tied Bob Odell, who coached the Bison from 1958 to 1964 and was enshrined in the Bucknell Athletics Hall of Fame in 1987, for sixth in program history in wins with the Bison’s Senior Day shutout of Georgetown on Nov. 11, 2017.
• At the conclusion of the season, Susan will stand in sole possession of fourth place in career seasons, passing legendary coaches Odell and Tom Gadd.
Inside the 2017 Schedule
• Bucknell has the benefit of playing six of its 11 games at Christy Mathewson-Memorial Stadium for the first time since 2010.
• Bucknell’s 2017 opponents went a combined 55-65 (.458) in 2016. Of that group, Colgate (5-5), Fordham (8-3) Lehigh (9-3) and Sacred Heart (6-5) finished at or above .500.
• Bucknell’s five non-conference opponents hail from five different conferences: the Big South Conference (Monmouth), the Colonial Athletic Association (William & Mary), the Ivy League (Cornell), the Northeast Conference (Sacred Heart) and the Pioneer Football League (Marist).
• Bucknell entered the season with a 156-24-10 (.383) record against its 2017 opponents, including winning marks against Marist (11-1) and Georgetown (17-11-1) and an even record with Sacred Heart (1-1).
• Head coach Joe Susan entered 2017 with a 25-33 (.431) record against the Bison’s 2017 foes. Bucknell has not faced Monmouth (first meeting) and William & Mary (fifth meeting) during his tenure as head coach.
How to Follow the Bison
• Every game will be broadcast on Eagle 107 (WEGH 107.3) and BucknellBison.com. Kevin Herr and Matt Catrillo will call the final two games as Doug Birdsong will be traveling with the Bison men’s basketball team.
• All six of Bucknell’s home games and its road contests at Lafayette, Colgate and Fordham will air on the Patriot League Network (PatriotLeague.tv).
• Fans can watch the Bison’s games at William & Mary (TribeAthletics.com) and Cornell (Ivy League Network) through the home team’s video platform.
• The Bison are active on Twitter (@Bucknell_FB) and Instagram (Bucknell_FB). Interact with the team using the hashtag #StartTheStampede.
Bucknell Bids Adieu to Seniors
• This will be the final game for Bucknell’s 19-man senior class: LS Tom Adams, DL Abdullah Anderson, K John Burdick, QB John Burkly, DE Craig Cassidy, RB Joey DeFloria, DE Trevor Fennimore, S Connor Golden, WR Jack Horan, CB Trey Johnson, CB Colin Jonov, WR Kyle Kinner, TE Jared Morse, QB Matt Muh, LB Mike Pirolli, TE Andrew Podbielski, LB Mark Pyles, LB Ben Richard and OL Chase Watkins.
• The senior class has captured eight All-Patriot League, two Academic All-Patriot League and two CoSIDA Academic All-District citations. Its number includes a William V. Campbell Trophy® semifinalist (Pyles) and a STATS Preseason All-American (Anderson) as well as two players who have earned a spot on the Patriot League Academic Honor Roll each of the past three seasons (Horan and Pyles). As a group, the seniors have excelled in the classroom, combining for a 3.12 grade point average.