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Only 18 schools in Division III football have recorded at least 500 wins

Friday, October 21, 2005

Only 18 schools in Division III football have recorded at least 500 wins.

The DePauw University football team will look to be the 19th Saturday, as the Tigers host conference rival Millsaps at 1:30 p.m. After a 7-3 victory over Rhodes College last Saturday, DePauw head coach Tim Rogers is expecting another close game.

"I expect that they're all going to be close games," Rogers said. "When you get into three or four conference games, people are able to go over games and see what you're doing."

Although DePauw struggled on offense last week, the Tigers are still averaging 359.2 yards per game. The defense has been rock-solid all season, ranking first in the SCAC in nearly all statistical categories. The Tigers are only allowing opponents an average 245.2 yards per and 11 points per contest.

"The defensive scheme is excellent," Rogers said. "The coaches are doing a great job, and the players are doing a great job."

In particular, senior defensive end Dustin Hertel's work has paid dividends. Hertel had a stellar performance last week, earning SCAC co-Defensive Player of the Week honors and being named to the D3football.com Team of the Week. Hertel had 12 total tackles, 10 solo tackles, three tackles for losses, one sack and one interception.

"He's a very good football player," Rogers said. "Rarely at this level do you see combination of strength and speed that Dustin Hertel has."

The Tigers will face a Millsaps team that has struggled all season long. Coming off a 35-21 loss to Rose Hulman, the Majors are 1-4 overall and 0-1 in the SCAC.

Millsaps is ranked last in the SCAC in total defense and sixth in total offense. The Majors are allowing an average of 403.2 yards per game, while only gaining an average of 274.8 yards per contest.

Despite the dismal numbers, Millsaps does feature a couple of big names in the coaching staff. In particular, quarterback coach Fred McNair is a former Arena League quarterback and brother of Tennessee Titans quarterback Steve McNair. Defensive coordinator Mike DuBose coached at the University of Alabama for 13 years, where he earned SEC Coach of the Year Honors.

Although Rogers' is impressed with his accolades, DuBose's resume doesn't change the game plan for Saturday.

"I'm always very respectful," Rogers said. "He's won a lot of football games and is a very good coach."

Millsaps starts freshman quarterback Billy Bob Orsagh, who is coming off his best performance against Rose Hulman last week. Orsagh threw for 298 yards and two touchdowns, while rushing for 34 yards against the Engineers. Rogers would like to see his defense get to the young quarterback early and often.

"You can expect that every Saturday," Rogers said. "We'll blitz you in the warm-ups if we could. Whether it's a freshman quarterback or a senior quarterback, that's the nature of our defense."

Offensively, the Tigers are looking for more production Saturday. Starting running back Jeremiah Marks sat out the first half due to illness Saturday and remains questionable. Despite possibly playing without the sophomore star tailback, Rogers is confident in Dorrius Ford and Jason Murphy as backups.

"Those are two running backs that are very capable," Rogers said.

DePauw will also look to get more out of quarterback Ross Wiethoff Saturday. The senior only managed 53 yards passing - well below his average of 123.2 yards per game. With Millsaps defense allowing an average of 255 yards per game passing, look for Wiethoff to get going Saturday.

"We're going to mix it up a little bit more," Rogers said. "Ross needs to feel more comfortable back there."

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