ETSU (4-3, 3-2 SoCon) vs. Georgia Southern (7-1, 6-0 SoCon)
Paulson Stadium - Statesboro, Ga.
National Leader ... Senior quarterback Todd Wells ranks 10th nationally in total offense per game (279.3 yards/game) ... He ranks second in the Southern Conference behind Chattanoogas Chris Sanders (324.9) ... Alabama States Darnell Kennedy leads the nation, averaging 358.4 yards of total offense in seven games.
Bucs in Southern Conference Rankings ... ETSU ranks fourth in the Southern Conference in pass offense (242.3 yards/game) ... The Bucs rank third in pass defense (185.6 yards/game) ... ETSU leads the conference in pass defense efficiency (100.7).
A Ranked Win ... The 23-21 win against Furman was ETSUs first win against a ranked team since Oct. 25, 1997 when the Bucs defeated #16 Furman, 58-28 in Greenville, S.C. ... The last time ETSU defeated a ranked team in Memorial Center was on October 26, 1996 when the Bucs defeated #8 Furman 21-19.
Hamilton vs. Ranked Teams ... During his four-year tenure, head coach Paul Hamilton is 3-6 against ranked teams ... In addition to Oct. 21s win against Furman, ETSU defeated #6 Appalachian State 51-28 and #16 Furman, 58-28 in 1997 ... This season, Hamilton is 1-1 -- the loss coming to Appalachian State, 30-13 on Sept. 30.
Tough Stretch ... For the first time in program history, ETSU will play back-to-back games against teams ranked in the top-10 ... The Bucs defeated #6 Furman 23-21 on Oct. 21 and will face #1 Georgia Southern on Oct. 28.
Tops in the Nation ... The Bucs havent faced the nations top-ranked team since October 31, 1998 when ETSU traveled to Statesboro, Ga. and lost 47-26 to Georgia Southern ... ETSU lost to #1 Marshall, 34-10, on November 9, 1996 in Memorial Center.
Closing in on Total Offense Record ... Senior quarterback Todd Wells needs just 523 yards of total offense to set the all-time ETSU career record ... Wells has amassed 7,709 yards so far and trails record holder Greg Ryan who compiled 8,232 in his career.
The Total Package ... Senior quarterback Todd Wells earned 401 total yards (336 passing, 65 rushing) in the 23-21 win against Furman ... It was the second-best performance by a Buccaneer in program history ... Wells holds the all-time single-game total offense record with 447 yards against Appalachian State in 1997.
A Career Game ... Senior quarterback Todd Wells enjoyed the second most prolific game of his career when he threw for 336 yards on 23-of-44 passing ... That performance was second only to his 377 passing yards against Appalachian State in 1997 ... Wells also led the rushing attack with 65 yards on nine carries against Furman.
Streaky ... The Bucs have grabbed at least one interception in every game this season ... Cecil Moore has made at least one touchdown grab in each of the last three games ... Moore is the only receiver to catch at least one pass in every game this season ... Corey Martin has made five catches in five of the first seven games ... Kicker Con Chellis has booted at least one field goal in each of the last three contests ... Todd Wells has thrown at least one touchdown in six of the first seven games ... Terrance Sims has made five catches for 42 yards in each of the last two games.
Variety of Scores ... ETSU has scored in numerous ways this season ... Aside from nine rushing touchdowns and seven passing scores, the Bucs have scored on a fumble recovery and a blocked punt ... In the season-opener at Liberty, linebacker Rahim El Amin recovered a punt in the endzone ... Against Western Carolina, cornerback Howard Nix returned a blocked punt 31 yards for a touchdown.
On the Road ... The Bucs are 7-13 on the road since Coach Hamilton took over in 1997 ... ETSU was 1-4 away from the Mini-Dome last fall.
Against Georgia Southern ... Georgia Southern leads the all-time series, 6-4 ... The Eagles have won the last three meetings ... The Bucs are 1-3 in Statesboro ... The last time these teams squared off in Paulson Stadium, Georgia Southern prevailed 47-36.
Last Season ... The Bucs owned the first quarter and led 6-0 after the first 15 minutes ... The Eagles responded with 55 points in the final three quarters en route to a 55-6 win at Memorial Center ... Brandon Walker ran 22 times for 119 yards and the Bucs lone score ... Todd Wells was 6-of-18 for 98 yards in that contest.
Turnovers, Turnovers, Turnovers ... ETSU tied a season-high with five turnovers forced against Furman ... The Bucs also forced five at Liberty ... Linebacker Russ Lindgren made his team-leading fourth interception against the Paladins ... Linebacker Rahim El Amin forced three of the turnovers; tipping one pass to Ryan Vaughn, hitting the quarterback on Lindgrens pick and forcing a Louis Ivory fumble at the goal line ... The Bucs have made at least one interception in each of the first seven games.
A Program First ... For the first time in ETSU football history, a quarterback ran for 100+ yards and passed for 200+ yards when Todd Wells ran for 108 and threw for 238 in a 38-3 win against VMI (Sept. 16).
Linebacker U? ... East Tennessee State hopes to have an All-America linebacker for the fourth consecutive season ... each of the last four years the Bucs have enjoyed a stellar linebacking corps ... gone from last years squad are two-time All-America Kevin Peterson (1998-99) and All-Southern Conference player Derek Fudge ... taking over in the middle this year is All-America candidate Rahim El Amin and All-Southern Conference candidate Cory Bolden ... linebacker Mario Hankerson earned All-America honors in 1997.
More than a Passing Frenzy ... Quarterback Todd Wells has thrown for over 200 yards in five of the first seven games this season ... Wells passed for 283 at Liberty, 238 against VMI, 221 at Western Carolina, 275 at The Citadel and 336 vs. Furman ... It was the third time in his career that Wells passed for 300+ yards ... Wells eclipsed 200 yards passing once last year -- 217 in a 38-10 win against Western Carolina.
In the Southern Conference ... The Bucs are 59-103 (21 seasons) in league games since joining the SoCon in 1979 ... Their best finish was second in 1996 when ETSU finished 7-1 in the league ... ETSU is 28-21 since 1994 and have been above .500 every year except 1998 (3-5) in that span ... The Bucs are 15-14 under Coach Paul Hamilton ... ETSU is 3-2 in the SoCon so far this fall.
Winning Season ... ETSU is playing for its third winning season in the past four years ... The Bucs finished last season 6-5 and went 7-4 in 1997 -- head coach Paul Hamiltons first campaign ... If the Bucs finish above .500 in 2000 it would be the fourth time in the past five years they accomplished the feat.
Leader of the Ship ... Fourth-year head coach Paul Hamilton has a 21-19 (.525) career record ... With the 20-7 win at The Citadel, Hamilton became the fastest to 20 career victories in program history ... With his next victory, Hamilton will have amassed the most victories in four seasons of any ETSU coach ... Hamilton is ETSUs 16th head coach.