Hardin-Simmons (3-0, 2-0 ASC) vs. Texas Lutheran (2-1, 1-1 ASC)
Oct. 5, 2019 - 6 p.m. - Abilene, Texas
Shelton Stadium - 100.7 FM
Setting The Scene
After the longest road trip of the season to Louisiana College last week, the Cowboys return home for a while. HSU hosts Texas Lutheran this Saturday at 6 p.m. at Shelton Stadium and then has a bye week before hosting Belhaven for Homecoming on Oct. 19. HSU is not on the road again until Oct. 26 when it heads to Belton. HSU is coming off another emphatic performance as the Cowboys handled Louisiana College, 51-6 on a hot steamy day in Pineville, La. Texas Lutheran is 2-1 overall and 2-0 in league play with road wins at East Texas Baptist and a shutout last week over Southwestern. The Bulldogs join HSU and Mary Hardin-Baylor as the only remaining undefeated teams in conference play. HSU comes into the game as the conference leader in total offense, scoring offense, total defense and scoring defense. The Cowboys will play four of their last six games at Shelton Stadium.
Inside The Series
Overall: HSU leads 19-2
Streak: HSU, Won 4
Last Meeting: HSU won 58-14 in Abilene in 2018.
Ty Hooper completed 20-of-30 passes for 343 yards and four touchdowns as the Cowboys had 557 yards of offense in a 58-14 win in Abilene. It was also the breakout game for Rae Millsap as a receiver as he had five catches for 134 yards and two touchdowns. Kevi Evans had five catches for 106 yards and a score and Bryson Hammonds had 176 yards rushing and two touchdowns. Evans also had an 89-yard kickoff return for a touchdown. Hayden Day added a 33-yard touchdown catch. HSU scored on plays of 33, 63, 34, 77, 86 and 89 yards in the game.
Series Notes: HSU leads the series with TLU 7-1 in the Jesse Burleson era...The Cowboys lead in Abilene 9-1 all-time. The loss came in the season opener in 2014. It was a non-conference game as the Bulldogs were not in the ASC for football at the time. HSU is 25-1 at home in the regular season since then.
On The Air
Hardin-Simmons Football will once again be broadcast locally on 100.7 FM. Video broadcasts with full production will be available for all home games. Most road games will have a video broadcast produced by the home team. There will be links available on www.hsuathletics.com for each game. You can also listen on your mobile phone using the HSU Athletics app. Al Pickett is in his 15th season in the Cowboys' play-by-play chair and 16th overall on the broadcast team. Former Cowboy quarterback Travis Jones will handle the color commentary duties for home games and director of athletic communications Chad Grubbs will handle the color analysis for the road games.
HSU gets a much-needed bye week next week that should allow several of the banged up Cowboys to be back close to full strength. After that, the Cowboys will host Belhaven for Homecoming on Oct. 19.
In The Polls
HSU moved up a spot in both national polls this week to No. 6. The Cowboys have now been ranked 50 straight weeks in the in-season D3football.com poll. HSU has been ranked inside the top 10 for 29 of those weeks and haven't been lower than No. 13 since week No. 8 of the 2015 season.
An HSU Win Would
▶ Give HSU five straight wins over Texas Lutheran.
▶ Make the Cowboys 5-0 for the first time since 2016. HSU has started 5-0 just two times since 2005 (2015, 2016).
▶ Make the Cowboys 22-5 under the lights under Jesse Burleson.
▶ Push the Cowboys streak to 27 in a row against ASC opponents other than Mary Hardin-Baylor.
HSU dominated from start to finish on Saturday in Pineville, La. as the Cowboys won 51-6. The Wildcats had negative yards on each of their first three possessions and the Cowboys had two touchdowns and a field goal to take a 17-0 lead in the first quarter. HSU had 661 yards of offense and limited the Wildcats to 188 yards and just 58 on the ground.
Hemphill Breaks School Record For Rushing TDs
Jaquan Hemphill breaking records seems to be a weekly segment in the game notes. Hemphill passed Lance Moore for the career rushing touchdown record with No. 38 in his career on Saturday. He also had his 14th 100-yard rushing effort of his career which moves him to second on that list. He is now 809 yards away from the school rushing record. He is just seven TDs away from breaking Kirk Rogers' total touchdown record of 51.
Kevi's Record-Setting Performance
Kevi Evans set the school record with 269 yards receiving, breaking the old record of Travis Tatsch set in 2011. He had TD catches of 96, 46 and 35 yards. Brennen Wooten hit Evans on a 96-yard touchdown pass that was the school record for longest pass in a game. The old record was 90 on two separate occasions. He was named ASC offensive player of the week and to the D3football.com and Lone Star Sports Daily teams of the week.
Hemphill Named One OF 30 Nominees For Award
Hemphill was also named one of the 30 nominees for The Mayo Clinic's Comeback Player of the Year Award. The award is given to the player that has overcome, injury, illness or tragedy to be one of the top performers in all divisions of football. The winners will be announced at the Fiesta Bowl on Dec. 28.
The Cowboys showed up all over the weekly NCAA stats report.
▶ Jaquan Hemphill leads the nation in total rushing yards (595), is second in yards per game (148.8) and is seventh in yards per carry (7.83).
▶ Kevi Evans ranks second in receiving yards (579) and receiving touchdowns (8) and is fourth in scoring (12.0 pg) and total touchdowns (8).
▶ Jamie Pogue ranks second in field goals per game (1.75).
▶ Brennen Wooten ranks 11th in yards per pass attempt (9.7), 14th in passing touchdowns (12), 18th in passing efficiency (176.1), and 19th in passing yards (1,045).
▶ The Cowboys lead the nation with 119 first downs.
▶ The Cowboys rank third in kickoff return coverage and seventh in punt return coverage.
▶ HSU ranks third nationally in total offense (568.8), is sixth in rushing offense (294.3) and is ninth in scoring offense (48.5).
▶ The defense ranks fifth in total defense (202.3) and sixth in scoring defense (9.0).
The Cowboys have been stung hard by the injury bug in the early going of the season but the program's depth has really stepped up. Preseason All-Americans Jonathan Castaneda and Dedrick Strambler are out for the foreseeable future with significant injuries. Three-year starter Matthew Sandoval has missed the last two games at wide receiver as has Bryson Hammonds at running back. Senior starting defensive tackle Cole Northcutt missed last week's game at LC. Tight end Colton Carter, offensive linemen Seth and Colt Stickland and defensive end Rowdy Teaff are all out with season-ending injuries as well.
Franklin Gets A Pick
Terrell Franklin came on strong at the end of his freshman year and has continued to be one of the top play makers on defense for the Cowboys. He had an interception on Saturday at Louisiana College. It was the first interception of his career.
The Turnover Game
One of the big determining factors in games, especially close games is the turnover game within the game. So far this season the Cowboys have turned the ball over eight times on offense and special teams, but the defense has not allowed a point after any of those turnovers. On the other side, the defense has forced seven turnovers and the Cowboys have turned that into 30 points.
Stretching The Field
The Cowboys have never been afraid to take shots down the field but the Brennen Wooten to Kevi Evans connection is something on a different level. The two have connected nine times in the first four games on passes of 35 or more yards, with seven of those going for touchdowns. It's a product of Evans' speed, Wooten's big arm and the fact teams must shade a safety to help stop the Cowboys' potent running game that is averaging almost 300 yards per game.
Pogue Makes Another FG
Jamie Pogue made his seventh field goal of the season on Saturday and he is now fourth all-time at HSU with 12 career field goals. The school record is 21 by Mark Smith from 1997-99. His seven field goals in a season ranks sixth but he will move up the charts with each make. Brian Beddow set the school record for a season with 11 makes in 1995.