The No. 18 Texas A&M University-Commerce football team welcomes long-time rival West Texas A&M University for the Lions’ annual Homecoming game this Saturday.
WHO: West Texas A&M University at Texas A&M University-Commerce
WHERE: Commerce, Texas | Ernest Hawkins Field at Memorial Stadium
WHEN: 4 p.m. on Saturday, October 27
RECORDS: The Lions are 6-2 overall and 4-1 in the Lone Star Conference. The Buffaloes are 5-3 overall and 3-2 in the Lone Star Conference.
RANKINGS: Texas A&M-Commerce is ranked No. 18 in the AFCA Coaches’ Poll and No. 20 in the D2Football.com Media Poll. West Texas A&M is unranked but receiving votes in the AFCA Coaches’ Poll.
LIVE AUDIO: Lion Sports Network — KETR 88.9 FM, Commerce (http://www.ketr.org)
LIVE VIDEO: http://lionathletics.com/live
LIVE STATS: http://statbroadcast.com/events/statmonitr.php?gid=tame
TICKETS: Tickets are available by visiting WeAreLionsTix.com, calling (903) 468-8756, or visiting the Lion Sales & Service Box Office in the Field House.
EAST MEETS WEST FOR HOMECOMING
• The Lions return home for the annual Homecoming game, hosting the Buffaloes of West Texas A&M.
• A&M-Commerce has three games remaining in the regular season and will push for a playoff spot.
•With the victory over Western New Mexico last week, the Lions clinched their sixth consecutive winning season after 11 consecutive non-winning seasons.
ALL-TIME AGAINST THE BUFFS
• The Lions and Buffaloes are meeting for the 33rd time in the history of the two programs.
• A&M-Commerce leads the all-time series, 18-14.
• The Lions have won four straight in the series, after WT had won six straight.
• The Lions are 10-6 against the Buffaloes in Commerce.
SUCCESS IN BUNCHES
• The Lions scored 34 points in the second quarter of the game at Western New Mexico, establishing a school record for points in a quarter.
• The previous record was 32, which the Lions scored in the second quarter of a 39-39 tie against Angelo State in 1991.
CONTINUED RECOGNITION NATIONALLY
• A&M-Commerce has been ranked in 48 consecutive AFCA polls, dating back to the 2015 preseason poll.
• This is A&M-Commerce’s 54th all-time appearance in the AFCA poll since its inception in 2000.
• In the polls recognized by Division II as the top rating system, the Lions have been recognized as a nationally ranked team 103 times since joining Division II in 1981.
MOVING UP THE RANKS
• Head coach Colby Carthel now ranks fifth in A&M-Commerce history in coaching wins with 55 wins.
• He is now only eight wins behind Lion and LSC legend J.V. Sikes, who sits in fourth place with 63 wins.
|3||Bob Berry||1935-41, 46-50||72-34-8|
SENIORS ON PACE TO SET SCHOOL RECORD
• The 2017 senior class established the school record for wins in a four-year period with the victory in the National Championship Game with 42 games won in a four year span.
• The 2018 seniors now rank second in school history at 39-9 with a guarantee of three more games in the season.
MARTINEZ CONTINUES TO CLIMB SCORING CHARTS
• Kicker Kristov Martinez went 7-of-7 on PATs against WNMU.
• The graduate student from Edinburg is now 8-for-11 on field goal attempts and 25-for-25 on PAT attempts in 2018,
• He is now 62-of-82 on field goal attempts in his career, which is tied for sixth in Division II history. The Division II career record is 82 made field goals. Second place is 68.
• Martinez has now tied West Texas A&M’s Sergio Castillo for the LSC career record with 62 field goals.
• Martinez is the Division II active career leader in made field goals, and fourth in all NCAA divisions behind LSU’s Cole Tracy (89), Wisconsin’s Rafael Gaglianone and Toledo’s Jameson Vest (65 each).
• Martinez is on the preseason and September watch lists for the Mitchell Award.
• For his career, Martinez has made 208-of-215 PAT attempts and is the Division II active career leader. Oklahoma’s Austin Seibert is the all divisions active career leader with 268 made PATs. Martinez is fourth in all divisions behind Seibert, Ohio State’s Sean Nuernberger (216), and North Dakota State’s Cam Pederson (215).
• In terms of overall scoring, Martinez (394 points) is chasing Castillo (437 points), and former Harlon Hill winner at Texas A&I Johnny Bailey (426 points) for the all-time LSC scoring record.
• Martinez is also one of three Division II kickers with 60 or more consecutive PATs made. Minnesota State’s Casey Bednarski failed on a PAT last week to fall off the list.
|ACTIVE DII KICKERS – CONSECUTIVE PATS MADE|
|1.||101||Julio De la Garza||Texas A&M-Kingsville|
|3.||73||Jake Chapla||Slippery Rock|
Thanks to Slippery Rock’s Jon Holtz for this research.
HARRIS AWARD NOMINEE IS TOP TACKLER
• The Lions’ leading tackler in senior Brucks Saathoff is also one of the leaders in the Lone Star Conference.
• His nine tackles and block of a potential go-ahead field goal in the fourth quarter earned Saathoff Lone Star Conference Defensive Player of the Week honors against MSU Texas
• The San Antonio native is averaging 9.1 tackles per game through eight contests, ranking 49th nationally and fifth in the LSC.
• In 2017, Saathoff was the Lion leader with 101 tackles, averaging 6.7 stops per game.
• For his career, Saathoff has 282 tackles, which is the leading mark for the Lions.
“BIG MIKE” BEHIND THE LINE
• Michael Onuoha (pronounced uh-no-ha) has been a menace in the backfield.
• The senior from Edmond, Okla., has 5.5 sacks for losses of 30 yards through seven games.
• His sack against CSU-Pueblo was also a forced fumble, recovered by Saathoff.
• He is 23rd nationally in tackles for loss, with 1.6 tackles for losses per game.
• He had an interception with a return of 48 yards to set up the Lions’ first touchdown in the record-setting second quarter at Western N.M.
• Prior to the season, Onuoha was named an honorable mention All-American and second team all-region pick by Don Hansen’s Football Gazette. He was also a first team all-Lone Star Conference pick.
• “Big Mike” ranked seventh in the LSC with 12 tackles for loss and recorded 56 tackles in the 2017 season.
KINCADE TAKES IT TO THE HOUSE AGAIN
• Lion return man Reggie Kincade is now the A&M-Commerce career record-holder for kickoff returns for touchdowns with three – all in the last nine games.
• Kincade– a senior from Everman-– had a 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in the second quarter of the loss against Tarleton.
• It was the fifth 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in school history and the fourth in Division II this season.
• He then returned a kickoff 70 yards for a score in the victory at Western N.M.
• With a 37.8 yard average per return for his career, Kincade would be the active career leader in Division II if he had enough attempts to qualify. The NCAA requires 24 career returns to be listed in the active career leaders – Kincade has 20 career returns.
• His season average of 41.7 yards per return in 2018 ranks second in Division II. Truman’s Lawrence Woods has a 47.6 return average
TAKE THAT AND LIKE IT
• The Lion kicking game has been spectacular during the 2018 season.
• A&M-Commerce ranks second nationally in kickoff return defense, as Lion opponents average 11.59 yards per return. Minnesota State is the national leader at 11.05 yards per return
• A&M-Commerce ranks No. 8 nationally in net punting. The Lions average 39.07 yards net per punt.
• Tristan Perry averages 42.5 yards per punt, which is second in the Lone Star Conference and ranks 20th nationally.
RETURN TO SENDER
• The Lions had three interception returns against Western New Mexico, with returns totaling 163 yards.
• This is the first game for the Lions with three interceptions this season.
• On top of Onuoha’s 48-yard return, Danny Huckaby had a 64-yard return for a touchdown, followed by a 51-yard return for a touchdown by Kader Kohou.
• The last time the Lions had over 100 yards in interception returns in a single game was the 2016 Homecoming game against West Texas A&M, when the Lions had four interceptions for 170 yards in returns.
LIONS RANKED SEVENTH IN REGIONAL RANKING
• The regional rankings came out for the first time on Monday, with the Lions ranked seventh in Super Region Four.
• The top seven teams in the region qualify for the playoffs at the end of the regular season, with the field announced on November 11.
• The Lions have been ranked in every regional ranking in the last five seasons.
• In the current configuration of Super Region Four (Lone Star, RMAC, Northern Sun, GNAC), the Lions were ranked eighth in the initial rankings in 2017.
• This is the second season of the current configuration of the region.
KRISTOV’S SPECIAL KICKOFF DAY
• Kicker Kristov Martinez averaged 65.8 yards per kickoff at Western New Mexico on eight kickoffs.
• Mathematic investigation will note that a kickoff for a touchback results in a 65 yard kickoff, which means he averaged more than available.
• On top of that, one of Martinez’ kickoffs was an 18-yard onside kick, further reducing the available average yardage.
• Following a third quarter touchdown, two penalties against the Lions forced Martinez to kick off from the TAMUC 10-yardline.
• His boot traveled to the WNMU 5-yardline before the Mustangs grabbed the ball, marking a stunning 85-yard kickoff.
• No records of this are kept, but we’re going to call it a national record for longest kickoff.