Sept. 22, 2004
Villanova Football Game Notes for Saturday night's crosstown battle between the No. 11 Villanova Wildcats (2-1, 0-1 Atlantic 10) and the No. 22 Pennsylvania Quakers (1-0, 0-0 Ivy League) scheduled for 7:00 p.m. at Franklin Field. The game can be seen live on CN8. Click on the pdf link below for a complete version of the game notes.
No. 11 Villanova Wildcats (2-1 Overall, 0-1 Atlantic 10)
No. 22 Pennsylvania Quakers (1-0 Overall, 0-0 Ivy League)
Saturday, Sept. 25, 2004
Franklin Field (52,593)
Philadelphia , Pa.
First Meeting: 1905, Penn, 42-0
Overall: Penn Leads 5-3-0
Overall Under Talley: 2-0-0
Last Villanova Win: 10/10/02, 17-3
Last Penn Win: 10/14/11, 22-0
Interview Requests- All Interview requests should be directed toward Dean Kenefick, Assistant Athletics Director/Communications, (610) 519-4120.
Television: Live on CN8 (Play By Play: Bill Zimpfer; Color Analysis: Bill Osborn).
Radio: Game Coverage begins at 7 p.m. on WNTP 990-AM (Play By Play: Joe Eichhorn; Color Analysis: Ryan Fannon).
*All Wildcat games can be heard on the internet at www.villanova.com
PENN REPORT: Penn enters play this week having won 17 in a row and 29 of its last 30 games. The Quakers last loss came at Villanova on October 10, 2002 when the Wildcat tallied a 17-3 victory. In addition to its 17-game winning streak, Penn is also riding a 19-game home winning streak and a 15-game Ivy League winning streak. Penn's last loss at Franklin Field came in the 1999 season finale with a 20-12 loss to Cornell. The Quakers enter play this Saturday with a 1-0 record. Penn opened the 2004 campaign last Saturday in sunny California with a 61-18 win over the University of San Diego. In the win, Penn tallied 494 yards of total offense including 313 yards on the ground and 181 yards passing. Two Quakers went over the 100-yard rushing plateau. Sophomore Von Bryant registered 111 yards on just five carries (22.2 yards per carry) and a touchdown, while junior Sam Mathews had 19 carries for 102 yards and three scores. Senior Mike Recchuiti added seven carries for 58 yards and two touchdowns. Junior quarterback Pat McDermott completed 13-of-27 for 181 yards and two scores. Senior Dan Castles led all Quaker receivers with three receptions for 62 yards and a touchdown. Penn's defense was led by junior defensive back Scott Willams and junior defensive back Michael Johns who each had nine tackles. All total, the Penn defense forced four turnovers including three fumbles and an interception.
QUAKER HEAD COACH AL BAGNOLI: Penn is led by 13-year head coach Al Bagnoli. During his tenure at Penn, Bagnoli has compiled an impressive 87-32 mark for a .730 winning percentage. The 87 victories ranks him second all-time in Penn history for wins. His career coaching record of 173-51 (.773) ranks him second in winning percentage among all active Division I-AA coaches. In his 13-year career at Penn, Bagnoli has guided the Quakers to six Ivy League championships and two second place Ivy finishes. As the Penn head man, Bagnoli has had three players drafted by the NFL and 10 others sign free agent contracts. He also coached four players to Ivy League MVP honors. Bagnoli made his collegiate head coaching debut at Union College from 1982-91 where he registered an 86-19 record. In his 10-year stint at Union, Bagnoli led the Dutchmen to six NCAA playoff appearances and 10 consecutive winning seasons. In 1983, Bagnoli guided Union to the Division III National Championship game and in the process he garnered East Region Coach of the Year accolades. Bagnoli began his coaching career at the University of Albany where he was an assistant from 1976-77. As a player, Bagnoli played three seasons of varsity football at Central Connecticut State.
VILLANOVA NEWS & NOTES:
TALLEY'S TENURE: Currently in his 20th season on the Main Line, head coach Andy Talley can feel responsible for every facet of the Villanova football program, having started it from scratch in 1985. In his career at Villanova, Talley has recorded a 134-78-1 mark, making him the all-time winningest coach in Villanova history. Talley's 25-year overall coaching record currently stands at 161-96-2. During his career as the Wildcat mentor, Talley has guided Villanova to six NCAA playoff appearances (1989, 1991, 1992, 1996, 1997, 2002), four conference titles and two Lambert Meadowlands Trophies. In 1997, Talley garnered the Eddie Robinson Award and the AFCA/GTE National Coach of the Year Award.
PHILADELPHIA FLAVOR: Villanova and Penn will meet on the football field for the ninth time in history when the two teams square off on Saturday night at Franklin Field. It will, however, be just the fourth time the two schools have played football against one another since 1911. Penn won the first five meetings played between 1905-1911 before the Wildcats tallied their first win in the series in 1980. In the last meeting, Villanova registered a 17-3 victory over the Quakers in a game played at Villanova Stadium on Oct. 10, 2002.
PLAYING AT FRANKLIN FIELD: This Saturday's game between Villanova and Penn will be played at Franklin Field on the campus of the University of Pennsylvania. In the program's history, Villanova has played 11 games at Franklin Field and have tallied a 7-3-1 mark in those 11 contests. Villanova's last game at Franklin Field came in 1999 when the `Cats downed the Quakers by a score of 34-6.
STREAKS ON THE LINE: Penn enters play this Saturday versus Villanova riding a 17-game winning streak and 19-game home winning streak. The Quakers last loss came during the 2002 season when Penn lost at Villanova by a score of 17-3. Penn's last home loss took place in the 1999 season finale with a 20-12 setback to Cornell.
TELEVISION EXPOSURE: Villanova will be making its second television appearance of the year this Saturday when the Wildcats play the University of Pennsylvania at Franklin Field. This week's game versus the Quakers can be seen live in the Philadelphia area on CN8. Villanova's game at Lehigh on Sept. 11 was broadcast live on Fox SportsNet Pittsburgh and on DirectTV. Other Wildcat games that can be seen on TV this year include the Oct. 2 home game versus New Hampshire and at Delaware on Nov. 20. Both of these contests will also be televised on CN8.
SEPTEMBER SUCCESS: Last Saturday's loss to James Madison was just Villanova's second loss in the month of Septemver to a I-AA opponent in the last eight years. Dating back to the 1997 season, Villanova is an impressive 21-5 in the month of September with three of the five losses coming against Division I-A opponents. Against I-AA competition in September since the 1997 season, Villanova has tallied a 19-2 mark.
OFFENSIVE WOES: Due to the severe weather that included heavy wind and rain last Saturday, the Villanova/James Madison game was far from an offensive masterpiece. In the 17-0 James Madison win, the Dukes recorded 122 yards of total offense, while Villanova managed just 91 yards of total offense. The 17-0 loss was the first time Villanova was shutout since Nov. 9, 1996 (85-straight games) when the `Cats lost at New Hampshire, 34-0. It also marked th first time that Villanova was shutout at home since a 34-0 loss to Temple in the 1973 season finale.
AMONG THE BEST: Villanova's defensive performance last Saturday versus James Madison when the Wildcats yielded just 122 yards of total offense ranks as the 12th best in school history. The school record for fewest yards allowed in a game is 2 (24 yards passing/-22 yards rushing) versus Kings Point on Sept. 20, 1947. The 122 yards accumulated by the Dukes last Saturday included 111 yards rushing and just 11 yards passing.
DOMINANT D: Entering the 2004 season, Villanova was expected to be one of the top defensive units in the Atlantic 10, as they returned seven starters from a defense that led the A10 last year in total defense giving up just 302.0 yards per contest. In addition, the Wildcats ranked second in the league in scoring defense last season allowing 16.2 points per game. After three games in 2004, the defense has been as good as advertised, allowing 15.7 points per game and just 193.3 yards of total offense per contest. The `Cats currently rank second in the Atlantic 10 in total defense and fifth in scoring defense.
THE IMPORTANCE OF FIELD POSITION: The Villanova defense has allowed six touchdowns in the first three weeks of the 2004 season. All six of the scores have been a direct result of the defense having to defend a short field. The opponents average starting field position in the six scoring drives is the 30-yard line. In the season opener versus Bucknell, th Bison's two touchdowns came on a 40 yard drive and a 23 yard drive. In week two at Lehigh, Villanova allowed two touchdowns on 53 and 31 yard drives. Last Saturday against James Madison, the Dukes two scoring drives were 11 and 25 yards.
GETTING TO THE QUARTERBACK: The Villanova defense have been getting to the quarterback on a regular basis in the early going of the 2004 season. After three games, Villanova has recorded 10 sacks, including six in week two versus Lehigh. The 10 sacks is even more impressive when you consider that James Madison attempted just seven passes in last week's game. Leading the way in the sack department for the Wildcats is senior defensive end Jamil Butler who has made a team-high four quarterback sacks. Butler led the Wildcats in sacks last year with five.
FINDING THE FOOTBALL: In last Saturday's game versus James Madison, the Villanova defense recorded five fumble recoveries. Of the five, three were recovered by junior defensive tackle Darrell Adams. In addition to the three fumble recoveries, Adams also recorded five tackles, a tackle for loss and a sack. After three games this year, Adams has 10 tackles, 2.5 tackles for loss and 1.5 sacks. After earning first team All-Atlantic 10 honors last season, Adams was a pre-season first team All-League selection this year.
LEADING TACKLER: Throughout his Villanova career, junior linebacker Brian Hulea has been a playmaker for the Villanova defense. Entering play versus Penn on Saturday, Sept. 25, Hulea has led the Wildcats in tackles in 17 of the 24 career contests he has played in. In addition, he has 11 career double digit tackle games to his credit. As a sophomore last year, he recorded a team-best 141 tackles (99 solo) en route to being named first team All-Atlantic 10. His 99 solo stops led all of NCAA Division I-AA football, while his 141 stops ranked him second in the Atlantic 10.
SWITCHING SIDES: True freshman Brian Hentosz had a busy couple of days last week. Hentosz began the season as a defensive lineman where he was earning playing time as a reserve. On Sunday, Sept. 12, Hentosz was asked by the Wildcat coaching staff to move to the offensive side of the ball to play guard. After spending the week learning the Villanova offensive scheme, Hentosz made his first career start at offensive guard last Saturday versus James Madison. In the loss to the Dukes, Hentosz played the entire game and graded out at an impressive 85 percent. As a standout at Central Central High School in Pittsburgh, Hentosz earned first team All-State honors and was selected to play in the Big 33 All-Star Game.
CATCHING ON:: Junior wide receiver J.J. Outlaw continues to be one of the team's top offensive threats. After three games, Outlaw has made a team-best 14 receptions for 100 yards and a touchdown to go with 40 yards rushing on nine carries. He also has 11 punt returns for 89 yards (8.1 yards per return) and four kickoffs for 56 yards to his credit this year. As a sophomore last year, Outlaw ranked second in the Atlantic 10 in all-purpose yards with an average of 135.5 yards per contest. He also ranks third in the league in receptions per game (4.9) and seventh in receiving yards per contest (64.0 yards per game). In 11 games last season, Outlaw registered a team-best 54 receptions for a team-high 704 yards and two scores, 28 rushes for 243 yards, 27 punt returns for 261 yards and 14 kickoff returns for 292 yards. He also had two, 200-yard all-purpose games and three, 100-yard receiving games a season ago.
STAYING LOCAL: The way the 2004 schedule is constructed, Villanova will not leave the state of Pennsylvania for the first five weeks of the season. Villanova opened up the season with a 20-14 home win over Bucknell before registering a 22-16 win at Lehigh in week two. Last Saturday, the `Cats lost at home to James Madison, 17-0. After this Saturday's contest at crosstown rival Penn, the Wildcats return home to play New Hampshire on Oct. 2. The Wildcats will finally leave the state of Pennsylvania on Oct. 9 when they travel to Boston to take on Northeastern.
CONFERENCE SUPREMACY: In the Sports Network Top 25 released on Monday. Sept. 20, the Atlantic 10 Conference has more teams ranked than any other I-AA conference with seven teams in the top 25. The seven ranked Atlantic 10 teams include Delaware (No. 4), Maine (No. 8), Villanova (No. 11), New Hampshire (No. 14), Massachusetts (No. 16), Northeastern (No. 18) and James Madison (No. 24).
MODEL OF CONSISTENCY: Villanova has been ranked in both the Sports Network and ESPN/USA Today Top 25 polls for 34 consecutive weeks. This rates as the longest active streak of being ranked of any Atlantic 10 Conference team. The steak began on Sept. 2, 2002 and continued through all 11 weeks of the 2003 campaign and the first three weeks of 2004. During the 33-week streak, Villanova's highest ranking was No. 2 on Oct. 20, 2003.
REMEMBERING DAVID: The Villanova football family suffered a tragedy this summer when Wildcat senior offensive lineman David Reid passed away in a drowning accident. To remember David, all Villanova team members will wear a black patch with his No. 73 on their game jerseys, while all Villanova coaches will display the No. 73 patch on their coaching shirts. In addition, David's locker has been encased in the Villanova lockerroom.
A NEW LOOK: The Atlantic 10 Football Conference will be adding a new member in 2004 when Towson University joins the league. With the addition of Towson, the conference will go from a one, 11-team league to two, six-team divisions. The North Division will consist of Hofstra, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Northeastern and Rhode Island, while Delaware, James Madison, Richmond, Towson, Villanova and William & Mary will make-up the South Division. Each team will play every opponent in their division and three of the six teams in the opposite division for eight conference games. Villanova's three crossover opponents include New Hampshire, Northeastern and Rhode Island. The Wildcats will not play Hofstra, Maine and Massachusetts.
VILLANOVA PICKED FIRST: The Villanova Wildcats were picked to win the Atlantic 10 South Division in the 2004 preseason Atlantic 10 Conference poll as voted on by coaches and media.
SOUTH DIVISION 1. VILLANOVA (13) 2. Delaware (11) 3. William & Mary 4. James Madison 5. Richmond 6. Towson
NORTH DIVISION 1. Maine (12) 2. Northeastern (7) 3. Massachusetts (3) 4. New Hampshire (2) 5. Rhode Island 6. Hofstra
FIRST TEAM WILDCATS: Villanova was well represented on the 2004 Atlantic 10 preseason All-Conference first team with five Wildcats earning this distinction. Four of the five selections were Villanova defenders including senior safety Raymond Ventrone, senior defensive end Jamil Butler, junior defensive lineman Darrell Adams and junior linebacker Brian Hulea. On offense, junior wide receiver J.J. Outlaw was a preseason first team selection. Ventrone, Adams, Hulea and Outlaw were all 2003 first team All-Atlantic 10 performers.
LIKE FATHER, LIKE SON: Fullback Phil DiGiacomo is the second member of his family to play football at Villanova. His father, Phil Sr., played defensive end and was a captain in 1977. As a junior last year, DiGiacomo finished second on the team in receiving with 48 receptions for 325 yards and five scores to go with 16 carries for 77 yards. For his career, he has tallied 88 catches for 637 yards and nine scores and 64 rushes for 319 yards and five touchdowns. After three games in 2004, DiGiacomo has four receptions for 17 yards and one touchdown to go with five carries for 15 yards.
ALL-AMERICAN HISTORY: The Villanova football program has had a first team All-American in seven of the last 10 years. In the program's history, 21 different players have earned All-American distinction.
1994 LB Tyrone Frazier 1996 WR Brian Finneran 1997 WR Brian Finneran QB Chris Boden 1998 RB Brian Westbrook 2000 KR Brian Westbrook 2001 RB Brian Westbrook 2002 QB Brett GordonNOTE: In 1999, wide receiver Murle Sango was a second team All-American.
OVERTIME HISTORY: During head coach Andy Talley's tenure at Villanova, the Wildcats have played in 10 overtime games and in those 10 games the Wildcats are 7-3. With the double overtime win at Temple on Sept. 6, 2003, Villanova has won five of its last six overtime contests. Of the 10 overtime games, seven have been played at Villanova Stadium. Before last year's overtime game with Temple, the Wildcats last overtime contest came in 2001 against James Madison in week four when the `Cats outlasted the Dukes, 45-44, in double overtime. The last overtime game before the James Madison contest came in 2000 when the Wildcats suffered a 48-41 loss to William & Mary. In 1999, Villanova played two overtime games. On Oct. 16, 1999 Villanova defeated UConn, 48-45, in triple overtime in a game played in Storrs, Conn. In the 1999 season finale at Villanova Stadium, the `Cats rallied from a 45-24 deficit with 8:37 remaining against Delaware to win a 51-45 thriller in one overtime.
PLAYING ON SUNDAYS: Villanova running back Brian Westbrook became the first Wildcat player to be drafted since Howie Long in 1981 when he was selected in the third round of the 2002 NFL Draft by the Philadelphia Eagles. With Westbrook a member of the Eagles, Villanova now has two players currently playing in the NFL. Wide receiver Brian Finneran (Villanova 1994-97) is currently in his fifth season with the Atlanta Falcons in 2004. Westbrook and Finneran both won the Walter Payton Award, given to the top player in NCAA I-AA football, during their senior seasons at Villanova. Westbrook is currently the starting running back for the Eagles, while Finneran is Atlanta's third receiver.
SAME STATION, DIFFERENT LETTERS: For the eighth-straight season, 990-AM will be the flagship station of the Villanova Football Radio Network. The only difference this year will be the call letters for the station are now WNTP instead of the previous WZZD. Play-by-play announcer Joe Eichhorn, who has been broadcasting Villanova football since 1988, returns to anchor the broadcasts. Joining Eichhorn for a 10th consecutive year is Ryan Fannon. All 11 Wildcat gridiron contests will be broadcast live, with a pre-game show airing either 30 or 60 minutes prior to kickoff.
Andy Talley RADIO SHOW: Continuing in 2004, WNTP 990-AM (formerly WZZD) will broadcast the Andy Talley Radio Show. The one-hour call-in show is hosted by color commentator Ryan Fannon and will provide a weekly recap of Villanova football games, as well as a preview of upcoming contests. The show will be held Monday evenings from 6-7 p.m. at the Conshohocken Marriott. Throughout the one-hour program, Fannon and Coach Talley will take questions about all aspects of the Wildcat football program, in addition to fielding questions concerning all the teams in the Atlantic 10 Conference, as well as NCAA I-AA football on the national scene.