Sept. 27, 2013
FULL COVERAGE OF SATURDAY'S GAME AGAINST PENN
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Game Notes: Villanova | Penn | CAA
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VILLANOVA, Pa.--Coming off its first win of the season Villanova (1-2) will be back in action at home this Saturday when it hosts Penn (1-0) at Villanova Stadium. Kickoff is scheduled for 5 p.m. and tickets can be purchased here. The game will be shown online on Nova Nation All-Access and can also be heard live on CBS Sports Radio 610.
Saturday evening's game will mark the 11th straight year that the Wildcats and Quakers meet on the gridiron. Villanova has won each of the recent meetings against Penn and leads the all-time series by a 12-5 margin. Wildcats head coach Andy Talley is 11-0 in his career against the Quakers, including a 24-8 win at Franklin Field last season.
"Penn is extremely well-coached in every phase of the game and they do not make a lot of mistakes," Talley said. "It is a game where we know going in that they won't beat themselves. We have to find a way to beat them in order to win, and they are also one of the most physical teams we will see all year. It is going to be a tough game and it is a big game because we don't have a lot of margin for error."
Last week in its home opener Villanova defeated Stony Brook, 35-6, to pick up its first win of the year. Sophomore quarterback John Robertson (Paramus, N.J.) ran for 119 yards and a touchdown while amassing 259 yards of total offense in the game. Sophomore running back Gary Underwood (Cincinnati, Ohio) and junior wide receiver Clay Horne (St. Paul, Minn.) each scored their first career touchdowns, while junior safety Joe Sarnese (Ventnor, N.J.) returned a fumble for a touchdown.
"This might have been one of our top 10 best games in a long time," Talley said. "It was right up there with some of the great wins we have had over the years. Stony Brook has more talent than most teams in this league and I think we got them at the right time after they came off a long overtime game. We are in a good place for the first time all year and we are fairly healthy so we are going to be ready to go for Penn."
Through the first three games of the season Robertson has completed 37-of-58 passes for 462 yards and two touchdowns. He is also the Wildcats leading rusher, with 241 yards on 43 carries to go along with three scores. His 119-yard rushing game last week against Stony Brook marked the fourth time in his career that Robertson surpassed 100 yards in a game. Sophomore wide receiver Jamal Abdur-Rahman (Philadelphia, Pa.) and juniors Kevin Monangai (Roseland, N.J.) and Austin Medley (Franklinville, N.J.) are also part of a Villanova running attack that is averaging over 200 yards per game.
On the defensive end the Wildcats have scored a defensive touchdown in consecutive games after having only three defensive touchdowns all of last year. Junior linebacker Joey Harmon (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) leads the team with 30 tackles through three games, including a career-high 15 stops in the season opener at Boston College. Villanova has had a double-digit tackler in each of the first three games of the season. Another defensive boost has come from senior defensive end Rakim Cox (San Diego, Calif.), who leads the team with 3.5 tackles for loss and two sacks on the year. Both of his sacks came in the win over the Seawolves last week.
Villanova is in the midst of playing three straight home games. Following this week's game against Penn the Wildcats will return to CAA action next Saturday to host William & Mary for a 1 p.m. kickoff.