MARQUETTE, Mich. – The Northern Michigan University football team (5-5, 5-4 GLIAC) plays its final game for the 2010 season Saturday (Nov. 13) at 1 p.m. in Houghton, Mich. against the Michigan Tech Huskies (7-2. 7-2 GLIAC). Winner of the game will receive the Miner’s Cup. NMU currently has the Miner’s Cup as a result of the 48-16 victory over the Huskies last year. A win would give NMU back-to-back winning seasons for the first time since 1999 (6-4) and 2000 (6-5).
In the eight year history of the cup the home team has won it five times. A run down of the series for the Miner’s Cup: 2002 – at MTU 34, NMU 13; 2003 – at NMU 35, MTU 24; 2004 – at MTU 45, NMU 6; 2005 – MTU 42, at NMU 21; 2006 – at MTU 42, NMU 14; 2007 – at NMU 34, MTU 27; 2008 – MTU 47 at NMU 21; 2009 – NMU 48 at MTU 16.
NMU leads the all-time series against MTU with a 41-37-5 slate. Over the last four games it has been even at 2-2. Last week the Wildcats lost to Saginaw Valley State at home in overtime (24-17) while the Huskies defeated Ferris State in Big Rapids, Mich. (28-16).
NMU is averaging 293.2 yards a game in total offense (143.3 rushing and 149.9 passing). Defensively the ‘Cats are giving up 255.7 yards a game (118.2 rushing and 137.5 passing). NMU is lighting up the scoreboard by averaging 22.1 points a game while the defense is holding opponents to 17.1. John Privitelli leads the ‘Cats on the ground with 590 yards on 151 carries. He has scored five of the 14 rushing touchdowns on the season. Jacob Hicks, who has now seen time in six games this season, has thrown for 396 yards on 41-79-3. He threw his first touchdown pass against Saginaw Valley State. Dustin Brancheau has hauled in a team-high 37 passes for 508 yards and five scores. Rockne Belmonte leads the ‘Cats in scoring with 55 points as he is 11-18 in field goals and 22-24 in extra points. Eddie Knoblock leads the team with 73 total tackles (40 solo and 33 assisted). He has picked off a team-leading five passes with two returned for touchdowns.
MTU is averaging a little over 400 yards a game in total offense (401.1) and giving up 313.1 yards a game. On the ground the Huskies are averaging 237.9 yards a contest and in the air it is 163.2. Defensively the Huskies are giving up on the ground 113.3 yards a game and 199.8 passing. On the scoreboard the team is averaging 32.6 points a game and yielding 18.4. Phil Milbrath is the leading ground gainer in the conference as he has tallied 1,379 yards on 192 carries with 10 touchdowns. Steve Short has thrown for 1,451 yards on 119-205-7 with 15 touchdown strikes. Two receivers have over 30 catches as Pat Carroll leads the way with 31 for 361 yards. Jesse Vandenberg has a team-high 76 total tackles (39 solo and 37 assisted).
NMU leads the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) in scoring defense (17.1 avg/g), total defense (255.7 avg/g) and pass defense (137.5 avg/g).
The Point (100.3 FM) will carry the action from Sherman Field.
An audio (http://webb.nmu.edu/SportsAthletics/SiteSections/ForCatFans/GameBroadcasts.shtml) and video (http://www.michigantechhuskies.com/liveEvents/liveEvents.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=18800) stream of the game are available. Live stats will be available at the following: http://www.gliac.org/scoreboard/index.
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