Louisville Leopards at West Branch Warriors 2015 Football Preview
Louisville Leopards (5-1, 3-0) at West Branch Warriors (5-1, 3-0)
SPREAD: Louisville By 13 (According to Drew Pasteur’s Fantastic 50)
WHEN: Friday, October 9 at 7:00 PM
WHERE: Clinton Heacock Stadium
HIGHLIGHTS: Will be available following the game late Friday night or early Saturday morning right here on louisvilleleopards.org
ALL-TIME SERIES: Louisville leads the all-time series 23-7, which includes an 11-3 record at West Branch.
LAST MEETING: The Leopards downed the Warriors 51-0 back on October 3, 2014.
LAST MEETING AT WEST BRANCH: The Leopards won at West Branch 48-0 back on October 4, 2013.
LAST WEST BRANCH WIN: The Warriors won at Louisville 21-17 back on October 12, 2012.
Both teams come into this game with identical overall records and both are an undefeated 3-0 in NBC play. The Leopards have outscored NBC foes by an average of 45-5 with the mercy rule in affect for all three games. The Warriors have also been impressive winning five consecutive games overall and also outscoring NBC opposition by an average of 37-12. West Branch is the only NBC foe to defeat Louisville twice in the past four seasons, but the Leopards have taken the last two meetings by a combined score of 99-0. Will Louisville continue their dominance against West Branch or is the team from Beloit ready to defend their new home turf against their longtime NBC rivals? We find out Friday at Clinton Heacock Stadium!
The Leopards are averaging a whooping 394 Yards (259 Passing, 135 Rushing) and 38 points per game this season, while allowing 182 Yards (72 Passing, 110 Rushing) and 14 points per contest through the first six weeks.
The Louisville Offense has been quite balanced this season as they have run 162 running plays versus 152 passing plays. Runningback Rahzul Young (98 Carries, 595 Yards, 4 Touchdowns) has led the rushing attack with Noah Bellew (12 Carries, 86 Yards) and Sean McKinney (13 Carries, 81 Yards, 2 Touchdowns) also taking significant carries in reserve. They will look to run behind the blocking of starting Offensive Lineman Alex Hall, Terry Gooch, Chase Lautzenheiser, Issac Mathie, and Jarett Heater.
Quarterback Jake Adams (106 of 148 for 1,533 Yards, 20 Touchdowns) and Wide Receiver Tyler Adams
(40 Catches, 651 Yards, 8 Touchdowns) are both on pace to have record-breaking seasons in the passing game. The pair hooked up 9 times for 163 yards in the first half alone against Marlington. Senior Receiver Alec Jones (31 Catches, 341 Yards, 7 Touchdowns) has also had a nag for making catches in traffic this season. Conner Bast (14 Catches, 242 Yards, 3 Touchdowns) and Brock Haren (14 Catches, 192 Yards, 1 Touchdown) have also made an impact in the potent Leopards aerial attack.
The Louisville Defense has produced 21 Sacks for a loss of 140 yards this season. Frankie Falcone (36 Tackles, 3 TFL, 4 Sacks, 1 FF, 1 INT), Kyle Ashcraft (23.5 Tackles, 4 TFL, 4 Sacks), Casey Nau (23.5 Tackles, 1 TFL, 4 Sacks, 1 FR, 1 PBU), and Daichi Castles (21 Tackles, 2 TFL, 3.5 Sacks) are the leaders in that department combining for 15.5 of those sacks. Ashcraft and Falcone were relentless in getting to the Marlington Quarterback last Friday and will look to create the same pressure this week. . Defensive Back Stephen Kerzan (25.5 Tackles, 1 FF, 1 PBU) leads the team in tackles this season. A host of Leopards have recorded takeaways this year and they include the following: Dalton Deckerd (20 Tackles, 2 TFL, 0.5 FF, 1 FR, 1 PBU), Cade Stertzbach (19.5 Tackles, 2 TFL, 2 Sacks, 1 FF, 1 FR), Jimmy Leonard (16 Tackles, 2.5 TFL, 1 Sack, 1 FF, 1 FR, 1 INT, 1 PBU), Cody Allgood (14.5 Tackles, 1 FR, 1 INT, 2 PBU), Justin Vanover (8.5 Tackles, 1 Sack, 1 FR), and Brody Hahn (2 Tackles, 1 FR, 2 INT, 2 PBU). Other key contributors include Reis Rankin (10 Tackles, 0.5 TFL, 1 PBU) and Dillon Deckerd (5 Tackles, 0.5 Sacks, 0.5 FF, 2 PBU).
On Special Teams, Tyler Adams has emerged as the main return man averaging 17.8 yards on 9 kick returns and 12.8 yards on 6 punt returns. Placekicker Trevor Burk has made 14 of 20 extra points this season and Jake Adams has averaged 35.2 yards on 10 punts this year.
The Warriors are averaging 289 Yards (134 Passing, 155 Rushing) and 31 points per game this season, while allowing 272 Yards (97 Passing, 175 Rushing) and 17 points per contest this year. West Branch has also produced 16 Takeaways (11 Interceptions, 5 Fumble Recoveries), while giving up the ball only 7 times (1 Interception, 6 Fumbles).
Quarterback TJ DeShields (65 of 93 Passing for 766 Yards, 6 Touchdowns) leads the Warriors passing attack and has yet to throw an interception this season. Top Targets include Austin R. Smith (21 Catches, 276 Yards, 3 Touchdowns) and Rob Lozier (25 Catches, 218 Yards, 1 Touchdown). West Branch has also gotten plenty of production out or Runningback Trae Hillyer (106 Carries, 733 Yards, 13 Touchdowns) who has carried the ball on 36% of the Warriors snaps this season and leads the team in touchdowns scored.
Defensive Back Brett Butcher leads the team in takeaways with 3 interceptions this season. Cole Pittman has also picked off a pair of passes this year. West Branch did find the endzone once on defense this season when Smith ran back a fumble 23 yards for a score against Crestwood on opening night.
On Special Teams, Kicker Marcus Hoopes has made field goal tries of 25 and 27 yards to go along with 18 extra points made this season. Justin Stowe has also averaged 36.0 yards on 20 punts this year. In the return game, Butcher has been explosive averaging 46.8 yards on 5 kick returns this season. Butcher returned a kick 90 yards to the house against Beaver Local Week 2 and also ran back a 93 yard kick return verse Minerva in Week 4. Smith has also been the main man on punt returns in averaging 6.4 yards on 8 returns.