First place in the American Southwest Conference will be on the line when the University of Mary Hardin-Baylor football team travels to Marshall to take on undefeated East Texas Baptist University in a key ASC showdown this Saturday. Both teams are ranked in the top 20 in the country and will face off at 1:00 PM at Ornelas Stadium on the ETBU campus.
The Cru will be playing a road game for the second straight week after topping Howard Payne University 59-10 in Brownwood last Saturday. UMHB has won its first two conference games by a combined score of 125-13 to improve to 5-0 overall and 2-0 in the ASC on the season. The Cru will be facing one of the teams it shared the ASC title with last season and the ETBU’s 28-21 overtime victory over UMHB back in 2003 kept the Cru out of the postseason for the only time in the last 15 seasons. UMHB has won 12 straight over the Tigers since that loss, including a 67-20 win last year. But with ETBU featuring an explosive offense and off to the best start in school history, the Cru is expecting a major challenge this weekend.
“ETBU looks really explosive and they can move the ball on the ground and through the air,” Cru Football Coach Pete Fredenburg said. “They are playing with a lot of confidence right now and really spread the ball around. A game like this really gets you fired up to go out and play hard, so I think it comes at a good time for us. I just think it is going to be a whale of a football game.”
East Texas Baptist is 5-0 overall and 1-0 in the ASC after knocking off McMurry University 67-31 last Saturday in Abilene. First-year head coach Scotty Walden spent the previous three seasons as the offensive coordinator for the Tigers. ETBU enters the game as the top offense in Division III in total offense per game and the Tigers trail only UMHB in scoring offense in the country. The Tigers are the third of four defending conference champions on the Cru’s schedule this season after sharing the ASC title with UMHB and Hardin-Simmons last season.
UMHB will enter the contest ranked #3 in the country by both the AFCA and D3football.com. The Tigers are ranked 15th in the nation by the AFCA and D3football.com has ETBU ranked 16th nationally this week.
Saturday’s game will also be broadcast live on K101.7 FM and through the station’s web site with the pre-game show starting at 12:30 PM. UMHB will provide live video streaming and East Texas Baptist will offer live statistics for the game with links to all live coverage available on the Cru Athletic Department web site at www.cruathletics.com