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Local colleges

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College football preview: Saint Francis at Taylor

Records: No. 8 Cougars (6-2, MFSA MEL 3-1); Taylor (4-4, 2-2)

When: 1 p.m. Saturday

Where: New Stadium, Upland

Radio: 1450 AM

3 matchups to watch

Saint Francis down seven vs. Taylor offensive line: Zach Bruce’s five sacks lead a Cougars down seven that has 15 sacks this season and has allowed just 11 rushing touchdowns. Taylor, meanwhile, has allowed just 12 sacks and has 15 rushing touchdowns. It’ll be a good battle.

Taylor down seven vs. Saint Francis offensive line: And now for the flip side. Taylor’s multiple-front down seven has 30 sacks far year, or nearly five per game, and is giving up just 3 yards per rush. The Cougars, meanwhile, have given up 17 sacks and their running game averages 3.7 yards per carry and 154.9 yards per game, with 16 rushing touchdowns – not overwhelming numbers, but far better than what Taylor’s been giving up. Another good battle.

Saint Francis QB Josh Miller vs. Josh Miller’s ankle: The chronic ankle injury that’s kept Miller off the field for the last two weeks and chunks of the last two seasons is Miller’s biggest nemesis right now. If he can avoid re-injuring it, his multiple run/pass talents give the Saint Francis offense a more diverse look and makes it much harder to defend. Just ask Saint Ambrose. The last time Miller was truly healthy, he stung the Fighting Bees with 412 passing yards and 428 total yards.

bensmith@jg.net

– Ben Smith, The Journal Gazette

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