Monday, November 10, 2014

VMI Keydets

The final home game of the season for the Catamounts, brings an old SoCon rival to Cullowhee, the Virginia Military Institute for the first time in 13 years.

Western Carolina leads the series with VMI, 17-3 and the Cat own an eleven game winning streak over the Keydets.

The Keydets have found that their football difficulties have continued since their return to the SoCon, as they currently are 1-4 in the conference play, with games against the Catamounts and The Citadel remaining on their schedule.

The bright spot for VMI is they are coming off their first conference victory of the season against Furman as well as a bye week to prepare for their game against the Catamounts. The Keydets are led by freshman of the year candidate Al Cobb who led VMI to their first win over Furman since 1979. He  completed 24 of 37 pass attempts for 239 yards and two touchdowns, and carried the ball 11 times for 49 yards and a touchdown.

The Keydets are currently in last place in rushing offense (99 ypg), but are in first place in passing offense, averaging 253 yards per game. One bright spot for the Cats is that VMI is in last place in the conference in scoring defense, giving up an average of 41 points per game, and last in total defense giving up an average of 482 yards per game.

When: November 15, 2014 at 2:00 pm (EST)

Where: Bob Waters Field at E.J. Whitmire Stadium, Cullowhee, NC

Radio:  Catamount Sports Network

TV:  SoCon Digital Network

Series History: Western Carolina currently leads the series 17-3. The Cats and Keydets first played in 1978 and last played in 2002, with the Cats owning an eleven game winning streak over VMI. Western Carolina was the last SoCon team the Keydets played in Lexington before their departure from the Southern Conference.

Their coach: Sparky Woods - Sparky Woods enters his seventh season as head coach of the VMI football program, and continues to make his mark throughout the program by implementing the philosophy and knowledge attained over an impressive coaching career. Catamount fans might also remember Woods as the head coach of Appalachian State from 1984 -1988.

Last year’s record: 2-10 overall, 1-4 Big South

The last game vs. VMI: Nov 2, 2002 - Western Carolina quarterbacks Pat Cilento and Brian Gaither combined for 350 yards passing and four touchdowns to lead Western Carolina past VMI, 35-23, in the final Southern Conference game played at Alumni Memorial Field in Lexington. The Catamount win was the 11th straight for Western over the Keydets and snapped VMI's three-game win streak. With the win, WCU improves to 5-5, 3-4 in the Southern Conference, while VMI fell to 5-5 and 2-4 in the SoCon.

Letterwinners returning/lost: 34 - 20
Offense: 15 - 9
Defense: 18 - 9
Special Teams: 1 - 2

Starters Returning/Loss: 14 - 10
Offensive starters - Returning/Lost: 6 - 5
Defensive starters - Returning/Lost: 7 - 4
Specialist Returning/Lost: 1 - 1

2014 VMI Statistics:
Scoring: 23.8 points per game
Rushing Offense: 88.4 yards per game
TDs rushing: 13 rushing touchdowns
Passing Offense: 253 yards per game
TDs passing: 17 passing touchdowns
Total Offense: 353 yards per game
Fumbles-Lost: 13 - 9
Penalties-Yards: 45 - 370 yards (37 yds per game)
On-side kicks: 0 - 0
3rd Down Conversions: 62 of 148  (41%)
4th Down Conversions: 6 of 14  (43%)
Field Goals - Attempts: 5 of 11
Red-Zone Scores: 27 of 34  (79%)
Red-Zone Touchdowns: 24 of 34  (71%)

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