Monday, July 18, 2016

2016 Football Preseason Preview: Mercer

Throughout this preseason, Purple & Gold will preview all of Western's 2016 football opponents. Today we look at the Mercer Bears.

For their sixth game of the season, the Catamounts travel to Macon, GA to  meet the Mercer Bears. This will be the Cats second time traveling to Mercer for football.


When:  Saturday, October 15th  - Time TBA

Where:  Five Star Stadium. Macon, GA

Radio:  Catamount Sports Network 

TV / video:  ESPN3

The Series:  This will be only the third meeting between the Catamounts and Bears on the gridiron. The first meeting in 2014 in Macon, and the Cats won both previous meetings.

Head Coach:  Bobby Lamb
Bobby Lamb enters his forth season as head coach of Mercer football. In his first season, the Bears set a NCAA Division I record for wins by a first-year program with a 10-2 campaign. The 2013 win total also set a school record for victories, surpassing the previous mark of seven wins by Lake Russell’s 1931 and 1932 squads. Lamb led the Bears into their first season of Southern Conference play in 2014,

Last year’s record (Mercer): 5-6 overall  (home: 3-3, away: 2-3),  2-5 in the SoCon

Last Season's Game vs. Mercer (Oct. 10, 2015):
Fourth Quarter Rally Lifts Western Carolina over Mercer, 24-21  - Sophomore tailback Detrez Newsome capped a 91-yard game-winning scoring drive with a 22-yard romp inside the final minute on Saturday afternoon as Western Carolina rallied past the Mercer Bears, 24-21, in Southern Conference action at E.J. Whitmire Stadium / Bob Waters Field. Newsome burst up the middle on a fourth down rush to provide the go-ahead score, tallying his sixth rushing TD of the season, having scored at least one in each of WCU's five games this season. Mercer (2-3, 0-2 SoCon) had one last opportunity, but a Jagger Lieb 42-yard attempt sailed wide left as time expired giving the Catamounts (3-2, 1-1 SoCon) their fourth-straight home victory. -

Offensive starters - Returning/Lost: 10 / 1

Defensive starters - Returning/Lost: 10 / 1

Specialist - Returning/Lost: 6  /  2

Offensive Formation: Pistol  (spread that resembles those of Western Carolina and Chattanooga out of the Pistol)

Defensive Formation: 3-4

2015 Mercer Statistics
Rushing Offense: 2512 yards
Yards per game: 213
Yards per rush: 4.8 yards
TDs rushing: 23
Passing Offense: 2205 yards or 200 yards per game
Passing Comp-Att-Int: 305-176-3
Total Offense: 4542 yards or 413 yards per game
Passing 1st downs: 93
Rushing 1st downs: 123
Fumbles-Lost: 14 - 7
3d Down Conversions: 67 of 157 or 43%
4th Down Conversions: 15 of 24 or 63%
Red-Zone Scores: 41 of 44
Red-Zone Touchdowns: 32 of 44

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