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MONMOUTH, IL (09/12/2019) Monmouth College expects a challenge when
it travels to Waverly, Iowa, Saturday for a 7 p.m. kickoff against
Wartburg, a team the Fighting Scots upended a year ago.
The Scots know they’ll be in for a battle under the lights after the
Knights rolled to a 60-21 win over Greenville in the opener. To add fuel
to the fire, the Scots upset Wartburg 24-18 last season when the
Knights were ranked 13th in the national poll.
“They’ll be fired up after last year, and they’re pretty good at home
and at night, anyway,” warned Monmouth head coach Chad Braun. “I have
no doubt they’re going to come after us with everything they’ve got.
They’ll play with an edge. We can’t worry about
them. We’ve got to worry about us.”
Braun’s focus on his own team is a reflection of a 38-0 loss in last
week’s opener with No. 22 Wheaton. The game was close until a 17-point
fourth quarter outburst by the Thunder, who scored on a long TD
reception in the first half and a pick-six in the
“We learned from that game and are moving forward,” said Braun.
“We’ve got to make teams earn every yard and take care of the football.
Those things are critical if we’re to succeed. We didn’t do that last
week and the score reflected that. We’ve got a lot
of things to improve on, on both sides of the ball. On defense, we gave
up leverage too much and let people get outside. On offense, we didn’t
take care of the ball and didn’t get positive yards on first down.”
Wartburg racked up first downs and yards last week, erupting for 27
third-quarter points en route to rolling over Greenville. Using two
quarterbacks – senior Noah Dodd and junior Jace Moore – the Knights
threw for more than 300 yards and five TDs, four to
senior wideout Kolin Schulte.
“Wartburg does a great job with game planning,” praised Braun.
“They’ll be well prepared and we’ve got to match that. Running two
quarterbacks can be a challenge for the defense if they’re different
schematically. If one is a runner and the other a thrower,
that creates a challenge to prepare the defense for two styles of play
in one week.”
Whatever the Knights’ scheme, both offensively and defensively, Braun
is certain his team will be prepared and anxious to get into Week 2.
“Our guys made a big jump from Week 1 to Week 2 last year,” reminded
Braun. “I expect us to do the same this week. Everything we saw on film
from last week is correctable, but we’ve got to be willing to make those
corrections. There’s no secret. We’ve just
got to go out and make the plays.”