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Concordia host its final regular-season home game of 2011 on Saturday when they square off against No.25-ranked Bethel at 1 p.m.

For the second straight home game, Concordia will play in the MIAC marque match-up game. Saturday’s game will have huge implications on the top 3 in the conference and a potential spot in the NCAA playoffs. The Cobbers can finish in second place with wins in their final two games. Both teams factor in the latest AVCA Division III national Poll. The Royals are currently ranked 25th while the
Cobbers are in the “also receiving votes category.”

Fans can follow the action on the web by going to the live broadcasts link at the bottom of the athletic website: Concordia vs Bethel Live Audio/Stats

Cobber Football Gameday Links
Complete Cobber Gameday Preview (pdf)
Concordia Football Page
Bethel Football Page
Concordia vs. Bethel 2010 Game Recap
Last Week – Cobber Game Recap vs. Hamline
Last Week – Bethel Game Recap vs. St. Thomas
Cobber 2011 Season Stats
Bethel 2011 Season Stats
Cobber NCAA Stats Team/Individual Rankings
Bethel NCAA Stats Team/Individual Rankings
MIAC Standings and Stats
MIAC Week 9 Preview

Cobber Head Coach Terry Horan Video Preview


Cobber Football Gameday Preview
#25 Bethel University (5-2/3-2 MIAC)
at
Concordia College (6-2/4-2 MIAC)
October 29, 2011

Jake Christiansen Stadium
Moorhead, Minn.

GAME TIME: 1 p.m.
RADIO: Live on 1660 AM in the F-M area with Larry Knutson doing the play-by-play and Chris Ohm adding the color commentary. Also live on the internet via the Concordia website at www.gocobbers.com.

SERIES: Concordia leads 22-11-0
SERIES STARTED: 1978
SERIES SYNOPSIS: Bethel has won four of the last five in the series. The only win for the Cobbers in that stretch came in 2008 – the last time the teams hooked up in Moorhead. Before those five games, Concordia had claimed three of the previous four. The Royals hold a 6-4 advantage in the last 10 games in the series. The previous 10 games have all been high-scoring affairs with at least 28 points being put on the board. The teams are combining to score an average of 51.2 points per game in the streak. The most points scored in a game came in 2007 when Bethel won 48-45 in triple overtime in one of the most exciting games ever played at “The Jake”…Concordia is 8-2 against BU in the last 10 games played in Moorhead but the teams have split the last four games played at “The Jake”…Cobber head coach Terry Horan is 4-6 vs. Bethel.

LAST YEAR:
Last year Concordia was outscored 24-6 in the second half and lost 36-20 to Bethel in Arden Hills. The game was tied at halftime and was only an eight-point affair at the end of the third quarter before the Royals score a pair of fourth-quarter TD’s and pulled away to win by 16. Perhaps the biggest play of the game came with 5:00 gone in the fourth quarter, Concordia was on the Bethel 4-yard line and looked like they were going to cut the lead to one score when the Cobbers fumbled and a Royal defensive player scooped up the ball and rambled 92 yards before being tackled on the CC 5-yard line . Bethel then scored three plays later to put the game out of reach at 36-14 with 9:12 to play. The statistics were virtually even for the two teams. BU held a 388-384 edge in total offensive yards. CC almost doubled up the Royals in passing yardage (272-151) while Bethel returned the favor on the ground (237-112). The “thorn in the side” for Concordia on Saturday came in the turnover department. The Cobbers coughed the ball up four times against the Royals and were unable to come up with a turnover on defense. QB Michael Dunham led the CC attack while RB Logan Flannery was the key for BU. Dunham was 27-for-47 for 272 yards. Flannery scored four TD’s (3 rush/1 rec.) and had 89 rushing yards on 23 carries.

Gameday Kickoff  
(What you need to know about Saturday’s Concordia/Bethel match-up)
Match-Up of the Day: The CC Run Game vs. The BU Run Game
This is the first key match-up of the season that won’t directly square off against one another. It will basically be a game of football “horse” as the two top rushing teams in the conference try to outdo each other. The Royals lead the MIAC with a “ground and pound” attack that averages 264.422-11-0 yards per game. The Cobbers’ “smash and dash” attack averages 228.8 yards per game. The teams are also 1 and 2 in time of possession. CC leads the MIAC, holding onto the ball at an average of 32:26 per game while BU is second at 31:36. It will be a battle of offensive and defensive lines as well as both defenses are in the top 3 of the of the league  at stopping the rush.

Cobber Notes
– The Cobbers 2-2 at home this year but are undefeated in the month of October (3-0)
– Concordia is 6-0 this season when they lead at halftime and 5-0 when they lead after the first quarter. The Cobbers are 0-2 when trailing at halftime.
– The Cobbers lead the MIAC in turnover margin. Concordia is +9 on the year. The CC defense has forced a league-leading 19 turnovers. That is four more than they had in all of last year and ties for the most since 2005. CC is 5-0 this season when their opponent has more turnovers.
– Concordia also leads the MIAC in first downs (171), sacks (34) and 4th-down conversions (77.8).
– Concordia fullback Brett Baune is still fifth in the MIAC in rushing (81.5 ypg). He also leads the league lead in overall touchdowns with 16. He has scored at least one TD in all seven games.
– Baune needs four more TD’s to break the single-season touchdown record of 19 set by Adam Swingdorf in 2007.
-CC quarterback Michael Dunham needs 166 yards to break the school record for career passing yards set by Ethan Pole from 1995-98.
– Three Cobbers lead the MIAC in stat categories. Bryce Hentges leads in interceptions with four and defensive linemen Paul Streich and Robin Wisner are first in overall sacks (4).

Royal Notes
– Bethel enters Saturday’s game having lost two of their last four games. After starting the season at 3-0, the Royals are now 5-2 and coming off a loss at home against No.3-ranked St. Thomas. Despite their recent .500 stretch, BU is still ranked 25th in the latest AVCA national coaches poll and 20th in the  D3football.com national poll.
– Bethel is the second highest scoring team in the conference. The Royals are averaging 36.1 points per game in their first seven games. They have scored at least 40 points in four games including a 41-point nugget at St. John’s.
– BU also leads the MIAC in pass efficiency (150.2), 3rd-down conversion (51.6), opponent’s first downs (93), sacks against (5), opponent’s 4th-down conversions (25.0) and Red Zone offense (90.0).
– Bethel senior QB Josh Aakre leads the MIAC in pass efficiency. He has a rating of 158.6. He is also sixth in total offense and fifth in total TD’s
– Returning All-MIAC linebacker Billy Morgan is second in the MIAC in tackles per game. He is averaging 10.6 tackles per game and has at least 10 tackles in five of the team’s seven games.
– Bethel senior Kelson Carr leads the MIAC in kick return average. He is averaging 26.0 yards per return and has a season-long return of 65 yards.

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To paraphrase basketball wise man Allen Iverson – “We talkin’ about Previews – not a feature, not a feature, not a feature – we talkin’ about Previews…we talkin’ about Previews, how silly is that. I know that they are important, I honestly do.  But we talkin’ about Previews man. What are we talkin’ about? Previews.

And that is what The Mess rant is about this week – Previews. As the calendar turns the page on October and we head into November, we have now stumbled into the preview season (cue the theme music from Twilight Zone). Forget about Halloween. The real scary late-October tradition is previews.

In the coming weeks you will see previews for conference championship meets, previews for league playoffs, previews for NCAA Tournaments, previews for upcoming seasons and even previews for the upcoming conference previews. There is one thing the Mess has learned about previews (once again to paraphrase a hackneyed line) – everyone has one and they all stink!

Put it this way – The Mess would rather get a spinal tap and a root canal, at the same time, than write a preview. Nothing good ever comes from a preview and nothing original is ever written in a preview. The Mess has never had a coach, player, parent or fan come up to us and say, “that was the best preview I have ever read – you really did a great job.” Nope, no sir. In fact it is always the opposite. Coaches, players, family and fans all get upset if someone isn’t mentioned or too many facts are given away.

Let’s take a look at the different ways The Mess has been criticized about previews over the years:
1) We have had coaches tell us that the preview was not very good because it had the audacity to point out that the team was going to be good that year (after the team had finished in the top 4 of the MIAC the year before and didn’t graduate a single player).
2) We’ve had coaches tell us that the preview was bad because it wasn’t positive enough or didn’t give the team enough credit (despite the fact the team finished in the bottom two of the conference the year before, hadn’t had a top 7 finish in the league standings for five years and lost their top two athletes).
3) We’ve received e-mails from parents who were upset that their son/daughter wasn’t mentioned in the preview despite the fact that the son/daughter hadn’t started a game in their career and had played less than half the games the year before.
4) We’ve even had players get upset because we wrote they were going to have a great season (it put too much pressure on them) despite the fact they were a two-time all-conference player and the top returning player at their position in the MIAC.

So you see Mess fans, nothing ever good – or original – comes from previews. We dare you to e-mail us with an original line, or quote, you have seen in a preview in the last five years. Go ahead, we’ll wait. How about we save you the time and just tell you it hasn’t happened. Coaches these days are too guarded about what they tell the SID for the preview. And then the SID is too paranoid they will upset someone, so they just stay right in the middle of the road.

Just once The Mess would like to write: “If this team doesn’t make the playoffs it will be the biggest disappointment in program history and the coach should think about getting into a new profession.”

There are other times we write previews for teams that are horrible, have no shot at winning – or making the playoffs – and we would like to write: “If this team wins one or two games (or finishes higher than ninth place in the MIAC) the coach should be given a bonus and named the Coach of the Year.”

Those things will never happen and so the reader is left to wander through word after word of milquetoast.

So, feel free to read all the previews coming out in the next few weeks – they are sure to REALLY (insert winking avatar here) shed some light on the upcoming playoffs, championships or seasons. As for The Mess, we will be in our office with all the windows open, our feet in an ice bucket and consuming mass quantities of Mountain Dew in order to keep from falling asleep as we type up these beauties!

The Mess Video of the Week
We are going to veer a little off course for The Mess Video of the Week. Since we spent this week’s rant on bashing what is bad about college sports information jobs, we figured we should pump up the tires of something that is great about college sports information. This week’s Mess Video of the Week was produced by the University of Miami Athletic Media Relations Office and was a 2010 College Sports Media Award Winner. Not only does it have a great inspirational message but it does a tremendous job at highlighting all the athletic programs at the university. It is original, engaging and will hold your interest – basically the exact opposite of a college sports preview.

It is only 2:45 which gives it another non-preview quality – straight forward and to the point.

We think that even non-Miami fans will enjoy this video as it could be about any college. It also has a great sports-related message about “heart”.

The Rest of the Mess
Another great weekend in Cobberville! The football team ran away from Hamline (no snide comments please) and the volleyball team swept both conference matches at home. It was a nice relaxing weekend before the big season overlap push (the fall seasons head down the stretch and this weekend the winter sports schedules start). The Mess was able to kick back and enjoy having only two home matches while watching the football game live via video stream.

We will leave you with the one great memory of the home matches over the weekend. The Mess enjoyed seeing the volleyball team’s opponents cheer like they were going to the World Series when they came close to winning a set. Not the match, or to take the lead in the match, just the fact that they might win a set off the most dominant team in the conference. Both visiting teams were all pumped up to win a set but then had their hopes dashed as the Cobbers, like Lucy does to Charlie Brown when he tries to kick the football, pulled the set away at the last second.

It was fun to see all the excitement generated by the home crowd, the opposing teams and the CC volleyball squad as they won their 27th straight set. That unheard of total is a school record and ties the MIAC record for most consecutive sets ever won. Which leads us to believe that – “it’s volleyball’s world and we are just living in it!”

The Mess Weekend Media Rewind
Fargo Forum recap of the Cobber volleyball team’s win over Gustavus
Fargo Forum recap of the Cobber women’s soccer team’s win over St. Olaf
Video Highlights of the Cobber/Gustavus volleyball match
Video Highlights of the Cobber/Carleton volleyball match
Video Player Profile on Volleyball All-American Katie Vohnoutka

The Mess Picture of the Weekend
This week’s Mess Picture of the Week comes from the only home contests of the weekend. The Cobber volleyball team has steamrolled its opponents the past month and the Picture of the Week speaks at least 1,000 words on the dominance of the team. Once again the Picture of the Week has great levels of action and great facial expressions.

The picture is of All-American Katie Vohnoutka about to put the hammer down on another one of her 271 kills of the season. What makes the picture is the look on senior setter Amy Sykora’s (#6) face. She know what is about to happen and can’t believe Katie is so far above the ball. All that plus, CC fastpitch coach Megan Johnson and trainer Anna Bratsch make an appearance in the background! Special recognition goes to photographer Issac Vatnsdal who has taken his volleyball pictures to a new level.

(You can click on the picture to see the larger version to get the full effect)

The Mess Photo Galleries of the Weekend/Week
Check out the award-winning picture galleries from the weekend.
Football vs. Hamline
Volleyball vs. Gustavus
Volleyball vs. Mayville State
Men’s Soccer vs. St. Olaf
Women’s Soccer vs. St. Olaf

* Special thanks goes out to Sheldon Green who took the awesome pictures from soccer, Isaac Vatnsdal for the volleyball shots and Tim Bye who is the road photographer for football.

Click here to view all the galleries from the Cobber SID Flickr Page

“Now That’s A Big Mess” Stat Line of the Weekend
Once again it’s volleyball’s world and we are just living in it. The Big Mess Stat Line of the Weekend goes to Cobber All-Americans Jenna Green and Katie Vohnoutka. In the matches on Friday and Saturday the two combined for 43 kills, 44 digs and 48.5 points – in only six sets! That is almost half of the team’s total output for the two matches. The Concordia two-headed monster is poised to make a long run in the playoffs.

Social Media Mess of the Week
Each week we will honor the best Cobber Twitter Tweet or Cobber Facebook post that we come across with our Twitter account or Facebook account

Since everyone at Concordia was away from campus and taking advantage of the mid-sem break, this week we are forced to go outside Cobberville to get the Social Media Mess of the Week winner. One of the Mess’ favorite follows is Deion Sanders. One of his hooks is the hashtag #HOP which stands for “Hold On Playa”. Basically a different way of saying “What’s up with that?” or “You can’t be serious”. Someone tweeted this gem to Deion: ”
“my 8yr son pos to go get 1$ out my pocket for school, I catch him at the bus stop #HOP !! i knw u can count, give my 100 back! ”
The Mess can sympathize Dads who have 8-year-olds that are always trying trying to one-up them! If you don’t follow Deion, you should. He has great tweets about life and doing what is right. 

Queens of the Mess
Let’s see. Who should we give this one too? Hmmm…oh…how about the volleyball team. Look up the term no-brainer in the dictionary and this decision is front and center. The Cobber volleyball team has been untouchable in the past nine matches. Concordia has won 27 straight sets which is a new school record. It is also believed to tie the longest streak ever in the MIAC. They have also won nine straight matches and are now 21-3 on the year. CC is also 8-1 in league play and tied for first place in the MIAC standings. Concordia also clinched its 11th straight MIAC playoff berth and its eighth 20-win season in the last 10 years. If they win their final two matches of the regular season they are assured of at least a tie for the MIAC regular-season championship (the first since 2006) and the No.1 seed in the upcoming conference playoffs.

King of the Mess
Despite having a sub-par year as a team, there is one player on the men’s soccer squad that consistently plays at an unbelievable high level. Senior Riley McGlynn has had a hard time backing up his record-setting numbers from last year. However, he has always worked hard and been a terror on opposing defenses. He takes a beating every game and, like the Energizer Bunny, he just keeps going and going and going.

The Cobbers played a pair of games out in California over the mid-sem weekend and came away with a tie and a loss. CC scored two goals in the two games and guess who got both? That’s right, Mr. McGlynn. He now has a team-leading six goals on the year. More importantly the four points puts him at 96 career points. He only needs four more points (2 goals, 1 goal and two assists or four assists – you get two points for a goal in college soccer) to become the second player in program history to reach the prestigious 100-point mark. The Mess couldn’t think of a better way to end a career than to go out and get a hat trick in his final collegiate game at home against St. John’s on Saturday!!!

The Tom Burnett Unsung Hero of the Week
Might as well stay with a good thing and recognize a pair of volleyball players that rarely get any attention. Once again The Mess will offer up a pop quiz. Quick – name a non-senior on the CC volleyball team that has played in all 24 matches? Bonus points if you said Rachel Wiinanen or Alison Bruggeman – this week’s Tom Burnett Unsung Heroes of the Week. Wiinanen, the team’s defensive specialist, had a team-high 35 digs in the two matches over the weekend. Bruggeman added 11 kills, 16 digs and three blocks as she continues to give the team solid play on the court. As every sports fan knows, it takes more than just a couple of stars to win titles and Wiinanen and Bruggeman have been huge the entire season.

The Mess Fans of the Week
This week’s Fans of the Week come from Friday’s volleyball match against Gustavus. The picture shows a part of the audience that made the atmosphere electric in the Cobbers’ 3-0 win. Despite the start of mid-sem break, over 300 fans flocked to Memorial Auditorium to cheer loud and proud for their beloved maroon and gold. So instead of saluting one fan, or a small group of fans, The Mess would like to say thank you to everyone in the crowd on Friday. (Be sure to enlarge the pic (click on the pic itself) and see if you can spot any Concordia dignitaries in the crowd!)


Once again we ask our 10’s of readers to submit Cobber fan pics! Please send your Cobber fan pictures to: cobbersportsinformation@gmail.com.  Remember – the winning entry receives a special Cobber prize!

Upcoming Mess Games of the Week
Judgment Saturday!!!
Football at home vs. Bethel – 1 p.m.
Women’s Soccer at home vs. St. Ben’s – 1 p.m.
Volleyball at St. Ben’s – 3 p.m.

It’s time for another Judgment Saturday! This Saturday should be an awesome display of athletic pressure, quality teams and pure playoff drama! The football and women’s soccer teams play at “The Jake” at 1 p.m. The football season has come down to a two-game schedule. If CC can win the final two games against Bethel and St. Olaf, there is a great chance they will earn an at-large berth to the NCAA playoffs. And, as any cliché-filled coach will tell you, you have to take it “one game at a time”, which means the battle with Bethel will be the first playoff-like atmosphere.

The women’s soccer team is currently in third place and still has a chance to win the conference regular-season title as well as clinch their ninth-straight MIAC playoff berth. If they can beat Augsburg on Wednesday, that would set up a huge showdown with league-leading St. Ben’s on Saturday. Like the football game, tensions will be high and every play will take on extra meaning as it could be the last game for the three Cobber seniors.

Finally, the Cobber volleyball team plays at St. Ben’s. CC and the Blazers are two of the three teams tied at the top of the MIAC standings entering the final week. Both teams have tough mid-week matches and if they can pull out wins, will square off in a winner-take-all for the conference title. The two teams have a great rivalry at the end of the year and in the playoffs. It will be another high-level, nail-biter.

The Mess is hoping that the streak of five straight “Mess Game of the Week” wins continues and that all the CC teams keep their drive for the playoffs going! In any case, both home teams need all the fan support they can get so come out to The Jake on Saturday and be LOUD!!!!!

That’s a wrap for another Mess. Make sure you click away from any season or playoff previews you might come across. We paraphrased a famous quote to start this Mess and we will now en this Mess by paraphrasing another famous quote – this time from the movie “Billy Madison“:
“…what you’ve written is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever seen. At no point in your rambling, incoherent preview were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought. Everyone who clicked on that is now dumber for having read it. I award you no points…”

And may you all be shown mercy if you do read the previews.

Feel free to tell your friends about the Mess and don’t forget to check us out on Twitter and Facebook

CobberSID Twitter Page

CobberSID Facebook Page

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And now for the newest feature for the Cobber Sports Information blog site – 5 Things We Learned On Saturday.

Since Saturday is traditionally the busiest day of the Cobber sports week, we thought it would be handy to be able to recap the day in five easy steps. That way in case you missed any of the Cobber action because you were at the lake, in the woods hunting, celebrating with friends in a different city or just bunkered in at home – you would be know what went down in Cobber athletics on each and every Saturday.

Without further hype – let’s get to this Saturday’s 5 Things We Learned

5 Things We Learned On Saturday, Oct. 22
1. The Cobber volleyball team is good – no, they are really good.
It’s gotten to the point that opposing teams cheer like they just won the conference title when they are close to taking a set off the Cobbers. Concordia staved off two set points against Carleton and then kept their consecutive set win streak alive at 27 by sweeping the Knights.

2. When in doubt – go to Jenna Green 
The Cobbers went to Green both times they were faced with set point and both times she delivered winners at the net. Green now has a team-high 322 kills on the year which marks the second straight year she has eclipsed the 300-kill mark.

3. Even against winless teams turnovers will haunt you.
The Cobber football team was on their way to rolling over winless Hamline when they fumbled deep in their territory and allowed the Pipers to kick a field goal in the second quarter. That pumped life into Hamline and they proved to be a tough opponent to keep down as CC had to fight until the fourth quarter to pull out the win. CC also fumbled at the start of the final quarter which led to the Pipers’ only offensive TD of the day. In the end the Lou Holtz turnover equation read – 2 Cobber turnovers = 9 Hamline points.

4. There’s a reason Special Teams have the name “Special” Teams
The other Hamline TD came courtesy of an 80-yard kickoff return. The Pipers pulled the ol’ Tennessee Titans full-field lateral and returned the kickoff all the way to the house to cut CC’s lead to 21-9. Concordia has now allowed two kickoff returns for a TD in the past three weeks. Before this year, CC hadn’t allowed a kickoff return for a score since the 2009 season (which ironically also came against Hamline)

5. It’s always a special “Situation” when Cobber teams travel to Cali
The Cobber men’s and women’s soccer teams are playing a pair of games in California over mid-semester break. On their flight to LA-LA land the Cobbers were accompanied by Mike “The Situation” Sorrentino of “Jersey Shore” fame. Weren’t not sure what it had to do with their results on Saturday – but like most characters on the show when forced with the decision of what to wear to a club –  CC was unable to make up their mind and settled for a pair of ties.

For the women’s team it was their fifth tie of the season which sets a new school record for deadlocks in a single season.

And that is what we learned on Saturday.

 

 

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Concordia’s season has come down to a three-game schedule. The Cobbers have won three straight games and are now at 5-2 overall and 3-2 in the MIAC. If CC can win its final three games of the year they have a chance to finish in the top 3 of the conference for the first time since 2008. They will also have a chance to make the NCAA playoffs for the first time since 2005.

This week the Cobbers travel to St. Paul to take on Hamline. Last year Concordia used a 23-point first half to roll to a 30-3 win. CC is 3-0 on the road this season and will be looking to win for the 10th straight time at Klas Field.

Fans can follow the action on the web by going to the live broadcasts link at the bottom of the athletic website: Concordia vs Hamline Live Audio/Stats

Cobber Football Gameday Links
Complete Cobber Gameday Preview (pdf)
Concordia Football Page
Hamline Football Page
Concordia vs. Hamline 2010 Game Recap
Last Week – Cobber Game Recap vs. Augsburg
Last Week – Hamline Game Recap vs. St. Thomas
Cobber 2011 Season Stats
Hamline 2011 Season Stats
Cobber NCAA Stats Team/Individual Rankings
Hamline NCAA Stats Team/Individual Rankings
MIAC Standings and Stats
MIAC Week 8 Preview

Cobber Head Coach Terry Horan Video Preview

Cobber Football Gameday Preview
Concordia College (5-2/3-2 MIAC)
at
Hamline University (0-6/0-4 MIAC)
October 22, 2011

Klas Field
St. Paul, Minn.

GAME TIME: 1 p.m.
RADIO: Live on 1660 AM in the F-M area with Larry Knutson doing the play-by-play and Chris Ohm adding the color commentary. Also live on the internet via the Concordia website at www.gocobbers.com.

SERIES: Concordia leads 53-13
SERIES STARTED: 1936
SERIES SYNOPSIS: Concordia has won the last 19 meetings between the two teams. The last time the Pipers prevailed was in 1991 when they won 30-20 in St. Paul. Since then Concordia has won nine straight over the Pipers at Klas Field. In that road stretch since 1991, the Cobbers have outscored Hamline  187-73 and only allowed more than seven points in a single game on two occasions. The two times that HU scored more than seven points against CC were both one-point victories for the Cobbers (27-26/1996;18-17/2008)…Concordia has scored at least 34 points in three of the last four meetings between the two teams. The exception was last year’s 30-3 win. During that time Concordia has outscored the Pipers 204-52…the most points ever scored by a team in a single game is 64. That occurred in Concordia’s 64-14 win in 1955…CC Head Coach Terry Horan is 10-0 against the Pipers.

LAST YEAR:
 Last year Concordia jumped out to a 23-3 lead at the half and then shut down the Pipers in the third and fourth quarters to come away with a 30-3 victory. The Cobbers outgained the Pipers 401-207 in total offense and were 5-for-7 in Red Zone chances. CC also converted on 7 of their 13 third-down chances as compared to only 3-for-14 for Hamline.  Cobber quarterback Michael Dunham threw for three scores and was 21-for-32 for 253 yards. Bronson Shepherd caught nine passes for 95 yards and also had two TD’s. Concordia also came away with four sacks and three interceptions in the game.

Gameday Kickoff  
(What you need to know about Saturday’s Concordia/Hamline match-up)
Match-Up of the Day: Cobber Pass Offense vs. Piper Secondary
The key in the Cobbers’ win over the Pipers in 2010 was Concordia’s ability to throw the ball. CC had 36 pass attempts and racked up 273 passing yards. They will need to do the same to have success on Saturday. The one bright spot for Hamline this season has been their ability to neutralize the opposing team’s passing attack. The Pipers rank third in the MIAC in pass defense, only allowing 157.0 yards per game. The CC pass offense is fifth in the league, averaging 194.1 ypg. Concordia has only thrown for over 200 yards in two games this year.

Cobber Notes
– The Cobbers are 3-0 on the road this year and undefeated in the month of October (3-0).
– Concordia is 5-0 this season when they lead at halftime and 4-0 when they lead after the first quarter. The Cobbers are 0-2 when trailing at halftime.
– CC has outscored its opponents 119-74 in the second half this year. That includes an 85-40 margin in the fourth quarter alone.
– The Cobbers lead the MIAC in turnover margin. Concordia is +10 on the year. CC is 21st in the nation in turnover margin.
– The CC defense has forced a league-leading 18 turnovers. CC is 5-0 this season when their opponent has more turnovers.
– The Cobbers are still second in the MIAC in rushing offense. CC is averaging 218.0 rushing yards per game and has rushed for over 200 yards in all but one game this year.
– Concordia fullback Brett Baune moved up one spot from last week and is now fifth in the MIAC in rushing (82.4 ypg). He also leads the league lead in overall touchdowns with 14. He has scored at least one TD in all seven games.  Baune is 12th in the nation in scoring average.
– Baune needs five more TD’s to tie the school record for most TD’s in a single season. Adam Swingdorf had 19 (18 rush/1 pass) in 2007.
– CC quarterback Michael Dunham needs 295 yards to break the school record for career passing yards set by Ethan Pole from 1995-98. His 560 career completions are 92 shy of Pole’s record of 667.
– Dunham has not thrown an interception in the team’s three road games this year. All four of his interceptions on the year have come at home.
– Three Cobbers lead the MIAC in stat categories. Bryce Hentges leads in interceptions with four while Bronson Shepherd leads the conference in total receptions (40) and receptions per game (5.71) and defensive lineman Paul Streich is first in overall sacks (4).
– The Cobber defense is fifth in the MIAC in overall defense (324.9). CC is third against the run (107.7) and ninth against the pass (217.1).
– The Cobber defense continues to be in the top 10 in the nation in sacks. Concordia is fourth in the nation in sacks (4.00). They have had at least two sacks in all seven games this year.
– Concordia is the least penalized team in the MIAC. The Cobbers are only averaging 26.6 penalty yards per game and have only committed 24 total penalties. They have only been flagged for more than four penalties in one game this year.
– The Cobbers lead the MIAC in first downs this season (152). They have one more than league-leading St. Thomas.

Piper Notes
– Hamline enters the game on Saturday having lost 12 straight games in a streak that dates back to last season. The Pipers have been shutout in four straight games and in five of their six this season. HU is averaging 3.3 points per game this year.
– The Pipers have had the lead in only one game this year. HU led for 41:33 in their game against Augsburg.
– Hamline has not scored a point in the second or third quarter of any game this season. They are being outscored 99-0 in those two periods combined. The Pipers’ best quarter is the fourth where they are being outscored 27-6.
– The Pipers are ninth in the MIAC in rush offense (84.3), ninth in pass offense (76.5) and ninth in total offense (160.8). Hamline is eighth in rush defense (204.3), third in pass defense (157.0) and seventh in total defense (361.3).
– Hamline has not thrown for over 100 yards in a single game this season and has not completed more than nine passes in a single game.
– Piper punter Alex Ferguson is third in the MIAC in punt average. He is averaging 36.9 yards per punt. He has punted 44 times which is almost twice as much as the next punter in the MIAC.
– Sophomore Tim Queck is fifth in the MIAC in kick return average (17.9).
– Freshman defensive back Damon Woods is tied for fourth in the MIAC in interceptions (2) and passes defended (1.00/game).
John-Michael Vandenberg is 11th in the MIAC in total tackles per game (8.0). He has not led the team in tackles in any single game this season but has been second on the team in tackles in the last five straight games.

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It’s time for the annual Cobber Homecoming game!

This year Concordia hosts Augsburg and the game shapes up to be the marquee match-up in the MIAC on Saturday. Both teams enter the game with aspirations of a top 3 finish in the league and earning a berth into the NCAA playoffs. The Cobbers have won two straight and are 4-2/2-2 MIAC while the Auggies, the surprise team of the conference this season, are 4-1/3-1 MIAC.

Fans can follow the action on the web by going to the live broadcasts link at the bottom of the athletic website: Concordia vs Augsburg Live Audio/Stats

Cobber Football Gameday Links
Complete Cobber Gameday Preview (pdf)
Complete Augsburg Gameday Preview (pdf)
Concordia Football Page
Augsburg Football Page
Concordia vs. Augsburg 2010 Game Recap
Cobber Game Recap vs. Carleton
Augsburg Game Recap vs. St. Thomas
Cobber 2011 Season Stats
Augsburg 2011 Season Stats
Cobber NCAA Stats Team/Individual Rankings
Augsburg NCAA Stats Team/Individual Rankings
MIAC Standings and Stats
MIAC Week 7 Preview

Cobber Head Coach Terry Horan Video Preview

Cobber Football Gameday Preview
Augsburg College (4-1/3-1 MIAC)
at
Concordia College (4-2/2-2 MIAC)
October 15, 2011

Homecoming 2011

Jake Christiansen Stadium
Moorhead, Minn.

GAME TIME: 1 p.m.
RADIO: Live on 1660 AM in the F-M area with Larry Knutson doing the play-by-play and Chris Ohm adding the color commentary. Also live on the internet via the Concordia website at www.gocobbers.com.

SERIES: Concordia leads 53-13-2
SERIES STARTED: 1926
SERIES SYNOPSIS: The teams have split the last two meetings with each team winning on the road. Before that string, Concordia had won nine straight games against Augsburg. The Cobber offense has put up big scoring numbers against the Auggies in recent history. The Cobbers have scored at least 30 points in 10 of the previous 11 games in the series. The only time they didn’t break the 30-point barrier was in 2009 when Concordia lost 27-20 in OT in Moorhead. The Cobbers are 6-2 vs. the Auggies at home since 1990. Concordia is averaging 44.5 ppg in the six wins and 11.5 ppg in the two losses. The two teams played in the NCAA playoffs in the Fargodome in 1997 with Augsburg prevailing 34-22…CC Head coach Terry Horan is 9-1 against the Auggies.

LAST YEAR:
Concordia received great efforts from both their offense and defense and went on to roll past Augsburg 35-16 in Minneapolis on Saturday. The Cobbers limited the high-powered Auggie offense to only 266 total yards as they picked up their first road win of the year. The winning combination for CC was an offense that ate up huge chunks of possession time to keep the Augsburg offense off the field and a defense that got better as the game went on. The Cobbers finished the game with a 38:48-21:12 edge in time of possession and the defense allowed only 266 total yards. CC quarterback Michael Dunham was the most effective player on the field. He was 18-for-24 for 175 with no interceptions and one TD. He also ran for 74 yards and three touchdowns on 11 carries. He accounted for 249 of the team’s 448 total offensive yards. Defensively, Concordia’s success was a total team effort. Not one CC defender had over six tackles in the game while nine Cobber players had at least three tackles. Josh Herzog led the way with 6.0 tackles and 1.0 tackles for a loss. Augsburg was led by the pitch and catch tandem of Marcus Brumm and Josh Pronschinske. Brumm was 24-for-49 for 240 yards and two TD’s and Pronschinske caught 10 passes for 101 yards and one TD.

Gameday Kickoff  
(What you need to know about Saturday’s Concordia/Augsburg match-up)
Match-Up of the Day: Cobber Run Defense vs. Auggie Run Offense
It would be easy to go with the Cobber pass defense against the Auggie pass offense since Augsburg is usually very pass orientated. However, this year the Auggies have added a very good rushing attack to go along with their passing prowess. Freshman Tyler Maxwell is averaging 131.8 ypg in his four games this year and Augsburg is averaging 152.8 rushing yards per game as a team. If the CC defense can consistently stop the Auggies run attack – specifically on first downs – then they can force Augsburg into obvious passing situations and significantly limit the Auggie playbook.
Match-Up of the Day II: Cobber Sack Attack vs. Auggie O-Line
We stay on the Cobber defensive side of the ball for the second key match-up as well. The Cobber defensive line leads the MIAC in sacks this season. CC has dumped opposing QB’s in the backfield 28 times this season. The Auggie offensive line has only given up four sacks all season long.

Another Key Point (or we hope it doesn’t come down to this): The two teams are at the bottom of the MIAC in extra point kicking. The Cobbers are eighth, connecting on 14 of their 19 PAT attempts (.737). Augsburg is ninth 9-for-13 (.692).

Cobber Notes
– Concordia is 4-0 this season when they lead at halftime and 3-0 when they lead after the first quarter. The Cobbers are 0-2 when trailing at halftime.
– The Cobbers lead the MIAC in turnover margin. Concordia is +8 on the year. The CC defense has forced a league-leading 15 turnovers.
– CC is 4-0 this season when their opponent has more turnovers.
– The Cobbers are second in the MIAC in rushing offense. CC is averaging 217.7 rushing yards per game and has rushed for over 200 yards in all but one game this year.
– Concordia fullback Brett Baune is sixth in the MIAC in rushing with a 73.0 ypg average. He is also tied for the league lead in touchdowns with 12.
– CC quarterback Michael Dunham needs 490 yards to break the school record for career passing yards set by Ethan Pole from 1995-98. His 546 career completions are 106 shy of Pole’s record of 667.
– Dunham has not thrown an interception in the team’s three road games this year. All four of his interceptions on the year have come at home.
– The Cobber defense still leads the MIAC in sacks. CC has come up with 28 sacks on the season. They also remain in the top 10 in the nation in that category. Concordia is fourth in all of DIII in sacks.
– Junior Paul Streich leads the MIAC in sacks. He has six on the season and is tied for 39th in the nation.
– The Cobbers continue to creep up the MIAC charts in defense. CC is now fourth in the MIAC in total defense (318.5) and has given up over 270 yards in only three games this year. CC is third in the conference against the run (111.5) and seventh in passing defense (207.0).
– Concordia leads the MIAC in interceptions this season. They have picked off nine passes this year and have at least one in all but one game and the three against Carleton last week was a season high.

Auggie Notes
– Augsburg is 4-1 overall this season and 3-1 in the MIAC. The Auggies are averaging 25.8 points per game this season and have scored at least 25 points in all but one game.
– The No.5 is significant for the Auggies this season. AC is fifth in the MIAC in total offense (368.4) and fifth in rush offense (152.8). They are also third in pass offense (215.6). They had a season-high 529 yards against St. John’s. Augsburg is also fifth in the league in total defense (336.2). They are fifth in rush defense (170.0) and fourth in pass defense (166.2).
– The Auggies lead the MIAC in punt return average (13.2) and third in net punting avg. (32.3).
– Augsburg is second in the MIAC in sacks allowed. They have only allowed 4 sacks in 5 games.
– Auggie QB Marcus Brumm is second in the MIAC in passing avg. (215.6 ypg). He is also eighth in pass efficiency (117.) and RB Tyler Maxwell leads the MIAC in all-purpose yds (149.0).
– Besides leading the league in rushing and all-purpose yards, Maxwell is seventh DIII in rushing and 13th in scoring per game (13.50).
Edmond Smith (10.2) and Bryce Vee (9.8) are second and third in the MIAC in tackles.

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Every week the MIAC puts out a weekly notebook that details all the top highlights from the conference teams the past week. Also featured are the top five stories from the conference. This week’s top five includes the Cobber volleyball team’s rise back into the top 10

Check out this week’s edition of the MIAC Notebook:

MIAC Notebook – Oct. 5, 2011

Top 5 MIAC Stories

St. Thomas men, St. Olaf women claim 2011 MIAC Golf Titles
A picture-perfect weekend for golf set the stage for the MIAC’s first championship event of the 2010-11 season, and the 2011 MIAC Golf Championships certainly didn’t disappoint with a record-setting team performance on the women’s side, a close race that came down to the final holes on the men’s side, and a number of terrific individual performances.

The St. Olaf women’s team unseated three-time defending champion Gustavus by setting MIAC Championship records for 18-, 36-, and 54-hole team scores. The Oles carded a 309 for their first 18 holes and 319 over 36 holes to break each record, then they obliterated the 54-hole record by 28 shots with a final score of 939. St. Olaf’s Vanessa Kleckner won individual medalist honors and headlined the 10-player All-Conference team, which featured four Oles.

The St. Thomas men won their first MIAC title since 1980 by shooting a three-day total of 897 to edge Gustavus (901) and three-time defending champ Saint John’s (902). Tommie freshman Alex Karpaun and St. Olaf senior Justin Volling tied for individual medalist honors by each shooting a 5-over-par 221 over the 54 holes. The duo headlined the MIAC Men’s Golf All-Conference team, which recognized the Top 10 including ties, and was separated by just seven shots.

Wild football weekend in the MIAC
it was a wild weekend for football in the MIAC that featured a top-five upset, a record crowd and a record blowout at St. Thomas and Augsburg coming back to remain among the ranks of the unbeaten.

Dan Dobson’s 335-yard passing performance helped St. Olaf complete a 20-point fourth quarter rally to defeat No. 5 Bethel University on Saturday. Trailing 28-10 early in the fourth, Dobson engineered three straight scoring drives as the Oles won in Arden Hills for the first time since 1992. He was 10-for-13 for 188 yards in the fourth quarter, including an 82-yard TD strike that brought the Oles within five points. He also rushed for two TDs in the game, including the game-winning one-yard plunge with 25 seconds left.

St. Thomas football broke a 29-year-old stadium record for attendance last Saturday as 10,421 came out to watch the Tommies’ 63-7 win over archrival St. John’s. The 63 points tied a modern record for points by a Tommie team, were the most UST has scored at O’Shaughnessy Stadium since 1929, and the most UST has ever scored at home against an MIAC opponent. QB Dakota Tracy threw five touchdown passes and the Tommies scored TDs on nine of their first 10 possessions. St. Thomas had 13 tackles-for-loss, including seven sacks. UST blocked a punt and returned it for a TD. Tim Albright tied a school record with nine PAT kicks and broke a school record for career PAT kicks, now at 85.
With a come-from-behind, 35-14 victory over Carleton on Saturday, Augsburg’s football team improved to 4-0 on the season, marking the third time that Augsburg has started a season 4-0 in school history. In the 1973 campaign, Augsburg started the season 5-0, and in 2008, the Auggies opened the season 4-0. It marks the fifth time in school history that Augsburg has been unbeaten after its first four games of the season; in addition to 1973 and 2008, Augsburg started 2-0-2 in 1928 and 3-0-1 in 1929. Augsburg hosts fellow unbeaten St. Thomas (5-0) this Saturday at 1 p.m. at Edor Nelson Field.

Cobber volleyball back in the Top 10
The Cobber volleyball team cracked the American Volleyball Coaches Association (AVCA) top 10 for the second time this season. Following their sweep over nationally-ranked St. Thomas, Concordia jumped into the No.10 spot in the latest national rankings. Concordia is the top ranked team from the MIAC, Iowa Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (IIAC) or Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) in this week’s national poll.
It is the second time in 2011 that the Cobbers have been ranked 10th in the Division III national poll. They climbed to No.10 on Sept. 20 but then fell back to the 12th spot last week after falling to Bethel 3-2. Concordia is 14-3 on the season in overall games and 3-1 in MIAC play. The Cobbers are currently tied for first place with four other teams in the league standings. Of the team’s 14 wins this year, six have come against nationally ranked opponents.

Second time the charm as Carleton’s Wills breaks scoring record
After scoring three times Tim Wills (Sr./Portland, Ore./Central Catholic) was named the MIAC Men’s Soccer Player-of-the Week. However, that honor pales in comparison to officially taking over as the Carleton College’s all-time leading scorer.
He scored twice in the Knights’ victory over Cornell College on Sunday, bringing his career total to 29 goals. He converted a penalty kick in the 13th minute, tying Bobby Phillips ’09 atop the scoring list. Wills then took over sole possession of the top spot on the chart with another score midway through the second half. Wills now owns the two most prestigious records in team annals, as he was already the all-time leader in assists with 29. Wills’ week began with tallying the game winner in 3-1 victory over pre-season co-favorite Macalester on Wednesday.

Auggie men’s soccer solid on defense
Augsburg’s men’s soccer team claimed its seventh shutout of the season on Sunday with a 3-0 victory at Wisconsin-Platteville. In building an 8-1-1 record so far this season, Augsburg has outscored its opponents by a 20-3 margin, and its 0.29 team goals-against-average is fourth-best among NCAA Division III teams in the latest national statistics rankings. Augsburg’s 0.7 shutouts-per-game average is ninth-best nationally. Sophomore goalkeepers Clayton Lynch (SO, Cedar Rapids, Iowa/Xavier HS) and Will Morlock (SO, Grand Haven, Mich.) have been solid, with Lynch netting four shutouts and a 0.32 goals-against-average in his six starts (nine shutouts in 14 career starts), and Morlock recording three shutouts and a 0.25 GAA in his four starts (11 shutouts in 18 career starts). Augsburg hosts Carleton this Saturday at 7 p.m. at Edor Nelson Field.

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Another Thursday means it is time to release the weekly Cobber football preview. This week we take an in-depth look at Concordia’s game against Gustavus. The two teams will square off on Saturday, Oct. 1 at 1:30 p.m. The game was moved back 30 minutes to accommodate the Homecoming festivities at Gustavus.

Fans can follow the action on the web by going to the live broadcasts link at the bottom of the athletic website: Concordia vs St. Thomas Live Audio/Stats

Cobber Football Gameday Links
Complete Cobber Gameday Preview (pdf)
Gustavus Football Page
Cobber Game Recap vs. St. Thomas
Gustavus Game Recap vs. St. Olaf
Cobber 2011 Season Stats
Gustavus 2011 Season Stats
Cobber NCAA Stats Team/Individual Rankings
Gustavus NCAA Stats Team/Individual Rankings
MIAC Standings and Stats
MIAC Week 5 Preview

Cobber Head Coach Terry Horan Video Preview

Cobber Football Gameday Preview
Concordia College (2-2/0-2 MIAC)
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Gustavus Adolphus College (0-3/0-1 MIAC)
October 1, 2011

Hollingsworth Stadium
St. Peter, Minn.

GAME TIME: 1:30 p.m.
RADIO: Live on 1660 AM in the F-M area with Larry Knutson doing the play-by-play and Chris Ohm adding the color commentary. Also live on the internet via the Concordia website at www.gocobbers.com.

SERIES: Gustavus leads 44-34-2
SERIES STARTED: 1920
SERIES SYNOPSIS: Although Concordia has won six of the last nine meetings between the two teams, the Gusties have won the past two games – both played in Moorhead. The road teams have won the last five games played between the two teams. The last team to win at home was Concordia back in 2005. Concordia has won the last four games played in St. Peter in a streak that dates back to 2000. Overall, the Cobbers are 13-25-1 at Gustavus. However, CC is 7-3 against GAC in the last 10 games played at Hollingsworth Stadium…head coach Terry Horan is 6-4 lifetime against Gustavus.

LAST YEAR: Last year Concordia scored on the opening drive of the game but then gave up 28 consecutive points and lost 38-14 in Moorhead in the annual Homecoming game. The big play of the game came at the end of the first half when CC fumbled a punt return and Gustavus was able to score the go-ahead TD after taking control of the ball on the Cobber 19-yard line. The other key point of the game was fourth down conversions. The Gusties were 5-for-7 on fourth down attempts and held the ball for an even 25:00 in their six scoring drives. Overall GAC had a 38:14-21:246 advantage in time of possession. Both teams earned 21 first downs and Gustavus had a 403-328 yard advantage in total offensive yards. Concordia rushed for only 57 yards in the game while GAC was able to gain 147 yards on the ground. Jeffrey Dubose rushed for 107 yards on 28 carries to lead Gustavus. CC was led by QB Michael Dunham who was 20-for-38 for 271 yards and 2 TD’s.

Gameday Kickoff  
(What you need to know about Saturday’s Concordia/Gustavus match-up)
Match-Up of the Day: CC Rush Offense vs. GAC Rush Defense For the second straight week the game might hinge upon the rushing game. The Cobber rush offense is second in the MIAC in overall games, averaging 213.8 yards per game. The Gustavus rush defense is last in the MIAC, allowing 197.3 yards per game. Both units are coming off below average performances. The CC offense gained only 52 yards on the ground against St. Thomas while the GAC defense gave up 296 rushing yards against St. Olaf.
– Today’s game is the 81st meeting between the two MIAC football programs.
– Gustavus holds a 44-34-2 lead in the series. The visiting team has won the last five games in the series.
Cobber Notes
– The Cobbers are now third in the MIAC in total offense. CC is one of three teams in the MIAC averaging over 400 offensive yards per game. Concordia is averaging 414.2 yards per game in their first four games this year.
– CC quarterback Michael Dunham is coming of a 300-yard-plus passing game against St. Thomas . He now needs 852 yards to break the school record for career passing yards set by Ethan Pole from 1995-98. His 535 career completions are 132 shy of Pole’s record of 667.
– Concordia junior fullback Brett Baune scored two more TD’s against St. Thomas last Saturday and now has eight on the season. That is second best in the MIAC and he is currently 13th in NCAA Division III in points per game.
– The Cobber defense continues to shine in the second half when it comes to allowing points. The Cobbers have given up only 34 points combined in the final two quarters of play and are outscoring their opponents 70-34 in the second half.
– Overall, Concordia is fifth in the MIAC in average points allowed (25.8 ppg) and third in rushing defense (116.5).
– Concordia leads the MIAC in first downs in 2001, averaging 21.5 per game. The Cobbers are also tops in fourth-down conversion (81.8%).
– The newly tagged “Black Shirt” defense is 11th in Division III in sacks – averaging 4.25 per game. They have had at least 3.0 sacks in three of the four games this year and last week had 2.0 vs. UST.
– Concordia is second in the MIAC in both time of possession and penalties. CC is averaging 33:05 in time of possession in their first four games and have committed only 15 penalties for 130 penalty yards.
Gustie Notes
– Gustavus is 0-3 on the season and coming off a 44-26 loss at St. Olaf last week. The Gusties gave up 28 points in the second half after trailing 16-14 at the half.
– The second half has given Gustavus trouble in their first three games. They have been outscored 46-19 in the final two quarters of play.
– Another area of concern for Gustavus is in turnover margin. The Gusties have only forced one miscue in their first three games of the year and have turned the ball over four times for a -3 turnover margin on the year.
– Gustavus is third in the MIAC in Red Zone offense. The good news is that they have converted on five of their eight chances inside the Red Zone. The bad news is that they are eighth out of nine teams in Red Zone chances.
– The Gusties are eighth in the league in both overall offense (256.7 ypg) and defense (373.3 ypg).
– Gustavus leads the MIAC in kickoff coverage. Kicker Tom Huepenbecker has two touchbacks on the year and the team is averaging 43.2 net yards per kickoff.
– Huepenbecker, who doubles as the team’s punter, is second in the MIAC in punt average. He is averaging 38.8 yards per kick in his first 13 punts of the year.
– Junior linebacker Alec Saunders is second in the MIAC in tackles per game (10.7).

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