The following “Pick Six” points offer a quick look inside GLVC football action this week:
[1 | conference play commences]
The conference season has arrived and three league matchups are on the docket Saturday, including defending GLVC co-champion Southwest Baptist traveling to four-time champion Indianapolis. Quincy will host Lincoln for a 6 p.m. CT kick, while Truman State welcomes Missouri S&T to its renovated Stokes Stadium in Kirksville. In other action, William Jewell welcomes Findlay for a noon kick on GLVCSN, while McKendree heads to Hillsdale. All GLVC home games are available for free on GLVCSN.com, the GLVCSN iOS and Android mobile apps, and GLVCSN OTT apps on Roku, Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, and Android TV.
[2 | uindy surges to 15th in afca preseason poll]
Just two weeks after Indianapolis opened the season unranked, the Greyhounds have surged to 15th in the latest American Football Coaches Association (AFCA) Coaches Poll, it was announced Monday. UIndy debuted in the national rankings at No. 18 last week and hit the road to in-region Wayne State, where a last-second field goal pushed the Hounds to 2-0 on the season. This week’s poll marks the 10th week the GLVC has boasted a team in nation’s top 15, and it’s the highest ranking achieved by a league member since UIndy was rated 13th on Nov. 16, 2015.
[3 | three schools garner weekly honors]
Quincy senior running back Chris Harris, McKendree senior defensive end Tobias Cook, and Indianapolis senior kicker Brad Schickel have been named the GLVC Players of the Week, it was announced by the league office Monday. Following a 155-yard performance on the ground, in which he carried the ball 18 times for 8.6 yards per rush during a 50-21 victory over Alderson Broaddus, Harris garnered his second career Offensive Player of the Week award. In the Bearcats’ 50-0 blanking of Kentucky State, the team’s first shutout since 2015, Cook picked up his first Defensive Player of the Week award with six tackles, a sack and a 47-yard interception return for a touchdown. UIndy’s Schickel picked up Special Teams Player of the Week honors after hitting the game-winning 30-yard field goal as time expired in the Hounds’ 31-28 road win at Wayne State. Schickel also shined in the punting game, dropping three of his four punts inside the opponent’s six-yard line.
[4 | a walker who runs]
With two weeks of his senior season in the books, Indianapolis running back Andrew Walker is inching closer to some of the GLVC’s top career marks. With 27 carries on the year, Walker has 547 for his career, just six shy of Braxton Shelton of Saint Joseph’s for second all-time and 28 rushes shy of career leader Bubba Jenkins of Southwest Baptist. Walker also boasts 2,818 career yards, leaving him 19 yards shy of second-place Shelton and 385 yards from the top spot held by Jenkins. Currently, Walker is third in the GLVC at 73.5 rushing yards per game.
[5 | swart looking to pass record holder to start the season]
Missouri S&T’s Tyler Swart has thrown for a league-high 731 yards in the first two games of the 2017 season, which is the second-most by a player in GLVC history in the first two weeks of a year. Southwest Baptist’s Willie Tindal threw for 842 in the first two games in 2014. Swart’s feat also marks the 11th time in league history where a quarterback has thrown for 700 or more yards in back-to-back games. Heading into Saturday’s contest at Truman State, Swart leads the league and is fifth nationally with 365.5 passing yards per game. If he throws for 243 yards, it will be the ninth time in league history where a quarterback has thrown for 1,000 or more yards in three consecutive games in the same season, and if he reaches 333, it will be the most by any GLVC quarterback over the first three games to start a season in conference history. McKendree’s Isaac Fisher opened 2015 with 1,053 yards in the first three weeks. Swart has thrown for 1,013 yards in his last three outings (2016 finale at Quincy and the first two games this season).
[6 | play like a champion]
Saturday’s kickoff between Southwest Baptist and Indianapolis will feature two teams that have earned the GLVC Championship over the past five years. UIndy earned the first four league titles, while the Bearcats shared the conference crown with Truman State last year. Heading into the matchup, both UIndy and SBU pace NCAA Division II in select categories. Jake Purichia and the Hounds boast the country’s top completion percentage at 80.6 percent, while Brad Schickel is one of 25 kickers in the nation yet to miss a field goal. UIndy is also one of 31 teams that owns a 100 percent scoring clip in the red zone. On the defensive side of the ball, SBU leads the country with 14.5 tackles for loss and has two defensive touchdowns on the season, which ranks second in DII.