#NECFB Week 7 Prep

#NECFB Briefs

  • Robert Morris will host cross-town rival Duquesne in the annual NEC Steel City Showdown, which kicks off Saturday at 6:00 pm ET on ESPN3. The host Colonials are permitting a league-low 162.0 passing yards per game while Duquesne’s aerial attack leads the NEC in yards per pass attempt (8.3), completion percentage (68.9) and touchdown passes (15).
  • Central Connecticut, which doubled up reigning Ivy League co-champion Penn in Week 6, has won three games in a row (all by double-digit margins) for the first time since 2010. The Blue Devils’ defense has totaled eight interceptions over the past three weeks while senior RB Cameron Nash has produced three consecutive 100-yard rushing performances.
  • Saint Francis has allowed league lows when it comes to opponents’ passing touchdowns (2) and yards per pass attempt (5.5). In Week 7, SFU visits Bryant, which owns the NEC’s top-ranked passing attack (354.2 ypg) for a game that can be seen live (for free) at NECFrontRow.com.
  • Sacred Heart closes its non-conference schedule with a home game against 4-and-0 Dartmouth. It’ll be the fourth matchup between the NEC and Ivy League this season (Ivy leads, 2-1).



Women-In-Sports Wednesday: When It Comes to NEC Bowling, Jones Has Seen It All

In the beginning, there was Kayla Jones.

The Keystone State product starred as a freshman for Kutztown during the 2008-09 season, the year that the NEC began sponsoring bowling as a championship sport.

Jones won the inaugural NEC Rookie of the Year award and went on to enjoy a decorated collegiate career that also included multiple All-America selections and a 2011 NCAA Championship berth.

Now, with the 2017-18 collegiate bowling season slated to start this month, Jones hasn’t left the NEC. The former student-athlete has spent the last five years as LIU Brooklyn’s head coach.

Under her leadership, the LIU Brooklyn Blackbirds have emerged as a conference title contender and have seen their national profile rise to new heights.

As a rookie head coach, Jones earned the 2013 NEC Coach of the Year award after guiding the Blackbirds to a 17-10 record in conference match play. In the four seasons prior to her arrival, LIU accounted for a combined .244 win percentage in NEC contests.

During the 2015-16 campaign, LIU Brooklyn attained its highest-ever ranking (10th) in the NTCA Top 25 Poll for the first time ever and went on to advance to the NEC Championship Match for the first time.

As the NEC and Jones begin their tenth season of collegiate bowling, LIU Brooklyn is again ranked amongst the top teams in America. The Blackbirds came in at No. 16 when the NTCA released the preseason edition of its monthly top-25 rankings.

The Blackbirds have also fared well in the classroom with Jones at the helm. The team owned the third-highest grade-point average amongst all NCAA bowling programs at the conclusion of the 2016-17 academic year.

Academic success is something that has followed Jones since her days as a student-athlete. At Kutztown, she earned multiple selections to the NTCA All-Academic Team, which requires of its members a minimum 3.40 GPA.

The Blackbirds will begin the 2017-18 season at the place where their head coach’s college career began.

LIU Brooklyn will contest the two-day Bud Whitman Memorial, which is hosted by Kutztown, Jones’ alma mater. The Blackbirds will be one of five NEC teams competing at Berks Lanes in Reading, PA on October 14-15.


SFU Punter Joins Elite Company Following Signature Win

The first two Red Flash to accomplish the feat were All-American honorees.

Andrew Zecca doesn’t own those lofty credentials, but there is no denying that the junior punter has been a factor in Saint Francis’ success this season.

Following an overly-efficient punting performance in a 13-7 road win over nationally-ranked Liberty, Zecca became the third Saint Francis athlete ever to earn the STATS FCS National Special Teams Player of the Week award. The other two recipients were SFU alumni Lorenzo Jerome and Lance Geesey.

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