UALBANY Football Week 5 Preview: UAlbany vs. William & Mary

by Ryan McCarthy, BBM Staff Writer

In the last episode of the 2018 UAlbany football season, the Great Danes rallied to defeat former NEC rival St. Francis (Pa.), 35-28. The Great Danes are coming off of a needed bye week and will travel to Williamsburg, Va to face the William & Mary Tribe on Saturday afternoon.

UAlbany seeks to go over .500 in their overall record and even their conference record (2-2 overall, 0-1 CAA) while William & Mary (1-3 overall, 0-1 CAA) looks to break a three-game losing streak. Can they fend off an improving Great Dane team?

UAlbany Offense vs. William & Mary Defense: After averaging only 16 points in their first two games, the Great Danes offense has averaged nearly 33 points in their last two. In their last game against St. Francis, they established the run game that ate up 172 yards and brought balance to the offense. They have an opportunity to continue to build that momentum as the dual threat of Elijah Ibitokun-Hanks and Karl Mofor faces a William and Mary defense that has allowed an average of 198 yards rushing in four games. QB Vincent Testaverde showed more poise in the pocket with his best performance of the season, going 22-of-28 for 331 yards and 3 TDs. Two of those touchdowns went to WR Dev Holmes, who earned his third CAA Rookie of the Week award after his performance against St. Francis. Although their run defense leaves much to be desired, William & Mary’s pass defense has been relatively good, giving up an average of 212 yards per game. One player to watch is S Isaiah Laster, who leads the team with 28 total tackles and two turnovers (one INT and one fumble recovery). DL Carl Fowler leads the Tribe defense with three tackles for loss.

William & Mary Offense vs. UAlbany Defense: William & Mary’s offense has had some tough sledding this season, managing to score only 31 points in total. It has also failed to score in their last two games and have lost those games by a combined score of 74-0. QB Shon Mitchell leads the Tribe in passing with 706 yards and two touchdowns, but has not thrown a touchdown pass since week two at Virginia Tech. His primary target is WR DeVonte Dedmon, who leads the team with 354 yards and two touchdowns. Similar to the Great Danes, the Tribe running game has to get going if they want to have a chance to win, but they have struggled with an average of only 60 yards per game. Over the last two games, the Great Danes defense has shown signs of improvement, especially in the fourth quarter. The front seven came up with sacks to clinch games for UAlbany against Morgan State and St. Francis. A player who has emerged for the Great Danes is LB Danny Damico, who has 27 total tackles and 1.5 tackles for loss in those last two games. For the Great Danes to win, they will need to force turnovers, something they could not do against St. Francis their last game.

Will the Great Danes continue trending upward? If they remain balanced on offense and the defense forces William & Mary’s offense to make mistakes, their winning ways might continue.

Game Time: 3:30pm.

Where to Watch: (William & Mary video stream).

Where to Listen: WTMM ESPN Radio The Team 104.5 (UA Feed).

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