Tomorrow the Villanova Wildcats will travel to central Pennsylvania to take on the Bucknell Bison. This will be Villanova’s second straight game against a member of the Patriot League, having already defeated Lehigh last week.
While the Wildcats have come out hot with an undefeated record, Bucknell is still looking for their first win of the season. Here are three things to watch for when these teams take the field.
Home Sweet Home
Bucknell has had a tough start to the season, drop both of their first two games. But those were both on the road, and Saturday marks the team’s home opener. It’s also the first time since 2005 that Villanova has taken the trip to Lewisburg, so the Bison will have a chance to break the Wildcats’ 7 game winning streak against them. That said, the last time Bucknell beat Villanova was in 1944, so they’ll really have to overcome the odds if they’re going to play spoiler on Saturday.
Villanova has been spectacular in the turnover category, already +3 on the season. In fact, in each of their first two games they’ve returned an interception for a touchdown. That doesn’t bode well for the Bison’s trio of quarterbacks (that’s right, they’ve used 3 QBs in both of their games this year), who threw two interceptions last week. Considering that the Wildcats have yet to turn the ball over even once this season, Bucknell will have to maintain ball control if they want to beat Nova.
Slowing Down The Cats
Villanova’s offense has come out on fire in their first two games, ranking Top 40 in total offense and Top 20 in rushing offense in all of the FCS. On the other side of the ball, Bucknell ranks 100+ in both of those offensive statistics. In order to keep Villanova from running wild, they’ll have to find a way to slow down their offense. Of course, that’s easier said than done as Bucknell’s defense ranks 110th in total yards, yielding over 600 yards per contest.