SEWARD, Neb. – The Concordia University Football team hopes to build upon last week’s 61-21 thrashing of Briar Cliff as it faces another tall task. The Bulldogs will hit the road on Saturday for a 1 p.m. CT kickoff at Dordt, which calls Open Space Park Football Field home. Concordia hopes to halt a three-game series skid against the Defenders, a 2020 NAIA playoff qualifier.
Head Coach Patrick Daberkow’s squad reversed fortunes from week one to week two. While shaking off the season opening loss to No. 3 Morningside, the Bulldogs racked up a program GPAC conference game record of 61 points. Concordia (1-1) dominated all statistical categories in the matchup with the Chargers, owning an advantage of 520-124 in total yards. The Bulldog defense accumulated five sacks, forced five turnovers (one on special teams) and found the end zone on a fumble return.
Head Coach Joel Penner’s squad garnered a No. 14 NAIA ranking in the preseason poll. Dordt let one get away in a 25-24 season opening defeat at the hands of Midland. Like the Bulldogs, the Defenders rebounded in a big way. They pummeled Hastings, 61-10, and amassed an eye-popping 738 total yards (475 on the ground) in week two. Dordt figures to continue to exhibit explosiveness on offense with the return of one of the NAIA’s best receivers in Levi Jungling.
Concordia (1-1, 1-1 GPAC) at Dordt (1-1, 1-1 GPAC)
Saturday, Sept. 18 | 1 p.m.
Open Space Park Football Field | Sioux Center, Iowa
Webcast: Dordt Media Network
Live Stats: Presto Stats
Radio: 104.9 Max Country
Commentators: Parker Cyza and Ross Wurdeman
Tickets: Must be purchased online (https://www.dordt.edu/athletics/tickets)
*2021 national rank out of 99 NAIA football programs in parentheses (93 teams have played at least one game).
Offensive PPG: 34.0 (T-28th)
Defensive PPG: 42.0 (T-75th)
Total Offense: 387.0 (33rd)
Pass Offense: 282.5 (19th)
Rush Offense: 104.5 (62nd)
Total Defense: 403.5 (T-56th)
Pass Defense: 330.0 (89th)
Rush Defense: 73.5 (15th)
Turnover +/-: +1
Offensive PPG: 42.5 (10th)
Defensive PPG: 17.5 (T-24th)
Total Offense: 550.5 (3rd)
Pass Offense: 221.0 (42nd)
Rush Offense: 329.5 (4th)
Total Defense: 266.5 (17th)
Pass Defense: 181.0 (34th)
Rush Defense: 85.5 (20th)
Turnover +/-: 0
2021 INDIVIDUAL LEADERS
Head Coach: Patrick Daberkow (17-23, 5th season)
Passing: Wyatt Ehlers – 26/45 (.578), 352 yards, 1 td, 2 int, 121.9 effic.
Rushing: Devin Zeigler – 30 rushes, 122 yards, 4.1 avg, 1 td
Receiving: Korrell Koehlmoos – 12 catches, 149 yards, 12.4 avg, 1 td
Defense: Caydren Cox – 15 tackles, 2 tfl’s 2 sacks, 1 ff
Head Coach: Joel Penner (33-22, 6th season)
Passing: Tyler Reynolds – 10/13 (.769), 196 yards, 3 td, 2 int, 249.0 effic.
Rushing: Anthony Trojahn – 32 rushes, 260 yards, 8.1 avg, 2 td
Receiving: Levi Jungling – 13 catches, 202 yards, 15.5 avg, 2 td
Defense: Drew Daum – 11 tackles, 2 tfl’s, 2 sacks
Concordia (0-1, 0-1 GPAC)
9/4 at (3) Morningside, L, 7-63
9/11 vs. Briar Cliff, W, 61-21
9/18 at (14) Dordt, 1 p.m.
9/25 vs. (2) Northwestern, 1 p.m.
10/2 vs. Dakota Wesleyan, 1 p.m. (Homecoming)
10/9 at Jamestown, 1 p.m.
10/16 at Mount Marty, 1 p.m.
10/23 vs. Midland, 1 p.m.
11/6 vs. Doane, 1 p.m.
11/13 at Hastings, 1 p.m.
Dordt (1-1, 1-1 GPAC)
9/4 vs. Midland, L, 24-25
9/11 at Hastings, W, 61-10
9/18 vs. Concordia, 1 p.m.
9/25 at Doane, 1 p.m.
10/9 vs. Mount Marty, 1 p.m.
10/16 vs. Dakota Wesleyan, 1 p.m.
10/23 at (3) Morningside, 1 p.m.
10/30 at (2) Northwestern, 1 p.m.
11/6 vs. Briar Cliff, 1 p.m.
11/13 at Jamestown, 1 p.m.
Concordia is allowing full capacity within Bulldog Stadium and face coverings are optional. Tickets can be purchased at the stadium on game day or by visiting the athletic department’s HomeTown Ticketing page. Additional game day information for fans/media can be found HERE.
In the rankings
Concordia and Dordt will be a matchup of two teams ranked in the top five of the GPAC preseason coaches’ poll. After struggling to get the program after the ground when it started up in 2008, the Defenders have become a regular in the NAIA top 25. Dordt garnered national rankings in all six polls during the 2020-21 season and was placed at No. 15 in the NAIA postseason poll. The Defenders checked in at No. 14 this preseason. The Bulldogs’ most recent top 25 appearance came in November 2017 whey appeared at No. 25.
GPAC preseason: 5th
Current Massey Ratings: 49th
GPAC preseason: 3rd
Current Massey Ratings: 31st
NAIA Preseason Poll: 14th
It had been 20 years since a Concordia Football team had cracked 60 points on the scoreboard. The 61 points scored against Briar Cliff were the most for the Bulldogs since they defeated Mount Senario College (Wis.), 62-6, in 2001. In addition, the 61-point outburst broke a program record for a GPAC conference game. Eight different Concordia players found the end zone with five scores coming via the pass, two via the run and one via a fumble return. The 550 total yards were the most for the Bulldogs since piling up 565 at Briar Cliff on Nov. 4, 2017. Concordia has eclipsed the 50-point mark four times within conference play during the GPAC era (2000-present).
Program’s highest point totals, GPAC conference games
61 – vs. Briar Cliff, 9/11/21
56 – vs. Briar Cliff, 10/8/16
55 – vs. Dakota Wesleyan, 9/28/04
52 – vs. Dordt, 9/22/12
49 – at Midland, 10/30/04
As well as the offense clicked last week, the defense may have been even better. Briar Cliff managed to put up 21 points thanks to the aid of a 32-yard interception return for a touchdown by Mike Green and a 93-yard kickoff return for a touchdown by Tim Brown. However, it was tough sledding for the Charger offense, which finished with 154 total yards. In addition, the Concordia defense notched five turnovers (one coming on a muffed punt), five sacks and a touchdown. Linebacker Shayne Campbell scooped up a botched snap and raced 49 yards for a touchdown in the third quarter. The biggest standout for the Bulldogs on D was linebacker Caydren Cox, who collected six tackles, two sacks and a forced fumble (recovered by Concordia). A week earlier, Morningside accumulated 652 total yards (515 passing) in a rough performance for Concordia. The run defense has been solid, allowing an average of 73.5 yards per game through two weeks.
McGarvie’s video game numbers
Freshman quarterback DJ McGarvie has made waves in relief of starter Wyatt Ehlers in back-to-back weeks. Coordinator Reggie Corbin and the staff can take comfort in having two quarterbacks they are confident in. Over the first two weeks, McGarvie has completed 10-of-11 passes for 183 yards and five touchdowns. In other words, nearly half of his passing attempts have gone for touchdowns. Last week, McGarvie fired four touchdown passes in the fourth quarter alone while turning heads. McGarvie is a Lincoln North Star High School product who threw for 1,560 yards and 14 touchdowns as a high school senior. As the starter, Ehlers has completed 26-of-45 passes for 352 yards and a touchdown.
Next man in
All-GPAC performers in running back Jonah Weyand and safety Peyton Mitchell were scratched from the starting lineup last week. In their place, Devin Zeigler and Gabe Knisely both made an impact. Zeigler got the start at running back and rushed 26 times for 86 yards and a touchdown. Meanwhile, Knisely made a nifty one-handed interception in his first career start at safety. As the backup to Zeigler, Qyalan Clay ran for 43 yards and a touchdown. Clay last appeared for the Bulldogs in 2015 and then returned to the university this fall after a six-year gap. Concordia hopes to get Weyand back soon. A sophomore in terms of athletic eligibility, Weyand rushed for 625 yards and nine touchdowns last season while earning First Team All-GPAC accolades.
Koehlmoos cracks 100 career catches
A native of Pilger, Neb., Korrell Koehlmoos is one of the most prolific pass catchers in program history. In last week’s victory, Koehlmoos became the seventh player in program history to reach 100 career receptions (list below). Koehlmoos owns career totals of 103 catches for 1,548 yards and nine touchdowns in 29 collegiate games. The Lutheran High Northeast product reeled in seven receptions for 108 yards and a touchdown versus Briar Cliff. That performance marked the sixth 100-yard receiving game of his career.
Most Receptions, Career
168 – Ross Wurdeman (1998-01)
161 – Jared Garcia (2014-17)
147 – Eric Pralle (1987-91)
140 – Dan Danielczyk (1968-71)
125 – Clarence Woods (1984-88)
115 – Travis Soukup (1991-94)
103 – Korrell Koehlmoos (2018-- )
Eight Bulldogs find end zone
As mentioned, eight different Bulldogs found the end zone last week in the blowout. Below is a summary of those touchdowns:
· Devin Zeigler: one-yard run.
· Garrett Schardt: 72-yard reception from Wyatt Ehlers.
· Qyalan Clay: one-yard run.
· Shayne Campbell: 49-yard fumble return.
· Korrell Koehlmoos: 22-yard reception from DJ McGarvie.
· Wyatt Cast: 21-yard reception from DJ McGarvie.
· Cayden Beran: 26-yard reception from DJ McGarvie.
· Cole Schaedel: six-yard reception from DJ McGarvie.
Campbell’s touchdown marked the first for a Concordia defensive player since former All-American corner Tarence Roby’s 100-yard interception return for a touchdown on Sept. 9, 2017, in a win over Ottawa University (Kan.).
The kicking game has new pieces in place this season, although they happen to be veteran players on the roster. Daniel Cantu has taken over as placekicker and is 8-for-8 on extra point tries and 2-for-3 on field goal attempts. Cantu made field goals from distances of 37 and 28 yards versus Briar Cliff. He and Jorre Luther have split kickoff duties. At punter, Korrell Koehlmoos has averaged 37.5 yards on 11 punts this season. Two of his punts have been downed inside the 20.
Series vs. Dordt
Concordia had won nine of the first 10 meetings with Dordt until the Defenders got the best of the Bulldogs in each of the past three seasons, 2018 through 2020 (the other victory in the series for Dordt came in 2008). That leaves the all-time series at 9-4 in favor of Concordia. Last year’s meeting in Seward was dominated by the Defenders, who won 41-14 and enjoyed a total yards advantage of 497-264. The Bulldog touchdowns were scored by Korrell Koehlmoos (24-yard reception) and Lyle Whitney (57-yard reception). Concordia will not have to deal with quarterback Noah Clayberg, who ran for 99 yards and a touchdown and threw for 268 yards and three touchdowns in the 2020 matchup. The most recent Bulldog win in Sioux Center occurred in 2017 (24-17 score).
Under Head Coach Joel Penner, Dordt has taken off and reached new heights last season by qualifying for the NAIA playoffs. Since the start of the 2018 season, the Defenders own a combined record of 23-11. Only a late collapse versus Midland has prevented Dordt from being 2-0 so far this fall. The Defenders took that loss out on Hastings last week in what amounted to a 61-10 blowout. Dordt is capable of devastating opponents with its running game, which is averaging 329.5 yards per game through two weeks. Anthony Trojahn has run for 260 yards and two touchdowns on 32 carries. The Defenders also make use of one of the NAIA’s top receivers in Levi Jungling, who returned for a fifth season of college football. He needs 135 more receiving yards to reach 4,000 for his career. Dordt can also play defense. Its opponents averaged only 283.9 yards per game last season. Despite the loss of quarterback Noah Clayberg, the Defenders remain a team to be reckoned with.