Football Game Notes: Wildcats Prepare to Tussle with Towson on Senior Day

DURHAM, N.H. -The 13th-ranked UNH football team looks to secure a postseason berth for a seventh consecutive season when it plays host to Towson University this Saturday, Nov. 20, at Cowell Stadium in the CAA regular-season finale. Kickoff is scheduled for 12 p.m. on Senior Day at Mooradian Field.



No. 13/14 UNH (6-4, 4-3 CAA) vs Towson (1-9, 0-7 CAA)

12:00 p.m. |Saturday, Nov. 20, 2010 | Cowell Stadium | Durham, N.H.

Radio: Wildcat Sports Network: Jim Jeannotte (play-by-play), Loren Foxx (analyst)


UNH: Sean McDonnell
Years as head coach: 12th
Overall Record: 86-57
Record at UNH: 86-57
CAA Record: 52-46
Alma Mater: UNH '78

Towson: Rob Ambrose
Years as head coach: 3rd (2nd at Towson)
Overall Record: 6-25
Record at Towson: 3-18
CAA Record: 1-14
Alma Mater: Towson '93 

LAST TIME OUT: UNH-31, VILLANOVA-24: UNH defensive end Brian McNally strip-sacked Villanova quarterback Chris Whitney on a 2nd-and-goal play from the UNH five-yard line, and Cody Muller  recovered with 13 seconds left in the fourth quarter to preserve the 17th-ranked football team's 31-24 upset victory over the ninth-ranked Villanova Wildcats on Nov. 13 at Villanova Stadium. Dontra Peters carried 12 times for 157 yards and a touchdown, and R.J. Toman passed for two touchdowns and ran for another for UNH, which improved to 6-4 overall and 4-3 in the CAA after earning its school-record fourth win against a ranked opponent this season. Toman went 11-of-22 for 158 yards and one interception, and he added 23 rushing yards on 14 attempts. The senior signal caller moved into second place on UNH's all-time passing yards' list with 7,784, surpassing Ryan Day (7,670) and Bob Jean (7,742). Whitney went 16 of 36 for 192 yards through the air and led 'Nova with 88 rushing yards on 24 carries with two touchdowns. Aaron Ball added 82 yards on 19 carries, but Villanova saw its chances to defend its national championship damaged, falling to 6-4, 4-3 in the CAA. The loss also snapped its 15-game home winning streak, as 'Nova fell to 23-2 in its last 25 home games.

LAST MEETING: UNH-57, TOWSON-7, 10/3/09 @ TOWSON:  The sixth-ranked UNH football team rolled out to a 30-0 lead in the first quarter and never looked back at Johnny Unitas Stadium. Making the first start of his career, Kevin Decker completed 11-of-19 passes for 104 yards and two touchdowns passing, adding a rushing score as well. The ferocious UNH defense created eight turnovers, six of them interceptions. Dino Vasso had a 31-yard pick-six, and Ryan McGuinness returned an interception 96 yards for a score. On special teams, Sean Jellison took a kickoff 81 yards for a touchdown. The Tigers were held to 201 total yards.

SCOUTING THE TIGERS:  Towson is seeking to snap an eight-game skid following a 28-18 home setback versus Maine last Saturday. The Tigers' lone win was a five-overtime 47-45 triumph over Coastal Carolina at Unitas Stadium on Oct. 11.  Towson's last CAA victory was Oct. 10, 2009, at Rhode Island, 36-28.  The Tigers' struggles include the league's lowest-ranked scoring offense (15.2), scoring defense (34.1), rushing defense (185.3), pass defense efficiency (140.2) and red zone defense (97.9%).

PLAYERS TO WATCH:  Towson QB Chris Hart is the CAA's leading rushing quarterback, averaging 64.8 yards per game and 518 yards. Hart also passes for 126.6 yards per contest, giving him 191.4 yards of total offense, good for 6th-best in the league. Hakeem Moore leads the CAA in all-purpose yardage, averaging 129.5 yards per game.  The senior ranks 10th in receiving yards (46.9 per game) and 7th in kick return average (21.6).  Senior DT Yaky Ibia is second in the CAA in tackles for loss (13.5), while sophomore DE Frank Beltre is tied for fourth with 12.0 tackles for loss. Sophomore DB Jordan Dangerfield has compiled a team-leading 90 tackles, good for a tie for 8th in the conference.

UNH-TOWSON ALL-TIME SERIES (UNH LEADS, 6-0):   The Wildcats have never fallen to the Tigers, including a perfect 4-0 record since the teams became conference rivals in 2004.   UNH has won by an average margin of 55-16 since the teams became conference rivals in 2004. The Wildcats have defeated the Tigers by an average score of 55-16, with no score closer than a 42-14 decision Oct. 25, 2008, at Cowell Stadium. 

Date Home/Away Score W/L

10/3/09    Away         57-7 W
10/25/08  Home       42-14 W
9/17/05    Away       62-21 W
11/13/04  Home      62-24 W
9/26/81    Home      31-29 W
10/18/80  Away         10-0 W


Totals (CAA Rank) UNH TOWSON

Total Yards Gained 3,552 (4) 2,949 (9)

Total Offense 355.2 (4) 294.9 (9)

Rush Offense 129.3 (8) 131.5 (7)

Pass Offense 225.9 (2) 163.4 (8)

Points Per Game 23.6 (5) 15.2 (10)

Total Yards Allowed 3,115 (4) 3,614 (9)

Total Defense 311.5 (4) 361.4 (4)

Rush Defense 139.5 (7) 185.3 (10)

Pass Defense 172.0 (3) 176.1 (4)

Points Allowed/Game 15.9 (T-3) 34.1 (10)

Possession Avg. 29:51 (7) 28:49 (9)

Sacks Allowed/Yards Lost 33/227 (10) 19/145 (T-8)

Sacks Made/Yards 26/149 (1) 13/74 (8)

Total Touchdowns Scored 25 (5) 17 (T-8)

Penalties Against/Yards 64/586 (5) 72/640 (8)

Punts/Avg. 62/36.2 (8) 55/33.1 (10)

Turnover Differential +10 (2) -11 (10)

EVANS REMAINS TOP STOPPER IN CAA:  With 128 tackles, Matt Evans leads the CAA in that category and is tied for 2nd in the nation in tackles.  Here is a glance at the Top 5 in FCS football:

Rank Player/College        Tackles

1. Kyle Glazier/Western Illinois 129
T-2. Matt Evans/UNH           128

T-2. A.J. Storms/Idaho State    128
4. Scott Lewis/St. Francis (Pa.) 121
5. Bryce Smith/Samford           120


EVANS ADDED TO BUCHANAN WATCH LIST:  New Hampshire linebacker Matt Evans is one of the latest additions to the 2010 Buck Buchanan National Defensive Player of Year Award Watch List, sponsored by  Evans' addition to the 20-player list was announced Nov. 12. The Buchanan Award is in its 16th season and will be presented to the FCS National Defensive Player of the Year on Thursday, Jan. 6 in Frisco, Texas - the night before the national championship game.  


D-LIGHTFUL: The UNH defense is ranked third in the CAA and sixth in the nation in scoring defense (15.9 ppg). The Wildcats boast the CAA leaders in tackles (Matt Evans-128), sacks (Brian McNally-9.0), passes defended (Dino Vasso-12) and interceptions (Vasso-(T) 5).


TOMAN & FOX A 1-2 PUNCH:  Senior QB R.J. Toman leads the CAA in total offense (234.0 yds/gm.) and ranks second in passing yards per game (218.3), and his favorite target, senior WR Terrance Fox, is No. 1 in the CAA in receptions per game (5.8) and fourth in receiving yards per game (61.8).


Player Weekly Award Date

Matt Evans CAA Defensive Player 10/25

Matt Evans Gold Helmet Award 10/20

Matt Evans ECAC Defensive Player 10/19

Matt Evans CAA Co-Defensive Player 10/18

John Greer ECAC Defensive Player 10/12

John Greer College Sporting News All-Star 10/11

John Greer CAA Defensive Player 10/11

R.J. Toman Gold Helmet Award 9/29

R.J. Toman ECAC Offensive Player 9/28

R.J. Toman CAA Offensive Player 9/27

Terrance Fox CAA Spec. Teams Player 9/6

V IS FOR VASSO:  Senior cornerback Dino Vasso has reached five interceptions in a season for the third straight year. His career total of 17 interceptions is three shy of the school record of 20, held by Bill Pappas (1952-54).  He is tied for the CAA lead in picks and one more interception will move him into a tie for eighth all-time in conference history.

VASSO, YOUNG, TOMAN UNDER FINAL CONSIDERATION FOR FCS SENIOR SCOUT BOWL : Seniors Dino Vasso (CB), R.J. Toman (QB) and Steve Young (DT) are all under final consideration to participate in the FCS Senior Scout Bowl on Dec. 11, 2010.  The Collegiate Development Football League (CDFL) is proud to present the "FCS Senior Scout Bowl." This game will showcase the talent of FCS Division Senior Football players at the conclusion of the 2010 season. Eighty-six players will compose two teams in a North vs. South format all-star game to be held in the Metro New York area. The selected players will have earned the right to play against their peers in a showcase game for all to recognize their talent.  For more information on the FCS Senior Scout Bowl, visit

EVANS ADDED TO MIDSEASON WATCH LIST FOR CFPA LINEBACKER OF THE YEAR:  Matt Evans has been added to the midseason watch list for the College Football Performance Award (CFPA) Linebacker of the Year. The purpose of the College Football Performance Awards is to provide the most scientifically rigorous conferments in college football. Recipients are selected exclusively based upon objective scientific rankings of the extent to which individual players increase the overall effectiveness of their teams. As prominent scholars from a wide variety of disciplines note, CFPA eliminates the politics and biases that vitiate balloting-based awards. Furthermore, CFPA is the only awards organization to receive praise from both Republican and Democratic White House officials for promoting objectivity and fairness in college football.


•UNH is 5-0 this season when winning the turnover battle, as it did last week Villanova.  The Wildcats are +10 in turnover margin, good for 2nd in the CAA.

•UNH has outscored FCS opponents 51-7 in the third quarter this season.

•UNH has defeated a school-record four ranked teams this season (Richmond, James Madison, UMass, Villanova) and Lehigh, which wasn't ranked at the time UNH knocked it off on Sept. 25, entered the Top 25 in this week's polls.

•The Wildcats snapped Villanova's 15-game home winning streak last weekend. Earlier this season, UNH ended Richmond's 11-game FCS road winning streak Oct. 9.

•UNH's win at Villanova was its first in the road white uniforms since an NCAA championship first-round victory at McNeese State, 49-13, on Nov. 28, 2009.

•With his 158 passing yards in the win over Villanova, R.J. Toman leapfrogged Ryan Day (No. 4) and Bob Jean (No. 3) to claim sole possession of 2nd place on UNH's all-time passing yards list (7,784). He is still a distant 4,405 behind all-time leader Ricky Santos.

Dino Vasso's five interceptions are three more than Towson has amassed as a team (two) this season.

•Senior Kevon Mason is the only Wildcat with at least one reception in every game. He has a streak of 14 straight games with at least one grab and, dating back to the 2009 season opener, has made at least one catch in 20 of the last 21 games. 

Dontra Peters owns two of the CAA's top four rushing performances this season: 197 vs CCSU (9/4/#2) and 157 at Villanova (11/13/#4).

R.J. Toman needs 354 yards of total offense to place among the CAA's career Top 10 in that department.


Sean Jellison needs 32 more rushing yards to reach 1,000 for his career.

Terrance Fox is three receptions away from cracking the Top-10 in UNH career history.

Hugo Souza needs seven tackles to become No. 5 all-time in UNH history.

Dino Vasso is eight tackles shy of joining the career Top 10.

R.J. Toman needs 24 more completions to become No. 2 all-time in school history and 32 completions to set a personal single-season best.

TOMAN AMONG BEST SIGNAL CALLERS IN SCHOOL HISTORY: Senior quarterback R.J. Toman has already moved into the top-5 in every major passing category in UNH history. Here is a look at how the Mission Viejo, Calif, native stacks up against the all-time great Wildcat QBs:

Rank Quarterback (Years) Attempts

1. Ricky Santos (2004-07) 1,498

2. Bob Jean (1985-88) 1,126

3. Ryan Day (1998-01) 1,089

4. R.J. Toman (2007-10) 1,033

5. Mike Granieri (2001-04) 764

Rank Quarterback (Years) Passing Yards

1. Ricky Santos (2004-07) 12,189

2. R.J. Toman (2007-10) 7,784

3. Bob Jean (1985-88) 7,742

4. Ryan Day (1998-01) 7,670

5. Matt Griffin (1988-91) 5,425

Rank Quarterback (Years) Completions

1. Ricky Santos (2004-07) 1,024

2. Ryan Day (1998-2001)     653

3. R.J. Toman (2007-10) 630

4. Bob Jean (1985-88) 567

5. Mike Granieri (2001-04) 564

TOMAN NEARING TOP-10 IN SINGLE SEASON COMPLETIONS: With 200 completions, R.J. Toman has cracked the Top-10 in single-season history for the second time in his career.  He needs 31 more completions to match his personal best, set during his sophomore campaign in 2008: 

Rank Player (Year) Completions

1. Ricky Santos (2005) 301

5. Bob Jean (1988) 246

6. Mike Granieri (2003) 237

7. Ryan Day (2001) 233

8. R.J. Toman (2008) 231

9.   Ryan Day (1999) 221

10. R.J. Toman (2010) 200

SOUZA CLOSING IN ON TOP 5/VASSO NEARING TOP 10: UNH senior safety Hugo Souza is within seven tackles of sole possession of fifth place on UNH's all-time tackles list.  Senior CB Dino Vasso needs eight tackles to move into the Top 10 all-time.  Here is the breakdown of the top tacklers in school history, dating back to 1981 when records were first tabulated:

Rank Player (Years) Career Tackles

1. Steve Doig (1978-81) 434

2. Jeff Pammer (2004-07) 359

3. Matt Parent (2005-08) 356

4. Aaron Thomas (2001-04) 343

5. Chris McGrath (1988-91) 322

6. Hugo Souza (2007-10) 316

7. John Clements (2005-08) 300

T-8. Romande Carter (1993-96) 297

T-8. Brett Bashaw (1997-2000) 297

10. Neal Zonfrelli (1982-85) 286

T-11. Dino Vasso (2007-10) 278

T-11. Scott Curtis (1984-87) 278


EVANS RISING THROUGH THE RANKS: With a CAA-leading 128 tackles, Matt Evans is not only just one tackle away from the NCAA leader (Kyle Glazier/Western Illinois), he needs just nine more tackles to move into second place on UNH's all-time single-season list.  Here are the current rankings, including the five players Evans surpassed by virtue of his game-high 15 tackles in last Saturday's win at Villanova:

Rank Player (Year) Tackles

1. Steve Doig (1981) 195

2. Chris Robinson (2003) 136

3. Aaron Thomas (2004) 130

4. Jeff Pammer (2007) 130

5. Matt Evans (2010) 128

6. Brett Bashaw (2000) 127

7. Jeff Pammer (2005) 123

8. Scott Curtis (1986) 122

9. Neal Zonfrelli (1985) 117

10. Aaron Thomas (2003) 116


FOX NEARING TOP 10 IN SINGLE-SEASON RECEPTIONS: Terrance Fox needs just three more receptions to climb inside the Top 10 in UNH single-season history.  Here is a list of the players within striking distance for Fox:

Rank Player (Year) Receptions

T-8. Mike Boyle (2008) 67

T-8. David Gamble (1993) 67

T-10. Calvin Jones (1996) 61

T-10. Curtis Olds (1987) 61

Terrance Fox (2010) 58

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