The Buffs and Wildcats are no strangers to one another; having met twice a season ago in a pair of monumental games. In October of last year, ACU paid a visit to Kimbrough Memorial Stadium and handed the Buffs a 49-33 loss in front of a nationally televised audience. WTAMU, however, got its revenge as the Buffs rallied from a 15-point fourth quarter deficit to post a 30-27 overtime victory that ended the ‘Cats season during the first round of the NCAA playoffs from Canyon.
This year the Buffs have sprinted out to a 7-0 record, marking the third straight season they have began a season with at least seven straight victories under head coach Don Carthel, who is 28-4 during his tenure in Canyon.
Junior quarterback Keith Null leads the high-powered Buffalo offense which ranks second nationally with an average of 525.6 yards per game. The junior quarterback from Lampasas, Texas, has been dialed in all season long, ranking second in the country in passing yards per game (350.6), while completing 67 percent of his passes for 2,454 yards and 25 touchdowns. Null has spread the ball around this year to WTAMU’s slew of talented receivers, 10 of whom have hauled in at least one touchdown pass this season. Junior Charly Martin leads the team with 424 receiving yards and shares the team lead in touchdown passes at five with fellow wideout A.J. Ruffins. In addition, running back Keithon Flemming, wide receiver B.J. Vickers and tight end Kolo Kapanui have each hauled in four scoring passes on the year. Flemming has also been solid on the ground, racking up 681 yards and nine touchdowns.
The Wildcats, coming off a 8-3 playoff season a year ago, were the preseason pick to win the LSC South Division and following a surprising season-opening loss to Central Oklahoma, have reeled off six straight victories, including a 45-26 win over Texas State who a division 1-AA conference champion a season ago.
ACU quarterback Billy Malone was also honored before the ‘07 campaign by being named Preseason LSC South Offensive Player of the Year. The Paris, Texas, native has been extremely productive this season and trails only Null among the conference leaders with 1,992 yards and 20 touchdowns. Running back Bernard Scott ranks third in the conference with an average of 142 yards on the ground per game, while receivers Johnny Know and Jerale Badon highlight a talented group of Wildcat receivers.
In addition to possessing potent offense, both team’s defensive units rank in the top half of the LSC in total defense. WTAMU defensive end Brandon Swain leads the league in sacks (7), tackles for loss (14), forced fumbles (4) and fumbles recovered (3).
Saturday’s game will be televised locally in both Amarillo on KAMR and in Abilene on KRBC.
West Texas A&M vs. Abilene Christian History
(ACU leads 24-15)
The series between the Buffaloes and Wildcats began during the 1921 season with WTAMU emerging with a 35-0 victory. Since that first meeting, ACU has held the advantage during the series, leading the head-to-head meetings between the school by the count of 24-15. The Buffs, however, have posted victories in two of the last three meetings, including a 40-24 win over the Wildcats the last time the series was played at ACU’s Shotwell Stadium. During that game, a redshirt freshman quarterback named Keith Null filled in for a injured Dalton Bell for the first start of his collegiate career in which he threw for 336 yards and one touchdown.
Article Courtesy: www.gobuffsgo.com