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Butler Bulldogs Set To Face Campbell on the Road


BUTLER (3-2, 1-1 PFL) at CAMPBELL (2-3, 2-0 PFL)
Saturday, October 11, Noon (ET)
Barker-Lane Stadium, Buies Creek, N.C.

INDIANAPOLIS, IN – After picking up their first Pioneer Football League victory of the season, the Butler Bulldogs will go for two as they wrap up a two-game conference road stretch with a visit to Campbell on Saturday, Oct. 11. The Pioneer Football League game at Barker-Lane Stadium in Buies Creek, N.C., will start at noon (ET).

The Campbell Camels are one of three remaining unbeaten teams in the PFL. The Camels (2-3) opened conference play with a victory at home over Valparaiso, 34-24, and then climbed to 2-0 in PFL play for the first time in school history with a 31-24 win at Morehead State last weekend. Quarterback Dakota Wolf hit wide receiver Jared Joyner with a 68-yard touchdown pass with just over four minutes remaining to secure the road win. The victory helped Campbell keep pace with Jacksonville (3-0) and Dayton (1-0) among the league’s unbeaten teams.

Butler (3-2, 1-1 PFL) began its current southern swing with a 49-41 victory at Stetson last weekend. The Bulldogs scored 35 points in the second half to capture the win. Following the Campbell game, Butler will return to Indianapolis to host PFL preseason favorite San Diego on Saturday, Oct. 18. Butler shares the PFL lead with two road wins this season.

Butler jumped in front in the second quarter, fell behind at halftime, and then used a big second half to secure its road victory against the Stetson Hatters. The Bulldogs trailed 20-14 at halftime before quarterback Matt Shiltz opened the third quarter with back-to-back touchdown passes. The first covered 19 yards to junior running back Rico Watson, while the second was a three-yard strike to senior wide receiver Derek O’Connor. After Stetson tied the game at 28-28, the Bulldogs responded with two more touchdowns to take a 14-point lead with less than 10 minutes remaining. The home team Hatters closed to within seven points with 8:52 remaining and then drove into Butler territory again in the closing minutes, but the Bulldogs came up with a clutch, fourth-down stop. Each team scored once more for the final total.

Photo: Butler Athletics/Butler Football
Photo: Butler Athletics/Butler Football

Butler running back Sam Schrader only touched the football 11 times in the Bulldogs’ game at Stetson, but those touches produced 233 yards and four touchdowns. The former high school quarterback entered the game on Butler’s second series and immediately rattled off an 11-yard run. He then caught a 15-yard pass from quarterback Matt Shiltz and three plays later hauled in a 25-yard scoring pass for Butler’s first touchdown. That was only the start. The next time he entered the game in the second quarter, he broke loose on a 57-yard touchdown run. In the second half, Schrader put Butler in front for good with an 83-yard touchdown run, and then, with the Bulldogs clinging to a seven-point lead, he scored the game-clinching touchdown on a 26-yard run with 1:53 left on the clock. The 83-yard touchdown run by Schrader against Stetson is the longest by a Butler player since 1989, when Steve Roberts rattled off a touchdown run of 85 yards against St. Ambrose, and is also the longest in the PFL this season. The redshirt freshman finished with a career-high 193 rushing yards on nine carries and added 40 receiving yards on two receptions. He averaged 21.4 yards per rushing attempt and 20.0 yards per pass reception. Schrader now has the most touchdowns in a regulation game in the PFL this season.

Quarterback Matt Shiltz passed for 193 yards and three touchdowns in Butler’s victory at Stetson. It was the second time in the past three games that he’s thrown for three scores, and he’s currently tied for second in the PFL with ten touchdown passes on the year. Shiltz, with just five career starts under his belt, leads the PFL in total offense (304.0) and passing efficiency (141.9), and he stands second in the league in passing average (258.6). He’s had at least one touchdown pass in each of his five career starts. Shiltz currently ranks ninth in the NCAA Division I FCS in total offense, 13th in the NCAA Division I FCS in passing average, and he’s 15th in Division I in passing touchdowns (10).

Junior linebacker Jordan Massey stopped Stetson quarterback on a key fourth down play with just under three minutes remaining in the game to help the Bulldogs preserve their win last weekend. It was his team-high tenth tackle of the game, matching his career-high for stops. Massey has led the Bulldogs in tackles in three of the first five games this season, and he leads the team on the year with 39 total stops.

Junior placekicker Jon Treloar was perfect on seven PAT kicks at Stetson, boosting his career total for PAT kicks to 103. He’s 11 PAT’s shy of Butler’s career record, held by John Jenkins (1985-88). Treloar has hit on 16 of 17 PAT’s this season, including his last 15. He’s tied for fourth in the PFL in PAT kicking percentage (94.1), and he’s seventh in the league in kick scoring (5.0).

Sophomore Justin Crull has shown a knack for tracking the football through the first five games of 2014. The second-year defensive back recorded his third fumble recovery at Stetson, moving him into a tie for first place in the NCAA Division I FCS in fumbles recovered. He currently shares the top spot with Alex Perry of Delaware State and Eric Pugh, Jr., of Morehead State. Crull needs one fumble recovery to tie Butler’s single season record.

Red-shirt junior defensive tackle Nick McInally and senior defensive end Bret Shannon are tied for second in the PFL in quarterback sacks (0.80). Senior defensive tackle Glen Somers is one of four players tied for ninth in sacks (0.50).

Senior safety David Burke recorded his fifth career pass interception at Stetson. The Bulldogs forced four turnovers at Stetson and currently rank second in the PFL in turnover margin (+3). The Bulldogs are ranked fourth nationally in quarterback sacks allowed (0.60). Butler is eighth in the NCAA Division I FCS in tackles for loss allowed (4.00).

The Butler Bulldogs will look to rely on a solid defensive outing and another offensive outburst to defeat the PFL undefeated Campbell Camels.

Chris Fultz is a senior writer for the Indiana Sports Report and is recognized as an accredited member of the media by Butler Athletics and has full media access. Follow @CafultzISR and the @IndySportsRep on Twitter.

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