Lions get tough test on roadPublished 7:54am Saturday, September 25, 2010
The University of North Alabama football team may not know a lot about its opponent this weekend, but the Lions know enough to know that the Lambuth Eagles will likely present the toughest challenge they have faced in this young 2010 season.
UNA and Lambuth have only met twice on the football field, and those meetings were back in 2001 and 2002. The Lions won both contests but by narrow margins — 37-27 under Bill Hyde in 2001 and 24-17 in 2002 for Mark Hudspeth’s first win at UNA.
Lambuth lost its 2010 season opener at Arkansas Tech before rebounding to defeat Bill Curry and Georgia State two weeks ago. The Eagles then knocked off eighth ranked West Alabama, also on the road, 14-13 last Saturday.
This will be Lambuth’s first home game of the season, although it will be played at Trinity Christian Academy in Jackson. Kickoff is set for 1 p.m.
UNA opened Gulf South Conference play last Saturday with a 48-6 rout of Southern Arkansas but will now play its final non-conference game of 2010.
UNA hasn’t lost a regular-season game to a non-GSC school since a 28-21 loss at Pittsburg State on Sept. 2, 2000. That gives the Lions a 13-game regular season winning streak against non-GSC schools.
Although UNA’s offense has grabbed the headlines through three games — averaging 43 points and 457 total yards per game — the Lions’ defense has been formidable. Through the first three games of the season, the UNA defense has allowed just three touchdowns — one in each game.
The Lions have also allowed just three total points in the second half (no touchdowns) and have outscored their opponents 54-3 in the second half.
No team has rushed for 100 yards against UNA’s defense and no team has gained 300 yards of total offense against the UNA defense.
North Alabama’s defense also has at least two interceptions in every game this season.
Lambuth comes in averaging just 18.7 points per game and 247 total yards, but the Eagles have played in three relatively low scoring games and have done what was necessary to get the win each of the last two weeks.
Against West Alabama it was a 77-yard TD run by Marquis Williams with just over a minute to play that gave LU the 14-13 win.