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Football Preview: Nebraska Wesleyan

Ben Schiltz (24), Noah Bruckner (28) and Jeramy Randol (98).
Ben Schiltz (24), Noah Bruckner (28) and Jeramy Randol (98).

INDIANOLA, Iowa -- Simpson football is one of three teams in the American Rivers Conference with two league wins and looks to push it to three as the Storm travel to Lincoln, Neb. to take on Nebraska Wesleyan this Saturday at 1 p.m.

Simpson (3-1, 2-0 A-R-C) remained unbeaten in conference play last weekend after handing Buena Vista a 46-0 loss inside Buxton Stadium. The Prairie Wolves (3-0, 1-0 A-R-C) were off last weekend and are looking to move to 4-0 for the first time since 1991.

The Prairie Wolves are celebrating homecoming this weekend.

Simpson (3-1, 2-0 A-R-C) at Nebraska Wesleyan (3-0, 1-0 A-R-C)
Saturday, Oct. 5, 2019
Kickoff: 1 p.m.
Abel Stadium | Lincoln, Neb.
Live Video | Live Audio | Live Stats

LISTEN TO THE STORM: For the fifth straight season, KNIA is the radio home of Storm football. The team of Andrew Swadner and Rick Wilson will have the call on 94.3 FM and 1320 AM or online at Fans can also download the KNIA app, available on iTunes and Google Play. Pregame coverage begins at 12:35 p.m.

FIRST AND 10: The Storm come into this weekend's game after an impressive 46-0 victory over Buena Vista on Saturday, Sept. 28 … Simpson's offense racked up 605 yards on 94 plays, while the defense only allowed the Beavers to gain 189 yards of total offense, 33 of which were in the first half … the Storm started the scoring early with two TDs in the opening five minutes of play and rushed out to a 30-0 advantage by halftime … Tanner Krueger finished with 337 yards passing and four TDs ... in the last two meetings with the Beavers, Simpson has outscored them 102-7 and outgained them 1,287-430.

NEBRASKA WESLEYAN SERIES NOTES: Simpson and Nebraska Wesleyan are meeting for the 17th time in a series that dates back to 1924 … the Prairie Wolves own the series with a 9-5-2 mark that resumed in 2016 after Nebraska Wesleyan joined the conference … Simpson won last year's battle 27-21 that stopped a four-game losing skid to the Prairie Wolves … since 2016, NWU owns a 2-1 mark as all three contests have been decided by a touchdown or less.

ABOUT THE PRAIRIE WOLVES: Nebraska Wesleyan is off to its best start since 2006 at 3-0 … the team is looking to reach 4-0, something no NWU team has done since 1991 … the Prairie Wolves had a bye last week after defeating Buena Vista in the league opener … NWU was down 16-0 near halftime and went on a 37-0 run to close out the game and win 37-16 … quarterback Jonathan Purti is leading the league with 1,029 yards passing with 343 yards per contest … Purti is also second with 14 touchdowns thrown … his top target this year has been wide receiver Derrick Curtis, who is tied for second in the conference with seven TD receptions.

BARTLETT IN THE RANKINGS: Senior Sam Bartlett has provided a boost to Simpson's offense through the team's first four games in 2019 … Bartlett has had such a strong start to the season, he not only has top marks in the conference, but is near the top in several statistical categories in the country across NCAA Division III programs.

Touchdowns (8) – 1st in A-R-C, 2nd in nation
Receiving yards (569) – 1st in A-R-C, 3rd in nation
Total points scored (48) – 1st in A-R-C, 4th in nation
Receiving yards per game (142.3) – 1st in A-R-C, 9th in nation

A-R-C OFFENSIVE PROWESS: Through two conference contests, the Storm are first in the league with 959 yards of offense on 166 plays … Simpson had an even mix of distribution last weekend against Buena Vista as the Storm tossed for 363 yards and ran for another 242.

DOUBLE-HEADED MONSTER SQUARED: Simpson had two players run for at least 100 yards and another pair grab more than 100 yards through the air in last week's win over Buena Vista … Noah Bruckner and Joe Meyer paced the squad on the ground … Bruckner raced for a career-high 122 yards and two TDs, while Meyer chipped in 120 yards on 23 carries … Bartlett was his usual self and hauled in 193 yards for three scores … the senior had TD grabs of 68, 51 and 22 yards … Joe McNally had his first 100-yard game of the year with 109 yards on seven receptions with a score.

SECONDARY SUPPORT: The secondary has filled the holes for Simpson's defense this fall as the two top tacklers on the team hail from the secondary … safety Brendan Holmes is first on the team and tied for third in the league with 34 tackles, while pacing the A-R-C with three forced fumbles … the other safety, Quinn Slaven, has produced 28 tackles and is first in conference with two fumble recoveries … cornerback Parker Schenk has defended five passes so far this year and contributed to the defense with 21 takedowns and one interception.

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