GAME OF THE WEEK
St. John’s (4-0, 3-0 MIAC) at Bethel (4-0, 2-0), 1 p.m., Saturday: It’s the first time since 2003 that both teams enter the rivalry with unbeaten records. The Johnnies have outscored three MIAC opponents 156-13. Bethel, 4-0 for the first time since 2013, has shut out Gustavus (31-0) and Carleton (48-0) in the past two weeks.
WEEK 6 STORY LINES
• Ridgewater Community College has canceled the remaining four games on its football schedule. Ridgewater, which began the season with a roster of 54 players, had 22 on its roster now. “Given the reduced size of our roster, we are concerned about players being in unfamiliar positions as this could increase the risk of injury. We did not make this decision lightly, but feel that it is in the best interests of our student-athletes,” Craig Johnson, president of Ridgewater College, said in a news release. The Warriors, 0-4 overall and 0-2 in the MCAC Western Division, had been outscored 159-25.
• Martin Luther, which was picked to finish sixth in the UMAC preseason poll, is tied for first with preseason-favorite MacMurray after two weeks of the conference schedule. Last week, the Knights (3-1, 2-0 UMAC) defeated St. Scholastica 49-21 to end a seven-game losing streak to the Saints.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
Jackson Erdmann, QB, St. John’s: The junior from Rosemount leads Division III in pass-efficiency rating (225.3). He’s thrown 13 TD passes and only one interception.
Blake Gimbel, QB, SW Minnesota State: The senior from Marshalltown, Iowa, has become the program’s career leader in completions (785) and completion percentage (66.1).
BY THE NUMBERS
5 Times Minn.-Duluth has opened a season 5-0 since 2002. In each of the previous four (2002, 2008, 2010 and 2014), the Bulldogs went 11-0 in the regular season.
16 TD passes — most in the MIAC — thrown by St. Olaf’s Ricardo Johnson III.
22 Years since MSU Moorhead opened a season with a 4-1 record. The Dragons (4-1) have a three-game winning streak.