GAME OF THE WEEK
MSU Mankato at Concordia (St. Paul), noon Saturday: MSU Mankato (2-0), ranked No. 3 in Division II, has won 26 consecutive regular-season games dating to 2016. The host Golden Bears have started a season 2-0 for the first time since 2016.
WEEK 3 STORY LINES
• The MIAC opens conference play with four games on Saturday — Carleton at St. Olaf, Gustavus at St. John’s, Augsburg at Concordia (Moorhead) and St. Thomas at Hamline. St. John’s, ranked No. 4 in Division III, and St. Thomas, ranked No. 6, are coming off bye weeks. Bethel, ranked No. 9, has a bye this week.
• UMAC teams open their conference schedules on Saturday with four games, highlighted by defending champion Martin Luther at St. Scholastica.
• The two longest active losing streaks in Division III ended last week. On Friday, William Paterson (N.J.) ended a 27-game skein with a 28-23 victory over FDU-Florham. William Paterson’s victory meant Crown’s 24-game skid was the longest. On Saturday, Crown defeated Beloit 23-6 for its first victory since 2016.
PLAYERS TO WATCH
John Larson, QB, Minnesota-Duluth: The senior from Braham, Minn., ranks seventh in Division II with six passing touchdowns and stands 12th in passer rating (179.6).
Khayleb Willis, RB, St. Olaf: The senior from Deltona, Fla., leads Division III in rushing (351 yards) after running for 257 yards (second-highest in Division III this season) in the Oles’ 33-20 victory at Luther.
BY THE NUMBERS
5 Victories (in 18 nonconference games) for UMAC teams this season. Last season UMAC teams were 1-14 in nonconference games.
18 Tackles (second-most in school history) by Concordia (St. Paul) linebacker Jake Portz in the Golden Bears’ 28-23 victory at Upper Iowa.
53 Consecutive losses by Division III program Earlham, which suspended its program for this season.