3 things to watch this week in district football
The road trips get a little shorter in the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference this weekend as West Division play begins with four matchups.
In the Presidents’ Athletic Conference, league play continues with five games.
Conversely, Duquesne travels 4,656 miles to take on Hawaii in a contest that won’t kick off until many people in Pittsburgh have gone to bed.
Here are three things to watch in Week 3 of district football:
1. Cal (Pa.) to clash with Edinboro
Cal bounced back from a rare 0-2 start by beating Shippensburg, 57-14, last week and will look to win its 14th straight game against the Fighting Scots (3-0) when the teams meet at 1 p.m. Saturday.
Vulcans freshman quarterback Noah Mitchell ranks second nationally with 1,072 passing yards to go with seven touchdowns and five interceptions, and junior receiver Jordan Dandridge is tied for first in the PSAC with 21 receptions.
They will likely need to score often against Edinboro, which leads the conference and ranks eighth in the country in scoring with 46.3 points per game. Junior running back Walter Fletcher is first in the PSAC with 359 rushing yards and tied for first with six touchdowns.
Cal, picked to finish second in the PSAC West preseason poll, has won 13 straight division openers.
2. Island living
The Dukes (3-1) take on their second Football Bowl Subdivision opponent this season when they oppose the Rainbow Warriors (3-1) at midnight Saturday.
The Duquesne players will get a chance for some sightseeing during the trip, but once the game starts, all sights will be on a Hawaii offense led by quarterback Cole McDonald and receiver John Ursua.
McDonald leads the nation with 1,486 passing yards and 15 touchdown passes, and Ursua is tops with 546 receiving yards and eight total touchdowns.
The Dukes feature their own big-time receiver in senior Nehari Crawford, who caught 11 passes for 223 yards and two touchdowns in last week’s 31-26 victory over Dayton.
Crawford’s 507 receiving yards on the season rank second in FCS.
3. Perfect in the PAC
Westminster (2-1, 2-0) hosts Bethany (2-1, 2-0) at 1 p.m. in Saturday’s only PAC matchup featuring two league unbeatens.
The Titans lead the conference in total defense (233 yards per game), and Bethany ranks third (309 ypg).
Westminster is coming off a 31-14 victory over Saint Vincent in which junior Paul Gonzalez, the PAC Defensive Player of the Week, returned a fumble 35 yards for a touchdown, and junior Connor Cox totaled five catches for 94 yards.
The Titans are looking for their fourth straight win in the series.
Bison junior Raekwon Wright ranks fourth in the PAC with 298 rushing yards.
Jeff Vella is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Jeff at [email protected] or via Twitter @JeffVella_Trib.