Zips look to hold on to first place

“The University of Akron football team will host Bowling Green State University on Saturday in the team’s final Homecoming contestÃ¥to be played in the school’s 66-year-old Rubber Bowl. The two Mid-American Conference East Division teams will be meeting for the 17th time since 1941.”

The University of Akron football team will host Bowling Green State University on Saturday in the team’s final Homecoming contestÃ¥to be played in the school’s 66-year-old Rubber Bowl.

The two Mid-American Conference East Division teams will be meeting for the 17th time since 1941.

BGSU leads the series 9-7 while the teams have split the eight games played at the Rubber Bowl.

UA (3-3, 1-1 MAC) and BGSU (2-3, 0-1 MAC) enter the contest following nail-biting finishes last week.

The Zips defeated arch-rival Kent State, 30-27, in double overtime at Dix Stadium to retain possession of the Wagon Wheel trophy.

Junior wide receiver Deryn Bowser was named the MAC East’s Offensive Player of the Week for his five catches for 77 yards and fourth-quarter touchdown in the win.

Sophomore kicker Igor Ivelijic was named the MAC East Special Teams Player of the Week and was honored as one of the three Stars of the Week by the Lou Groza National Collegiate Place Kicker Award for his 3-field-goal, 12-point performance.

The Falcons are coming off a heartbreaking 24-21 loss to Eastern Michigan. EMU quarterback Andy Schmitt connected with Tyler Jones for a 16-yard touchdown with 36 seconds left in the game to spoil BGSU’s Homecoming game.

Seventh-year Bowling Green head coach Greg Brandon said during his weekly news conference Monday that his team will be challenged in every conference game because of its preseason ranking.

We’ve got to understand that in preparation it doesn’t matter what that team looks like on film, they’re going to bring their A-game every time they play Bowling Green because we were picked to win the East, Brandon said. We’ve had the bulls-eye on our chest.

The Falcons are led offensively by junior quarterback Tyler Sheehan.

Sheehan has completed 123 of 187 passes for 1,208 yards and three touchdowns.

He’s also rushed for three scores.

Fifth-year UA head coach J.D. Brookhart praised the junior signal caller’s accuracy during his weekly news conference Monday.

The quarterback is extremely accurate and makes good decisions, Brookhart said. He hit almost 80 percent of his passes last week. He is a veteran and handles himself very well.

Brandon described the Zips as athletic and said UA’s 3-3-5 defense requires additional preparation.

They present a defense that’s unique in that no one else runs it in the league, he said. They’ve run it since J.D.’s been there, and they’ve run it well.

The MAC East tilt will serve as UA’s final Saturday home game at the Rubber Bowl. Kick off is set for 6 p.m.