Today: St. Ambrose (4-1) hosts Iowa Wesleyan (1-5) in a "home-away-from-home" nonconference clash. The game kicks off at Pleasant Valley High School's Spartan Stadium at 1 p.m.
Tuning in: KALA radio (88.5hd2 or 106.1-FM). You can also listen through the Internet at sau.edu/athletics — click on football and the 2012 schedule for the listen now link. Twitter updates: @STappa_DA
The series: In the longest set St. Ambrose is involved in, the Fighting Bees lead 32-12-2 and have won 13 straight. SAU has dominated the last five, outscoring the Tigers by an average of 39.6-6.2.
The move: A scheduling conflict with a major marching band competition has SAU on the move from its regular home of Brady Street Stadium. SAU coach Mike Magistrelli is thankful for the Spartans welcoming the Bees as that was preferable to forfeiting a home game and playing a "real" road game at IWC in Mount Pleasant, Iowa.
Rankings: The Bees moved up one spot to No. 15 in this week's NAIA coaches poll.
On IWC: The Tigers are not part of a conference this year as they transition to NCAA Div. III. ... SAU coach Mike Magistrelli begins his breakdown of the Tigers by saying QB Kevin McConnell "is the best player on their team." He has rushed for team highs of 355 yards and 5 TDs and thrown for 1,028 yards (74-135-6, with 9 TDs). "They put him in a lot of empty formations where he's back there by himself. He obviously throws the ball well out of that, but he's a very dangerous runner. Containing him will be the biggest key to us defensively."
Local links: There is just one player from the Quad-Cities area on the IWC roster — Ryan Gerleman (Fr., DB, Kewanee Wethersfield).
SAU notes: With leading rusher Cole Kelly (60 carries, 288 yards, 3 TDs) out after hand surgery, SAU got a big boost in its backfield from wideout transplant and former United Township prep Raimon Clay last week. Still, Magistrelli said Anton Wilkins (49-236-1) and Zach Rockford (31-99-1) will get the early workload. "We will certainly try to get Raimon (9-100-1) some more touches and more opportunities and expand his role. We'll look to use him more than what we have," said Magistrelli. "How much and exactly when and how, the flow of the game will dictate that. We'd like to get him 10, 12, 15 touches and see what he can do." ... Through five games, SAU is even in turnovers. The Bees have 11 turnovers and 11 takeaways. ... SAU's defense has been stout in the red zone, ranking No. 2 in the MSFA, allowing nine scores in 17 chances (52.9 percent). Only six of those scores have been TDs. ... Junior QB Eric Williamson has already thrown for 1,352 yards this season (an efficient 103-164-3, 13 TDs). He needs just 30 yards to pass his total passing yards of last season.
Up next: SAU is back at Brady Street Stadium to host Olivet Nazarene (1-5, 0-3 MSFA Midwest League) in a Midwest League contest. Kickoff next Saturday is at 1 p.m. -- By Tom Johnston, email@example.com
Today is Saturday, May 18, the 138th day of 2013. There are 227 days left in the year. 1863 -- 150 years ago: A large variety of children's wagons and gigs have arrived in thecity and are being sold at war prices. 1888 -- 125 years ago: All Rock Island retail houses, with the exception of a clothingstore and a jewelry store, have agreed to early closing hours during the summer months.The store will be closed at 8 p.m. 1913 -- 100 years ago: Baseball enthusiasts in Rock Island are attempting to raise$20,000 to keep the Island City Park open, despite the fact that the city has no franchise inorganized baseball this year. 1938 -- 75 years ago: The organization of a third rural young people's unit will beundertaken tomorrow night at the Milan Presbyterian Church, with Mrs. Mildred K.Wellman, home advisor, and Robert Smith, county farm adviser in charge. 1963 -- 50 years ago: Deere & Co. will begin a "big switch" on its telephone systemMonday morning. The extension numbers of all 1,600 telephones on the firm's EastMoline and Moline exchanges will be changed Monday morning. 1988 -- 25 years ago: East Moline's June Jamboree VI -- Nostalgia Days, will seemlike a '60s revival with the appearance of stars like Bobby Vee, Freddie Cannon, PeterNoone, Turtles, The Grass Roots and Lou Christie. This year's festival has beenexpanded to five days, June 22-26, at the Northeast Park complex.