Duquesne drops season opener, focuses on Valparaiso this week

Posted on Sep 8 2017 - 3:09pm by Danny Beeck
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A tough matchup for the Dukes pitted them against the #4 ranked South Dakota State Jackrabbits, the highest ranked Football Championship Subdivision (FCS) opponent they have faced in the history of the program. South Dakota St. would score the opening 34 points in the game, en route to a 51-13 victory for their first win of the season.

In an interview with GoDuquesne on YouTube, head coach Jerry Schmitt stated that the team played hard right to the final whistle. “I didn’t see any finger-pointing, or any heads down. They played hard right down to the end, even though we were over matched.”

Schmitt also mentioned the arm of Jackrabbits quarterback,Taryn Christion, who threw for five touchdowns while going 17 of 26 through the air. Duquesne suited up graduate student transfer, Tommy Stuart, who went 14 of 22, while adding two touchdowns to his name for his first regular season game for the Dukes.

As for this weeks matchup, Valparaiso is yet another non-conference foe that will line up against the Dukes. Starting off their season 0-1 with a loss to Montana last week, the Crusaders look to improve on their 4-7 record from a season ago. Duquesne will be on the road yet again, a challenge the Dukes will hope to overcome, as they won three of five away games last year.

Valparaiso tallied 450 yards of offense in their opener, with two different quarterbacks lining up behind center. The Crusaders went20-42 through the air, and did not run the ball much, only accumulating 123 yards on 32 attempts.

The Dukes will need to get sophomore running back A.J. Hines started yet again this season, as he was silenced for only 34 yards on 13 carries. Look for the Dukes to up their production through a balance from both the running and the passing games.

The Dukes will be traveling to Brown Field in Valparaiso, Indiana and kickoff is slated for 2 p.m.