Football returns for reunion against Columbia on Saturday

Central Connecticut plays at Columbia on Saturday for Homecoming at Arute Field. The 1:00 p.m. kick-off marks the first homecoming game since 2019. CCSU is just coming off a week off, as Columbia looks to bounce back from a setback against Princeton.

Fans will be permitted at Arute Field and are urged to review the fan attendance policy for fall / winter sports at CCSU. Tailgating will not be permitted on the CCSU campus.

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GAME OF THE DAY • The Blue Devils return home for the first time since Sept. 18, hosting Columbia today for Homecoming at 1 p.m. Today marks Central’s last non-conference game of the season. The last six games of the season are all NEC contests.

COVID-19 HEALTH AND SAFETY PROTOCOLS All outside visitors attending games at Arute Field this season are urged to follow the health and safety protocols in place at the CCSU. People who have been vaccinated are not required to wear a mask outside. Unvaccinated people are required to wear a mask. Wearing face masks is mandatory inside all CCSU sports facilities. Masks should cover the nose and mouth and have a tension that reasonably seals the top and bottom of the mask. Individuals are required to follow the state’s 3 foot physical distance guideline both indoors and outdoors. Campus visitors who are not enrolled as faculty, staff, or students at CCSU are required to complete the Campus Visitor Symptom Tracking Form (bit.ly/3lbtYjr) before coming to campus. Verification of completion of symptom follow-up may be required prior to entry into the stadium. It can be done directly from your mobile device

POSSESSION TIME • The Blue Devils hold the ball an average of 37:09 per game, which leads the Northeast Conference and ranks 2nd in the FCS subdivision. CCSU held the ball to a 53:51 season high in the season opener against Southern Connecticut. Central had the ball for just 26:19 in their win at Wagner – a season low.

BLUE DEVIL IN FULL SPREAD • Freshman Aidan Clark was strong in the punt game for CCSU. He ranks third in the Northeastern Conference, averaging 37.3 yards per punt, while putting seven kicks in the 20s. He has a 60-yard long that he blew up at Wagner. . Against Miami, he put in four punts inside the 20s and snatched three kicks from at least 50 yards, including one that was 58 yards long.

DOUBLE THREAT • Junior Dexter Lawson stood out for the Blue Devils in defensive and special teams. Lawson leads the Northeastern Conference with 1.2 defended passes per game and one interception. He is also among the leaders in the league with an average punt return of 19.2 yards and posted 7.2 yards per punt return. During his career, Lawson recorded seven interceptions, which ranks him among the 12 best of all time at the CCSU.

IT HAS DONE A LONG TIME • After winning Wagner on September 11, Central has not lost a Northeastern Conference game since November 17, 2018, an eight-game streak. The CCSU went undefeated in the 2019 season (7-0) against league opponents and lost one last conference game in the last game of 2018, 38-31 at Duquesne.

APPLY PRESSURE • Senior Kelvin Apari leads the Blue Devils with 2.0 sacks and 5.5 tackles for a loss. Both brands place it in the NEC ranking. In CCSU’s victory at Wagner, Apari became the first Blue Devil to record two sacks in a match since Brandon Puritt on November 2, 2019 in Wagner. He also added 4.0 tackles for a loss in the win.

FOLLOWING • Central returns to the NEC game with a trip to the Sacred Heart to kick off at 1 p.m. The last six games for the Blue Devils will all be conference competitions.

About Dale Whyte

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