By Matt Leon

VILLANOVA, Pa. (CBS) – After falling last weekend at James Madison, 34-10, Villanova brings a 1-6 record into Saturday’s homecoming matchup with Old Dominion.

The matchup with the Dukes was closer than the final score would lead one to believe: the Wildcats led that game 10-6 midway through the third quarter before the wheels fell off.

So now, the focus is on the Monarchs, who are new to the CAA; this is the first-ever meeting between the two schools.

Wildcats head coach Andy Talley notes that ODU has compiled a 5-2 record so far.

“They run a spread offense much like we do, and they have a quarterback who can run and throw,” Talley tells KYW Newsradio.   “It’s a team that averages in the mid-30s (points), and much like New Hampshire they are high scoring and they give up a lot of points.  A lot of fast, athletic guys, they’ll blitz about 40 percent of the time, so we have to be ready for that.  It’s going to be quite a challenge for us,” Talley says.

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Last week the Wildcats got their quarterback back, as redshirt freshman Dustin Thomas returned to the starting lineup after being sidelined by a shoulder injury.   He went 11-24 against JMU for 127 yards and a touchdown.  He also threw two interceptions.

Talley says he is hopeful that a healthy Thomas will help his offense turn around what has proven to be a season-long struggle.

“We really need to start scoring some points.  We’re only averaging (14.1 ppg) and we really need to upgrade offensively.  And I’m hoping with Dustin back now, we’ll start to put some points on the board.  (Sophomore) Joe Price is back who has been out, a very good wide receiver.  So those two guys will help us.”

Kickoff is set for 3:30pm on the Main Line.

Reported by Matt Leon, KYW Newsradio 1060

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