PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — One of the biggest games in Division II college football this week will be at Farrell Stadium as West Chester University hosts Kutztown University in a critical Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference East battle.
West Chester is 3-1 (1-0 in the PSAC East) and coming off a 35-14 road win over Lock Haven last week. The Golden Rams played that game without starting quarterback Paul Dooley, who sat out with an ankle injury, but back-up quarterback A.J. Long stepped in and threw for 198 yards and two scores and also rushed for a game-high 181 yards and two more touchdowns.
“A.J. did a nice job,” West Chester head coach Bill Zwaan tells KYW Newsradio. “Especially running the football for us, to pull out that win.”
Zwaan is hopeful that Dooley will be able to return this weekend.
“As long as he doesn’t have any setbacks, he should be okay for Saturday,” Zwaan says. “And we know there are things we can do with A.J. also in a package. So we feel like we have some ways to attack people with both quarterbacks.”
Kutztown (1-0 in the PSAC East) is also 3-1 on the season and the Golden Bears are the defending PSAC East champions. They are led on offense by redshirt sophomore quarterback Collin DiGalbo who has ten touchdown passes and just one interception.
“He’s a dual threat,” Zwaan says. “He’ll run the football (159 yards rushing and three touchdowns), he throws the football really well. That’s the first guy that stands out. Then Craig Reynolds, their running back, he does everything. He catches the ball out of the backfield, I think he’s their leading receiver (20 catches for 303 yards, five touchdowns), he returns punts and kickoffs and he runs the ball really well (359 yards rushing, four touchdowns). He’s one of those kids that you’ve just got to know where he is all the time.”
Zwaan says the Golden Bears are also very sharp on the other side of the football.
“[Kutztown head coach] Jimmy Clements is one of the best defensive coaches I’ve ever been around and he does a great job with his kids defensively,” Zwaan says. “They are very sound in everything they do. They are very aggressive and it’s tough to score points on them. We had a little trouble scoring points last year against them up there and that really did cost us. It ended up being one of the biggest games of the season and we lost it.”
The final last year was 20-14 in favor of Kutztown in a game that proved critical to the PSAC East race as West Chester finished one game behind the Golden Bears.
Saturday’s game will kick off at noon.