Football Ready for Season Opener at Syracuse on Friday Night

Football Ready for Season Opener at Syracuse on Friday Night

For the second time in school history the Central Connecticut football team will play an FBS opponent in 2017.  The Blue Devils will kickoff their 11-game schedule with a trip to Syracuse on Friday night, Sept. 1, at 7 p.m. for a game against the Orange in the Carrier Dome.  Central last took on an FBS opponent in the 2007 season when they traveled to Western Michigan.

Fans can follow the game several different way, listed below.  Football games will not air on New Radio 1410 AM this season.  All six home games will be available on NEC Front Row, as well as all NEC road games (the game vs. Sacred Heart will be on ESPN3).

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CCSU GAME NOTES

Today's Game • The CCSU football team opens its 79th football season with a trip to FBS opponent Syracuse on Friday night.  The Blue Devils and Orange are meeting for the first time ever on the football field.  Central has played one other FBS opponent in its history, traveling to Western Michigan in 2007.  Following tonight's game the Blue Devils will open the home portion of their schedule on Sept. 9 vs. Fordham at 12 noon.
 
CCSU Picked Fourth, Four Earn Preseason Honors • The Central Connecticut football team was tabbed fourth in the 2017 Northeast Conference Football Preseason Coaches' Poll it was announced at the league's Social Media Day held at MetLife Stadium. Four Blue Devils were also named to the Preseason All-NEC Team. Senior wide receiver Joey Fields and junior K.J. Smith return on the Central offense and led the quartet of Preseason All-NEC honorees. Senior linebacker Randall Laguerre and senior defensive back Jevon Elmore earned Preseason All-NEC honors and will help anchor the CCSU defense. Head coach Pete Rossomando is set to begin his fourth season at the helm of the Blue Devils. Central returns a total of 18 starters, including eight on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball.
 
COMPLETE NORTHEAST CONFERENCE PRESEASON COACHES POLL
1. Duquesne (4), 2. Saint Francis (1), 3. Wagner (2), 4. Central Connecticut, 5. Sacred Heart
6. Bryant, 7. Robert Morris (First-place votes in parentheses)
 
NORTHEAST CONFERENCE PREASON ALL-CONFERENCE PICKS
Joey Fields • Fields returns after leading the Blue Devils with 46 receptions on the season, good for 732 yards and six touchdowns. He had a catch in every game and at least five catches in a game six times, including each of the last five games. He caught 28 balls in the final five games of the season.
 
K.J. SMITH • Smith played in 11 games as a sophomore and hauled in 38 catches for 489 yards and three touchdowns. He had a four-catch, 120-yard game at Penn last season and collected at least three catches in eight games. 
 
RANDALL LAGUERRE • Laguerre earned All-NEC First Team honors as a junior. Laguerre produced one of the best defensive seasons in school history, registering 116 total tackles in 11 games, leading the league in that category. He averaged 10.5 tackles per game and had 10 or more tackles in a game six times, including a season-high 14 against Wagner. He did not have fewer than seven tackles in a game all season and also recovered two fumbles, an interception and a pair of sacks.
 
JEVON ELMORE • Elmore returns for Central after missing last season. He earned STATS FCS All-America Third Team honors in 2015 after compiling 71 tackles, including three for a loss. He played in all 11 games and was second on the team in interceptions with two, and posted an impressive 16 pass break-ups on the year, leading the NEC and finishing second in the country in that category.
 
Schedule in 2017 • The Blue Devils will play arguably the toughest non-conference schedule in school history in 2017 and one of the toughest non-conference schedules in the country this year.  The Blue Devils open the year at FBS Syracuse, followed by a home date with No. 22 Fordham, then on the road at No. 9 Youngstown State and also has a home date with (RV) Penn, the 2016 Ivy Champion.  
 
Dolegala's Record Breaking Year • Junior quarterback Jacob Dolegala set a new school record last season throwing for 2,934 yards, the second-highest total in Northeast Conference History.  His 258 completions and 432 attempts were also school records.  He finished 13th in the country in passing yards per game last season at 266.7 yards per game.  In his two seasons Dolegala has thrown for 3,955 yards and is fourth all-time in career yardage at CCSU.  His 345 career completions are already fifth all-time in school history.  Last season Dolegala led the conference in completions (258), completion percentage (59.7), completions per game (23.45, 8th in the country), passing yards (2,934, 14th in the country) and passing yards per game (266.7).  In 432 attempts he was only intercepted nine times.  
 
LaGuerre Leads the Conference • Senior linebacker Randall LaGuerre, and All-Conference pick last season and a preseason All-Conference pick this year, led the NEC and CCSU with 116 total tackles a season ago.  He played in all 11 games, and also had 5.5 tackles for a loss, two sacks, one interception and two fumble recoveries.
 
Pick 6x3 • The Blue Devils returned an interception for a touchdown three times last season. Safety Tymir Hinton picked off a pass and returned it 11 yards for the game's first touchdown in a win over Sacred Heart.  It was his second pick 6 of the season.  He also had one in the loss on the road at Bryant.  Earlier Najae Brown returned an interception in the loss at James Madison.
 
NEC Front Row • Thanks to a continued partnership between the Northeast Conference and the Pack Network, live webcasts of NEC sports will be available free of charge on NECFrontRow.com. The site will carry every CCSU NEC football game this season (Excluding the game broadcast on ESPN3.com at Sacred Heart on Sept. 30).
 
Social Media • Follow the Blue Devils all season long on Social Media:
Twitter: @CCSUBlueDevils
In Game Twitter Updates: @KizerBlueDevil
Facebook: CCSUBlueDevils
Instagram: CCSUBlueDevils
SnapChat: CCSUBlueDevils

 

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