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Furman To Kick Off SoCon Slate Saturday Against VMI

Andrej Suttles
Andrej Suttles
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Furman vs. VMI Game Notes (PDF)

GREENVILLE, S.C. -- Riding the crest of a 16-15 victory over UCF, Furman returns home to kick off Southern Conference play this Saturday against VMI at Paladin Stadium in a 3:00 p.m. contest that will highlight Family Weekend at Furman University.

The game, which will be carried by ESPN3, will be radio broadcast over the Furman IMG Sports Network headed up by flagship station WGOG 101.7/Walhalla and FoxSports 1440/Greenville.  It will also be available via stadium transmitter (96.7 FM) and audio streamed via TuneIn.com, which is also accessible through FurmanPaladins.com

Live stats will be available through FurmanPaladins.com and for mobile devices via Paladinslive.com

Fans can also follow the game via Twitter @PaladinFootball and @Furman Paladins

Tickets for Saturday's game and all Furman athletic events may be purchased online 24/7 at www.furmanpaladins.com at the Tickets tab, or by calling the Timmons Arena Box Office at 864-294-3099 between 10:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Monday-Friday. The Timmons Arena Box Office and the Paladin Stadium East Stands Box office open two hours prior to kick off of each home football game.

For a complete summary of game details and promotions, please see the bottom of this release.

Saturday's contest will mark the 33rd meeting in football between the Paladins (1-2, 0-0 SoCon) and Keydets (1-2, 0-0 SoCon) but only the second clash between the two old SoCon rivals since VMI rejoined the league a year ago following an 11-year hiatus (2003-13) to compete the Big South Conference.

The Keydets won last year's series renewal, 31-15, in Lexington to snap the Paladins' 21-game series winning streak that had run from 1981-2002.  Owner of a 23-9 overall lead in the series, Furman is a perfect 10-0 versus VMI in Paladin Stadium and has won 11 straight over the Keydets in Greenville dating back to 1980.

VMI, under the direction of first year head coach Scott Wachenheim, dropped a 42-10 verdict at Richmond last Saturday.

Furman, meanwhile, picked up its first win of the season by bagging FBS foe UCF in Orlando on the strength of a school record 55-yard field goal by Greenwood, S.C., sophomore Jon Croft Hollingsworth, who on Monday was named SoCon Special Teams Player of the Week.

Also keying the victory over the Knights, Furman's first triumph over an FBS foe since 1999 and sixth in the program's FCS history (1982-present), was junior safety Trey Robinson, who notched 10 tackles and two interceptions, the second of which came with 49 seconds remaining to seal the outcome.  A Spartanburg, S.C., native and Dorman High School product, Robinson captured STATS National Defensive Player of the Week honors for his performance that headlined a Paladin defensive unit that limited UCF to 269 total yards and just 112 yards in the second half.

Quarterback Reese Hannon passed for 188 yards and a touchdown in the triumph.  His 61-yard third quarter scoring strike to Andrej Suttles gave the Paladins a 13-12 lead, setting the stage for Hollingsworth's game winning kick early in the fourth quarter.

Paladin linebackers Cory Magwood and Carl Rider, turned in strong performances against UCF, registering 12 and 11 tackles, respectively.  Magwood currently tops the SoCon with 32 tackles while Rider, with 26 tackles, has returned to form after missing all of the 2014 campaign due to injury.  He topped the league with 136 tackles in 2013.

The Game: Furman Paladins (1-2, 0-0 SoCon) vs. VMI Keydets (1-2, 0-0 SoCon)
Game Promotion: Family Weekend at Furman University
Site: Greenville, S.C. (Paladin Stadium, on the campus of Furman University)
Kickoff: 3:04 p.m. ET
Television: ESPN3: Chuck Hussion (pbp), Sam Wyche (color), Bob Mihalic (sideline)
Radio: Furman IMG Sports Network (WGOG 101.7/Walhalla, FoxSports 1440/Greenville, Stadium Transmitter 96.7): Dan Scott (pbp), David Cobb (color), Bob Mihalic (sideline)
Audio Stream: TuneIn.com accessible through FurmanPaladins.com
Tickets: Available (www.furmanpaladins.com); Timmons Arena, East Stands Box Offices Open 1:00 p.m.
Gates Open: 1:30 p.m.
Game Sponsor: Ingles

Pre-Game Activities:
  8:00    a.m. -- Parents Fun Run (Cherrydale House)
  9:00    a.m. -- Furman Fall Invitational Tennis Tournament (Mickel Tennis Center)
10:00    a.m. -- Furman Baseball Scrimmage (Latham Stadium)
11:00    a.m. -- Paladin Knights Kids Club Punt, Pass & Kick (Paladin Stadium)
  1:30    p.m. -- Paladin Club Zone Opens (Paladin Stadium)
  1:45    p.m. -- Paladin Regiment March/Concert (Timmons Arena)
  2:17    p.m. -- Champions Walk (Paladin Stadium)
  2:54    p.m. -- America The Beautiful/National Anthem Performed By Paladin Regiment/Furman Singers (Paladin Stadium)

Special Promotions:
 + Paladin Club Zone, located in the area between the home stands and field house, opens 90 minutes prior to kickoff and will offer sunglasses for the first 250 Paladin Club members, free bounce houses for kids, and food/drinks sponsored by Ingles.
 + The "Champions Walk" commences approximately 50 minutes prior to kickoff and the first 500 fans on hand to usher the Paladins into the stadium will receive special "Champions Walk" t-shirts and shakers sponsored by Ingles, the exclusive grocer of Furman Athletics.
 + Paladin Pet of the Week. Fans can submit a picture of their game-day-ready pet for a chance to win four passes to the Greenville Zoo, a Furman prize pack, and have their pet featured on the videoboard during the game.
 + Farm Bureau 2016 Furman Season Ticket Giveaway. Fans have a chance to win two (2) 2016 Furman football season tickets, season parking pass, and two (2) Furman football shirts by registering.
 + Furman's coaching staff will be wear "Coach To Cure MD" shoulder patches during Saturday's game as part of the American Football Coaches Association's effort to raise awareness and funds to fund research in the fight against muscular dystrophy, the most lethal genetic disorder of childhood.     

In-Game Promotions:
McDonalds Cheeseburger in Paradise, Mast General Store T-Shirt Toss, GSP International T-Shirt Toss, Hardee's Hyped-Up Fan Cam, Farm Bureau Insurance Fanatic Fan of the Game, Family Dental Health Smile Cam, Available Technology Tweet Your Seat, ScanSource Student Athlete of the Month, Ingles Show Us Your Ingles Card, Ingles Kicking Hunger Promotion, Greenville Heritage Federal Credit Union Take Away Give Back, Children's Museum of the Upstate Tiny Tailgater of the Game.

Halftime:
Furman University Paladin Regiment

Recognitions:
Quarter 3 Break -- Paladin Knights Kids Club Punt, Pass & Kick Winners

Post-Game:
Paladin Power Hour at the Dive & Boar Restaurant Post-Game Call-In Show (hosted by Chuck Hussion and Tom Van Hoy)
Furman IMG Sports Network (WGOG 101.7/Walhalla, FoxSports 1440/Greenville)

Hunter Reid, Furman Sports Information