Special to The Flash Today
Tarleton is set to make school history with its longest season-opening road trip ever (548 miles) as the Texans head to Cleveland, Mississippi on Saturday, September 2 for a 2 p.m. kickoff at McCool Stadium against Delta State.
A complete broadcast of the game can be heard on the Tarleton Sports Network presented by the North Texas Ford Dealers. Byron Anderson has the call on the flagship station of Tarleton Athletics – KTRL 90.5 FM in Stephenville – and worldwide at TarletonSports.com/ListenLive. Live Stats and a video stream can be found on the football schedule of TarletonSports.com or at gostatesman.com.
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ABOUT THE TEXANS
Tarleton is coming off a 5-6 season in 2016 where they also went 5-4 in the Lone Star Conference. Last season, Tarleton averaged 27 points per game while giving up 25 points per contest. The Texans averaged 358 yards on offense and returns the LSC leader in receiving touchdowns in Del’Michael High, who had 790 yards to go with his 10 touchdowns. Quarterback Zed Woerner returns for his senior season and is coming off a year with 2,445 yards and 24 touchdowns. Defensively, the Texans had 16 interceptions and forced 17 fumbles. Key members returning from that defense are EJ Speed (6 sacks, 5 forced fumbles), Chase Varnado (8 sacks), Basil Jackson (84 tackles, 2 interceptions), David Solomon (39 tackles, 3.5 sacks) and Devin Hafford (54 tackles).
ABOUT THE STATESMEN
Delta State went 4-6 in 2016 and 3-5 in the GSC. The Statesmen averaged 36.9 points per game last season and gave up 39.3 points to opponents. Offensively, DSU put up 449 yards of offense per contest, led by all-conference running back Chris Robinson. Robinson led all of NCAA Division II in scoring at the end of the regular season and rushed for 97 yards per game with 24 total touchdowns.
INSIDE THE SERIES
The game will mark the third time the Texans and Statesmen have met on the gridiron in school history. The teams traded a home-and-home series in 2012 and 2013 with the Statesmen winning both meetings by a combined five points. The first-ever meeting saw Tarleton drop a 38-35 heartbreaker in Stephenville and then a two-point loss on the road in Cleveland in 2013.
UP NEXT FOR TARLETON
The Texans will return to Stephenville for its first game on the brand-new CoolPlay Turf at Memorial Stadium on Saturday, September 9 against Oklahoma Panhandle State. The Aggies, who were a LSC affiliate member last year, have returned to the NAIA ranks this year.