The Daily Item, Sunbury, PA


October 21, 2013

Todd Hummel's college football column: Bison, Crusaders notch nice wins

Doing this job, you get a chance to know some of the local college coaches a bit.

A bit of small talk on the phone or getting a chance to see them as a proud father outside of college football or maybe grabbing lunch at Sheetz. It's sometimes hard for fans to see coaches as people as well.

That's why Saturday was so nice to see as both Bucknell University and Susquehanna University won. The Bison snapped a four-game losing streak with a victory over Dartmouth on the road, while the Crusaders downed Moravian for their first win of the year.

Bucknell coach Joe Susan couldn't have scripted a better day in Hanover, N.H. Susan's football philosophy is simple: every possession should end in a kick (extra point, field goal or punt) and control the line of scrimmage on both sides of the ball.

Getting possessions that end in kicks has been the toughest thing for the Bison to do this year. Bucknell has been hampered by 19 turnovers in its first five games, but had just one in the victory over the Big Green.

Injuries have also been a factor on both sides of the ball, but the Bison got some of their standouts back on the field. Senior quarterback Brandon Wesley returned to the field for the first time since injuring his left leg against Cornell on Sept. 21.

The fourth-year starter didn't throw an interception and broke the school-career passing yards record in the victory. Wesley set the record on a 42-yard completion to Josh Brake in the first half and now has 5,347 yards in his career.

Sean Sellers also returned to the starting lineup at defensive end, something Susan was hoping for earlier in the week. Sellers, who also hadn't played since the game against Cornell, had six tackles and 1.5 sacks. His return allowed Demetrius Baldwin-Youngblood move back to his normal defensive tackle position, helped another Bison standout defensive lineman, Tracey Smith, get free as well. Smith finished with eight tackles, 2.5 sacks and a forced fumble that set up Bucknell's second touchdown of the game.

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