Clarksville, TN – Coming off its first win, the Austin Peay State University football team hosts Mississippi Valley State on Saturday for a 3:00pm game at Fortera Stadium. The game against the Delta Devils is a “Red Out,” it is also Family Weekend and Teacher Appreciation Day.
Last week the Governors shut out Presbyterian in a 63-0 rout. Mike DiLiello completed 18 passes for 254 yards and four touchdowns while playing just the first 34 minutes of the contest. Jevon Jackson and CJ Evans Jr. led the ground attack, rushing for 167 and 106 yards, respectively, with Evans Jr. finding the endzone twice and Jackson punching it in once.
On defense, Josh Rudolph picked up a career-best nine tackles, including seven solo stops. Antoine Williams added five tackles, a sack, and a blocked punt while J’Vian McCray made four tackles, two tackles for loss, and forced and recovered a fumble.
Saturday’s game will feature the Blazin’ VIPeay Zone presented by Buffalo Wild Wings, which will be at all five home football games for the 2022 season. Buffalo Wild Wings will provide all-you-can-eat food and drinks – including beer – in the Blazin’ VIPeay Zone, which is available to season ticket holders in section M and the VIPeay Zone Chairback section.
The game against Mississippi Valley State is sponsored by Coca-Cola and there will be red “For the Peayple” shirts available for fans while supplies last.
Season, single-game, and group tickets are available online at LetsGoPeay.com/buytickets or by calling the Austin Peay ticket office at 931.221.PEAY (7329).
Saturday’s game will be streamed on ESPN+ with Barry Gresham and Ethan Schmidt on the call.
Inside The Film Room
Check out the APSU Governors official Youtube channel each week for new episodes of Inside The Film Room, game highlights, and much more!
In the past five seasons, Austin Peay State University’s 35 victories are tied for the 15th most in the FCS and are the most in a five-year stretch in program history. Awaiting the Governors in the ASUN Conference are three other teams that rank in the top 15 in the FCS in wins during the past five seasons — Kennesaw State (49, 3rd), Jacksonville State (42, t-7th), and Central Arkansas (35, t-15th).
A week after kicker Maddux Trujillo and wide receiver Kam Thomas were named the ASUN Special Teams Player of the Week and Freshman of the Week, respectively, Jevon Jackson became the second-straight Governor to earn ASUN Freshman of the Week honors.
Jackson rushed for a career-best 167 yards and a touchdown against Presbyterian and his rushing total was the best single-game mark by a Governor since Brian Snead ran for 227 yards against Tennessee State (2/28/21).
Scotty Walden; Or, Life At Austin Peay State University
In his first 390 days at Austin Peay State University, Scotty Walden coached the Govs through 17 games in a 273-day span. His ten wins during that time are tied with Watson Brown (10-7, 1979-80) and only College Football Hall of Fame coach Boots Donnelly (11-6, 1977-78) has more wins through his first 17 games at APSU.
After picking up his 11th win against Presbyterian, Walden has a chance to secure the third-most wins by an Austin Peay head coach in their first 20 games with a win against Mississippi Valley State.
In the inaugural ASUN Football Preseason Coaches Poll, Austin Peay State University received a first-place vote but was tabbed to finish fifth in the league with 15 points. Kennesaw State was picked atop the league with four first-place votes and 34 points, while Central Arkansas — who received a single first-place vote — and Eastern Kentucky were tied for second with 25 points. Fourth-place Jacksonville State received 19 points and North Alabama rounded out the poll with 8 points.
The Gang Gets Preseason All-ASUN Honors
Sophomore wide receiver Drae McCray, graduate transfer defensive lineman Chukwuemeka Manning Jr., junior defensive back Shamari Simmons, and sophomore kicker Maddux Trujillo were all named to the inaugural ASUN Football Preseason All-Conference team at Media Day in Atlanta.
McCray and Trujillo earned First Team and Second Team All-OVC honors, respectively, last season, while Simmons’ four-interception, 50-tackle, and 10-PBU season somehow didn’t earn All-OVC recognition. Manning was a Third Team All-MEAC selection in 2021 after racking up 5.0 TFL and 2.0 sacks in his final season at North Carolina Central.
New Kids In Stacheville
50 newcomers and 25 players that redshirted a season ago combine with 40 returning letterwinners to make up the 2022 Austin Peay State University football roster. The 50 newcomers are made up of 23 transfers – with nine players having Group of Five experience and a pair of players having Power Five experience – and 27 true freshmen.
Last Time Out
Austin Peay State University improved to 7-1 in home openers at Fortera Stadium when it routed Presbyterian, 63-0, in the second-biggest shutout win in program history. The Governors’ 63-point margin of victory was the largest against another Division I team this season.
The shutout was the first of the Scotty Walden Era and was the first since the APSU Govs shutout Presbyterian, 24-0, in 2018.
About the Mississippi Valley State Delta Devils
This is the first-ever meeting between Austin Peay State University and Mississippi Valley State.
This is APSU’s first-ever game against an opponent from the Southwestern Athletic Conference
Mississippi Valley State finished fifth in the SWAC’s East Division after going 4-7 overall and 3-5 in the conference last season. This season, the Delta Devils were tabbed to finish sixth in the league’s east division after receiving just 35 points in the SWAC’s preseason poll, which is five points less than Texas Southern, who was picked last in the West Division.
The Delta Devils led the SWAC and ranked 26th in the FCS with 13 interceptions last season. Kenneth Martin and Caleb Brunson lead the returners on defense with two picks in 2021. MVSU also ranked 12th in the FCS with 7.4 TFL per game last season and will return the trio of Jalen Bell (9.5 TFL), Ronnie Thomas (8.0), and Deione Reed (7.0). Thomas, Bell, and Brunson are all preseason All-SWAC selections.
After rushing for a league-leading 1,018 yards and eight touchdowns last season, MVSU running back Caleb Johnson was named a preseason First Team All-SWAC selection by the league’s head coaches and SIDs, HBCU Sports, and Phil Steele. Also, a BOXTOROW HBCU Preseason All-American, Johnson rushed for 78 yards and a touchdown in the season opener against Tarleton. The redshirt junior averages 14.8 carries per game, which ranks 10th among active players in the FCS.
Next Up For APSU Football
The Austin Peay State University football team hits the road for its second-consecutive game against the SWAC when it travels to Alabama A&M for a September 17th 2:00pm contest at Louis Crews Stadium in Huntsville, Alabama.
The first-ever meeting between the Governors and Bulldogs will serve as Austin Peay State University’s final tuneup before they host Eastern Kentucky for their first ASUN Conference game.