A look at the area's small college football matchups for Saturday, Sept. 21:
Brevard (1-1, 0-0) at Carson-Newman (2-0, 0-0)
JEFFERSON CITY — If recent history holds true, Carson-Newman can expect a battle from South Atlantic Conference foe Brevard College.
The Eagles and Tornadoes kick off at 1 p.m. Saturday at Burke-Tarr Stadium in both teams' SAC opener. Since a 77-7 drubbing at the hands of the Eagles in 2009, Carson-Newman hasn’t beaten Brevard by more than 18 points.
Brevard was picked last this year in the conference's preseason coaches' poll, but hasn’t looked like a bottom-dweller so far. The Tornadoes are coming off a 69-0 win over College of Faith. The week prior, Brevard hung with FCS Presbyterian for three quarters — the game was tied at 21 shortly after halftime — before falling 42-24.
“We are playing a very dangerous team,” Carson-Newman coach Ken Sparks said. “Think about what our defense has faced: a pro style team in Wayne State, a spread offense in Colorado Mines and now a flex bone offense at Brevard. They do an unbelievable job of generating ways to find your vulnerabilities."
Slotback Kelvin Jeter, the 2010 SAC freshman of the year, leads the Brevard offense. The senior is averaging 111 yards per game on the ground, which is second in the SAC.
The Eagles boast a more opportunistic secondary from a year ago and already have four interceptions to their credit. Jarrett East-Brown, Jaycob Coleman, Eien Jacob and Greg Beauduy have one pick each, and the total puts Carson-Newman atop the SAC standings and in the top 10 nationally.
The Eagles are 6-0 all-time against the Tornadoes.
“They are never not going to play hard,” Sparks said. “They’ve always given us a fit. We expect them to do that again because they’ve got so much team speed, which is just amazing.”
University of Charleston (0-2, 0-0) at Virginia-Wise (0-2, 0-1)
WISE — Carl Smith Stadium hosts its inaugural Mountain East Conference game when the Highland Cavaliers welcome the Golden Eagles for a 2 p.m. kickoff.
Both teams, which have never met, are seeking their first league win. The Cavs dropped their first MEC contest, a 37-7 decision at West Virginia Wesleyan, last week.
Virginia-Wise should have its hands full with the Eagles, who are led by dual quarterbacks John Knox and Maurice Leak. Picked second in the preseason coaches' poll, Charleston went 9-2 last season.
Senior James Long highlights the Cavs' offense after topping the century mark in receiving yards in Virginia-Wise's first two games.
Defensively, the Cavs are allowing 46.5 points per game and the Eagles are giving up 37.5 ppg.
The Cavs, 16-6 all-time in home openers, are looking to end a six-game home losing streak. Their last win at Carl Smith Stadium was on Oct. 22, 2011, when they beat Pikeville 56-14.
Fans attending the game receive a free T-shirt commemorating Virginia-Wise's inaugural MEC season.
Tusculum (2-0) at North Greenville (2-0)
TIGERVILLE, N.C. — The Pioneers and Crusaders meet in a battle of unbeatens at Younts Stadium.
Tusculum has been an offensive juggernaut to start the season, notching a 54-41 win over Elizabeth City State on the heels of its 63-0 season-opening win over College of Faith.
Last week, the Pioneers racked up a program single-game record 782 yards, including a SAC-record 596 passing yards from quarterback Bo Cordell. Cordell was 31-for-42 and accounted for five touchdowns (four passing, one rushing). He also had a school- and SAC-record 612 total offensive yards.
North Greenville, under first-year head coach Jeff Farrington, beat Albany State 26-24 in its opener before taking down FCS VMI last week, 37-24. The Crusaders are averaging 405 yards a game, led by junior wideout Freddie Martino. Martino is averaging 12 catches and 137.5 receiving yards per game.
Tusculum leads the series 3-1. Kickoff is at 7 p.m.
Emory & Henry (2-0) at Methodist (2-0)
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — The Wasps cross the border for their final non-conference game of the season, visiting the Monarchs for a 1 p.m. kickoff.
Emory & Henry has won five in a row over Methodist, including a 34-20 victory at Fred Selfe Stadium last year.
The Wasps are coming off a 27-21 victory over Maryville. Kyle Boden was 25-for-37 passing for 286 yards and three touchdowns, and Cleo Cooper had five receptions for 129 yards and a score for E&H.
Methodist is led by junior quarterback Max Reber, the USA South player of the week for a second consecutive week. Reber was honored for his efforts in the Monarchs' 41-34 win over Guilford. He piled up 418 yards of total offense last Saturday, including 314 passing yards and three touchdowns on 28-of-42 passing. Reber rushed 11 times for 104 rushing yards and a score.