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Coast Guard at Curry football preview capsule

When: Saturday, 1 p.m.

Where: Katz Field, Milton, Mass. (no spectators allowed)

Records: Coast Guard Academy 1-0 overall; Curry 0-1.

Players to watch: Coast Guard, QB Tafari Wall (19-for-30, 262 yards, 1 TD, 1 INT), RB Jared Colletti (19 carries, 32 yards; 5 catches, 55 yards), WR Damaso Jaime (5 catches, 44 yards), WR James Duren (3 catches, 66 yards, 1 TD), WR Cody Fidler (4 catches, 75 yards), LB Michael Palermo (10 tackles, 1 INT), LB Connor Healy (11 tackles), DB Logan Morris (9 tackles, 1 pass breakup), DB William Price (2 tackles, 1 INT), K-P Finnegan Hall (1-for-2 XP, 1-for-1 FG; 9 punts, 363 yards, 40.2 yards per kick).

Curry: QB Justin Mullaney (21-for-36, 184 yards), RB Chris Jenkins (13 carries, 62 yards, 1 TD), WR Gabe DeSouza (5 catches, 55 yards), WR Maxx Bell (6 catches, 42 yards), LB Jake Macneil (8 tackles).

Analysis: At a team meeting prior to a week one trip to the University of New England, Coast Guard coach C.C. Grant asked his players to stand up if they've ever started a full season of college football. He got two takers, two of the Bears' four captains in wide receiver Damaso Jaime and left tackle Mason Schroder. Coast Guard picked up a 16-0 victory over the Nor'easters in spite of its inexperience, with first-year quarterback Tafari Wall throwing his first career touchdown and sneaking the ball into the end zone for another. "The nice thing about playing this game is the kids get to actually look at themselves (on film) against an opponent and they can see right away the glaring mistakes that they did wrong. So you get a chance to go into practice and correct those things," Grant said. "You would think there would be a big jump in execution between week one and week two." Now, on to the next one. Curry is coming off a 41-7 loss at MIT, allowing 452 yards offense (261 passing, 191 rushing). Curry is big; offensive lineman Josias Roman is 6-foot-5, 350 pounds, for instance. Meanwhile, Grant is anxious to see how Wall improves at the quarterback position minus his first-game jitters, how the offensive line can improve its run blocking and whether the defense can clamp down on giving up third-down conversions. "I think all of those things come into play against a team that's very big, very physical," Grant said. Said Coast Guard wide receiver Cody Fidler, who had a team-best 75 yards recieving last week: "We like to use the 24-hour rule. Enjoy (the win) for 24 hours and then get back to work, trying to bring high energy, just get better, get ready for Curry this weekend." ... Coast Guard has two straight victories in the series, winning 17-7 in 2019, as then-senior RJ Robiskie had three sacks and forced a fumble. ... The game will be livestreamed at ... Coast Guard punter/kicker Finnegan Hall was named the New England Women's and Men's Athletic Conference Special Teams Player of the Week last week. He placed five of his nine punts inside the 10 (three at the 10, one at the 7 and one at the 1), with a long of 63 yards. "Now you're looking at if you're backed up, flipping the field," Grant said of Hall. ... Curry's roster features a pair of Griswold High School graduates in sophomore wide receiver Andrew Koziol (the Wolverines' former quarterback) and sophomore linebacker Michael Sims.

— Vickie Fulkerson


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