South Dakota at Northwestern - Sept. 22, 2012
Ryan Field - Evanston, Ill.
Northwestern Team Notes
This was the fifth meeting between Northwestern and South Dakota and the first since 1927 (the teams opened every season between 1924 and '27). NU has won every game, outscoring the Coyotes by a combined 161-16.
The Wildcats own a 4-0 start for third time in the last five seasons (5-0 in 2008 and 2010). Three wins have come against teams from BCS automatic qualifier conferences.
NU is two wins away from becoming bowl eligible for the sixth straight season and seven times in the last eight years.
NU has 13 consecutive victories against nonconference foes at home. The Wildcats have not lost to a team from outside the Big Ten at Ryan Field since losing to Duke on Sept.15, 2007
With 277 yards, NU exceeded 200 yards rushing for the third consecutive game.
The five rushing touchdowns were the most for the Wildcats since they scored five on the ground against Towson on Sept. 9, 2009.
With RB Venric Mark's 117 yards, Northwestern has had an individual reach the 100-yard rushing mark in three consecutive games (Mark, 123 vs. Vanderbilt; RB Mike Trumpy, 106 vs. Boston College) for the first time since the second week of the 2007 season.
As NU coach, Pat Fitzgerald owns a 19-9 record in September. In addition to this season, he was 4-0 as NU coach in September 2008 and 2010.
Fitzgerald has run his career record vs. nonconference foes in regular season games to 23-5.
With his 44th career win, Fitzgerald is now five victories shy of the Wildcats coaching record of 49 held by Lynn "Pappy" Waldorf (1935-46).
Northwestern forced a turnover from its opposition for the 17th straight game. The Wildcats have at least one fumble recovery or interception in 40 of the last 43 contests.
On the other side of the ball, the Wildcats did not commit a turnover for the second time in the last three games.
NU quarterbacks have yet to throw an interception this season (in 71 attempts). Going into the game, the 'Cats were one of 16 teams in the country that had not surrendered a pickoff.
Following up their 75 percent completion rate last week, the Wildcat quarterbacks completed 12-of-15 passes today (80 percent), the finest showing this season.
Northwestern was 9-of-14 in third down conversions today, running its total this season to 34-of-64 (53 percent).
Northwestern has now scored in double figures in 64 straight games.
Northwestern limited the Coyotes to 51 rushing yards. Wildcat foes have gained only 76 rushing yards combined in the past two contests.
The defense had six stops for 17 yards in losses.
Northwestern Individual Notes
QB Kain Colter, who had a 62 percent career completion percentage going into the game, was 7-of-9 today.