Western Kentucky visits Florida International on Saturday

WKU Insider provides a preview of the Hilltoppers visit to FIU on Saturday

Date: Nov. 21, 2015
Game Time: 1:30 p.m.
Location: FIU Stadium, Miami, Fla.
Television: ESPN News
  Play by Play: Mike Morgan
  Analyst: JC Pearson
 Sideline: Steffi Sorensen


Balmy, but thunderstorms are expected. The Weather Channel forcasts temperatures at kickoff to be 80 degrees, with an 80 percent chance of thunderstorms. The chances of thunderstorms increase throughout the game.  In short, just an average autumn day for south Florida.

About the Hilltoppers and Panthers

  • Western Kentucky enters the game at 8-2 overall and a perfect 6-0 in Conference USA play.
  • FIU is coming off a 52-0 loss at Marshall last weekend and is currently 5-6 overall, 3-4 in C-USA.
  • The Hilltoppers carry an nine-game winning streak over C-USA opponents into the game, the second-longest active streak in the country vs. conference opponents, behind only Ohio State (15).
  • WKU QB Brandon Doughty, an All-American candidate, leads the FBS in completion percentage (72.7), while ranking third in TDs (34) and fourth in yds (3,590)
  • Against FAU, Ace Wales became just the 20th RB in C-USA history with four consecutive 100+ yard rushing games against league opponents. QB Brandon Doughty also became the ninth active QB to throw, rush and catch a TD pass in their career.
  • The Panthers are led by sophomore Alex McGough, who has completed 252-of-390 passes for 2,627 yards and 21 touchdowns. His 21 passing touchdowns and 2,627 passing yards are both single-season school records.
  • Sophomore Alex Gardner enters this week’s action having rushed for 712 yards on 177 carries and eight touchdowns. Gardner’s eight rushing touchdowns ranks No. 5 all-time at FIU for a single season. He also leads the team in receptions.
  • Hilltopper running back Anthony Wales leads C-USA in rushing yards per attempt (7.8) and has posted four-straight 100-yard games against league opponents.
  • WKU reciever Taywan Taylor ranks ninth in FBS in receiving yards (1051), 9th in receiving yards per game (105.1) and T-4th in TDs (13).

3 Things for FIU

1. Contain Wales. It seems all Anthony Wales does is run for more than 100 yards against C-USA competition.  It happens again, visitors win.
2. Keep Up. Marshall had its way with the Panther defense last weekend and its not likely that WKU will take it easy on the home team just because its Senior Day.  The Panthers offense will need to find a way to keep up.
3. Hope for Rain. Wet weather is often the great equalizer in football.

3 Things for WKU

1. Stay Focused. There is always the fear of a let-down game. Being in the warm ocean air on a Saturday afternoon can have a calming effect. Tops must stay focused.
2. Run. The emergence of Anthony Wales has been a key to WKU's undefeated mark in league play.  Keep that theme going.
3. Limit Errors. Bad weather or not, if the Hilltoppers don't hurt themselves with turnovers and unforced penalties they win big.

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