William & Mary Preview
Courtesy: Mat Schlissel, TowsonTigers.com  
Release: 09/13/2012
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The Towson Tigers (0-1) open up their conference season on Saturday, Sept. 15 at 12 p.m. against William & Mary Tribe (0-2) at Unitas Stadium.
 
Last year, the Tigers beat the Tribe, 38-27 in Williamsburg. It was their first win in the eight-game series which started back in 1992. Sophomore running back Terrance West led the Tigers with 141 yards on 23 carries and scored three touchdown. The Tribe's Jonathan Grimes ran for 133 yards on 30 attempts with a score.
 
William & Mary head coach Jimmye Laycock owns a career record of 213-153-2 and is in his 33rd season at the helm of the Tribe. Albany, a future CAA football member, has the only active Division I head coach (Bob Ford, 40 years) who has been at his respective program longer than Laycock.
 
The Tribe opened the season with a 7-6 loss at the University of Maryland two weeks ago. They followed that with a 17-14 defeat at home in a downpour against Lafayette last Saturday.
 
One thing that stands out about William & Mary is its defense. In two games, the Tribe have allowed just 2.6 yards per carry and 203 total rushing yards. They've also forced five turnovers and picked off three passes.
 
Offensively, W&M has struggled with consistency at the quarterback position, using three different players. Junior Brent Caprio (6-1, 212) started against Maryland but was sidelined by an injury to his non-throwing shoulder in the first half. Sophomore Raphael Ortiz (6-3, 220) relieved him and performed well. But he was the third-string quarterback, so with junior Michael Graham (6-4, 224) recovering from a foot injury, Ortiz got the start against Lafayette as Caprio sat with the shoulder injury.
 
Graham struggled against the Leopards so Laycock went back to Ortiz to find a spark. He produced a late touchdown to narrow the final margin. Ortiz, who is big and agile, looks like the starter against Towson as Graham and Caprio are both injured.
 
Ortiz has 159 yards passing (11-of-25) and one touchdown in a backup role in the first two games.
 
There's no doubt that there is talent on offense, especially at wide receiver. The Tribe is led by senior Ryan Moody (5-11, 175), who started just three times in 2011 due to injuries but still managed 10 catches for 174 yards. In 2010, Moody posted 47 receptions for 731 yards and two touchdowns, earning second-team All-Colonial Athletic Association (CAA) honors. Sophomore Tre McBride (6-1, 190) leads the team with 11 catches for 188 yards and two touchdowns.
 
At running back, Grimes is gone but William & Mary has a plethora of talented backs to replace him, led by sophomore Keith McBride II (6-0, 215) who tallied 55 yards on 10 carries at Maryland. He was the backup to Grimes in 2011, who ran for 1,431 yards and 10 touchdowns, earning All-America honors.
 
The W&M offensive line is anchored by senior Mike Salazar (6-5, 308) who has started all 25 games during the past three seasons.
 
On defense, the Tribe has a sturdy and experienced defensive line. Junior George Beerhalter (6-3, 280) recorded 3.5 sacks with 35 tackles last year. This year, he has nine tackles. Sophomore DE Stephen Sinnott (6-4, 245) has a sack and two fumble recoveries in two games. Junior Bryan Stinnie (6-4, 255) adds eight tackles at defensive end.
 
Senior OLB Jabrel Mines (6-0, 215) leads the linebacking corps. Mines led the Tribe in tackles last year with 109, adding two picks and two fumble recoveries. He's third in tackles this year with 14. Redshirt freshman Luke Rhodes (6-2, 230) leads the team in tackles with 20 with a pass breakup and three tackles for loss.
 
The secondary is led by senior corner B.W. Webb (5-11, 180), a two-time All-CAA first-team selection. He has 11 career interceptions. This year, Webb has five tackles and two pass breakups. Last season, he had two picks and three pass breakups, though his numbers would be higher if more teams attacked him.
 
Redshirt freshman Deandre Houston-Carson (6-1, 190) recorded an interception in his first game action at Maryland and last week, recorded nine tackles.
 
At strong safety, senior Brian Thompson (5-11, 215) was a Preseason All-CAA pick and has one interception so far this year. Junior free safety Jerome Couplin III (6-2, 210) forced a fumble at Maryland and has 10 tackles on the season.
 
On special teams, Webb averages six yards per punt return and 16.5 yards per kick return. Junior Drake Kuhn has punting (41.5 yds/punt) and kicking duties (2-of-3 field goals). Last year, he made 10-of-14 kicks with a long of 45 yards.

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