Ball State Cardinals
Raymond James Stadium (65,857/Natural Grass)
BIG EAST Network/ESPN3.com
— Jim Barbar and Doug Graber
WFLA-AM 970 (flagship)
Saturday’s game will be the first meeting between USF and Ball State … The Bulls will look to extend their perfect streak in home-openers, taking a 14-0 record into Saturday’s game … USF lost its last two home games of 2010 and is looking to avoid its first three-game slide at Raymond James Stadium in program history.
22/rv USF (1-0)
Skip Holtz (Notre Dame ’86)
9-5, second season at USF
81-55, 12th season as collegiate head coach
USF added to its impressive list of “program-defining” victories with a 23-20 win at No. 16/18 Notre Dame in a matchup that took 5 hours and 59 minutes to complete … The Bulls registered their seventh win against a top-25 program since joining the BIG EAST in 2006 … USF was on the short end of a 508-254 discrepancy in total offense, but took advantage of five Notre Dame turnovers to get the win … The Bulls were 3-for-3 in red zone scoring chances while holding the Irish to just 2-for-6 … QB B.J. Daniels managed the offense to the tune of 128 passing yards, completing 18-of-30 attempts with one touchdown … Daniels was one of three players with at least 10 rushing attempts as RB Demetris Murray ran for 40 yards on 14 carries, and RB Darrell Scott had 33 yards on 12 runs … WR Sterling Griffin had a team-high eight receptions for 75 yards against the Irish … S Jon Lejiste and LB Michael Lanaris had a team-high 10 tackles against Notre Dame, while S Jerrell Young had a hand in two turnovers with a forced fumble and an interception … Veteran K Maikon Bonani hit three field goals against the Irish, while P Justin Brockhaus-Kann dropped three of his seven punts inside the 20-yard line.
BALL STATE (1-0)
Pete Lembo (Georgetown ’92)
1-0, first season at Ball State
80-36, 11th year as collegiate head coach
Ball State began the 2011 season with a 27-20 win against Indiana at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis … The Cardinals will play in an NFL stadium for the second straight week with the trip to Raymond James Stadium … Head coach Pete Lembo won his Ball State debut after spending five years as head coach at Elon … Lembo went 35-22 at Elon, which was 14-42 in the five seasons prior to his arrival … Ball State rushed for 210 yards and passed for 173 in the win against the Hoosiers, while holding Indiana to 103 rushing yards and 272 passing yards … QB Keith Wenning completed 23 of 29 passes for 173 yards and two touchdowns while rushing for 61 yards against the Hoosiers … Ball State registered four sacks against Indiana, with DT Nathan Ollie turning in two … After allowing Indiana to score on three of its first four drives, the Cardinals held the Hoosiers to just one field goal on their last six possessions … The Cardinals return 11 starters from the 2010 team that was 4-8 overall and 3-5 in the Mid-American Conference … Ball State radio play-by-play announcer Morry Mannies is in his 56th season as the voice of the Cardinals.