|The Bates backfield of running back Patrick George '13 (22) and Trevor Smith '13 (11) would love a repeat of last week, when they combined to rush for 167 rushing yards and two touchdowns.|
WILLIAMSTOWN, Mass. -- The Bates football team plays at Williams on Saturday at 1 p.m., with both teams sporting identical 1-1 records. That doesn't mean it wouldn't be a huge upset if the Bobcats can leave Weston Field with a win.
The NESCAC heavyweight Ephs are coming off of an 8-0, conference championship season in 2010, and second-year head coach Aaron Kelton sported an unblemished 9-0 career record prior to Saturday's 21-13 loss at Trinity. Part of Williams' unbeaten 2010 campaign was its 41-0 win a year ago at Garcelon Field, one of only two Bobcat losses last season that were decisive ones. Williams holds a 22-1 lead in the all-time series between the schools, which began in 1988. Bates won 10-7 at Williams in 2003.
The Bobcats' last time out was a 28-9 thrashing of Tufts last Saturday at Garcelon, their largest margin of victory since 2004. Bates has shown terrific balance thus far and no glaring weaknesses. Bates ranks fourth in the conference so far in total defense (Williams is eighth), and seventh in total offense (Williams is second). Broken down further, the Bobcat offense ranks fifth in the league in rushing (133.0 ypg) and seventh in passing (162.0 ypg). Against the pass, the Bates defense is fourth-best in the conference against the run (113.5 ypg) and sixth against the pass (170.5). Most significantly, Bates sits atop the NESCAC in turnover differential -- the Bobcats were even against another conference power, Amherst, in Week 1, but were plus-four against Tufts for an average +2.00 differential.
Read Williams College's game preview notes.