Football Notebook: Perkins Takes it to the House in First Collegiate Game
Northern Arizona (1-1, 0-0 BSC) at Portland St. (1-0)
5:07 p.m., Sept. 17, 2011, Portland, Ore.
Sodexo Lumberjack Radio Network-105.1 The Big Talker/Comcast Sportsnet
FLAGSTAFF, Ariz. – Redshirt freshman Jamaal Perkins made a huge impact the first time he touched the ball in a Lumberjack uniform. After Fort Lewis had kicked a field goal to cut the lead to 14-3 in the first quarter Saturday, Perkins fielded a bouncing ball at the one-yard line and quickly made a name for himself.
Perkins returned it 99-yards for a touchdown, the third longest kickoff return for a touchdown in school history and longest since 1994. There have been two 100-yard kickoff returns in school history by Len Raney vs. Idaho State (1994) and Randy Farrell vs. Drake (1974). He finished the game with two kickoff returns for 132 yards and five carries for 37 yards and a touchdown. He was named Kick Returner of the Week by the College Football Performance Awards.
"It felt great. It bounced at the four and I picked up and took it to the house," said Perkins. "My blockers made it happen. I just finished it off for them. That is my way of showing off my appreciation for the blocking."
Perkins ran back two kickoffs in high school for Rio Mesa High School in Oxnard, Calif., where he set the school record for most rushing yards in a season with 1,275 yards and 12 touchdowns as a senior.
"It felt even better," said Perkins of the rushing touchdown. "Last year I was a little frustrated after redshirting. It felt good to bounce back in my first game playing."
Three Dot Data...NAU opens Big Sky Conference play at Portland State this week...NAU is 24-16 all-time in Big Sky openers...The Lumberjacks opened at Idaho State last season, winning 32-7...Portland State and NAU are both playing in renovated stadiums this season...The Lumberjacks will get their first look at JELD-WEN Field ...NAU opens the Walkup Skydome last week to rave reviews from their fans...NAU
leads the Big Sky in rush defense, allowing 54 yards per game...Portland State rushed for 335 yards and six touchdowns in its win over Southern Oregon...NAU freshman WR Ify Umodu has 14 catches for 249 yards and two touchdowns in his first two collegiate games...NAU QB Cary Grossart has an efficiency rating of 180.9. He is completing 76.6 percent of his passes. Head Coach Jerome Souers is coaching his 150th game at NAU today.
Not If But When... Ify Umodo is off to an amazing start this season. Umodo, a sophomore, caught seven passes for 149 yards and two touchdowns in NAU's win over Fort Lewis. He has 14 catches for 239 yards and two touchdowns this season. He ranks seventh in FCS in receiving yards per gameand tied for 19th in receptions per game. He had four catches for 43 yards and no touchdowns in 2010.
Dixon Adds Big Run...For the second consecutive game in the Skydome, junior Givannie Dxon broke a big play. He had a 75-yard run against Portland State last season in the season finale and added an 82-yard score against Fort Lewis. He joins former Walter Payon Award winner Archie Amerson as the only two players to record to scoring runs from scrimmage of 75 yards or more in a career. Amerson did it twice in 1996. The 82-yard run is tied for the fourth-longest run from scrimmage in school history.
State of Oregon Connections...QB Jordan Perry (Portland) and OT Alex Mott (Troutdale) are both from the state of Oregon. DL Isaac Bond is from Vancouver, Wash., just north of the border from Portland. NAU also has two transfers this season from the University of Oregon: DB Mike Dosen and WR Nick Cole (left).
"Both are tremendous student-athletes," said Head Coach Jerome Souers, speaking of the Oregon transfers.