Game Day Central: Duquesne
The Flames begin their most successful month under head coach Turner Gill on Saturday when they open November play against NEC conference leader Duquesne.
"4 Downs" with the Dukes
1. Liberty and Duquesne are meeting on the gridiron for the first time on Saturday. The Dukes suffered their only loss of 2017 on opening night, a 51-13 setback at South Dakota State (Aug. 31). Since then, Duquesne has reeled off seven straight victories. Both Liberty (2014) and Duquesne (2015) have made one FCS Playoffs appearance in program history.
2. Duquesne is the second NEC opponent to visit Williams Stadium in 2017. Conference foe Saint Francis (Pa.) became the first NEC team ever to leave Lynchburg with a victory, posting a 13-7 win over the Flames on Sept. 30. Saturday marks the Dukes' second straight lengthy road trip from their campus in Pittsburgh, following an Oct. 28 visit to Sacred Heart in Fairfield, Conn.
3. Duquesne QB Tommy Stuart is a first-year graduate transfer from Boise State. He ranks No. 3 nationally in completion percentage (69.6), No. 4 in passing efficiency (172.8) and No. 5 in passing TDs (22). Stuart's top target, Nehari Crawford, is tied for the national lead with 11 receiving TDs.
4. Duquesne is off to its first-ever 4-0 start in NEC play and its first 4-0 conference start since 2005, when the Dukes were MAAC members. Duquesne was won or shared four NEC titles since 2011, while Liberty has captured four Big South Conference championships during that same time span.