Illinois Wesleyan football coach Norm Eash closes out his 26th season when the Titans visit Elmhurst on Saturday. (Photo by Eric Stock/WJBC)
By Eric Stock
BLOOMINGTON - Illinois Wesleyan football coach Norm Eash got his wish that Saturday's season finale at Elmhurst would have playoff implications.
The problem is, the playoff implications are only for their opponent.
Elmhurst (8-1) looks to wrap up an NCAA Div. III playoff berth when the Bluejays host the Titans in a College Conference of Illinois and Wisconsin game at Langhorst Field on Saturday.
"The pressure is on them. They have everything to lose and we have nothing to lose, really," Eash said.
The Titans come in on a three-game losing streak after winning their first six games of the season.
"I just want to see the old Titan football team that I saw the first six weeks. I want us to play hard. I want us to play hard with some confidence and make some plays," Eash said.
Junior nose tackle Zach Szykowny said the key to controlling the Bluejays and CCIW-leading rusher Scott Williams (1,542 rushing yards, 18 touchdowns) is to limit the big play.
"The last few weeks, especially against Augustana, it was all big plays, otherwise we think we did a pretty good job of shutting them down and limiting them for the rest of the game," Szykowny said.
Conversely, the offense lacked the big game-changing play which starting offensive lineman Niall Mulcahy said would help their cause on Saturday.
"I thought offensively we played solidly, but there was really no spectacular big plays that anyone and I feel like if we could do that this week it wold make a big difference," Mulcahy said.
Eric Stock can be reached at email@example.com.