The Series: Saturday’s game will be the 91st meeting between the two teams, which includes a span of 86-straight seasons (expect 1942-45 when football was not played due to World War II). The Tigers currently own a 47-41-2 advantage in the series. The teams have played each other as members of the NCAA DII on 16 of the 90 previous occasions, with the Tigers holding a 10-6 lead.
Against the Bulldogs: ECU dropped a 13-103 decision at Fast Lane Field to SWOSU in 2012.
The Tigers were trailing 13-0 late in the second quarter before earning the final 10 points of the game, but were unable to overcome the deficit as both teams stepped up on defense.
Offensive execution and penalties became keys to the game, with ECU trailing in both categories. The Bulldogs ended the game with 128 rushing yards and 208 passing yards to the Tigers’ 16 rushing and 135 passing yards. ECU was also penalized 11 times for 86 yards to SWOSU’s seven penalties (76 yards).
The Coaches: Dan Cocannouer enters his fifth season as the head coach of the Southwestern Oklahoma State University football team in 2013. He returned home to lead his alma mater in 2009 and helped the team better its won-loss record in each of his first three seasons. After finishing 1-10 in his inaugural season, SWOSU improved to 5-6 in 2011, the first season of the Great American Conference. In 2012, the Bulldogs slipped slightly in the win column, finishing 3-7 (2-6 GAC) with three losses of 10 points or less. Overall, Cocannouer is 16-34 overall at SWOSU and 2-2 against East Central.
Tim McCarty is in his fifth season of his second stint as the East Central head football coach, with a record of 29-36 to date. McCarty was the Tiger head coach in 2004 and 2005 before spending three seasons as the top assistant at Kansas State from 2006-08.
Key Offensive Performance: The Tigers had their best offensive performance of the season against Northwestern (Oct. 19), with 599 yards of total offense, 405 passing and 194 rushing. It marked the fourth-straight week that ECU was above 400 yards of total offense, dating back to the Ouachita Baptist game (423). The Tigers added 418 yards against Henderson State, and 491 against Southern Nazarene.