James Madison upsets Virginia Tech

By Nick Bellofatto

James Madison Athletics
James Madison did its best 2007 Appalachian State impression by handing a Top 25 BCS opponent – Virginia Tech – its second loss of this early season.

Ranked No. 13 in the BCS national polls, VA Tech was upset 21-16 by the Dukes. The win is considered the second-biggest upset in a matchup between a Football Championship Subdivision and a Football Bowl Subdivision college football team, right behind ASU’s win over No. 5 Michigan during the first week of the 2007 season.

The Dukes are coming off a 2009 season in which it was only one game over .500 and played the second half of the season without its starting quarterback.

However, with quarterback Drew Dudzik back in the picture, the Dukes opened up with a 48-7 win over Morehead State and then defeated the in-state rival Hokies in surprising fashion.

With this second win, JMU moved up nine spots in the FCS polls from No. 12 to No. 3.

Dudzik, who was injured the last half of the 2009 season, is back in his starting position and has already compiled seven touchdowns through only two games (four rushing, three passing).

With their starting quarterback performing at such a high level, it’s not surprising that the Dukes look as if they are ready to shake things up in the FCS Top 25 this year.

Villanova could move to Big East

National Champion Villanova is reportedly thinking about taking on one of the hardest conferences in the FBS and moving into the Big East conference for the 2011 season.

Fresh off of a 35-0 win at Lehigh, the Wildcats climbed back into the top spot in the FCS polls with 74 of a possible 139 first place votes.

In second place came the Mountaineers (2-0), with 25 first place votes and JMU in third with 30 first place votes.

Even though the season has just begun, many analysts are already looking toward a 2011 Wildcats team that could be moving to the FBS and the very competitive Big East. All other Villanova sports teams have been part of the Big East conference since the second year of the conference’s existence.

This is not the first time that the Wildcats have been offered a chance to join the Big East in football, such was the case in 1997, with the Wildcats declining the invitation. Today, the Big East is made up of eight football teams.

According to the Philadelphia Daily News, the Big East has not made a formal offer to Villanova, but the conference is ready to accept the Wildcats if they settle on making the move.

Riddle nears record

Senior quarterback Scott Riddle will become the Southern Conference’s all-time leader in passing yards if he throws for just 79 yards next Saturday.

Elon is playing Division II Shaw this Saturday and Riddle is entering the game as the active passing leader in the FCS.

Entering the game with 10,314 career passing yards, Riddle looks to surpass the Mountaineers’Armanti Edwards in the statistical category. Edwards finished last season and his career with 10,392 passing yards making him the all-time passing leader in this Southern Conference.

This would not be the first record for Riddle, who already owns the Southern Conference all-time records for completions, touchdown passes and pass attempts. Riddle led the league in passing yards three times, and is looking to etch his name onto another record this coming Saturday.

Nick Bellofatto can be reached at [email protected]