No. 16 UC Davis Readies For No. 5 Cal Poly In Matchup Of Last Year's GWFC Champions

Tony Kays had 212 receiving yards in last year's exciting 20-13 win by UC Davis. <br> (Wayne Tilcock, Davis Enterprise)
Tony Kays had 212 receiving yards in last year's exciting 20-13 win by UC Davis.
(Wayne Tilcock, Davis Enterprise)

Oct. 4, 2006

Complete UC Davis Game Notes in PDF Format
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Complete Cal Poly Game Notes in PDF Format
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No. 16 UC DAVIS (2-2)
No. 5 CAL POLY (4-1)

Saturday, October 7, 2006
6:00 p.m. (PDT) • San Luis Obispo, Calif.
Alex G. Spanos Stadium (7,700) • Natural Grass

• UC Davis plays the final game of its season-opening five-game road trip (covering 10,968 miles) by playing Cal Poly, its fourth consecutive ranked team... The Mustangs are the highest-ranked Div. I-AA team on the schedule so far and the second consecutive in the top 10. • Since 1949, UC Davis has started a season with two road games 11 times, and once with three straight (1978), but has never started with five. • The Mustangs are the first team the Aggies have a history with since playing Northern Colorado in the opener... The past three opponents were first-time foes... Another first-time opponent - Central Arkansas - is on tap next week. • UC Davis is 1-1 in Great West Football Conference openers over the past two seasons - both games coming against South Dakota State... The Aggies lost 16-14 at SDSU in last year's conference opener. • The Aggies and Cal Poly each finished 4-1 in league play in 2005 with UC Davis winning the head-to-head matchup, 20-13 at Toomey Field. • UC Davis has won six of the past eight games against the Mustangs, including the last two overall, and the last four at San Luis Obispo. • The Aggies are coming off the first of two byes on the 2006 schedule... The other is Nov. 11... UC Davis was 0-2 last season after a week off with losses coming at South Dakota State and Eastern Washington. • The Aggies are one win away from posting their 11th consecutive season with at least three road wins... Another win would also put them halfway to their goal of securing a 37th consecutive winning season, the most among non-Div. III schools. • UC Davis is also trying to avoid a 2-3 record after five games for the second straight season and the third time in head coach BOB BIGGS' era (1996 was the other). • This weekend's game is a matchup of Cal Poly's defense which is ranked No. 3 overall, No. 1 against the pass and No. 1 in points allowed vs. the Aggies offense which (if eligible to be officially ranked) is No. 4 in passing, No. 12 in total offense and tied for No. 21 in scoring. • Similarily, UC Davis is tied for No. 2 in sacks allowed (2 all season) while the Cal Poly defense is No. 6 in sacks gained (18 in `06). • QB Jon Grant has enjoyed success against Cal Poly, having thrown completed 42 of 84 passes for 700 yards and 3 TD's the past two games, including a career-high 393 yards at San Luis Obispo in 2004. • WR Tony Kays has enjoyed similar success, having caught 19 passes for 328 yards and a TD the last two meetings... He had a career-high 212 yards (on 13 catches) in last year's 20-13 win at Toomey Field while catching the game-winning TD pass from Grant with 13 seconds to play in 2004. (UCD, 36-33) • Cal Poly is the last team to post a shutout against UC Davis, having done so with a 19-0 win in 1990... The Aggies' scoring streak now stands at 182 games while its run of games with at least 200 yards of total offense is at 403 games. • UC Davis has had two players named National Player of the Week by Don Hansen's Football Gazette - DE Mike Ng (3 sacks vs. No. Colo.) and Grant (324 yds, 5 TDs) vs. Montana State. • Grant is on the 16-player "watch list" for the Walter Payton Award for the top I-AA player... Grant is currently No. 6 in I-AA in pass yds/gm (261.0), total offense (274.8) and No. 7 in completions/gm (20.25).

• With the transition to Division I comes more attention from national media and, as a result, more media outlets referring to UC Davis in a number of different manners.Simply, the university is either "UC Davis" or "University of California, Davis". • Incorrect references we have seen in media outlets: California-Davis, Cal-Davis, U.C. Davis, Cal St. Davis, Davis State and U.C.-Davis... A new one spotted last season was U-C Davis... An new moniker noticed on a luggage tag last week at Montana State was "U-C David"... Wow. • The Aggies thank you for helping them make a new name for themselves on the field only.

• UC Davis leads Cal Poly 16-13-2 in the all-time series between the two program... The Aggies have won the last two games overall and the last four at Cal Poly... UC Davis won 20-13 at Toomey Field last season, scoring the game-winner on a 1-yard TD by QB Jon Grant... The go-ahed score was set up by a 58-yard pass from Grant to Kays... The two teamed up for a 14-yard TD pass in 2004 at Cal Poly... The Mustangs' last win in the series was 18-14 in 2003... Their last home win against the Aggies was 17-13 in 1996.

Bob Biggs (UC Davis `73) is in his 14th season at the helm of the Aggies and his 29th with the program overall. • He owns a 110-45-1 (.708) overall record and is 52-29 (.642) on the road, 43-11-0 (.796) and entered the year 33-14 (.702) against opponents on the 2006 schedule. • Biggs is the second-winningest coach in the history of the UC Davis program. • RICH ELLERSON (Hawaii `77) is 38-24 (.613) and in his sixth season at Cal Poly... He is 42-31 (.575) and in his seventh overall which includes a 4-7 record at Southern Utah in 1996. • Ellerson, who has also coacheed at Arizona and Hawaii, has twice been named the GWFC Coach of the Year after having led the Mustangs to at least a share of the league title twice and last year's NCAA Div. I-AA Playoffs.

• The Mustangs, who advanced to last year's NCAA Quarterfinals, feature one of the top defenses in the country once again. • Cal Poly is ranked No. 3 in total defense (185.2), No. 1 in points allowed (8.2), No. 1 in pass defense (78.6) and No. 22 against the rush (106.6)... They posted a pair of shutouts to start the season. • The Mustangs have had the past two Buck Buchanan Awards winners (top I-AA defenders) in LB Jordan Beck (2004) and DE Chris Gocong (2005)... They have another candidate this year in LB KYLE SHOTWELL. • Shotwell has a team-high 53 total tackles (29 solo), 7.0 TFL's for 21 yards in losses and a sack. • LB JASON RELYEA has 35 total tackles and 2.5 sacks while Shotwell's younger brother, redshirt freshman DE RYAN, is third on the team with 29 tackles and a team-best 4.5 sacks. • SS RANDY SAMUEL has a team-best three interceptions. • Cal Poly has yet to allow a point in the first quarter. • Offensively, Cal Poly is averaging 299.4 ypg., 163.4 of which are coming on the ground. • RB JAMES NOBLE, the only other GWFC player on the Payton "watch list" besides Grant, is averaging 95.0 ypg. rushing. • QB MATT BRENNAN has thrown for 6 TD's and 645 yards and is averaging just 17.6 passes per game. • WR RAMSES BARDEN (26 rec., 455 yds, 4 TD's) is the only Mustang with at least 10 catches,100 yards and more than 1 TD reception.

• UC Davis allowed 326 yards of offense in the first half, but just 53 after the break. • Similarily, YSU scored on 5 of 6 possessions in the first half but were held scoreless all five in the second. • RB Alex Garfio had 125 all-purpose yards (48 rush, 77 receiving) for his second 100-yard day of the year... He had 130 at Northern Colorado. • QB Jon Grant had 317 yards of total offense (285 pass, 37 rush) and has 646 yards his last two games (329 at Montana State). • K Emmanuel Benjamin had a field goal for a career-high fifth straight game. • WR TONY KAYS' 38-yard TD pass to WR Kale Turner was the first TD pass by a non-QB at UC Davis since WR Billy Zeier ( a former QB in JC) hit WR Kevin Freeman for a 34-yard TD during the 2002 NCAA Div. II Playoffs at Central Washington (UCD, 24-6)... Like Kays' strike, that also was a double-pass. • Turner, a senior, has two career TD receptions, one each the past two games. • FS Jonathan Barsi's 44-yard kickoff return was a career-best and the Aggies' longest since former WR Ryan Ramey had a 98-yarder against Sacramento State in 2004... (no, Ramey didn't score). • Barsi tied a career-high with 11 tackles and LB Tyler Pringle posted a career-best with 10... UC Davis had at least two players with double-digit stops for the first time since the 2003 season finale against Northern Colorado (UNC, 35-28) when LB Kelly Valaau (13), SS A.J. Avila (12) and FS (and current UCD asst. coach) Ejiro Evero (12) accomplished it. • UC Davis went its fourth straight game without forcing a fumble and its second game without the benefit of a turnover. • P Gabe Ellis, who had a 36.4 avg. last season, had a 47-yard effort at YSU, marking the third game where he has had a punt of at least 47 yards. • QB Jon Grant had 37 rushing yards, marking the seventh time in 25 starts he's had at least that many. • UC Davis was 10 of 16 on "critical downs" (2 of 2 on 4th; 8 of 14 on 3rd)... The Aggies were 4 of 5 on third down in the fourth quarter. • The Aggies had just one drive of at least 10 plays; that coming on a 15-play, 72-yard drive in the fourth that led to a 24-yard field goal by Benjamin... Likewise, the longest drive was 4:34 and resulted in a touchdown. • UC Davis' average starting position was its own 20 while YSU, on average, started on its own 37... In the second quarter, when the Penguins scored 21 points, their average starting spot was their own 44.

• UC Davis is starting a season with five straight games for the first time ever... (The schedule was set up with home games later in the slate in the hopes UC Davis would be able to play in its new stadium. Due to construction delays, that will not happen this year). • The Aggies will travel 10,968 roundtrip miles during their first five games: Northern Colorado (1,832); TCU (2,850); Montana State (1,472); Youngstown State (4,346) and Cal Poly (468). • Mix in a 2,698-mile roundtrip to South Dakota State in October and the Aggies will have covered 13,666 miles for 2006. • The 2006 schedule also has UC Davis playing road games in each of the Pacific (Cal Poly), Mountain (MSU, UNC), Central (TCU, SDSU) and Eastern timezones (YSU).

• The Aggies enter the season with 36 consecutive winning seasons, the longest active streak of any non-Division III school in the country. • UC Davis has not had a losing record since a 3-7 mark in 1969. • The streak has been in jeopardy heading into the final game of the season five times, but last year marked the first time the Aggies entered the season-finale with a .500 record and needed a victory to secure the winning record. • Former coach JIM SOCHOR (1970-88) started the streak, it was continued by BOB FOSTER (1989-92) and has been extended by Bob Biggs (1993-present). • UC Davis is 296-97-7 (.749) during the streak.

• The Aggies' 36 straight winning seasons are synonymous with its football program, however, two other streaks are also intact in 2006. • UC Davis has scored in 182 consecutive games... The last shutout was a 19-0 defeat to Cal Poly in 1990. • The Aggies have not had less than 200 yards in total offense since a 30-12 loss to Nevada in 1969, a span that now stands at 403 games... UC Davis had 130 in that game.

• The Aggies' co-championship in the Great West Football Conference last season was their first league title since 1993... UC Davis was not affliliated from 1994-2003. • UC Davis has won at least a share of a championship during 23 of its last 25 years of conference affiliation... The other two times it was second. • Included in that run is a 20-year streak from 1971-1990 of at least a share of a conference title. • Conference affiliation (1971-81, Far Western Conference; 1982-92, Northern California Athletic Conference; American West Conference, 1993; 2004-present, GWFC).

• UC Davis welcomes back 10 players who earned recognition on the All-Great West Football Conference teams last year, including six on the first team, three on the second and one honorable mention. • Grant and Kays were named to the first team on offense with Grant also earning Co-Offensive Player of the Year accolades (with James Noble of Cal Poly). • DE James Amos, DT John Faletoese, DE Mike Ng and FS Jonathan Barsi were named to the first-team defense. • OT Elliot Vallejo and CB Nevan Bergan were voted to the second-team along with PK Emmanuel Benjamin. • CB Adam Cook was selected honorable mention.

• UC Davis allowed just 87.5 rushing ypg. last season, a mark that would've ranked it No. 2 in I-AA had the Aggies been eligible to be officially ranked. • The Aggies held seven of 11 opponents below 100 yards rushing, including ranked teams No. 16 North Dakota State (3 yards), No. 10 Cal Poly (50) and No. 7 New Hampshire (81), as well as Northern Colorado (31), Portland State (33), Stanford (74) and Sacramento State (99). • The 87.5 avg is the second-lowest in school history behind 1983 (68.2). • UC Davis allowed just seven rushing touchdowns, including just one during a six-game stretch in midseason. • Four players who started last year on the front line - DE Mike Ng, DE James Amos, DT John Faletoese and DT Naveen Daftari - return this season. • However, the starting `05 linebacking corps of WLB Ben Reece, MLB Dan Elbanna and SLB NOLAN DEGRAAF - all graduated...Reece and Elbanna were the top two tacklers last season, respectively. • Sure, the rushing defense in 2005 was outstanding, but so was the defense overall... Consider these I-AA "unofficial, official" defensive rankings: Total defense (8th, 282,6), passing efficiency (4th, 96.03); 3rd-down conversion (2nd, .276); scoring (16.7) and sacks avg. (T10th, 2.91).

• WR Tony Kays earned a pair of preseason second-team All-America honors by The Sports Network, Don Hansen's Football Gazette and by • QB Jon Grant was named a preseason second-team All-America by and a third-team by Don Hansen's Football Gazette. • CB Nevan Bergan was named a preseason second-team All-America by Don Hansen's Football Gazette. • Grant was named to the 16-player "watch list" for the Walter Payton Award, given to the top player in Div. I-AA. • Four Aggies received mention by Matt Dougherty, Executive Director of I-AA Football for The Sports Network, as being among the top returning players at their positions... Those players are Kays (No. 3, wide receivers), Grant (No. 4, quarterbacks), Bergan (No. 8; cornerbacks) and John Faletoese (No. 9, defensive tackles). • DE Mike Ng was named the GWFC Defensive Player of the Week after three sacks against Northern Colorado... He was also named National Player of the Week by Don Hansen's Football Gazette. • QB Jon Grant was named the GWFC Offensive Co-Player of the Week and the Offensive Co-Player of the week by Don Hansen's Football Gazette after his performance against Montana State.

• WR Tony Kays suffered an ankle injury against Northern Colorado which sidelined him for most of the game and was hampered still against TCU... However he returned to his recent form with a 10 rec., 143-yard performance with 3 TD's against Montana State. • It was his sixth game with at least 10 catches and ninth with at least 100 yards.. The three scores are a career-high and match his total from 2005. • It was reminiscent of his performance last year which set new Aggie standards. • His 93 total catches broke the previous school record of 75 by Michael Oliva (2001) for an overall season and 55 for a regular season by Charley Enos (2000). • The 93 were also most among Div. I-AA receivers. • His 1,213 yards are most for a regular season at UC Davis. • Kays tied the school record for single-game catches with 12 in the opener against New Hampshire and then broke it with 15 a week later against Portland State. • He had six games with at least 115 receiving yards, including 212 (on 13 receptions) versus Cal Poly. • He was named All-American by Associated Press (2nd), The Sports Network (3rd) and Don Hansen's Football Gazette (2nd). • He left the UNC game without a catch, ending a streak of 19 straight games with at least one grab... Kays only has gone catchless just four times in 33 career games. • Kays added 7 reception for 71 yards and a TD against Youngstown State on Sept. 23.

• QB Jon Grant is on track to become the Aggies' first three-year starter since J.T. O'SULLIVAN (1999-2001) and only the third - along with former New York Jets QB KEN O'BRIEN (1980-82) - in the past 25 years. • His 324-yard performance at Montana State only enhanced an already outstanding Aggie career. • He now has seven career 300-yard efforts with a career-best 393 at Cal Poly in `04... Grant has 700 yds vs. Poly in `05 & `06. • His 5 TD strikes against Montana State surpassed his previous career-best of four against South Dakota State and were one off the school record. • Grant had four 300-yard passing games last season, including 373 at Stephen F. Austin... He had 307 a week earlier against Cal Poly. • Grant also rushed for a team-high six touchdowns in 2005, and has two more so far this season. • His 23.55 completions/game last year would've ranked No. 8 nationally, his passing yards (261.2) would've been 14th and his total offense (273.3) 16th. • He is a two-time first-team All-GWFC quarterback is No. 5 on the career passing yards chart at UC Davis with 5,893.

• CB Nevan Bergan had a breakout year in 2005 after entering the year with just one career interception. • He had seven picks last year, including two each against New Hampshire and North Dakota State, which tied him for second-most in a single season at UC Davis. • His average of 0.64 int/game was third-best among I-AA players. • Bergan led the GWFC in interceptions and had 17 passes defended (interceptions & breakups combined), which put him fifth nationally. • He added another pick with his 27-yard return at Montana State, giving him nine interceptions for his career (T6th at UC Davis).

• Five players who started last season return for the Aggies in 2006 as the team looks to improve its rushing average of 99.5 ypg. • LT Kyle Skierski and RT Elliot Vallejo anchor the line from the outside, each having started the past 25 games.. Skierski split time between guard and tackle, playing the last five at the latter. • C Timothy Keane enters the season having started all of last season and is working on 15 straight starts. • RG Jonathan Compas started the first six games of last season before being sidelined by injury while LG MARIO GONZALES started the last five games of the year. • The group is off to a good start in 2006, having allowed just two sacks in 151 passing plays... The lone sacks came against TCU and Youngstown State.

• RB Nelson Doris, who led the Aggies in rushing last year with 328 yards and scored a pair of touchdowns in the upset of Stanford, will redshirt this season while continuing to recover from a foot injury.

• Aggies making their way up the career charts: • QB Jon Grant is No. 4 in passing yardage (6,502), having moved passed FOUR other Aggie QB's already this season... He's become the fifth QB in Aggie history to surpass 6,000 career yards... He needs 136 yards to pass KEN O'BRIEN (1980-82, 6,637 yds) for No. 3. • Grant is No. 3 in total offense (6,741 yards)... Grant is also No. 3 in attempts (899) and 172 tries from becoming No. 1, and is No. 3 in completions (528), 142 from assuming that top spot. • WR Tony Kays has 160 career catches and is No. 5... He needs 35 to break CHARLEY ENOS' (1998-2001) mark of 194. • Kays is No. 6 with 2,102 career yards and is the sixth receiver in school history with 2,000 career yards. • CB Nevan Bergan is tied for No. 6 with 9 career interceptions... ADAM WILLIAMS (1972-73, `75) is No. 1 with 15 career picks. • PK Emmanuel Benjamin is No. 6 in career field goals (20) and PAT's (67)... He is No. 7 in field goal attempts (33) and No. 6 PAT tries (71).

• It's not unsual for teams to have players with the same last name, many times the players being brothers... But UC Davis has two players named Chris Carter... And, no, it's not a George Foreman thing where the two are brothers but have the same name. • Chris L. Carter and Chris J. Carter are both active players on this year's team... The former is a WR this season while the latter is a LB... Both are making contributions and while the stat sheet lists their middle initials to help the computer stat program from getting a short circuit, media can drop the middle initials when referring to either player. • For the record, UC Davis has three players with the last name of "Brown", two with "Grant", two with "Cook", two with "Doris" and two with "Rice". • Only the two Doris's are related... The others have no relation. • There is one Faletoese.

• UC Davis players vote for their team captains at the conclusion of the previous season. • The 2006 captains are QB Jon Grant, WR Tony Kays, DE James Amos and CB Nevan Bergan. • Kays is a captain for the second straight year.

• A key to any successful football program is a continuity in the coaching staff... UC Davis has that one nailed. • Five members of the staff enter the season with a combined 128 "coaching years" after having been together as a quintet the past 17 years. • Bob Biggs (28 years total, 13 as head coach); Assistant head coach Fred Arp (39 years); defensive coordinator LOU BRONZAN (22 years); offensive coordinator Mike Moroski (18 years) and running backs/special teams coach Greg Chapla (17 years). • For good measure, they're all graduates of UC Davis. • Arp coached his 400th career game last season.

• UC Davis will play its final season this year at venerable Toomey Field - its home since 1949 -before moving into new digs across campus at its new stadium currently being constructed. • The 10,000-12,000-seat stadium sits below grade and is expected to be ready for occupancy in early 2007... The UC Davis women's lacrosse team will be the first Aggie team to compete in the stadium. • The stadium is being constructed on a 27-acre area known as "The Triangle" on the west side of campus... It was approved by students as part of the Facilities and Campus Enhancement Initiative (FACE) in 1999. • The first phase of construction also includes lockerrooms, a press box, a scoreboard with video display board, and another amenities. • The stadium has yet to be named but as the bumper stickers say, "Ask me how!"

• UC Davis is playing its final season in Toomey Field after calling the venerable stadium "home" since playing its first game there at the end of the 1949 season. • UC Davis has compiled a 188-85-7 (.689) record at Toomey Field during that time. • The Aggies have enjoyed 14 undefeated home seasons, most recently in 2002 when it went 4-0. • UC Davis has a 10-11 record in NCAA Division II playoff games at Toomey Field. • Toomey Field is named after Irving F. "Crip" Toomey, a coach, athletic adminstrator and teacher from 1928-61.

• There are three former UC Davis players were on preseason NFL training camp rosters, with two of them earning spots this year on NFL rosters. • OT Cory Lekkerkerker (2003-04) started the 2006 season as a backup tackle with the San Diego Chargers. • TE Daniel Fells (2002-05) is with the Atlanta Falcons... He and Lekkerkerker were free agent signees out of UC Davis a year apart. • QB J.T. O'SULLIVAN (1998-2001), the all-time passing leader at UC Davis, played with the Minnesota Vikings during the preseason but was waived... He signed with New England's practice squad last week... He was drafted by the New Orleans Saints in the sixth round in 2002. • Cory's brother, Brad, retired this summer from the Oakland Raiders after spending time on their practice squad. • Former QB's KHARI JONES (1991-93) and MARK GRIEB (1994-96) have been standouts in the Canadian Football League and Arena Football League, respectively, and are former league MVP's.

• Besides becoming the all-time winningest coach at UC Davis, former mentor JIM SOCHOR has several former players and assistants who have gone to college or pro coaching careers, including: - MIKE BELLOTTI (Oregon, head coach), who played for Sochor in 1969-72 and was a subsequent assistant coach. - BOB FOSTER (California, LB coach) was an assistant coach under Sochor before taking over as head coach from 1989-92... He later was an assistant at Oregon with Bellotti, assisted Hawkins when he was at Willamette (Ore.) and is now with Cal. - PAUL HACKETT (Tampa Bay Buccaneers, QB coach), who played from 1966-68, and was an assistant at UC Davis as well a head coach at USC, Pittsburgh and an assistant with the New York Jets... His son, Nathaniel, played for UC Davis from 1999-2002 and is also on the statf at Tampa Bay. - DAN HAWKINS (Colorado, head coach), who played for the Aggies in 1981-82 and was later an assistant... He went to Colorado from Boise State this year. - CHRIS PETERSEN (Boise State, head coach), who played for UC Davis in 1985-86 and was also an assistant.

• The 2006-07 academic year marks the final year of a four-year reclassification to NCAA Division I status for UC Davis. • The Aggies, six-time winners of the Directors' Cup as the most successful Division II program, will become official members of the Big West beginning next season in most sports. • The Aggies, however, are in their third year of playing Division I schedules in all sports and are playing a full complement of Big West Conference schedules. • UC Davis will remain a member of the GWFC in football. • UC Davis announced its intention of moving to the Big West Conference and Division I in 2003.

• KHTK (1140 AM), the 50,000-watt home of the Sacramento Kings, will once again broadcast all UC Davis games. • STEVE BUZZARD (play-by-play), DOUG KELLY (analyst) and SCOTT MARSH (sidelines, studio) provide the call each week. • KDVS (90.3 FM), the UC Davis student station, also carries all of the action... Sports Director ANDREW TOMSKY will handle the duties. • It was announced earlier that the UC Davis-Cal Poly game on Oct. 7 will be broadcast nationally by the Sports Byline Radio Network, and also available worldwide on Sirius Satellite Radio, Channel 122.