Point football excited at chance to upset FCS opponent Kennesaw State

Published 10:21 pm Wednesday, August 28, 2019

VALLEY — The Point University football team was in high spirits at the end of practice on Wednesday afternoon, getting one day closer to Saturday’s season opener at Kennesaw State University.

“The majority of our players are from the state of Georgia,” Point University head football coach Julius Dixon said. “A  lot of our guys know a lot of those guys. For us, it’s the first game seeing, other than ourselves, running into somebody. I just want to go out there and execute. I want to go out there, line up and do the fundamentals. [I] want to have guys play hard, and we’ll see where it takes us.”

Point brings in a talented corps this season, led by junior safety Isaiah McFarland. McFarland was named an NAIA All-American honorable mention last season and was also on this year’s College Football America Yearbook NAIA preseason starting lineup. McFarland set a school record last season with three interceptions against Kentucky Christian University on Sept. 15, 2018. McFarland also holds the single-season records with four forced fumbles and seven interceptions.

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The Skyhawks defense as a unit is bringing back nine of last season’s 11 key players. 

“I expect to do the same thing,” McFarland said. “Have the same energy, a little more stats, get better day-by-day and lead this team to a championship.”

Kennesaw State is coming off of an 11-2 2018 season, advancing to the National Quarterfinal last winter as one of the better teams in the FCS. Although the Skyhawks are coming off of a 3-8 season last year, the team is confident in its chances to pull off the week one upset against the in-state opponent.

“We can pull off an upset most definitely if we just do what we were taught to do, what we’ve been working on, what we’ve seen in film and what we’ve been practicing,” McFarland said. “Everyone playing hard with the mindset that we’re going to be able to beat them.”

Dixon agreed with his players’ mindset heading into Saturday.

“[We need] to play a perfect game,” Dixon said. “On defense, we have to be sound running our assignment with them running the wing-t, triple-option offense, we must be fundamentally sound. We can’t give up big plays, keeping the momentum in our corner gives us the best chance to go up there and compete. I think the longer that we can hang around and play with those guys, the more confidence we’ll get and who knows at the end, we can be in the position to do what we need to do and pull off the miracle.”

Kickoff is at 6 p.m. EDT. and will be broadcasted on ESPN+.