Football Heads to University Heights to Open October Slate

Pictured: Trey Zimmer (94). Photo credit: Joe Maiorana, Impaction Action Sports Photography
Pictured: Trey Zimmer (94). Photo credit: Joe Maiorana, Impaction Action Sports Photography

Capital Crusaders (0-4, 0-3 OAC) at John Carroll University (3-1, 2-1 OAC)

Saturday, October 6, 1:30 pm  |  Don Shula Stadium (University Heights, Ohio)

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Capital notes (pdf)  |  JCU notes (coming soon)

Coming off of its loss to No. 1 Mount Union, JCU came back and routed Muskingum University, 44-7, last week. QB Anthony Moeglin and RBs Sam Kukura and Michael Canganelli drive the offense which averages 366.8 yards and 36.0 points per game. Moeglin is 58-of-96 with five touchdowns to three picks and 651 passing yards. Canganelli has stepped up in his last two games with 116 rushing yards against Mount Union and 75 yards and two touchdowns last week versus Muskingum. Canganelli is not only leading JCU in rushes but is second on the team with 11 catches (11-151-0) as well. Darrin Davis leads John Carroll with 14 snags, 167 yards and is one of three receivers with two scores. The defense spreads its success around as seen with five different players with either 18 or a team-high 19 total tackles. Thirteen different players have been in on the team's league-leading 20 sacks. DL Jimmy Thomas leads the team with 4.0 sacks (5th, OAC) and has 18 tackles. Six different players have one interception to account for the team's league-leading total. Opponents are averaging 12.6 points and 253.3 yards per game, both rankings second in the OAC.
John Carroll has won the last eight meetings against the Crusaders and holds a 9-22-1 advantage in the all-time series. The last time Capital beat JCU was in 2009, 28-20.
... the Blue Streaks defeated Capital 48-21 but earned their points with only one touchdown coming on a play of over 20 or more yards and six of their eight scoring drives going more than 60 yards in distance. JCU scored three touchdowns out of the gate before Capital's 11-play, 77-yard scoring drive that ended in a short-yard touchdown run. David Barnett and Dar Stanford both caught touchdown passes from Thomas Wibbeler, but the Blue Streaks tallied nearly 600 yards of total offense and controlled the clock to drive them toward victory. 
... the Crusaders lost to Baldwin Wallace on Homecoming Weekend, 45-17. Capital held a slim 3-0 lead exiting the first quarter but then the Yellow Jackets rattled off 31 unanswered points. The CU offense never found a rhythm after QB Thomas Wibbeler was sacked seven times. Capital still managed to display two 100-yard receivers, though one of those was senior WR Conner McCloud (7-115-0). 
Capital has a strong duo to lead the team into Saturday gamedays. The following individuals will serve as captains this season, as voted on by the team:
#13 Cory Heeter, RB, Sr.
#17 Thomas Wibbeler, QB, Sr.
The team will also dress an honorary defensive captain that will rotate each week.
Wyatt Pertuset was called upon to punt four times in last week's matchup against Baldwin Wallace over Homecoming Weekend. He totaled 182 yards in his four punts and averaged 45.5 yards per boot, a new single-game high for the junior. He also set the mark for a new personal long when he cranked one punt 55 yards downfield. Three of his four punts also pinned the Yellow Jackets inside their own 20-yard line.
This marks Pertuset's first career OAC weekly award. He is now the third Crusader to earn a Player of the Week award from the conference, this year. 
It's not Merlin's magic. It's talent. Check out some of the milestones achieved by Capital players this season!
WR Wyatt Pertuset's 1st career TD catch - 9/1 @ MSJ
WR Dar Stanford reaches 1,500 yards - 9/29 vs. BW
WR David Barnett eclipses 2,000 yards - 9/29 vs. BW
QB Thomas Wibbeler hit 50 career TD passes - 9/15 vs. Heidelberg
QB Thomas Wibbeler surpassed 5,500 passing yards - 9/29 vs. BW
QB Thomas Wibbeler surpassed 6,000 total yards - 9-29 vs. BW
LB Kane Murray tallied his 150th career tackle - 9/15 vs. Heidelberg
DB LaShaun Sanders Jr. notched his 100th tackle - 9/15 vs. Heidelberg
K Blake Middleton scored his 50th career point - 9/29 vs. BW
Still to come ... 
Barnett is 1 TD catch away from 25 in his career and 6 catches from 150 receptions
Stanford is 7 catches from 100 in his career
Wibbeler is 101 yards away from 1,500 yards this season
Middleton is six PATs away from 50 in his career
QB Thomas Wibbeler is currently second in the country in total offense with 404.5 yards per game! 
Last week, Capital was only one of 17 teams in the country in NCAA Division III to have not thrown an interception yet this year. Senior QB Thomas Wibbeler went six games without throwing a pick until last week. Even still, his lone interception ranks him 10th in the country for fewest INTs this season. He now has 52 TDs to just 15 INTs in his career, and 12 TDs to 1 INT this season.
Capital's record in October games in recent history has not been pleasant. Over the last seven seasons, Capital is 3-28 in the month of October, where the meat of the OAC schedule resides. Their 2016 win versus Otterbein snapped a streak of 19 straight losses in October. Their last October win prior to that, ironically, came at Otterbein (24-20) on 10/15/11. They defeated Baldwin Wallace in double overtime in 2016 in the final game of October for its second win, marking its best October in nearly a decade.
Capital has won the time of possession battle in all four of its games this season. In 2017, they won TOP in six of 10 games and 2016 just four times. The 2016 season turned out to be Capital's best (4-6) and in their wins the TOP sided with them just once - and only by 26 seconds. Their TOP this year is 36:20, which ranks sixth in the country at the D3 level.
Capital has lost the ball just THREE times this season compared to their opponent's six. Its +3 turnover ratio ranks their 29th in the country. The Crusaders three turnovers is the seventh fewest in NCAA Division III.
After making the transition from QB to WR prior to the 2017 season, McCloud is beginning to get more and more opportunities as a slot receiver in his senior year. After making zero catches through the first two weeks, he made four grabs for 22 yards against Heidelberg (9/15) and set new career highs for catches (7) and yards receiving (115) against Baldwin Wallace (9/29) over the last two games. Both of those marks also led the team despite the loss to BW.
When junior WR/P Wyatt Pertuset (pronounced per-TWO-set) arrived on Capital's campus in 2016, the Richwood, Ohio native shared with his new teammates that he is openly gay. His teammates, in true #CapFam fashion, welcomed him still and have been tremendously supportive. To Pertuset, being him is no big deal, but he made history in week one of the college football season when he scored his first career touchdown, and the first touchdown for a community that continues to fight for acceptance.
On Sept. 1, 2018 it was reported by that with his 37-yard touchdown reception at the end of the first quarter was the first reported touchdown of any kind scored by an openly gay football player in NCAA Football, at any level. The celebratory moment was monumental for Pertuset personally for his athletic career, but for the impact he hopes to make towards other LGBTQ athletes locally and afar.
On Friday, September 21, a small piece of Wyatt's story, including the catch, was featured on a segment of ESPN's Outside the Lines when host Bob Ley used it as his selection of Underreported News of the Week. To view the video clip, go to
Junior Wyatt Pertuset came to Capital as a wide receiver. As a sophomore, he was asked to double up and become Capital's punter, a position he also played in high school (North Union High School). He then missed his sophomore season with a lis franc fracture in his foot. Now he is back as a junior, ready to go. In his first action since his freshman year, Pertuset caught his first career touchdown pass at Mount St. Joseph (9/1) and finished with three grabs for 53 yards. He also had five punts with two landing inside the 20-yard line. This year he has 14 punts and averaging 37.6 yards per boot and registered a long of 55 against Baldwin Wallace (9/29). He also has landed five inside the 20-yard line and induced three fair catches. On the WR front, he has eight catches, 136 yards and one TD.


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