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Langston football looking to open season at 3-0 (1748 hits)


LANGSTON, Okla. By Nick Snow


nicksnow@stwnewspress.com


Coming off a huge win over Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference member Tuskegee, the Langston University Lions hope to continue their surge against Division II opponents as they travel to St. Joseph, Mo., to face Missouri Western State.


We try to prepare mentally, like we always do for our opponents, Langston coach Mickey Joseph said. We try to get it together and make sure were mentally sound. Physically, I think were ready, but we still have to work on things mentally.


For Langston, a win at Missouri Western would mark the first time since 1996 that the Lions have started 3-0.


We talked about it at the beginning of the season, Joseph said. We have 10 mile-markers and were at the third mile-marker right now. They understand that were going to prepare the same way we prepared for Tuskegee and Arkansas Pine-Bluff. After that, were going to put everything on the table and go after them.


If there is any concern for the Lions, its that they might suffer from a hangover effect after wins over Arkansas Pine-Bluff and Tuskegee to start the season.


What do you take after hangovers? Tylenol? Joseph said. Im the Tylenol. I bring it right out of them. But you know what, our kids have such great character and great integrity. They know how to come back, and they know thats one game and thats a game thats gone. Were going to come back and try to do what we always do, so I dont think theres going to be a hangover.


Another thing that has Joseph concerned is the ability of Missouri Western States quarterback Travis Partridge to turn something out of nothing.


They have a great quarterback, who is the coachs son, Joseph said. When you play coachs sons, you cant make mistakes. They also have a real solid defense and are great on special teams, so we have to make sure that in all three phases of the game were solid. I think if we get through that, I think well be OK.


On the positive side, this years Lions team has a lot more speed than in past years. Joseph said he hopes to use that speed to disrupt Partridges rhythm and force a few turnovers.


Theyre a great football team, Joseph said. Theyve had a winning record for the last five or six years, so we know we need to cut down on our mental mistakes and play hard. We just have to use our speed on both sides of the ball to our advantage. ... We expect everybody we put out there to play well not just one or two players. We need them all to play well and work together in order for having a chance to win.


While the Lions wont have to travel nearly as far for this game, the game does start a little earlier with an 11:00 a.m. kickoff. Still, Joseph says the earlier kickoff shouldnt affect his team.


Its 1:00 p.m. somewhere, Joseph said. Thats all were looking at. We cant control the time of the game. Were going to bump everything up early, then its going to be 11:00 a.m. and we have to play.


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Sunday, September 25th 2011 at 5:51AM
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