GREENVILLE, Ill. -- The Greenville College football team has been invited to host the 2012 NCCAA Victory Bowl after finishing the season as a UMAC tri-champion with an overall record of 7-2 (7-1 UMAC).
The Panthers will take on the Northwestern College Eagles in the Victory Bowl on Saturday, November 17, at noon. GC is coming off of a seven-game win streak, including a 27-16 win against Northwestern in their last game of the regular season.
The weekend of activities includes a Christian service project on Friday afternoon, a banquet Friday evening, and the game on Saturday. The Panthers and Eagles will join together in efforts to work on the nature trails in the Greenville College gullies as their service project. These trails are utilized by Greenville College students and Greenville community members for recreation. The banquet at 6:30 p.m. Friday will include both teams and will feature a guest speaker who has yet to be determined.
Greenville, Northwestern, and St. Scholastica were all tied with UMAC records of 7-1, so they will share the UMAC title this season and be considered tri-champions of the conference. The tie caused the UMAC to hold a random draw to decided who would represent the conference in the NCAA tournament, and St. Scholastica won the draw. These results allowed Greenville and Northwestern to participate in the NCAA Victory Bowl, and Greenville was invited to host.
This year will mark Greenville's fourth appearance in the Victory Bowl, and their third appearance in the last four years. In 2000, the Panthers' first Victory Bowl, GC played Northwestern, with the Eagles coming away with a 35-27 victory. Greenville appeared in the Victory Bowl again in 2009, this time playing Geneva College and losing 29-28 when the opposition had a come-back field goal with 19 seconds left in the game. Last year, Greenville took on Campbellsville and the Panthers faced a tough 21-7 defeat. GC is sure to be back with a vengeance to redeem themselves this year at the Bowl.
Greenville's offense has been impressive this season with 439.3 yards per game. This included 314 of those yards rushing and 125.3 yards passing. The offense has been led by running back Immanuel Gamble and quarterback Brendan Chambers. Both men are juniors and had considerable rushing yardage this season. Gamble ran for 1073 total yards and Chambers added 685 for the Panthers.
Defensively, GC was also strong with 546 tackles and 13 sacks this season. Blake Bateaste, Bryce Wright, Robert Deering, Cody Lopez, and Jacob Bronars provided the strongest defensive presence for Greenville. Bateaste was credited with 46.5 tackles, Wright had 45.5, Deering picked up 41, Lopez made 35.5, and Bronars recorded 35 tackles along with 3.5 sacks.
Ordell Walker is in his third year of GC head coach and was named UMAC Coach of the Year in 2010. Walker hopes to lead his team to their first Victory Bowl win in school history next week. and has a chance to do that this Saturday.