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September 13, 2013

Game Notes: Bethune-Cookman

Game No. 3 vs. FCS No. 23 Bethune-Cookman, Saturday, Sept. 14, at Alfonso Field at FIU Stadium marks the renewal of one of FIU's oldest football rivalries. The Wildcats, along with annual opponent, Florida Atlantic, were on the Panthers'inaugural 2002 schedule.

The two-game series renewal with Bethune-Cookman will continue with another
game to be played at Alfonso Field at FIU Stadium in 2014.

The two teams first squared off during FIU's fi rst two seasons playing football in
2002 and 2003. The Panthers played at the Football Championship Subdivision
(FCS) for its fi rst three seasons before transitioning to the Football Bowl Subdivision (FBS) in 2005.

Brian Jenkins has had a successful history coaching on teams that went a
combined 7-0 playing against FIU. From 2002-08, Jenkins was Running Backs/
Special Teams Coach at former Sun Belt Conference foe Louisiana-Lafayette.
In 2009, Jenkins then coached wide receivers at Rutgers, which FIU played
during its non-conference schedule.

A week after having a school-record 13 first-time starters, another four Panthers made their fi rst debut starts vs. UCF. This season 17 players have earned their fi rst career starts, including eight on offense, seven on defense and two special
teams (kicker and punter).

Bethune-Cookman: FIU's Dieugot Joseph's
brother, Josue Joseph, is currently a sophomore offensive lineman for the Wildcats. FIU's Jeremiah McKinnon's cousin, Cedric McKinnon, was a star linebacker in the late 1988-90.

FIU's 2013 schedule has been tough, to say the least. According to TeamRankings.
com, which measures schedule strength, the Panthers have played the 16th toughest non-conference schedule thus far. FIU's four non-conference opponents are a combined 8-0 on the season heading into week No. 3. Upcoming, FCS Bethune-Cookman are the reigning MEAC champion, while No. 8 Louisville was last season's BIG EAST Champion.

Still critical to mention, as far as returning starters and players who logged at
least one career start, FIU appears to have the youngest roster in the nation. The opening day ACTIVE roster featured 22 players with a combined 122 career starts. Those 22 players also included just four primary starters from the 2012 season (one on offense and three on defense). Take into account, FIU had the most veteran roster in the nation in 2012 with 55 players, including more than 30 seniors, with a combined 762 career starts.

The back-to-back home games vs. Florida
schools marks the fi rst time that occurrence has occurred for FIU and just the third time the Panthers have faced Sunshine State programs in back-to-back games all-time. The last time was in 2009, FIU traveled to top-ranked Florida in
the 11th game before closing the year at home vs. Florida Atlantic.


GAME DETAILS:

Date: Friday, Sept. 14

Location: Miami, Fla.

Time: 6:00 p.m. (EST)

Stadium: Alfonso Field at FIU Stadium (20,000)

2013 Records:

FIU: 0-2 Overall, 0-0 Conference USA

Bethune-Cookman: 2-0 Overall, 0-0 MEAC

Series: B-CU leads 2-0

Social Media: Twitter.com/@FIUFootball

Game Broadcast: No television; FIU Sports Radio Network at FIUSports.com



Next Up:

Opponent: No. 7 Louisville (2-0/0-0 American)

Date: Saturday, September 21

Location: Louisville, Ky.

Time: 12 p.m.

Stadium: Papa John's Cardinal Stadium (55,000)

Game Broadcast: No television; FIU Sports Radio Network at FIUSports.com


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