NORTH DARTMOUTH, MA-For the first time in five years, the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth's football team will begin their season on the road. The Corsairs will begin 2012 action at Mount Ida this Friday evening. Kickoff for the first game ever at the Mustangs' new turf field is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.
UMass Dartmouth defeated Mount Ida, 24-21, in last year's opener at Cressy Field. The Corsairs went on to finish the season at 5-5, while the Mustangs finished 6-5, losing to Endicott in the Eastern College Athletic Conference's North Atlantic Bowl.
"We're very excited to go to Mount Ida's new facility, from everything we've seen, it looks like a great place to play," said UMass Dartmouth Head Coach Mark Robichaud. "They have already started school, and they say there will be several thousand people there. We are very excited to play in front of a large crowd."
Robichaud said he is looking forward to the game, and is not concerned with having to travel. "We don't view travel as a negative, we'd play in a parking lot," said Robichaud. "I think this will be a good test for us. We don't have a great idea about their personnel, and they have a new offensive coordinator, so we're not sure if some of their schemes may change. Mount Ida has a very good football team, they were picked to finish third in the Eastern College Football Conference, so the other teams in the conference think they will be a good team. It should be an outstanding test for us."
The battle could easily play out on even terms. "They are a very well-coached team, and they are very aggressive," said Robichaud. "They will be fired up playing in a brand new stadium. They will be ready to go, and it will be up to us to match their enthusiasm."
Last year, the Corsairs built an early 24-7 lead en route to their victory, and the team that gets off to the best start could have the upper hand.
"I think it's important for our offense to have success early, and for our defense to show how good it is," said Robichaud. "We have a very good defense again this year. Doing well early in the game is going to a big key for us on both sides of the ball."
The Corsairs will visit Bridgewater State next weekend. The home opener is Saturday, September 22nd against Plymouth State.
UMASS DARTMOUTH FOOTBALL