By Matt Noonan | @MattyNoonz11
Happy Friday, everyone – hope you’re ready for a great weekend of New England Division III football!
Last week, I went a perfect 10-for-10 in picks – yes, I picked all 10 contests correct to bump my overall picks record to 16-14.
My hope is to continue this trend in week four – we have some intriguing match-ups to follow, so make sure to get out and enjoy one of these 10 games highlighted below because it sounds like Saturday is going to be a gorgeous day (weather-wise) in New England.
New England D-III Football | Games to Watch (Week Four)
Rankings for teams are from this week’s Noontime Sports Top 20 Poll.
Bridgewater State at Fitchburg State (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 12 p.m.): The Bears were competitive last week against Western Connecticut, but struggled to make the necessary plays down the stretch to squeak out what would have been an important conference win. Bridgewater must play a complete 60 minutes this week to take down a 1-2 Falcons squads. PREDICTION: Bridgewater State 23, Fitchburg State 16
No. 15 Salve Regina at No. 17 Nichols College (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 1 p.m.): The Seahawks finally cracked the win column last week with an important win against Dean College. Look for Salve to deploy its rushing attack again this week against the Bison. PREDICTION: Salve Regina 27, Nichols 20
No. 4 Western New England at No. 19 University of New England (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 1 p.m.): UNE quarterback Brian Peters believes his team has played well through three games, but said, “I think we have yet to play our best game.” Perhaps Saturday is the day the Nor’easters play their best game of the 2019 season. PREDICTION: UNE 20, Western New England 17
No. 5 Trinity College at No. 13 Middlebury College (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 1 p.m.): Middlebury quarterback Will Jernigan feels more comfortable running the Panthers offense this season but knows the unit will be tested by a defense that allowed just seven points last week. Trinity rebounded from a six-point setback to Tufts University with an offensive showcase against Bowdoin College. PREDICTION: Middlebury 21, Trinity 18
Bates College at No. 20 Wesleyan University (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 1 p.m.): As we learned this week on a brand new ‘Football Friday Podcast,’ it has been the senior leadership of the Cardinals, which has helped Wesleyan enjoy its first 2-0 start in five seasons. Look for the seniors to once again lead the Cardinals past the Bobcats on Saturday afternoon. PREDICTION: Wesleyan 28, Bates 10
Curry College at No. 8 Coast Guard Academy (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 1:30 p.m.): The Bears defense recorded four interceptions last week against Norwich despite falling to the Cadets, 17-14. Look for the defense to jumpstart the Bears offense against Curry on Saturday. PREDICTION: Coast Guard 25, Curry 14
No. 16 Plymouth State at No. 11 UMass Dartmouth (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 2 p.m.): The Corsairs relied on its air attack in the first two weeks before turning to its defense to help them beat Fitchburg State last week. Tony Slaughter and the UMass Dartmouth defense will be tasked with slowing down Plymouth State halfback David Hamilton on Saturday afternoon. PREDICTION: UMass Dartmouth 28, Plymouth State 24
Mass. Maritime at Westfield State (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 2 p.m.): The Buccaneers will look to improve to 3-0 on Saturday when they visit an Owls team that struggled to contain Framingham State’s offense and defense one week ago. PREDICTION: Mass. Maritime 30, Westfield State 14
No. 7 Norwich University at Castleton University (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 3 p.m.): After capturing the ‘Mug’ last week against Coast Guard Academy, the Cadets look to win the ‘Battle for the Maple Sap Bucket’ against the Spartans. PREDICTION: Norwich 28, Castleton 14
No. 1 WPI at No. 9 Springfield College (Saturday, Sept. 28th at 3 p.m.): The Engineers enter Saturday’s conference clash with a great deal of momentum, but certainly know the Pride’s offense will challenge the WPI defense. In the end, look for this game to be decided by a touchdown or maybe a field goal. PREDICTION: WPI 20, Springfield 14