• It's Senior Day at Gillette Stadium on Saturday as the UMass football team hosts Akron in the home finale for 2013. Both teams are coming off bye weeks in preparation for the contest - a week off for the Minutemen which could not have come at a better time after a rash of injuries kept several key starters out two weeks ago against Northern Illinois.
• The game will be televised on ESPN3.com and via the WatchESPN app with Bob Picozzi calling the action and former Delaware head coach KC Keeler providing color commentary.
• The UMass Sports Network will once again feature Voice of the Minutemen Josh Maurer handling play-by-play duties alongside analyst Matt Goldstein, sideline reporter Cody Chrusciel and in-game host Adam Frenier. The game can be heard live starting at 12:40 AM (EST) on 105.5 FM WEEI (Springfield), 1440 AM WVEI (Worcester) and 95.9 FM WATD (South Shore). The broadcast is also available online through www.UMassAthletics.com and on smart phones and tablets through the TuneIn app.
• UMass won last year's meeting at Akron for the Minutemen's first-ever win as a FBS program. Thanks in part to a strong defensive effort and key special teams play, the Minutemen left InfoCision Stadium with a 22-14 win. Mike Wegzyn threw for 266 yards against Akron, his second highest total of the season, while kicker Blake Lucas scored a career-high three field goals on the day, which also marked a season-high for the team as Lucas hit from 23 yards, 26 yards, and 35 yards. Defensively, UMass forced four interceptions and recovered a fumble, while Joe Colton blocked and recovered an Akron punt.
• UMass is on pace to set a new home attendance record for a single season. This year, the Minutemen have averaged 16,876 fans per game which would be the best all-time attendance mark at UMass. The previous high was 14,684 for five home games in 1999 - the year after UMass won the NCAA I-AA National Championship.
• Saturday's game will also be Educator Appreciation Day at Gillette Stadium. The University will honor its College of Education along with the College of Nurshing and the School of Public Health & Health Sciences. Teachers throughout the state were offered discounts on tickets for the game as a token of thanks for their work in the classroom.
•Prior to Saturday's game against Akron, the UMass football program will honor its 2013 Senior Class. The senior class is made up of 18 student-athletes who have been instrumental in the Minutemen's transition from the Football Championship Subdivision to the Football Bowl Subdivision. Additionally, three of the players became the first-ever Minutemen to be honored among college football's elite players. Offensive tackle Anthony Dima was named to the Outland Trophy Watch List, tight end Rob Blanchflower was named to the Mackey Award Watch List, and Colter Johnson was named to the Ray Guy Award Watch List. Senior safety Devin Brown became the first player since Anthony Nelson in 2010 to earn CoSida Academic All-District First Team accolades. Kicker Brendon Levengood recently tied the school record for most field goals made in a game, while Blanchflower is on the cusp of becoming the Minutemen's most accomplished tight end in program history. UMass will also recognize its three graduate student-athletes as part of the Senior Day festivities: Justin Anderson, Ricardo Miller and David Osei.
No. Name Pos. Hometown/High School/Previous School
59 David Osei OL Abington, Pa./Abington H.S./Rutgers
80 Ricardo Miller TE/WR Orlando, Fla./Pioneer H.S. (Mich.)/Michigan
50 Justin Anderson DL Blythewood, S.C./Blythewood H.S./Maryland
79 Vincent Westcarr OL Miramar, Fla./Miramar H.S.
41 Jeff Strait P Manheim, Pa./Manheim Central H.S.
95 Brandon Potvin DL Worcester, Mass./Holy Name Catholic H.S.
96 Brendon Levengood K/P Lebanon, Pa./Cedar Crest H.S.
70 Anthony Dima OL Centereach, N.Y./Centereach/Hofstra
49 Galen Clemons DL Danielsville, Pa./Northampton Area/Central Michigan
93 Kevin Byrne DL Mashpee, Mass./Mashpee H.S.
37 Tom Brandt LB Natick, Mass./Natick H.S.
87 Rob Blanchflower TE Leominster, Mass./St. John's H.S. Shrewsbury
48 Vance Barton LS Albany, N.Y./Burr and Burton Academy
2 Antoine Tharpe DB Lauderhill, FL/Coral Springs Charter School
91 Colter Johnson K Warren, Pa./Warren Area H.S./Alfred State
10 Devin Brown DB Piedmont, Calif./Piedmont H.S./Contra Costa College
18 Matthew Quinn QB Seekonk, Mass./Proctor Academy
24 Greg Orekoya RB Malden, Mass./Billerica H.S./American International
• Complete Game Notes As PDF