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Bryant opens 2017 football season on Saturday vs. Merrimack

Photo by: Dave Silverman
Photo by: Dave Silverman
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SMITHFIELD, R.I. – The Bryant University football team opens the 2017 season on Saturday afternoon when it welcomes Merrimack to Beirne Stadium for a 3:00 p.m. kickoff.

The Particulars

Opponent: Merrimack

Kickoff: 3:00 p.m.

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Live Stats: Sidearm

Series History

  • Bryant and Merrimack will be meeting for the 15th time in school history on Saturday afternoon.
  • The Bulldogs own a 7-6 lead in the all-time series thanks to six-straight wins over the Warriors.
  • Bryant defeated Merrimack, 41-20, last season in Smithfield and has scored 34+ points in each of the last seven meetings between the two schools.

Bulldog Notes and Notables

  • Saturday will be James Perry's first as a collegiate head coach. Perry was hired as the third coach in program history on January 3rd.
  • Bryant has won each of its last four season openers, having beaten Merrimack, American International, Stony Brook and Holy Cross.
  • Since moving to Division I, the Bulldogs are a perfect 11-0 against Division II opponents.
  • Junior defensive linemen Dillon Guthro (Newburyport, Mass.) and Kevin Lazo (Pembroke Pines, Fla.) will serve as co-captains for the 2017 season.
  • Guthro and senior Matt Sewall (Portsmouth, R.I.) were named to the Northeast Conference Preseason All-Conference team.

A bit about Merrimack

  • Merrimack is coming off a season in which it went 3-8 overall and 2-7 in NE-10 play.
  • The Warriors will have a new quarterback this season as graduate transfer CJ Scarpa will be calling the signals. Scarpa made 17 starts in three years at Bentley and threw for 1,490 yards.
  • Merrimack also returns its second-leading rusher in Derrick Villard (112 car., 589 yds., 3 TDs).
  • Defensive back Brian Carroll is the leader on defense after posting 67 tackles and two interceptions last fall.