DES MOINES, Iowa – The Drake University football team plays its final home game of the 2012 season Saturday afternoon when it hosts Butler at Drake Stadium. Kickoff against Pioneer Football League leading Butler is scheduled for 1 p.m.
Prior to the game, Drake’s senior class will be honored and recognized before taking to the Drake Stadium gridiron for the final time. Saturday's clash of Bulldogs will also feature dogs in the stands as Drake Athletics has partnered with the Des Moines Animal Rescue League for 'Bring Your Dog to the Game' day. Tickets in a special section for dog owners are available through the Drake ticket office or the ARL for $10.
Additionally, fans who attend the men's basketball season opener in the Knapp Center at 11 a.m. can present their basketball ticket stub at the football game and receive a discounted $3 ticket.
Once the game starts, Drake will be charged with stopping the PFL’s top rusher in Trae Heeter who averages 109 yards per game on the ground and a rushing offense that ranks second in the league.
“Butler is having a great year,” head coach Chris Creighton said. “Their back is having a fantastic year and leading the conference which tells you their offensive line is part of that. They have our attention and focus to try and limit what they can do on the ground.”
Butler, entering its final game of the season, is 8-2 overall and 7-0 in the PFL. Drake stands at 5-1 in the league and 8-2 overall. Saturday’s contest has potential PFL championship implications as Butler can secure an outright title with a win, while Drake can earn a share of the title by winning its final two games of the season.
“We’re living in the moment and people are talking about at the things that can happen,” Creighton said. “We need to get back to playing Drake football this weekend, that’s our goal. We believe if we’re playing to our potential then a lot of good things can happen.”
While Butler boasts a strong rushing attack, Drake poses challenges of its own with one of the country’s top passing offenses. Drake’s 297.4 yards per game through the air are the ninth most in the country thanks to the record-setting season quarterback Mike Piatkowski has recorded to date.
Following Saturday’s contest, Drake wraps up its 2012 campaign on the road at Jacksonville on Nov. 17.