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Football Ready To Face No. 22 Indiana State

Courtesy: Drake Athletics
Release: September 14, 2012
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The Drake University football put in a full day of travel and practice Friday in preparation for its Saturday afternoon contest at No. 22 Indiana State.

Kickoff at ISU's Memorial Stadium is scheduled for 1:05 p.m. CDT and will be broadcast in Des Moines on KRNT 1350-AM and online here.

In addition to being the Bulldogs' second straight game against a ranked opponent, it is also the team's first road test of the season. That wrinkle that promises to create new challenges for Chris Creighton's squad.

Creighton's primary goal on Friday afternoon was to create and instill the ability to in his words, 'flip the switch.' To make certain the team is prepared step off the bus in an unfamiliar environment focused and ready to execute.

While there certainly are challenges to stepping outside of Drake Stadium for the first time this season, Creighton feels his team is ready to 'flip the switch.'

"There are some benefits to going on the road," Creighton said. "You really get a focused group and everybody knows that they're on the trip for one specific reason. You also develop good bonding situations with each other. It's our first road trip of the year, but we have a mature group that knows why we're going."

Upon arrival in Terre Haute, Ind., the team got in a spirited practice at ISU's Memorial Stadium that included a 20-minute mock-game walk through with increased attention paid to special teams.

While that focus will certainly be needed on special teams, the defense will be charged with stopping one of the top running attacks in the nation featuring Payton Award watch list member Shakir Bell. Earlier this season, he set a school record with 192 rushing yards in a loss at Indiana State  and is fourth in program history in rushing.

Drake's senior quarterback, Mike Piatkowski, is knocking on a school record of his own, needing just 359 more yards to become the Bulldogs' all-time leader in passing. Last week, he threw for 311 yards with 198 of those yards going to the tandem of Kevin Marshall and Joey Orlando.

Saturday's game is the 10th all-time between the former Missouri Valley football foes but the first installment in the series since 1985.

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