There is an added urgency to the annual battle between Central and Western, as first place in the MAC West is on the line as well.

The rivalry that has spawned many a student riot at the famed "directional schools" rekindles tonight under the cloak of the pandemic. At stake is the Victory Cannon Trophy.

"I love college rivalries," second-year CMU coach Jim McElwain was quoted on the team's web site, "I think it's really what makes this sport great. People throughout this state know the importance of the Central-Western rivalry. As a coach, as a player, you just love playing in those kinds of things."

"It represents something and it's something you carry with you for a year," McElwain said. "And then you go put it back on the line once a year. … Fun to be a part of. No matter where you're at, knowing rivalries, respecting the rivalry, and knowing what it means to so many is really important for your team."

Western's Broncos, fresh off a last second upset of conference favorite Toledo, heads to Mount Pleasant to take on the Chippewas, who have run up some surprising offensive numbers under back up quarterback Daniel Richardson, who's been subbing for the suspended David Moore.

This should be a high scoring shootout, as both teams are averaging over 35 points a game, but they do it in different ways.

Central can run the ball, chomping out over 210 yards per game on the ground. But Richardson can throw too, averaging over 200 yards through the air to pace a balanced attack.

Western has thrown a bit more with QB Kaleb Eleby averaging 273 yards a game passing.

Western is a one point favorite and has won five of the last six games, and 7 of the last ten. The game will be broadcast live on ESPN2, kicking off at 7pm. You can also stream it online via the ESPN app.






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