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Brown Football Set to Open Season at Bryant

Friday, September 16, 2016


QB Kyle Moreno

The Brown Bears football team kicks off their 2016 campaign on Saturday afternoon when they face instate rival (1-1) Bryant in Smithfield at 1 p.m. 

The Bears are coming off a 2015 season in which they went 5-5 overall and 3-4 in the Ivy League. This season's squad carries a mix of new faces, including at quarterback, and familiar faces returning from injury.

“New team, new faces, it is a breath of fresh air to have the team that I have now,” said Brown head coach Phil Estes, now in his 19th season with the Bears. 

Brown Offense 

The most notable new face is senior co-captain and quarterback Kyle Moreno who will get the start. 

“Right now Kyle is in the drivers seat but {backup} TJ Linta is going to see time. Kyle gives us something that we haven’t had in that position which is that he can run with the ball,” said Estes. 

Moreno saw time in games against Harvard and Dartmouth last season while backing up quarterback Marcus Fuller.

Against Harvard, Moreno accounted for four Brown touchdowns, passing for 307 yards and two scores and rushing for 28 yards and two scores. 

In the game against Dartmouth, Moreno rushed for 78 yards and a touchdown. 

When he does throw the ball, he will target North Attleboro’s Alex Jette. 

Jette is a two time first team All-Ivy League wide receiver who ranked 10th in the country in receptions, 10th in receiving yards and 24th nationally in all-purpose yards in 2015. 

“Alex is just an incredible athlete. One that comes around every few years and we are lucky to have him. Not only is he our top receiver, he returns kicks, punts and he will be the starting punter,” said Estes. 

Joining Jette at the wide receiver position will be seniors Troy Doles and Garrett Swanky. 

Brown Defense 

Last season, the Browns defense allowed 402 yards and 33 points per game. 

“Last year, we had a lot of injuries. There was a lot that we had to give up on defense just so our guys could function,” Estes said. 

The Brown defense will be led by defensive end Richard Jarvis who led the team with 6.5 tackles for loss last season and 34 tackles overall. Along with Jarvis, the Bears will look for contributions from Robert Hughes, who led Brown with 3 sacks last season, totaling a loss of 22 yards. 

In the secondary, the Bears will look to the only returning starter, Jordan Ferguson to lead the way. In 2015, Ferguson had two interceptions, five passes defensed and made 39 tackles. 

Brown gave up 247 passing yards per game last season. 

Brown vs. Bryant 

The Bears and Bulldogs will face each other for the third time, with each team winning one of the previous two meetings. Brown won the last game between the teams in Smithfield 2 years ago, while Bryant won at Brown Stadium last season. 

“We are just happy that they are willing to play us,” said Bryant head coach Marty Fine. “It’s great for Rhode Island, great for Rhode Island high school football, great for college football fans in the state. I’m just appreciative that they are willing to play us," he added.

Bryant is coming off a 27-24 loss on the road to Montana State last week where they turned the ball over five times. 

“I feel really good about how we played last week. Montana State was one of the more athletic teams we have faced and they made some great plays. I’m hoping we can bring the same energy this week that we had last week,” Fine said.

The Bulldogs will be led by quarterback Dalton Easton who currently ranks fifth in the country in passing touchdowns with six, fifth in yards per completion with 15, eighth in total yards with 591 and ninth in yards per game with 295. 

Wide receiver Taylor Barthelette has four touchdowns on the season and averages 135 receiving yards per game for Bryant. 

Looking Ahead. 

After their game against the Bulldogs, Brown will host Harvard at 2 p.m. on Saturday, September 24 in their first Ivy League game of the season. 


Related Slideshow: RI Teams To Win National Championships

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