Record Setting Day for Erdmann Leads Johnnies to 56-10 Win
NORTHFIELD, Minn. – No. 4 Saint John’s football scored touchdowns on its first five possessions and totaled 617 yards of offense in a 56-10 road win at Carleton on Saturday, Sept. 28, in Northfield.
Senior quarterback Jackson Erdmann (Rosemount, Minn.) broke the conference and SJU record for career touchdown passes in the victory. He entered the game needing two touchdown passes to tie the record of 100 held by Alex Kofoed (2004-07) and finished 17 of 20 passing for 334 yards and four touchdowns for the Johnnies (3-0, 2-0 MIAC). The reigning Gagliardi Trophy winner and D3football.com National Offensive Player of the Year only played the game’s first two quarters.
The MIAC’s top-10 list for all-time touchdown passes (in all games) is below.
102 – Jackson Erdmann, Saint John’s (2016-current)
100 – Alex Kofoed, Saint John’s (2004-07)
97 – Ayrton Scott, Augsburg (2012-15)
87 – Kurt Ramler, Saint John’s (1993-96)
79 – Tom Linnemann, Saint John’s (1996-00)
77 – Mitch Hendricks, Gustavus/Saint John’s (2012-15)
72 – Jordan Berg, Augsburg (2006-08)
71 – Chris Esterley, St. Thomas (1993-96)
68 – Ryan Keating, Saint John’s (2000-03)
67 – Dan Dobson, St. Olaf (2010-12)
The reigning MIAC Offensive Player of the Week, Erdmann followed last weekend’s performance in the win over Gustavus Adolphus (24 of 35 passing for 335 yards and four touchdowns) with another efficient afternoon. He passed for 179 yards and three touchdowns in the first 16:20 of last year’s 59-0 win over Carleton in Collegeville.
The 300-yard passing performance is Erdmann’s sixth, which broke his tie with Willie Seiler (1990-93) and Ryan Keating (2000-03) for sole possession of third on SJU’s all-time list. Kurt Ramler (1993-96) is second with eight and Kofoed owns the school record with 10. Erdmann has now thrown for 300 yards or more in four of his last five games going back to last season.
A week after he caught the first touchdown pass of his collegiate career, sophomore wide receiver Ravi Alston (Lake Elsinore, Calif./Vista Murrieta) reached the end zone twice with 22- and 25-yard grabs to give SJU a 12-0 lead in the first quarter. He finished with four catches for 80 yards and the two scores.
Sophomore T.J. Hodge (Miami, Fla./Doral Academy), like Alston, also recorded a collegiate first in last Saturday’s win at Gustavus: his first 100-yard receiving game (six catches for 113 yards). And, like Alston, Hodge repeated that performance with six receptions for 118 yards and a touchdown Saturday at Carleton.
Senior wide receiver Andrew VanErp (Battle Lake, Minn./Ottertail Central) also snagged six catches for 110 yards and a 32-yard touchdown reception, which gave SJU a 20-0 lead with 40 seconds left in the first quarter.
VanErp (16 catches for 269 yards and two touchdowns) and Hodge (15 catches for 259 yards and one touchdown) have nearly identical stat lines through the season’s first three games.
First Catch, First Pass
Erdmann ended his day with a 61-yard touchdown pass to junior wide receiver Blake Patrick (St. Stephen, Minn./Holdingford) with 5:52 left in the first half (for a 35-0 lead). The reception was the first of the season for Patrick, who owns the team’s fastest 40-yard dash time – a laser-timed 4.47 seconds – for the second straight season.
Although a regular performer as the team’s holder on PAT’s and field goals, junior Chris Backes (St. Cloud, Minn./Tech) made his first appearance of the season as SJU’s backup quarterback Saturday. He wasted no time by connecting with Hodge for a 56-yard touchdown on his first pass attempt, and the second half’s second play from scrimmage, and finished 8 of 8 for 112 yards. He found senior running back Will Kleinschmidt (Avon, Minn./Albany) for a nine-yard touchdown pass to end the scoring with 9:28 remaining.
Multiple Ball Carriers
Seven different rushers carried the football and 11 different Johnnies caught a pass in the win. Three running backs led the way with 35 yards each: sophomore Carter Huberty (Avon, Minn./Albany), junior Nolan Prokott (Avon, Minn./Holdingford) and sophomore running back Henry Trost (Lindstrom, Minn./Chisago Lakes).
Shutout Streak Ends
The Johnnies saw their shutout streak against Carleton (2-2, 0-2 MIAC) end at 310:46 with Jonathan Singleton’s eight-yard touchdown run with 2:07 left in the first half. The points were the Knights’ first against SJU since a 26-yard field goal with 12:53 left in the second quarter in the Johnnies’ 52-3 win on Oct. 25, 2014, in Collegeville.
Big Plays vs. Carleton
SJU has totaled 64 offensive plays of 20 yards or more in the last 10 meetings with Carleton, including 24 of 35 yards or more.
SJU is now 37-0 all-time against Carleton and has out-scored the Knights 1,604-329 in the series, including a 320-13 advantage in the last six meetings.
The Johnnies return home to host Augsburg for Homecoming Saturday, Oct. 5, in Collegeville. Kickoff is scheduled for 1 p.m. in Clemens Stadium.
After the Game
The J-Club’s 2019 Hall of Honor class of student-athletes, coaches and volunteers will be inducted during a ceremony next Saturday following the Johnnies’ Homecoming game. Tickets are $75 per person through the remainder of today (Sept. 28) and $100 per person after that date. All proceeds go to the J-Club to support SJU athletics. The event will begin with a social at 5 p.m., followed by dinner and program at 5:45. – Register for the Oct. 5 Event
By St. John’s Football Staff
Featured Image Courtesy of Libby Auger