he Hope College football team faces the most crucial stretch in their league season with back-to-back road games beginning Saturday (Oct. 28) at Adrian.

Kickoff at Maple Stadium will be 1 p.m. The game will be broadcast on WHTC-AM (1450) and WFUR-FM (102.9). It may also be heard on the internet -- www.hope.edu.

The Flying Dutchmen (5-1) are the only team with a spotless (2-0) record in league games. Adrian (2-5), meanwhile, is part of a four-way tie for second place (1-1).

"On paper we would be the favored team, but Adrian always plays with a lot of emotion against us, especially on their home field," said coach Dean Kreps.

Hope leads the MIAA (league games) in total offense (387 ypg) and total defense (265 ypg) while Adrian ranks fifth in both total offense (266 ypg) and total defense (388 ypg). The Dutchmen are averaging 32.2 points in all games compared to 9.3 per game by Adrian.

The Flying Dutchmen have a five-game winning streak, longest for a Hope team since 1986. Hope is coming off a 35-25 come- from-behind victory against Alma while Adrian is seeking to rebound from a 56-10 setback to Albion.

The Hope-Adrian series started in 1938 with Hope owning a 47-10-1 advantage in the rivalry, including a 38-15 victory last fall. The teams have split their last six meetings, however. For the sixth time this season, Hope has a player honored as one of the MIAA's players of the week. The honor this time goes to sophomore defensive back Nick Conrad of Wyoming (Wyoming Park HS). His two pass interceptions in the second half stopped Alma scoring drives and set the stage for Hope scores. Conrad has four interceptions this season.

Hope as a team already has 18 pass interceptions this season. The record is 26 interceptions by the 1984 Flying Dutchmen.

After Saturday, the Flying Dutchmen will keep their bags packed for a November 4th game at Olivet. The regular season concludes with a Parents Day home game against Albion on November 11th.