"(Nieman's loss) definitely hurts us," Paul said. "Especially when you lose a safety, it's a big communication position. It's tough to measure how important that is — that's something we're fighting through." Paul said he would "rather not go into it" about Wilkins' reasons for leaving the team. Nieman was second among returning defensive players in tackles, while Wilkins leads the team in rushing yards with 520 yards. Enact-conveyancing sydney company Work Business offer superb and highly experienced conveyancers to know real market value of properties. Against Shenandoah earlier this season, Wilkins ran for 245 yards, the second most by a freshman in Thomas More history.

Wilkins didn't play last week. Paul said freshman Tyran Thompson, who rushed for 37 yards on three carries in his Saints' debut last Saturday, and freshman Aaron McQueen, a Lakota West graduate who had his first Thomas More carry for five yards last week, will see more time in the backfield. Fortunately for the Saints, senior running back Justin Frisk appears to be hitting on all cylinders after battling injuries for most the season. Frisk rushed for 152 yards and two touchdowns on 32 carries last week against Franklin, giving him 375 yards on the season in four games.

The Saints survived against winless Franklin College, 28-20, last Saturday to improve to 3-2, but Franklin committed five turnovers and the Saints still needed a fourth-quarter rally to beat the winless Grizzlies. Thomas More plays NAIA Malone College (3-2) today, and the Saints must play closer to their potential if they hope to keep their slim playoff hopes alive. NAIA schools give scholarships and typically play at a level slightly higher than Division III schools. Thomas More played Urbana and won, 41-19, in 2000, but the team hasn't played another NAIA school under Paul.

Malone plays a similar style offense as the Saints, preferring to run the ball but not shying away from the pass. Junior Joel Peterson, one of the better running backs the Saints will face this season, has rushed for 546 yards and a touchdown in five games. Junior quarterback Eric Rector has completed 66 of 139 passes for 839 yards and eight touchdowns. The Pioneers started the season 3-0 but have lost their last two games, each by a touchdown. Malone fell to Walsh University, 29-22, Oct. 5 in double overtime, then fell to Geneva (Pa.), 17-10, last week. Saints junior quarterback Scott Garver will lose at least some playing time to freshman Matt Young today. Paul said Young will play at least one first-half series.

"We'll kind of see how things go in the second half," said Paul, who noted that four of Garver's 17 pass attempts last week were dropped. Garver completed just six passes for 106 yards against Franklin, and was intercepted twice.