LIVESTREAM: Japan Xleague – IBM Big Blue v. All Mitsubishi Lions, Sat., Oct 19, 2p (7a CEDT, 1a EDT)

The 0-4 All Mitsubishi Lions will face the 1-3 IBM Big Blue Saturday, October 19 at Fujitsu Stadium Kawasaki  as Japan’s XLeague passes midseason.

IBM, who reached the X Bowl in 2018, have struggled badly this season. Last week, they were surprisingly beaten 45-38 by Elecom Kobe Finies and now are in danger of missing the playoffs. They have had a tough schedule with a lopsided loss 55-13 to powerhouse the Fujitsu Frontiers, a solid 41-36 win over Nojima Sagamihara Rise and 42-28 loss to the Panasonic Impulse. So the other losses were against top teams.

For IBM quarterback Kevin Craft who has also taken over as head coach is the second leading passer in the country. He has thrown for 830 yards and eight touchdowns while his Japanese quarterback, Yuki Masamoto has thrown for 357 and three scores. Katsuhito Omi and John Stanton are the fourth and fifth leading receivers in the X League. Omi has 283 yards receiving while Stanton has caught 26 passes for 280 yards and two touchdowns. Daisuke Yamanaka is Big Blue’s top rusher with 201 yards with Takaki Ito behind him having rushed 24 times for 151 yards and two touchdowns.

Still, the IBM defense has given up a league-worst 177 points in four games.

The Lions, in their first year in the top division, have lost all four games starting with a 48-16 loss to the Obic Seagulls. They followed this by getting narrowly beaten 10-6 by the Tokyo Gas Creators. Elecom Kobe Finies downed them 37-6 and finally, two weeks ago, the league leaders, the Fujitsu Frontiers handed them a 68-0 pasting.

In other words, the Lions do not have much of an offense, having scored a total of 28 points in four games.

All Mitsubishi quarterback Satoshi Saito has thrown for 444 yards and no touchdowns while teammates Shogo Taniguchi and Yuta Kashiwagi have combined for 220 yards and two touchdowns. The Lions do not have a single rusher in the top 20.

IBM should get their second win of the year.

Watch the game live here. IBM Big Blue v. All Mitsubishi Lions, Sat., Oct 19, 2p (7a CEDT, 1a EDT)

AFI
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