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After suffering their first loss on the West Coast to San Diego, the Bears will huddle back in the den this weekend.

Mercer welcomes Valparaiso to Macon Saturday at noon.

Valpo is one and four, but head coach Bobby Lamb says they started off with a tough schedule.

As for the Bears, they still rank among the best when it comes to their rushing defense.

Lamb put the guys through a shorter practice Thursday morning. But he says the keys to win number five will rest on the fundamentals and, once again, the maturity of his young squad.

"I think another key factor in this game is obviously coming back after a loss and how are we going to react, and that's what I'm interested to see," Lamb said.

Mercer found out redshirt Freshman Payton Usher was just named to the watch group for the Jerry Rice Award. Usher says as long as the Bears stay focused he likes thier chances against Valparaiso.

"We can't get down after last week," Usher said. "I think it's already out of the way. We're not even talking about it anymore, so we've just got to play hard like we have for the past five weeks and I think we'll do good."

We will have more on Usher later on in the week.

Once again the Mercer game is early Saturday, kickoff is at noon.