Posts Tagged ‘Central Michigan’

Week 8 News & Notes – Part 1

October 21st, 2013 No comments

By Phil Steele

WKU had a dominating 1H vs Louisiana with a 249-81 yard edge but the game was tied at 13. The key play of the game happened with WKU up 10-0 and having a 4&gl at the 1 yard line. They opted to go for it and the QB, under pressure, forced the ball into the EZ and was not only intercepted, but returned 99 yards for a td and instead of taking a 17-0 lead, WKU only led 10-7. WKU’s next drive ended on a 4&9 fumble at the UL29 and it was returned 45 yards to the 35 setting up a UL td. In the 2H UL turned it over to the run game. They ran 15 times on their opening drive of 3Q but settled for a 23 yard FG. On their next possession, they did pass twice on an 80/9pl drive for a td which put them up 23-13. WKU was SOD on 4&2 at the UL24 with 13:33 left, fumbled at its own 24 and on the next play UL got a 24 yard td pass, 30-13. Each team went on a long td drive to make it 37-20 with 2:37 left and WKU was SOD at its own 35 with 1:17 left. Terrance Broadway hit just 5-10-90 but UL piled up a 254-133 rush edge. Brandon Doughty was injured in the game and Nelson Fishback replaced him and hit 5-6-78 but Doughty did return and finished 18-23-260.

Miami, Fl came into North Carolina undefeated. Miami did put up 556 yards offense while UNC piled up 500 yards offense. In fact, at the half the two teams had 579 yards of offense but had combined for only 30 points. UM suffered 2 big injuries. RB Duke Johnson had 83 yards on 8 carries but then went out (for the game) with injury. Leading receiver, Phillip Dorsett, had 2 catches for 68 yards but then he too was lost (likely out at least a month). Both teams blew numerous opportunities in the redzone. Miami trailed almost the entire game including being down by 10 in the 4Q. UNC was intercepted in the EZ on its 2nd possession. UM went on a 76/10pl drive but settled for a 22 yard FG. Trailing 7-3, the Canes went 72/7pl and again settled for a 20 yard FG after a 1&gl. Two possessions later UNC had a 47 yard FG blocked and UM returned it 67 yards for a td to lead 13-7. UNC drove 71/7pl for a td and UM got down to the UNC32 but was intercepted at the 1. That would set up UNC for a 60/12pl drive but at the 8 they settled for a 25 yard FG to lead 17-13 at the half. UM opened the 3Q with a 54/6pl drive and missed a 43 yard FG. The Tar Heels went 56/10pl and had a FD at the 11 but a clip forced them into a 35 yard FG, 20-13. UM was intercepted at the UNC20 and the Heels drove 76/12pl, but after a 1&gl at the 9, settled for a 21 yard FG to lead 23-13 leaving UM in the game. UM went 75/7pl for a td with 11:29 left and was intercepted at midfield but UNC was then intercepted at the UM11 with 7:51 left. After an exchange of punts, UM took over at its 10 with 4:11 left and went 90/13pl getting a 3 yard td run with :16 left. UNC got to the UM28 and a pass into the EZ was in both hands of Quinshad Davis, but he couldn’t come down with it. When I released my Midseason All-American team prior to the game, I was the first source to list Eric Ebron as a 1st Tm All-American TE and had did not disappoint with 199 yards on 8 catches. Dallas Crawford, filling for in the injured Johnson, was not quite as explosive but did have 137 yards on 33 carries (4.1). Read more…

Week 2 News & Notes

September 9th, 2013 1 comment

By Phil Steele

FAU was only outgained by East Carolina 312-282 but I thought FAU was more impressive the previous week vs Miami, Fl than they were here. In the 1H ECU did get an 85 yd KR setting up a 12 yd td drive then an 18 yd IR setting up another 12 yd td drive and led 21-6. FAU also had a 37 yd FG bounce off the upright and ECU had 190-114 yd edge at the half. ECU got another interception returned to the FAU5 and got a 22 yd FG for a 24-6 lead. FAU went on a 12 play drive but was SOD and ECU went 57/9pl to go up 31-6. FAU fumbled at its own 29 but recovered a fumble at its own 11. FAU missed a 40 yd FG with 7:34 left as ECU put backup QB Cody Keith in with 10:40 left. FAU’s last drive went 64/11pl and on 4th&gl from the 2 Hankerson hit Dukes with a td pass which made some Owl fans’ very happy as they “only” lost by 18.

Sacramento St had only lost to San Jose St the previous week by 24 but on Thursday night was blasted by Arizona St. Sac St had beaten Colorado in ‘12 and Oregon St in ‘11. This was a ball game for the first half of the 1Q. Sac St took the opening KO at its 25. They went 59/15pl and with just 7:25 left in the 1Q, they missed a 33 yd FG. ASU would go 80/11pl, 71/6pl, 29/7pl (after fumble), 52/5pl, and 59/3pl for td’s on their first 5 possessions to lead 35-0. After their second 3Q possession, which came after a 67 yd IR to the 2, they led 52-0. ASU had 27-6 FD and 523-167 yd edges.

On the Friday night game on CBS College Sports, UCF rolled to a 38-0 shutout of FIU with a 390-173 yd edge. FIU had an excited home crowd at the start and did only trail 7-0 after the 1Q. UCF got a 44/4pl drive for a td (after 16 yd PR) and 50/8pl drive for a 37 yd FG to lead 17-0 then got a 59 yd pass keying an 80/4pl drive for a td to go up 24-0. FIU went 58/11pl but missed a 34 yd FG. FIU fumbled a shogun snap at their own 17 setting up a UCF td and UCF went 70/7pl for a td to lead 38-0 with 3:04 left in the 3Q and played their backups the rest of the game. Blake Bortles hit 12-19-214 while Jake Medlock hit 16-25-128.

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Week 12 News & Notes – Part 1

November 19th, 2012 No comments

By Phil Steele


Ball St solidified its bowl standing and Ohio’s banged up team kept sliding. The Bobcats missed as many as 10 players due to injury but did only trail 21-17 at the half. Ball St lost their starting QB Keith Wenning who hit 16-20-172. Veteran Kelly Page came in and ran 7 yards for a td on his only play of the 1H and OU did get to the BSU12 with :12 left in the half but was sacked on the final play and did not score. OU got a 58 yd td run by Blankenship on the first drive of the 2H to take a 24-21 lead but Ball got a 68 yd Edwards run keying a 71/2pl drive for a td and OU missed a 27 yd FG. After 2 punts, BSU went 59/10pl for a 38 yd FG and OU went on an 11pl drive for a 34 yd FG, 31-27. Ball, after a 46 yard KR and a 15 yd penalty on a personal foul, drove 38/1pl for a td then after a punt went 65/6pl for a td and after OU went 3&out again, went 77/8pl for a td and turned it into a 52-27 rout with 2:18 left. Page hit just 5-7-41 rushing 4x’s for 34 yards.

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Week 6 News & Notes (Part 2)

October 9th, 2012 No comments


Any time the weather gets cold for Miami, they tend not to show up so Notre Dame had a large edge in the unusually chilly temps in Chicago. UM was also off two wire-to-wire gut wrenching ACC conf games and now travelling in a non-conf game. As you would expect, ND had a 34-13 FD edge, 587-285 yd edge and held the ball for 39:08 to UM’s 20:52. Both teams were ranked in the top 10 when they met in four consecutive years from ‘87-’90 with the winner going on to win the National Title 3 straight years. UM WR Dorsett did have 2 open td passes that he dropped and he was also wearing gloves and full long sleeves while most Irish players were in short sleeves. ND went 88/10pl for a td then after each team drove for a short FG, the Irish made a 32 yd FG and missed a 34 yd FG and only led 13-3 at the half. ND went 81/6pl for a td, then 86/12 for a td as it got chillier as the night went on in the 2H. ND went 66/3pl for a td and after UM was SOD at the ND7, the Irish took over with 9:51 left and went on an 8:45 drive adding a 1 yd td run with 1:06 left for the dominating win. Read more…

Week 5 News & Notes – Part 1

October 1st, 2012 No comments


Stanford went on the road for the first time and led 13-3 late 3Q but on a key play of the game, Washington on 4&1 got a 61 yd Sankey td run to get back in it. They later got a 35 yd td pass with 4:54 left and SU’s last gasp was a 4&4 incomplete pass with 1:46 left. Josh Nunes hit 18-37-170. It was UW’s first win over a top 10 team since 2009 and the student section poured on to the turf of CenturyLink Field at the end and actually gave them more of a home field edge than I thought they would playing away from their home stadium this year. UW finished with a 313-235 yd edge and 13-10 FD edge.

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MAC Announces 2011 Schedules!

March 3rd, 2011 No comments

2010 was a memorable year for many of the teams and players in the Mid-American Conference. The ’10 season saw the conference send four of its teams to bowl games and both MAC Championship game participants Miami, Oh and Northern Illinois each won their bowl games. Both the RedHawks and Huskies also finished in the final AP Top 30 and Miami, Ohio had one of the greatest single season turnarounds in college football history going from a 1-11 record in 2009 to a 10-4 season last year which included a MAC Championship.

2010 was also a banner year for several MAC players including Toledo WR/KR Eric Page who was named 1st-Tm All-America by several different services after avg 31.3 yds per return with 3 TD’s. Page also had 99 rec (11.2) and 8 TD’s. Read more…

2010 Coaching Changes

August 20th, 2010 No comments

From 2005-’08 I published an article titled Coaching Changes in my College Football Preview magazine. Each year I try to make the magazine a little bit bigger and a little bit better but we’re capped out at 328 pages so Coaching Changes does not appear in my 2010 magazine. We have had a lot of requests for this article and since the website has an unlimited amount of room, is a great vehicle to continue publishing this article and I will do so each year. Read more…

Most/Least Improved Defensive PPG L/20 Years

July 29th, 2010 No comments

Today’s blog will complete my series of analyzing the most/least improved units over the last 20 years. Each day for the past week I have had a new offensive or defensive statistical category to examine and today I will breakdown defensive ppg.

There are many factors that contribute to a significant change in defensive ppg. First, a team may see a significant improvement if they return a bunch of experienced starters from a team that was relatively inexperienced the year before. Naturally a team that loses a bunch of starters from an experienced team will usually see a drop off in defensive ppg. Read more…

MAC Team of the Decade…

June 29th, 2010 No comments

For the next two weeks, I will be taking a look at the conference teams of the decade for 2000-2009. Factored into my analysis will be conference win %, conference and division titles, bowl games and bowl wins. I will also include BCS bowl wins, final AP rankings and number of national championships for the major conferences. There have been several teams who have changed conferences during that time and I will include them in the analysis for any season(s) they were affiliated with that certain conference. I will also be doing a breakdown of how the conference did in bowl games during the decade and I will emphasis the overall win/loss record, the number of BCS bowl wins, and the records against Non-BCS and ranked bowl teams.

While some conferences may have no-brainers as the top team, other conferences were very competitive over the past decade. Here is the schedule for the upcoming week with the conferences I will be analyzing on each date. Read more…

2010 Opponent’s Win %

April 14th, 2010 No comments

In Monday’s Blog, I analyzed which method of determining who plays the toughest schedule is more accurate; mine or the NCAA. I compared the preseason predictions of both and concluded that my method is superior because it takes two major factors into account. The first is my 9 sets of Power Ratings. This ensures that an FCS team like William & Mary who was 11-3 last year is rated much lower than Oklahoma which was 8-5 in 2009. The second factor is the amount of home and away games played. As an example, this year some teams will have as many as 8 home games, while others play as many as 8 on the road.

Today’s blog will take a closer look at the toughest schedule debate by looking at this year’s opponents’ win/loss record from the 2009 season.

At the beginning of the season, the NCAA usually releases a rating of each team’s schedule based on their opponents’ win/loss record from the previous season. This is a good method but it does have its obvious flaws.

The first flaw is basing the ratings on opponents’ records from the previous season. Let’s look at a couple of examples. At the start of 2007 I had Illinois rated as one of the top teams in the Big Ten and they went on to knock off #1 Ohio St and play in the ROSE BOWL. My ratings had them as an above avg opponent at the start of the year and they finished the regular season #13 (AP). Using 2006’s record as the criteria for determining the strength of an opps’ schedule, however you would count them as a 2-10 team!

The second flaw is basing it on pure overall records. If a team plays a FCS (IAA) school that was 11-1 in 2007, that would have counted as a MUCH tougher game in the NCAA ratings than facing a team like Alabama who was 7-6 in ‘07 but #1 at the end of ‘08 regular season! My ratings had Bama ranked as a much tougher team than an FCS foe.

Below is a chart of all 120 teams and the combined 2009 opponents’ records from last year. It is ranked in order of highest % of opponent wins (or toughest schedule) to lowest % of opponent wins (or easiest schedule). This is the same chart that will be printed in this year’s college preview magazine. Read more…