MAC Football Week Five Recap Print E-mail
Written by Dave Ruthenberg   
Monday, October 01 2007
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Photo: Paul Nelson
Part of the attraction of college football is that it is frequently wildly unpredictable.  It is a game that can give us great storylines such as Appalachian State upsetting the mighty Michigan Wolverines. That wild, unpredictable nature certainly can be applied to the MAC as well.

The MAC consistently plays 80% or more of its non-conference games on the road and typically faces a Herculean task in trying to pull the upset in non-conference play. But the MAC has shown that not only can it frequently compete on the road, but can make life tough on the BCS folks when they come visiting into MAC territory.

Case in point would be the Miami RedHawks.

Floundering at 1-3 heading into a home contest against Syracuse, which had just knocked off nationally ranked Louisville, 38-35, not many gave the RedHawks a shot against the Orange but Miami showed again that the saying about "any given Saturday" is more a truism than a cliché as the RedHawks stunned the favored Orange, defeating Syracuse 17-14.

With Miami's victory Saturday, the MAC has now scored out of conference wins over teams from the Big East, Big Ten, Big 12, Sun Belt, and Western Athletic Conferences as well as wins over independents Navy, Army and Western Kentucky.

On any given Saturday.

Mighty Mite Tops The Nation
When he was being recruited, the big schools shied away from him.

ksu_jarvis_small.jpgToo short. Too slow. He heard it all.

But you can't measure heart and Kent State running back Eugene Jarvis, all 5-feet, 5-inches of him, now has the rest of the nation looking up at him.

Following his 230 yards rushing performance in Kent State's 33-25 conference victory over Ohio, Jarvis has now rushed for 769 yards, tops in the NCAA.

Here's a quick look at the nation's top five ground gainers:



Rushing Yards

Eugene Jarvis

Kent State


Michael Hart



Kevin Smith



P.J. Hill



Darren McFadden



Mr. Automatic
Ohio placekicker Michael Braunstein is on quite a roll having converted on sixteen consecutive field goal attempts which is the longest such streak in the nation.

Braunstein is 8-8 this season for the Bobcats and made his last eight field goals while playing for the University of Washington prior to joining the Bobcats this season. Braunstein also tied a school record earlier this year when he kicked for four field goals in the Bobcats' 34-33 loss to Wyoming.

Around The Conference

BallState_Color_small.jpgBall State 49, Buffalo 14.819.gif
Quick Take:  Ball State showed no ill-effects from its loss last week to Nebraska, choosing instead to take out its frustrations on the Buffalo Bulls. The Cardinals jumped out to a 28-0 halftime lead and coasted to an easy 49-14 triumph behind a pair of touchdowns each from TE Darius Hill and WR Dante Love with one of Love's touchdowns coming on the ground. Cardinals QB Nate Davis passed for three touchdowns while DB Trey Lewis contributed a defensive score on a 26-yard interception return. The Cardinals followed up last week's offensive output of 610 yards with 507 yards of offense against the Bulls while the Bulls were limited to 219 yards of offense and only 11 first downs.

Ball State freshman RB Frank Edmonds rushed for a career-high 124 yards in his first collegiate start.
**Buffalo freshman safety Davonte Shannon recorded a career-best 16 tackles.
**Ball State rushed for 274 yards, their highest single-game total since rushing for 289 yards against Buffalo in 2002.

** "
After we watched the film of the (Nebraska) game Sunday, we just put that game out of our mind and focused on what we needed to do today." Ball State TE Darius Hill.
** "We wanted to come out and make a statement around the whole conference and we did that today." Ball State DB Trey Lewis.
** "We know they have an explosive offense, and somehow, some way, you have to keep them off the board." Buffalo head coach Turner Gill.

Connecticut 44, Akron 10. zips_small.jpg
Quick Take: The Huskies blew open a close contest with 28 unanswered second-half points to win going away over the Zips, 44-10. The Zips held a 10-9 lead in the second quarter after QB Chris Jacquemain connected with Jabari Arthur on a 6-yard TD but Connecticut immediately answered by returning the ensuing kickoff for a touchdown. The Zips however had a chance to take the lead before halftime and had the ball at the Huskies' 3-yard line with less than 30 seconds remaining but Jacquemain was stopped on a run and was not able to get out of bounds and the clock ran out on the first half. It was the last time the Zips would seriously threaten as Connecticut reeled off 21 points in a ten minute span to put the game out of reach.

**Tyvon Branch's 97-yard kickoff return for a touchdown for Connecticut was the first allowed by the Zips' since Steven Clay of Eastern Michigan returned a kick 95-yards in 1993.
**Akron QB Chris Jacquemain recorded a career high by completing 19-28 passes.
**Akron RB Bryan Williams recorded 170 all-purpose yards; 65 yards rushing and 105 return yards.

** "
We missed some opportunities and I think the momentum kind of shifted with the way the first half ended and that was disappointing. When you're playing a team of this caliber, you have to play a lot better. You can't make the mistakes and have the penalties that we had which killed drives." Akron head coach J.D. Brookhart.
** "
I thought I'd made a mistake by not throwing the ball away on that play. I thought I got out of bounds to stop the clock but apparently I didn't. Its one of those things I'm going to learn from and get better. Coach told me that I should've thrown the ball away and there really wasn't a throw there." Akron QB Chris Jacquemain discussing the final play before halftime.
** "Akron did a great job of shutting down the run in the first half; I think we only ran the ball a few times in the first half.  After we started airing the ball out, the running game opened up." Connecticut RB Donald Brown.

Army 37, Temple 21.Temple_small.JPG
Quick Take:
Turnovers and penalties continue to doom the Owls as they search for their first win of the season. The Owls battled Army to a 21-21 halftime stalemate despite giving up an 88-yard touchdown on the game's opening kickoff. Jason Harper scored twice in the opening half, once on a 25-yard pass from Owls QB Adam DiMichele and once on a 9-yard run. The Owls added a third first half score on Bruce Francis' 27-yard TD reception from DiMichele but surrendered 16 unanswered second-half points to the Black Knights, including another special teams score when Army returned a third-quarter punt 86 yards for a touchdown. The Owls committed four turnovers and were penalized 11 times for 89 yards.

**Temple RB Jason Harper's two touchdowns were a single-game career high.
**Owls' WR Bruce Francis recorded a career high 133 yards receiving and scored a touchdown for the third consecutive game.
**Temple TE Kevin Armstrong also had a career day, recording a personal best five receptions for 79 yards.

** "I just got done telling the team, when you turn the ball over, you have penalties that take points off the board and you play like crap on special teams you're going to lose." Temple head coach Al Golden.
"We've been taught how to fight through adversity. It's adversity that we're putting ourselves through though. It's nothing they are doing or the referees are doing. We put ourselves in those predicaments." Temple QB Adam DiMichele.
** "We have to bounce back. We have seven games left and we just have to do what we have to do to win" Temple RB Jason Harper.

CMUletterC_Color_small.jpgCentral Michigan 35, Northern Illinois 10.NIU_3CHD_small.jpg
Quick Take: Central Michigan put last week's 44-14 loss to North Dakota State, and the ensuing distractions, aside and delivered their best performance of the year, topping Northern Illinois 35-10 to remain undefeated in conference play. The Chips scored touchdowns on five of their first six possessions in the first half as all of the game's scoring came in the opening half. Northern Illinois drove downfield after taking the opening half kickoff but usually reliable PK Chris Nendick missed a 21-yard FG attempt and four plays later CMU RB Justin Hoskins scampered 40 yards to give the Chips a lead they would never surrender. NIU threatened again in the first quarter but NIU TB Justin Anderson fumbled the ball at the CMU 1-yard line. The Chips' second touchdown came via a 32-yard WR option pass from Duane Brooks to QB Dan LeFevour while the leading contender for MAC freshman of the year, Antonio Brown, added a 90-yard kickoff return for a touchdown after NIU had narrowed the score to 14-7 on a 92-yard pass and catch from QB Dan Nicholson to Matt Simon.

**Central Michigan RB Justin Hoskins finished with 14 carries for 93 yards and two touchdowns, all career highs.
**NIU WR Matt Simon had a career best 205 yards receiving; the sixth 200 yard plus receiving performance in Northern Illinois history.
**Huskies' TB Justin Anderson rushed for 157 yards, his third straight game of over 150 yards rushing.
**CMU snapped a nine-game losing streak to Northern Illinois, dating back to 1997.

** "I kept hearing about all of these things that were supposedly going on, but I didn't feel it at all." Central Michigan head coach Butch Jones on reports of dissension between the team and the coaches.
** "I just told every player that they needed to believe in their abilities and have fun playing football. We had a great week of practice, and we came out ready to play."
Central Michigan LB Red Keith.
** "We have good kids, we just need to keep them together. It's hard, but we have to keep working." Northern Illinois head coach Joe Novak.

MiamiRedhawks_Color_small.jpgMiami 17, Syracuse 14.
Quick Take: Just when it appeared that Miami's season was quickly becoming a lost cause, the RedHawks came up with arguably their best performance of the season, defeating Syracuse at Yager Stadium, 17-14. Mike Kokal returned as the starting QB after being benched last week and responded with 213 total yards while seldom-used fifth-year senior RB Cory Jones, pressed into greater duty as a result of injuries to the RedHawks' backfield starters, responded with 125 yards on 12 carries, scoring both of Miami's touchdowns. The victory snapped Miami's home losing streak at seven games and the win also equaled Miami's total from last season.

** Miami's 286 yards rushing were the most since the RedHawks recorded 399 yards rushing against Akron in 1999.
** Syracuse managed only 66 yards rushing after coming into the contest averaging over 134 yards rushing per game.
** Miami is now 3-3-1 all time versus teams from the Big East.

** "We really needed to get our confidence back." Miami head coach Shane Montgomery.
** "We stopped the run. We got the win. That's all that matters." Miami LB Clayton Mullins.
** "I want to be out there. I want to lead the team and be the motivational guy. Not being out there kills me."
Miami QB Mike Kokal.

State 33, Ohio 25.OhioBobcats_color_small.jpg
Quick Take: Kent State RB Eugene Jarvis exploded for 230 yards rushing as the Flashes downed Ohio 33-25. KSU rolled out to a quick 17-3 advantage after the opening quarter after Jarvis opened the scoring on a 35 yard TD run. After Ohio PK Mike Braunstein made it 7-3, Shawn Bayes hauled in a three-yard pass to put the Flashes up 14-3 but Ohio RB Kalvin McRae scored with just over four minutes remaining to make the score 17-10 by halftime. Eugene Jarvis then added another long TD run of 42 yards in the third quarter as the Flashes opened up a 27-10 advantage. Ohio staged a late comeback behind backup QB Theo Scott's two fourth quarter scoring strikes to Andrew Mooney, closing to within 33-25 with three minutes remaining but could get no closer as Ohio dropped its conference opener and third straight game overall.

** Kent State RB Eugene Jarvis' 30 carries for 230 yards were career highs and represented the most yards rushing by a Kent State player since Josh Cribbs in 2004.
** Jarvis has rushed for over 100 yards in five consecutive games, the first
Kent State player to so since Don Fitzgerald in 1966.
** The two teams combined for 28 penalties resulting in 264 yards.

** "Eugene is a special player. He's got speed, he's got vision, he's got everything." Kent State head coach Doug Martin.
** "We knew we were going to be able to run the ball."
Kent State RB Eugene Jarvis.
** "It's not all doom and gloom. There are a lot of games yet to be played, and this thing is not over in any way, shape or form." Ohio head coach Frank Solich.

BG_small.jpgBowling Green 41,
Western Kentucky 21. 
Quick Take:
Bowling Green pretty much had its way with the Hilltoppers who are transitioning to the FBS and will participate in the Sun Belt Conference starting in 2008. The Falcons were led by QB Tyler Sheehan who passed for 270 yards and three touchdowns, as well as rushing for one more TD, before he was lifted in the second-half with the game well in hand and BG up 31-7 in the third quarter. Bowling Green led 41-7 late in the game until Western Kentucky added two late touchdowns after the Falcons had pulled their first team. BG intercepted WKU QB KJ Black four times while committing no turnovers. The Falcons were a perfect 7-7 in the red zone.
** BG QB Tyler Sheehan has completed 30 or more passes in each of the Falcons' first four games this season.
** Both teams were a combined 10-10 in the red zone.
** BG DB PJ Mahone picked off two passes and leads the team with three picks, averaging 40.6 yards per interception return.

** "Kids are having fun playing, winning helps, but they understand why we're winning. It was an off-season of working their butts off." Bowling Green head coach Gregg Brandon.
** "We wanted to play fastball, which we haven't done this year. We wanted to get everyone up to the line, in a no huddle offence to change things up. I just got the ball to the people who needed the ball." Bowling Green QB Tyler Sheehan.
** "Whenever you lose the turnover battle it's not easy to win. We've been fortunate the last couple of weeks, but it bit us in the backside today
."  Western Kentucky QB KJ Black.

WMUBroncos_color_small.jpgWestern Michigan 42, Toledo 28.ToledoRockets_Color_small.jpg
Quick Take:
The Broncos ran roughshod over Toledo's porous defense in downing the Rockets, 42-28 but the Rockets may have lost more than just the game. Toledo's starting QB, Aaron Opelt was injured making a tackle on Western Michigan's Londen Fryar's interception return, injuring his ankle. His backup, Clint Cochran, suffered a possible separated shoulder in the fourth quarter, forcing Rockets freshman quarterback DJ Lenehan into action. The Rockets actually jumped out to early leads of 7-0 and 14-7 on an Aaron Opelt 28 yard TD to Nick Moore and a three yard score from Cochran following a 70-yard pass from Cochran to Moore. The Broncos however put up 20 points in the second quarter and during one stretch put up 27 unanswered points, putting the game safely out of reach in their conference opener. Western Michigan rolled up 490 yards in offense with both Mark Bonds and Brandon West topping the 100-yard rushing mark.

** The win was the first for
Western Michigan at the Glass Bowl since 1988.
** WMU RB Mark Bonds rushed for a career high 143 yards.
** Toledo WR Nick Moore had a career-high 110 yards receiving.

** "Injuries are a part of football. We need to adjust and get the guys who can play on the field and push hard and go again."  Toledo head coach Tom Amstutz.
** "Our first few possessions we didn't do what we wanted to do. Then we got that interception in their red zone. We dominated from there."
Western Michigan WR Herb Martin.
** "I thought the defense played outstanding. A lot of three-and-outs, a lot of hard-hitting. We just kind of went back to basic football." Western Michigan head coach Bill Cubit.

Vanderbilt 30,
Eastern Michigan 7.E-Eagle-color_small.JPG
Quick Take:
The Eagles were their own worst enemy in dropping a 30-7 decision at Vanderbilt. EMU QB Andy Schmitt, after going three consecutive games without throwing an interception, tossed four picks against Vanderbilt as the Eagles offense accounted for only 173 yards. Eastern Michigan's defense was equally opportunistic, forcing four Vanderbilt turnovers however, unlike the Eagles, the Commodores were able to take advantage of their short field opportunities. The Commodores led 13-0 at halftime and the teams traded touchdowns in the third quarter before Vandy broke the game open on a DJ Moore 24-yard interception returned for a touchdown late in the third quarter to give the Commodores an insurmountable 27-7 lead.

Eastern Michigan has not won a road contest against a non-conference opponent since defeating Youngstown State 17-12 in 1988.
** The five interceptions recorded by Vanderbilt were the most by the Commodores in a single game since 1993 against Navy.
** The Eagles' offense did not cross midfield until halfway through the third quarter.

"I think our defensive line played a great game against a veteran Vanderbilt team and I think they played good enough to win the game but we committed far too many turnovers to win." Eastern Michigan head coach Jeff Genyk.
** "I thought the front seven did a good job of moving laterally and getting to the quarterback. I thought we were able to force him into some bad throws, and our secondary did a good job of executing and getting some interceptions."
Eastern Michigan LB Daniel Holtzclaw.
** "I'm obviously pleased with the win. Defensively, we played extremely well, and I think Eastern Michigan played hard overall and well on defense. They caused us to make too many mistakes to be as happy as I'd want to be." Vanderbilt head coach Bobby Johnson.

Players of the Week
MAC Report Online announces its choices for offensive and defensive players of the week for week five of the MAC season.

Offensive Player of the Week
ksu_jarvis2_small.jpgEugene Jarvis, RB, Kent State. 30 carries, 230 yards, two touchdowns
Comment: Jarvis keyed Kent State's 33-25 conference win over Ohio with a career high 230 yards rushing that propelled him into the nation's top spot among all running backs, leading the nation with an average of 153.8 yards rushing per game.




Defensive Player of the Week
cmu_keith_small.jpgRed Keith, LB, Central Michigan, 10 tackles (5 solo), 1 tackle for loss; 1 forced fumble; 1 interception.
Comment: Keith was a significant component of the Central Michigan defense that limited Northern Illinois to ten points in the Chippewas' 35-10 win Saturday. In addition to his ten tackles, Keith forced a fumble at the goal line and intercepted a pass.


Prognosticating Prowess
We've been making our predictions for four seasons and for the first time we have had back-to-back losing weeks. But that's why they play the games. If everyone could predict the outcome, why bother playing them? Well, that's our story and we're sticking with it (for now). For the past week our picks went 4-5 for a season mark of 35-16. Below is the ugly truth of the matter:



Northern Illinois 38, Central Michigan 30.

Central Michigan 35, Northern Illinois 10.

Temple 24, Army 16.

Army 37, Temple 21.

Akron 20, Connecticut 17.

Connecticut 44, Akron 10.

Ball State 45, Buffalo 21.

Ball State 49, Buffalo 14.

Ohio 20, Kent State 17.

Kent State 33, Ohio 25.

Syracuse 34, Miami 24.

Miami 17, Syracuse 14.

Vanderbilt 27, Eastern Michigan 14.

Vanderbilt 30, Eastern Michigan 7.

Bowling Green 43, Western Kentucky 17.

Bowling Green 41, Western Kentucky 21.

Western Michigan 38, Toledo 30.

Western Michigan 42, Toledo 28.

Last Updated ( Sunday, October 07 2007 )
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