Thursday, October 30, 2014

Babers Presser...YAWWWWWnnnn

Short, sweet and boring Babers presser this week...just got done watching it.  Honestly, very little of any interest...all our goals are in front of us, trying to simulate game conditions and game speed, this game isn't the whole season, guys understand how important it is...

The whole thing was barely five minutes.

Two interesting things....Akron is fast.

And Coach is preparing to see Pohl at QB.  You can't argue with this..I think he could have played last week, and I can't believe that he won't be in the lineup Tuesday.

MAC Blogger Roundtable

So, the MAC Blogger roundtable is back for the week.  This week, our host is our arch-rivals at Let's Go Rockets...

1.  With UMass exiting the MAC at the conclusion of the season, is it in the conference’s best interest to stay at 12 teams or pursue two teams, one to replace and one to even the divisions? If the MAC goes after two, which two teams fit well or what teams would you like to see join the conference?

I think we stay at 12.  Still enough for a title game and an even number--as in a number that can be equally split into TWO divisions.  At one time you worried about expansion as a defensive measure (lest you end up like the WAC) but now that appears to be have settled in and the next big move will be the Power 5 leaving the NCAA and doing their own things.  Looking around, there are not (to me) any obvious choices.  WKU is in C-USA...maybe Middle Tennessee.  Lastly, I am holding firm to my belief that BG should not bring any more football-only schools.  We are 0-3 with that approach.

2.If your respective team was destined to lose every remaining game on their schedule save for one that you could pick, which game would they win and why?

Are you talking to me?  Are you talking to me?  Are you talking to me?  Well, I'm the only one here.  Who the f**k do you think you're talking to?  Anyway, the answer is obvious...if BG did finish 6-6, it would be oh so much more palatable to have one of the six be a win over UT.

3.  College football has seen some impressive fan displays this year with fan wearing a specific color (white out, blue out, etc.), striping the stands, checker-boarding the stands, etc. To what degree has your team embraced this trend? Has it been successful? What can be done to improve the fan participation and get more fans on board?

I think it looks cool when it gets pulled off but I would be happy to find a way to keep fans from wearing their Ohio State gear to home BG games.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Falcon Football Gets De-Commit

BG had a de-commit today from the football program.  The de-commiter was Ferrod Gardner, a LB from Dayton.   According to the article linked above, he had Power 5 interest and apparently he has decided to explore his options.

As always in these situations, it is worth remembering that being a collegiate athlete requires a huge amount of commitment, and if someone doesn't have his heart in this decision, it is better for everyone involved for him to make the right one.

All the best, Ferrod.

Update:  Ferrod says here that he is still considering BG.  This is a huge of luck finding your home, Ferrod.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Media Predicts BG MBB to Finish 5th in East

The media poll is in from the MAC office.  BG is picked to finish 5th in the East, ahead of only Miami.  The Falcons did get one first place vote.

Everyone seemed surprised by this:

More is coming through the week on this, but I think there will be plenty to watch for this year.  BG brings a lot back from last year's team and added some guys and maybe some new energy.  Depth will be better.  On the other hand, they are starting lower on the mountain than the other programs are and the main guy they did lose was the primary inside guy and BG will be very small this year.

All that to say that I don't think it is unreasonable to pick BG 5th or 6th.  That's the most likely scenario based on what we know today.  Again, we will talk more about what would have to change to make that better in the next couple days.

Here is the full poll:

2014-15 MAC East Division Predicted Order of Finish
1. Akron – 117 points (17 1st Place)
2. Ohio – 92 (2)
3. Kent State – 66
4. Buffalo – 58
5. Bowling Green – 52 (1)
6. Miami – 35

2014-15 MAC West Division Predicted Order of Finish
1. Toledo – 118 points (18 1st Place)
2. Western Michigan – 94 (1)
3. Eastern Michigan – 68
4. Northern Illinois – 63
5. Central Michigan – 49 (1)
6. Ball State – 28

Tournament Champion: Toledo (15), Akron (1), Bowling Green (1), Central Michigan (1), Ohio (1), Western Michigan (1)

The pre-season first and second teams were also announced.  Richaun Holmes was named first team All-MAC pre-season, which is a nice honor for him.  He's a very good player and I'm looking forward to seeing if the new staff can iron the last couple kinks out of his game.

One other note...there is only one non-senior on the first and second team.  This is a senior-dominated conference.

MAC East Division Preseason All-MAC Team
Demetrius "Tree" Treadwell, Sr., F, Akron
Richaun Holmes, Sr., F, Bowling Green
Will Regan, Sr., F, Buffalo
Kris Brewer, Kent State, Sr., G, Kent State
Maurice Ndour, Sr., F, Ohio

MAC West Division Preseason All-MAC Team
Chris Fowler, Jr., G, Central Michigan
Karrington Ward, Sr., F, Eastern Michigan
Julius "Juice" Brown, Sr., G, Toledo
Justin Drummond, Sr., G/F, Toledo
David Brown, Grad., G, Western Michigan

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Past and Future Opponent Land, and West domination benefitting BG

BG might have had the best off-day in the history of the Mid-American conference.  There were five games played between teams from the West and teams from the East and the West won every single one of them, meaning that BG ticked up on each opponent.  The only game featuring East-only teams was Miami-Kent, two teams unlikely to challenge for the division title.

BG has one division loss.  Akron has two and everyone else has at least 3.  Furthermore, BG has beaten Buffalo, OU, and UMass, meaning that essentially they have a 3-game lead against those teams.

Even more than before, the Akron game will decide it all.  If BG beats Akron, they would only need one win in the final three games (@UT, Kent and Ball State) to lock it down.

Thanks to today's loss, even if Akron beats BG, the race continues.  Both BG and Akron would have two losses, and while Akron has a softer schedule coming home, they could easily lose one more time.

Finally, I think it is entirely plausible that the East winner will finish with 3 losses, and even with a loss to Akron, BG might still win some tie-breakers if they ended up being multi-team tiebreakers.

Point is, for as disappointed as some Falcon fans are and as weak as the East is, BG is pretty much one win for heading back to Detroit.

One last thing:  how is the "WMU is awful" camp reacting?

Western Kentucky (3-4) Beat Old Dominion 66-51
VMI (1-8) Lost to 38-3 to Wofford
Indiana (3-4) Idle
Wisconsin (5-2) Beat Maryland 52-7
UMass (2-7) Lost 42-35
Buffalo (3-5) Lost to CMU
Ohio U (4-5) Lost 42-21 to WMU
WMU (5-3) Beat Ohio 42-21
Akron (4-4) Lost to Ball State
Kent (1-7) Lost to Miami
Toledo (5-3) Beat UMass 42-35
Ball State (3-5) Beat Akron

MAC vs. Power 5: 4-22
MAC vs. non-MAC FBS: 3-12
MAC vs. FCS: 11-2
East vs. West: West leads 10-2

Saturday, October 25, 2014

Men's Basketball Check-in

We are beginning to get ready for two sports season...BG has its "secret" exhibition game against UM next Saturday and then the Friday after that the first exhibition game and then the week after that the season gets going in earnest.

The program is at a transition point, obviously.  Our new coaching staff is in place and is busy coaching the guys into his style of play.  BG returned four starters from last year (plus Orr) and brought in 3 JUCO players who can play right away, so BG does have a lot of guys who are older to put into play.  Talent level remains the open question.

BG had their media day recently and it was mostly the type of thing you hear at these events...working hard, team is gelling...blah blah.

A couple of interesting nuggets.
  • We are going to play tough defense and be a tough rebounding team.
  • We are going to race the ball up floor after we are scored against.
  • Depth is important because it is creating competition at positions.
  • Coach wishes we were bigger, but figures most teams do.
One other thing that has been remarked upon in many places...BG lost none of its legacy players during the changeover.  That's impressive.  And, one of those returning players is Chauncey Orr.  Coach Jans has great things to say about Chauncey, who has made the transition with class and demonstrates a commitment to his teammates and his school.  I'm proud he is wearing our colors and going to the university I love.

A few other notes from beyond the media day.

First, if you love college basketball, the Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook is for you.  Their previews are incredible and show a strong focus on being comprehensive.  Highly recommended.

A couple tidbits from there.  First, JD Tisdale has had some injury issues in the off-season.  And Coach Jans talked specifically about Garrett Mayleben as someone who has made strides--gained weight and looking to make a contribution.

That is interesting.  Mayleben was recruited by Orr and id'd as a project from the get-go.  He's 6'9" and if he can make any contribution at all it will be important.  On the inside, BG right now features Richaun Holmes and true FR. Rasheed Worrell, neither of whom is a 5.  BG added Delvin Dickerson for inside toughness, but he is only 6'5".  

There's Spencer Parker--who Jans said in Blue Ribbon is more of a 4 than a 3, which is the opposite of what I would thought based on last year.  And then Mayleben and Josh Gomez.

So, if Mayleben can contribute rotation minutes, it makes a big difference.  We shall see.  He red-shirted last year, so our coaches have time to build him up.

The guard play looks to be significantly upgrade.  BG brought two PGs in, which I believe will be a big help because it frees up Jehvon Clarke to play 2, which I think might be a more natural fit for him.  I think playing him at PG was a stretch.

Blue Ribbon picks BG last in the East and that's where everyone is going to put them and that's a rational pick, frankly.  I think BG has the potential to exceed that expectation, but a lot of things will need to come together and a lot of unknowns will have to land on the plus side.

Having said that, I'm looking forward to it.  I tend to be optimistic, but I think Coach Jans can build this program to where we want it to be, which is into the Big Dance.  It won't be easy to get there.  The MAC is much improved over the last couple years but still remains a one-bid league.  You have to have a lot of things line up right to win this conference...ask UT from last year...and there are far more cruel fates than triumphant victories.

MAC Bogger Roundtable Compiled...

Light attendance this week at the MAC Blogger Roundtable.  Obviously, busy time of year.  So, it was us and Bull Run...still well worth the price of admission.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Falcon Football Nabs New Verbal

With the extended off time, it stood to reason that BG's coaches would head onto the recruiting trail, and if they did they are showing some results.  Today, we learned of a new verbal to Falcon football-OLB/DE Tyler Horstman of Vero Beach, FL.

He is 6'3" and 200 pounds and had offers from Rutgers and Wake Forest (!!) according to this.  A paywalled story on the web from a local paper referred to him as having a "high motor" and he was third team all-state in Florida 8A as a junior.  Also, you will see here that Horstman credits BG coach (and recruiting secret weapon) Nick Monroe for long-term commitment to his recruiting.

The All-State honor is no wonder.  Last year, he made 101 tackles in 9 games with 10 sacks.  This year, he has 5 sacks in 4 games.

Vero Beach is undefeated this year as well.

Welcome to the Falcons, Tyler.

MAC Blogger Roundtable, My Answers

The weekly MAC Blogger roundtable is back....this week hosted by Eagle Totem.

1. Last week talked about coaches; this week let's talk about players: Which player from your team has been the biggest positive surprise, and who has fallen the most short of expectations?

For the positive surprise, I would go with R-FR LB James Sanford.  Sanford had seen no action prior to the year but has stepped in with injuries at LB and made some very nice plays and has been productive.  He made a big play in Athens to help BG close out the Bobcats.

I would say that the fallen short of expectations player would be Gehrig Dieter.  That might be a matter of the expectations more than anything.  Dieter transferred from SMU and I think BG fans had high expectations that he would step right in and be an all-MAC caliber player, but between being injured and not playing for a year, he just hasn't contributed yet.

2. If you could steal any one player from another MAC team, who would you take and why?

Well, given that BG lost its starting QB, I guess I would go with Zach Terrell, who has been the most efficient QB in the MAC in a passing role.  An experienced QB would help the team out a lot.

3. Bill Parcells once commented, "You are what your record says you are." Which MAC team this season is not what their record says they are?

Boy, if you were to ask a large number of Bowling Green fans, they would say it would be the Falcons.  I think the real answer is that you can't answer the question because you don't know who anybody actually is.  There's hardly a team without a blemish or a contradiction on their record.

4. We were supposed to do this last week but seem to have forgotten, so...rank 'em!

  1. UT
  2. NIU
  3. AK
  4. WMU
  5. BG
  6. CMU
  7. OU
  8. UMass
  9. Ball State
  10. EMU
  11. Buffalo
  12. Miami
  13. Kent