For anyone looking for last week’s game I actually wrote the game story for the paper. You can check that out here.
It’s rivalry week. Everyone is fired up to play Akron. It was just two years ago Kent State surprised everyone and returned the Wagon Wheel to Kent after starting the season slow. I believe they went on a five gamed winning streak after that. Can it happen again this year?
I would like to think so, but the injured list for this week’s game doesn’t bode well. Although I hear Akron is pretty banged up too.
Just got back from Kent State coach Doug Martin’s weekly press conference and The Flashes are now the definition of “Walking Wounded”… again.
Senior quarterback Julian Edelman isn’t hurt this year. After playing on a torn knee ligament and eventually breaking his arm last year, he is “As healthy as ever” according to Martin. He is really playing great football right now too, but more on that later.
This week’s injury report might as well include half the roster.
The great depth at linebacker that the Flashes used to possess is now gone. Sophomore middle linebacker Cobrani Mixon will be done for the season with a broken bone in his left foot, the fifth metatarsal according to athletic communications.
Strongside linebacker Cedrick Maxwell broke his fibula Saturday and could be out for the season as well, but Martin seems optimistic about getting him back before the season ends.
Senior linebacker Stevon Moss is battling an ankle injury of his own that he suffered against Delaware State. It is still unclear if he will be able to play this week.
Senior tight end Jameson Konz, who used to play linebacker last year, is also done for the season with a high ankle sprain. Konz also has ligament damage in his ankle that was worse then first expected. He is now expected to apply for a medical red shirt. Jon Simpson has done a very job filling in for him this season though.
Don’t expect to see Eugene Jarvis this weekend either as his high ankle sprain has not allowed him to return to running yet. Although I feel as if Andre Flowers and, especially, Jacquise “Speedy” Terry both do a very nice job as fill ins. Neither have the impact Jarvis does though.
Another injury is cornerback Kirk Belgrave who banged up his shoulder a little bit. Martin said the injury didn’t seem to serious at this point and he is expected to play.
EDELMAN PLAYING WELL
Edelman seems to be the one of the only guys who is completely healthy right now and it is really showing on the field. Saturday’s game against Ball State is one of the best games I have seen him play in two years.
He is making good decisions running the football and passing the ball too. I was really impressed with his touchdown pass to Shawn Bayes Saturday as he began running to his left and at the last minute un-tucked the ball and threw it to a place that only Bayes could make the catch. Great work by both players.
The play was stolen from the Florida playbook, Edelman said Monday at the press conference. It is an intended run, but if the defense over commits to stop him, which with his running ability they typically will, he just flips to an open receiver. It was Bayes Saturday. With his offensive skill set it is a great wrinkle to have.
Right now Edelman seems to know when he should tuck the ball and pick up yardage and when he should send the ball downfield. He also had another third down completion where he took off to run and stopped before the line of scrimmage to find a receiver for a first down and decent gain. (My apologies, I can’t remember who caught it for the life of me right now).
As long as he continues to play intelligent football and makes the big plays when he needs to, the offense will be alright. Whether the receivers catch his passes still remains questionable. (Shawn Bayes is playing extremely well too, but the rest of the receivers leave little to be desired.)
SOFTENING MY STANCE
After seeing Louisiana-Lafayette put 37 points up on Kansas State over the weekend (and knowing they nearly knocked off Illinois) ; Kent State’s 1-4 record suddenly does not seem nearly as bad to me.
This team should be 2-3 right now without a doubt, but when you think that their losses came against….
Boston College, who has one of the best defenses in the nation and have allowed just 26 points all season so far (two shutouts). They are currently ranked as the 16ht best defense in the country.
Kent State gave away the Iowa State game. Martin admits it. If there is one game everyone should be ticked off about it is this one. Two blocked punts when the other team is in a return formation. Seriously?
I, like many others, fully expected Kent State to win against Louisiana because they just haven’t been a good team the last couple years, but this year they have the 17th best offense in the country, much better than anyone has given them credit for.
Saturday’s loss at Ball State was completely expected. Some consider the Cardinals the best team in the state of Indiana. There offense is that good, there defense could be a little better. I still think it is enough to win the MAC title this season.
In retrospect: Kent State has played a pretty brutal non-conference slate. That is not an excuse, I still think they can play much better than they have this season. Outside of the Iowa State game though, this season is really come out the way everyone expected it too.
THIS IS WHAT IT’S ALL ABOUT
Sophomore quarterback Giorgio Morgan hasn’t taken any snaps this season, but he and five teammates made one of their biggest plays of the season Monday morning when the group went to the Tallmadge learning Center to talk to three and four year old Autistic children.
Senior offensive lineman Augustus Parrish, Senior quarterback Jon Brown, junior wide receiver Leneric Muldrow, Sophmore defensive back Brian Hummer, Sophomore linebacker Byron Tyson, and Morgan spent an hour and half playing, eating and singing with the special needs kids on there day off.
I hear some local recruits will be at Dix Stadium Saturday for the game. No word on what offers are out there.
Eric Duale, K, Medina Highland
His coach calls him a legitimate Division I kicker.
Todd Culver, WR, ST. Vincent St. Mary
David Lee, WR-DB-RB, St. Vincent St. Mary
Both of these players are impact type players for the Irish and are good with the ball in their hands. I also like any player who comes from a strong program like SVSM.
Tyler Fortner, DB-RB, Tallmadge
I hear he has Ivy league smarts. He has always put up big numbers at Tallmadge as a runner. It seems like he has been playing there forever though.
I don’t know much about these guys, but I’ll try to find out more.
Anthony Massaro, Walsh Jesuit
Eric Osborne, GlenOak
Chauncey Clemons, OT, Garfield
Marquess Shepard, ATL, Garfield
Dexter Davis, Garfield
David Sutter, Hoban
Matt Wolski, Hoban
Ben Coudriet Hoban