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Akron vs. Central Michigan - Preview

By mrasor Published: October 28, 2011


Central Michigan quarterback Ryan Radcliff is ready for an Xbox-like statistical day.

His offense averages a MAC-best 273.5 passing yards per game; the Zips defense gives up yards in big chunks.

Despite being 2-6, the Chippewas' only bad loss was a 44-14 beating at rival Western Michigan. CMU showed it is capable of contending for the conference title when the Chips put up 48 points in a win over Northern Illinois.

This, ahem, will be another day to forget at InfoCision Stadium for the hundreds sitting through the brisk October afternoon.

Like Akron, Central Michigan is very young. The Chips are playing with 10 true freshmen. Only four seniors played in last week's loss to Ball State, in which the Chips coughed up a 20-3 third-quarter lead to lose 31-27.

But the five remaining Zips' optimists will point out that on Saturday Akron will trot out a healthier, more complete offensive line to protect Clayton Moore and clear turf for Jawon Chisholm. I don't see that making much difference.

There is only one win separating Central Michigan and Akron. The bigger difference is that CMU has a fuller stable of upperclass talent, such as Radcliff and junior receiver Cody Wilson, to keep games close, despite CMU's MAC-worst turnover margin. In contrast, Akron has to play mistake-free football just to keep it close.

Radcliff does throw a lot of interceptions. The Zips' best hope is to take one of those back to the painted grass and play even elsewhere.

I'm done being optimistic with this team.

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