The theme: Run a little bit. Hit the possession receiver to move the chains. Then, when swing for the fences. That has been Indiana's game. All-world receiver James Hardy has caught from Kellen Lewis six passes for 180 yards. Lewis is a pretty good passer, but Hardy has a way of making QBs look good.
The running game is a weakness. Marcus Thigpen has been able to rush for only 3.7 yards per carry against Indiana State and Western Michigan. Lewis helps the cause with his mobility. He's actually the Hoosiers' leading rusher with 118 yards on the year. With Kent State coming next week, containing Lewis should be good practice for keeping Julian Edelman from scrambling.
Key players: QB Lewis, WR Hardy, WR Ray Fisher, K Austin Starr (No, Kiel. I'm not making that up.)
How Akron can stop them: Well, besides not wanting to confront Mr. Starr, who shares a name with a mid-card pro wrestler, the Zips MUST, repeat MUST, not let Hardy get behind the defense. As you can see from his stats, he's a big play receiver with first-round NFL talent. Hardy is 6-foot-7, so the Zips might want to borrow Jimmy Conyers for this game. In all seriousness, Akron needs to rely on the run defense to hold up against a pee-wee attack, spy Lewis with perhaps Andre Jones, assign the other safety exclusively to Hardy and hope the other defensive backs can stay with Fisher, who is a solid possession receiver.
Scout.com has done a tremendous job previewing this game this week. Check out its analysis.
The Buckeyes game doesn't start until 3:30 on Saturday, so Zips fans don't have to worry about as much about being at a bandwagon bar.
The early line on this game is Indiana minus 13. That is absurd. I'm not prepared to predict a victory, but bet your farm on J.D. and the boys. (Rasor on the Zips is not liable to anyone who actually bets his livelihood on the spread and loses.)
Thanks to your efforts, Zippy has overtaken CavMan. But it's still a close race.
For those of you in the Yahoo! Pick'em League, remember to make your choices. Yours truly, under the alias of J.D.'s 3-3-5ers, is in second place, and closing in on johnnyzip84.
- 2013 (110)
- 2012 (199)
- 2011 (225)
- 2010 (266)
- 2009 (380)
- 2008 (327)
- 2007 (561)
- 2006 (605)
- 2005 (89)