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Zips expected to lose big at home against division rival

By mrasor Published: October 19, 2011


The Zips are expected to lose by 14.5 points Saturday against Ohio.

The answer to your next question is: November 3.

(That's when the basketball team opens the 2011-12 campaign against John Carroll. I just distracted myself and read basketball articles the past 20 minutes. . . . Oh, that's right. The header on this post is "football." I'm sure there's something to talk about with football, too.)

The Bobcats enjoyed a successful non-conference season. They thwomped New Mexico State, Gardner Webb (remember them?) and Marshall. If not for four turnovers, Ohio would have bested Rutgers on the road.

Flying high, the Bobcats went on to beat Kent State. But then the Bobcats lost two MAC games by a combined four points. To catch up with Temple, it's likely Ohio University will need to win each of its remaining five games to finish at 6-2 MAC. Temple is 3-1 MAC.

Ohio is a well-balanced team. The Bobcats have averaged the second-most yards per game in the MAC (435.1) and allowed the third-fewest (331.4).

If you had to pick one aspect of the team that stands out, it's probably the pass defense. The Bobcats have intercepted 12 passes -- three more than the nearest MAC school. Opposing quarterbacks have only completed 50.2 percent of their passes against the Ohio secondary.

On offense, sophomore QB Tyler Tettleton plays like a veteran. His 15-to-4 touchdown-to-interception ratio is off-the-charts for a first-year player (just set a record for hyphens in a sentence). Donte Harden is still carrying the rock with an explosive average of 5.7 yards per carry.

Oh, and did I mention that Ohio will be playing poor Akron with a big chip on its shoulder? The Bobcats are right to believe they could be 7-0 right now. So that's how you get a 14.5-point spread. I don't think it's enough. This is going to be a blowout.

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