Archive for September, 2013

Well, the first month of University of West Georgia football is over and we’re sitting at 3-1. We beat the teams we’re supposed to beat; exacted some revenge on Shorter and held our own against a highly ranked team. I like what I’ve seen so far for the most part. Offensively we’re passing a lot better than we have in recent years. We’re running the ball great when the starting line is intact. Center Quincy Awa-Dubose has missed the last two games. That means Guard William Wright is playing out of position at Center while Somto Okeko fills in at RG. Hopefully he’ll be back for Homecoming against Point. We need a good showing in front of a big home crowd.

Offensively we have still yet to put together a balanced show. The first two games we averaged 250 yards rushing versus 70 passing. The last two games (with Quincy out) it’s been 90 rushing versus 250 passing. Other than against Midwestern we have yet to need both phases but we surely will against the rest of the GSC. We’ll have an opportunity to showcase that against Point this weekend.

Defensively I guess we’re playing as well as we could have hoped. Keep in mind we lost two starters for the year before the first game in Lane Thompson and Bobby Liggins; four if you count Alex Lakes and Philip Warren, who both left school after Spring semester. We lack the ability to stop a strong run, which was expected. Surprisingly our pass defense is best in the conference at 128.8/gm; 120 yards below last year. You’ve got to love that.

West Georgia @ Mars Hill Game Breakdown – Defense

Defensive line

Mars Hill lost All-SAC DT Mam Nyang, All-SAC MLB Rudy Cabral, one CB and one FS. They return DE Troy Harris and linebacker Jasper Mason who earned first-team defense recognition.

UWG lost All-GSC DT Juan Pickett, All-GSC CB Kelly Dawsey. They bring back All-GSC Bobby Liggins. JUCO DE Tommy Dover will bring QB pressure but Pickett was a 4-year starter. Both teams gave up about the same yardage running.

Advantage MHC (slightly)
—————-
Linebackers are pretty much a wash. Both teams have one All-Conference performer, although MHC did lose one at the LB spot. West Georgia rotates a lot of experienced people at LB so none of them will have big numbers.

Secondary

UWG brought in alot of help here. They have looked very good in fall camp but until they play a game I won’t make any assumptions. Neither team has any All-Conference selections back here but Mars Hill surrendered much fewer passing yards in the much more passy happy SAC. Four SAC teams passed for more than 190 yards/game while only VSU did so in the GSC. As porous as our defense can be they have been much better in the red zone. Bo Cordells stats vs West Georgia last year were 514 yards passing, 3 TDs and 5 INTs, and that was with with two All-American receivers.

Advantage – MHC
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Kicking game

Mars Hill lost the Punter and holder, but bring back their PK. UWG lost All-American PK/P Davis Brackett and the replacements are big legged but young.

Advantage – MHC
————–

Return Game

I’m not even going to bother checking the MHC side of this one. All-Galaxy Punt Returner Denarious Appling is back…’nuff said.

– Advantage UWG

DEFENSIVE TALE OF THE TAPE
Code:

UWG MHC
PPG 28.4 25.5
PASS/G 216.3 158.4
RUSH/G 207.5 201.1
YDS/G 423.8 359.5
INT 13 6
FUMB REC 8 13
SACKS 15 25

PREDICTION

A high scoring running game shootout that will come down to turnovers and special teams. Look for Denarious Appling to take a punt return to the house. I expect 50+ points in this one, with West Georgia winning by 7-10.

West Georgia Wolves 31, Mars Hill Lions 24

West Georgia @ Mars Hill Game Breakdown – Offense

The University of West Georgia Wolves football team opens the 2013 season playing the Mars Hill College Lions. Here is my game breakdown.

2012 records:
UWG finshed 3-7, losing to teams that were a combined 59-26, 4 ranked D-II top 25.
MHC finished 6-4, losing to teams that were a combined 22-24, 2 ranked D-II top 25 and two unranked in FCS.

OFFENSE

Offensive Line
MHC returns all five starters including All-SAC Nick Allison, part of a Lion offensive line that produced 158 yards rushing per game; however UWG averaged 206/game. Denzel Good is the largest at 6-7, 320 lbs.

UWG has four linemen returning with three being 3-year starters and two preseason All-Americans, plus a JUCO transfer that was expected to compete for the starting Center job at BYU. My Johnny Manziels (that would be money) are on the unit that’s been together the longest.

– Advantage UWG but close.

Quarterback
Of the 392 passes thrown by MHC in 2012, 386 were thrown by the graduated Jon Richt; another 4 by Senior backup Joe Hoilman, also gone. The last two were thrown by receivers. No QB on the roster has thrown a collegiate pass. Game speed timing will surely be a work in progress.

UWG has two game starting QBs returning for the first time since the invention of the iPod. Austin Trainor threw for 825 and two TDs plus he ran for another 154 with four TDs. Dallas Dickey passed for 621 yards and five touchdowns. He also ran the ball 75 times for 390 yards and 10 touchdowns.

– Advantage easily UWG

——————
Running Back
Pre-season All-SAC Shaikel Davis led all SAC performers during the regular season with 236 carries for 1,173 yards. The junior earned All-Super Region II honors from Daktronics and Don Hansen’s National Football Weekly Gazette.

All-GSC RB Seth Hinsley and departed VSU transfer David Bailey combined for 1,356 yards and 9 TDs on 278 carries. As mentioned above the QBs combined for another 544 yards and seven TDs.

Of MHC’s total 158 yards/game rushing Davis accounted for 117. UWG’s Hinsley/Bailey combo accounted for 129 of West Georgia’s net 208 yards/game. I believe JUCO transfer Derick Seward will more than make up for the loss of Bailey. He is faster than both and rushed 134 times for 923 yards (6.88 per carry) and 11 touchdowns in the California JUCO league. If Davis cramps up (always an issue first game) or otherwise goes down Mars Hill’s running game is done. West Georgia’s multiplicity of weapons makes this a clear advantage UWG.

– Advantage UWG

Receiving
Mars Hill has two Pre-season All-SAC receivers in Dimitri Holmes and Deunta Jennings. Holmes hauled in 71 receptions for a team-leading 992 yards and eight touchdowns last season. The junior was a First-Team All-SAC performer last season after ranking among the top five in the conference in every statistical receiving category. Holmes was the SAC Offensive Freshman of the Year in 2011.

Jennings led the conference in averaging 18.8 yards per catch last season and totaled 866 yards receiving. He won SAC Offensive Player of the Week for his eight-catch, 212-yard performance against Tusculum and was Second-Team All-SAC.

Mars Hill averaged nearly 295 yards passing last year, almost double West Georgia’s tally, however they no longer have record setting QB Jon Richt slinging the rock. If the MHC line can give the newbie QB (see what I did there?) time to throw it could be a long day for an already sketchy UWG secondary.

West Georgia has most of its pass catchers back except super clutch V.J. Hunt, who hauled in the game winning pass against VSU in 2011. 2011 top receiver Denarious Appling also returns (he was out last jury due to injury) to join Bobby Burum, Malcolm Johnson, Alex Macaulay, Joey Eliezer and Randall Snell. West Georgia also adds several new pair of hands in TE Eric Newman (two year starter at Newberry), JUCO WR Earvin Anumgba and Garrion Heard, who was on the squad at Mississippi State. All-State WR Ben Lamb comes off his redshirt year and will definitely see the field.

UWG has a lot of experienced bodies at the wideout spot but we don’t pass that much and it’s hard to argue with two All-Conference guys.

– Advantage MHC

Offensive Tale of the Tape

UWG MHC
PPG 28.4 28.0
RUSH/G 207.8 158.8
PASS/G 147.6 294.7
YDS/G 355.4 453.5
Redzone % 86.5 68 (percentage of times we scored TD or FG)
Redzone TD% 73 58 (percentage of times we scored a TD)
Penalty yrds 73.8 69.0