YPSILANTI, Mich. — GAME NOTES for Oct 16, 2010 @ Ball State University
The last meeting between Eastern Michigan and Ball State University almost became a historic moment for the Eagles but the in the end the result was the same, Ball State squeaked away a 29-27 win against the Eagles at Rynearson Stadium in Ypsilanti, Michigan.
The Eagles actually jumped out to a 27-13 advantage leading into the third quarter but the Cardinals came back and scored 16 points and recorded their first victory last season.
Ball State tailbacks MiQuale Lewis and Cory Sykes combined for a NCAA record and a Ball State record 504 yards rushing. Lewis cut through the Eagles defense for 303 yards and Sykes rushed by the Eagle defense for 203 yards, the Cardinals rushed 57 times.
The series began way back in the year of 1936, this will make it 52 time these teams have met on the gridiron, the Cardinals hold a 29-20-2 edge over the Eagles and currently have beat the Eagles in the last five meetings. The last time the Eagles left Muncie, Indiana with a victory over the Cardinals was back in 2004, the Eagles defeated the Cardinals 31-24.
Eagle Keys for the Game:
The key for Eastern Michigan University to obtain the elusive first victory is to contain Ball State University tailback MiQuale Lewis and according to Ball State University football coach Stan Parrish Lewis is running better than he has at any time this season.
Last Saturday afternoon Lewis moved up in the Ball State record book by running for 64 yards against Western Michigan University he passed the Ball State legend Bernie Parmalee with a career rushing yardage of 3,523.
Lewis only need 480 yards to place his name at the top of the page of the record book replacing Marcus Merriweather.
“For the first time since 2008, he put his foot in the ground and ran north and south,” Parrish said about his star tailback. “He gave us a big boost and provided a lot of leadership in a tough time on our sideline and in the locker room. He is going to be a part of the solution.”
If the Eagles are going to play a spoiler roll at Ball State and leave Indiana with a victory the team is going to have to step up and play the best game of the season.
The Eagles will have to combine the effort at Ohio State University and the play against the Army a combination of determination and smart.
A clean game – no penalties, no turnovers and hold the Cardinals offense to just three downs and get the ball back and give their offense a chance to get the ball into end zone.
Field position will be a major factor of the game plan for both squads because both teams have weapon in the punting game.
The Eagles will be relying on the right foot of Australian Jay Karutz who is the 17th punter in the nation with a 39.5 yard average.
Parrish coaches the program that has supplied a couple of pretty good punters that are playing on Sunday in the National Football League and the tradition continues with Scott Kovanda averages 40.8 yards which is good to be ranked in seventh in the Mid-American Conference.
Eagles to Watch:
LB Matt Boyd — He made his first start in Columbus, Ohio against the No.1 Ohio State University. The sophomore linebacker made 14 tackles against the Buckeyes and against Vanderbilt he made four stops.
This week his linebacker team mates will have to support each other and be able contain MiQuale Lewis in order to give the Eagles a chance for a win.
OL Bridger Buche — He is the starter at left tackle and seems to be recovered from a season ending hip injury last season. His team mates that make up the offensive line will also be counted on this week to make holes for the Eagles tailbacks scoot into daylight and crate a balance offense attack.
RB Dwayne Priest or Corey Welch — Somebody needs to step up and not miss the bus but instead be like a Mack truck get through the line scrimmage like a diesel truck rolling down the open space of the interstate and keep the football safe by covering up the ball with two hands like the after the game pizza.
There is no word from the Eagle camp why Priest did not play last week at Vanderbilt University. Welch worked hard against the Commodores he ran 18 times for 55 yards.
Cardinals to Watch:
RB MiQuale Lewis — Last season he busted through the Eagles defense for a career best of 301 yards.
Lewis has become the forgotten runner in Parrish’s backfield until last week against Western Michigan University when he gained a season-high 64 yards on 12 carries.
RB Cory Sykes — He was averaged 13 carries before the Western Michigan University game and he is the other historic combination that ran across the turf at Rynearson Stadium for 201 yards his personnel best.
Last week against the Broncos Sykes fumbled the ball on his first carry of the game, he was found on the bench for the rest of the game.
QB Keith Wenning — Made too many mistakes against the Broncos and Parrish directed Wenning to the bench for the second half but there is no quarterback controversy at Ball State University Parrish will start Wenning against the Eagles.
About the Author
Written by Mel Suiter
Graduated from Eastern Michigan University in 2002 and have been working as a beat writer for The Ypsilanti Courier covering Eastern Michigan University football and men's basketball during my school career and after graduation. I like the Mid-American Conference and the rest of the mid-major conferences.