BOWLING GREEN, Ohio —-The wind always seems to howl down the interstate and through this small city that hugs the highway that points in the direction of warmer weather to the south or the upper peninsula of the north woods.
Eastern Michigan University bagged there first win of the 2012 football season against the United States Military Academy last Saturday afternoon at Rynearson Stadium in Ypsilanti and immediately after the game, the focus turned to this week’s opponent Bowling Green State University at the coolest and the breeziest stadium in the Mid-American Conference Doyt L. Perry Stadium.
There were no treats for the Eastern Michigan University Eagles, getting behind early and the Eagles could not get the ground game going with any kind of consistency dropping the game 24-3, to Bowling Green State University in front of 13,158 inside Doyt L. Perry Stadium.
Eastern Michigan University football coach Ron English looked into his crystal ball and with his wizard cap on his head concocting up a game plan for the Falcons because Bowling Green State University leads the conference in not allowing points and shutting down anybodies rushing game.
English said his team is improving and gaining valuable experience on the field.
“I saw a lot of improvement today our defense only gave up 17 points and our young freshman got beat on one trick play and we gave up the one run,” English said after the game. “I thought several guys made improvement defensively. Mycal Swaim played a lot of football today, (Alex) Bellfy plays well and does what he can do he is discipline and he is tough so we made some huge strides today defensively.”
The first half of the game, the Falcons used it ground game to take advantage of the Eastern Michigan University defense by scoring two touchdowns in the first quarter.
The Eagles offense showed some signs of getting lose against the Falcons but miscues and poor offensive line execution caused the Eagle offense to fail getting into the end zone.
The first series of the game, the Falcons used some trickery when tailback Jordan Hopgood took the lateral from Bowling Green State University’s quarterback Matt Schilz ran toward the right side of the field and found Shaun Joplin streaking down the sideline all alone and the pass launched by Hopgood found Joplin for a 53 yard touchdown pass.
The Eagles used a little luck getting their first points of the day.
Facing a long third down situation in the shadow of the end zone, Eagle quarterback Tyler Benz scrambling out of the pocket got caught by defensive end Bryan Thomas but Thomas was called for a personal foul and the penalty breathed new life into the drive for the Eagles.
Benz having limited success completing passes moved the ball down the field but the conference best defense at stopping the run limited Bronson Hill and the drive stalled and English called upon Dylan Mulder converting a 42-yard field goal.
The Eagles rushing game gained 64 yards for the game, Hill carried the ball 13 times for 64 yards but no touchdowns. The Eagles gained a total offense of 178 yards.
“We did not have enough carries,” English said. “If you take the sacks out, we ran the ball decently against that defense we are still over four yards a carry we just did not run enough times.”
The next Falcon offensive possession, Bowling Green State University took the ball 84-yards in eight plays to score their second touchdown of the day.
Falcon running back Andre Givens literally carried Eagle defensive back Donald Scott draped across his back the final five yards and ending a 27-yard run in the end zone and later in the game in the third quarter Givens injured would have to be carted off of the field after a vicious hit.
The Falcon defense made a little magic in the third quarter by forcing a fumble and recovering the ball for a touchdown.
Benz fading back to pass the ball when Falcon’s rover back Gabe Martin came across the line of scrimmage and wrapped his arms around Benz and the ball fell onto the ground being picked up by defensive tackle Chris Jones and he rumbled for 23-yards to the end zone.
“That is what makes you good. When you got guys up front that can get into the backfield, you are going to play good defense,” English said about the Falcons’ defense. “So they were good up front, what really happen today is this, their front made our guy look like a rookie quarterback and that is what he looked like today.”
Benz finished the game 11 of 24 for 114 yards but was sacked five times and he fumbled once that the Falcons turned into a touchdown.
“There were guys open he could not find them he missed a lot of throws,” English said. “I don’t think they had that much pressure early but when they got a head and we had to throw and they got a lot of pressure on us.”
“Tyler will learn from it,” English continued. “ There is a reason that they are leading the league in about seven categories they are a very good Mid-American Conference defense.”
The Falcons offense gained a total of 356 yards and on the ground the falcons were lead by John Petttigrew. He ran 24 times for 136 yards and caught the ball twice for 21 yards.
Bowling Green State University quarterback Matt Schiltz day was not spectacular but he did enough to lead his team to victory. He completed just nine passes in 20 attempts for 78 yards.
It will be a short work week this week for the Eagles as they get ready to face the Ohio University Bobcats down in Athens, Ohio.
The game will be played Thursday night November 1, 2012 at Peden Stadium on the campus of Ohio University, the game is schedule to start at 6 p.m.
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.