BROOKSVILLE, Fla. — Uncle Mel has survived the three days of rain, he is a little soggy for the most part but he is finally glad to see and feel the sunshine and warm-dry air.
Feeling refreshed too after the bye week, is the University of South Florida football team and their coach Willie Taggart.
Now your old uncle knows that Taggart is not happy with the 0-3 start, the inconsistence of play of the Bulls’ offense but most of all Taggart is not pleased with the amount of turnovers by his team.
Taggart says, that the Bulls are continuing making progress and he is feeling like the Bulls are moving to higher ground.
“If I thought like everybody else, we’d definitely be in trouble as a football program,” Taggart said earlier this week. “I’m the leader of this program, I’m the one who has to get it done. I can’t think like anyone else.”
Uncle Mel is glad that Taggart is not giving up hope on his football team.
This week the schedule maker did not do the Bulls any favor because coming into Raymond James Stadium at high noon, Saturday September 28, 2013 is the No. 15 team in the nation-Miami University.
Taggart and his coaching staff burned a lot of midnight oil last week getting ready for the Hurricanes by looking at game tapes and evaluating players.
Taggart said that he is looking for a playmaker!
Uncle Mel and Taggart both agree the first playmaker that needs to appear for the Bulls is a quarterback that can play without making too many mistakes and Taggart said that Steven Bench is the quarterback that gives the Bulls the best chance to win.
“Steven brings a lot of energy to our offense. He has some ability that can get him out of trouble at times and he’s a coaches son,” Taggart said about his quarterback choice against Miami. “He understands and loves the game of football. I think he’s one of those kids that thrive under the spotlight.”
Like a football player and a leader Bench is willing to except the challenge from Taggart and the Hurricane defense.
“We really have been working hard, focusing on fundamentals and went back to the basics,” Bench said. “Football is a fun game and you’re supposed to have fun while you’re doing it. You need to come out here and enjoy yourself. That’s what it’s all about.”
Courage my friend!
Remember your old buddy Uncle Mel is familiar with Big Ten football and some of the teams that play in that prestigious conference and remember nieces and nephews your old uncle gave the Bulls some advice about the size and speed of Michigan State University.
Well nieces and nephews, the Bulls are going to see more bulk and watch more speed on exhibit by the Hurricanes.
Success for the Bulls will keep the Hurricanes from scoring more than 77 points, like they did last Saturday against Savannah State University.
The defense for the Bulls will need to be ready for a challenging afternoon against the Hurricanes, especially up on the line of the scrimmage.
Miami University offensive line is, in a word-huge and they are going to be hard to get through or around.
The left tackles for Miami is Ereck Flowers and he stands 6-6 and weighs 315, the right tackle for the Hurricanes is Seantrel Henderson and he is just 6-8 and 345 but wait the offensive line gets stouter at the guard position.
Red-shirt junior Jon Feliciano fills in at left guard, he is 315 and is 6-5, the right guard is senior Brandon Linder, he tips the scale at 319 and is 6-6 and finally anchoring the center of the offensive line is Jared Wheeler. He is a senior and he weighs in at 319 and stands 6-5, this is the main group up on the line for the Hurricanes that provides comfort and a pocket for Miami’s quarterback Stephen Morris.
This is also the group that help in providing Miami with 1,352 yards of total offense and keeping the defense away from Morris, he has only been sacked twice in three games.
Uncle Mel is wondering with all of the bulk in front of him, how does Miami University quarterback Morris see any receivers?
Morris is finding his receiver, he is completing 53.6 percent of his passes, 404 yards and four of them for touchdowns,
Now nieces and nephews sit back and relax, your old story-teller Uncle Mel is going to tell all of you a tale that you are just not going to believe and believe it or not – it is a true story.
Way back in time, the year was 1997, a former football coach at Eastern Michigan University was asked about a offensive tackle that was at this time in football history played at left tackle was huge, he played physical and he even had quickness which added to his resume.
This former coach told people that would be interested in his idea and quotes actually said that offensive linemen do not make or break a game, as a coach you do not make a defensive game plan around an offensive lineman and that is one reason this coach is now a former coach and is selling insurance.
Call your old Uncle crazy but it seems that if the offensive line can control the line of scrimmage, then what follows is success for the offense and the result would be points which is something that Bulls would like to do and it is something that the Hurricanes have experienced.
The word around the state of Florida, college football and the American Athletic Conference that the strength of the Bulls is the defensive line and the linebackers making a forcible foe at the line of scrimmage-this is there chance to make a statement and to shine.
Miami University football coach Al Golden said the Bulls are going to be ready for his team and that the Hurricanes on the field and the coaches in the booth need to be prepared for a worthy opponent.
“All you have to do is turn on the film to get their attention. If not for the turnovers, the season would be dramatically different for the Bulls,” Golden said. “They present a number of problems. There front seven is as good as anybody. (Sean) Price is a big-league tight end, (Marcus) Shaw is one of the best running backs and (Andre) Davis is a deep threat.”
Can the Bulls defensive line control the line of scrimmage?
Can the Bulls offense find the end zone and hold on to the ball?
Can the Bulls really make this a rivalry game as Golden describes the game?
Uncle Mel is like Taggart and the football fans that will be wearing the green and gold in support of the Bulls-hopeful.
If the Bulls keep dropping the ball like rain drop, if the pocket around Morris is like a steel curtain and Bench needs to find a dry spot on the sideline then the forecast against the Hurricanes will be wet and soggy from the tears of disappointment pooling in the parking lot for the Bulls’ fans.
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.