Saturday, October 30, 2010

Bearcat Preview: Fort Hayes State

NWMSU - 41
Washburn - 40

Well it wasn't for a lack of trying, Washburn almost toppled the Bearcats. With another close game the Cats barely escaped with a one point win. Falling behind early the Cats scratched their way back overcoming three fumbles and out scoring Washburn in the second and their quarters and finally stopping a two-point conversion late in the fourth for the victory. Bolles and Simoneau put on an aerial show both throwing for over 330 yards and three touchdown each. Northwest tried to run the ball with very little success and were beaten statistically by Washburn.

Here's a look at this week's game

The essentials

Fort Hayes State Tigers (3-5, 1-5)
at Northwest Missouri State Bearcats (6-1, 6-0)
Saturday, October 30, 2:00 pm CDT at Bearcat Stadium

Offense
Well the Cats are going to see the 22nd ranked total offense again this week in the Tigers. Led by SR QB Mike Garrison who is just behind Bolles in passing efficiency. His favorite targets are SR RB James Walker and SR WR OJ Murdoch. FHS's passing attack is ranked just above the Cats at 19th nationally (286 yds/g) with their rushing attack ranking in at 70th (146 yds/g)

For the Cats, they will likely be able to bring up that 2.6 yd/carry they had last week. NW will run the ball to achieve some balance to their attack and look for the Austin/Simmons combo to continue. Bolles spread the ball around nicely last week. Look for him to continue that this week. Also, Bolles and Soy are one touchdown away from being the Bearcats' all-time touchdown leaders at QB and WR. While we talking records, Bolles is two or three games away from becoming the all-time leading passer in NW history.

Defense
This is where the two team break. The Tigers are 75th in total D and 88th in scoring D and at or near the bottom in the conference. NW on the other hand has been solid on the defensive side of the ball. Last week Washburn put a dent in the Cats, but they still are first in rushing and scoring defense.

Prediction
I don't see the Cats have much of a problem this week. The only way I can see them struggling is if they are looking ahead to Central next week. If they are looking ahead and play sloppy, this could be closer than NW would be comfortable with. But I think Mel will have the boys focused. 24 - 38 Bearcats have the game put away early in the third quarter.

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