Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Bearcat Preview: Central Missouri

Last Week:

FHS - 27
NWMSU - 45

The Bearcats got it done last week and secured a Homecoming victory over Fort Hayes. Bolles broke the NW all time TD record and Jake Soy tied for the TD receptions record. Josh Baker had a big day with 131 yard and a TD. The Cats took care of business and set up this week's battle for MIAA supremacy.

This week:

The essentials
#3 Northwest Missouri State University Bearcats (7-1, 7-0) at
#6 University of Central Missouri Mules (9-1, 8-0)
Saturday, November 6 1:30 p.m. CDT, Walton Field, Warrensburg, MO

The Offense
Well this should be fun as the top two scoring and passing offenses square off against one another. Central is ranked 4th in the nation in passing and total offense and is 6th in scoring. Leading the way is SR QB Eri Czerniewski, who not only leads the conference in passing but in total offense. Because Central only runs the ball like 7 times a game they come in at #104 and are last in the conference in rushing. But, because Czwerouoinasfoasiojski has thrown 477 passes through 9 games, he has three targets he loves: SR WR Jamorris Warren, SR RB Anthony Stewart and SR WR Demarco Cosby who are all in the top ten in the conference in receptions, with Warren leading the conference. So yeah the Mules can play offense.

Which really should be no surprise to NW fans given the Mules coaches are former NW Offensive Coordinator Jim Svoboda and NW QB legend Josh Lamberson their WR coach. The good news for NW fans is that the Cats are right behind the Mules in all offensive categories save total offense (#3) and rushing where they're actually better than the Mules (#57 nationally and 7th in the MIAA). The Cats should be able to run the ball on the Mules, which will help them control the clock and keep the ball out of that offenses hands.

The Defense
For the Mules they have to be good on the offensive side of the ball, because their defense is less than stellar. Ranked 8, 8, 6 and 5 in total D, rush D, pass D and scoring D in the MIAA, the Mules have to score to win. Which hasn't been a problem to date.

For the Cats, this is where they have the advantage. NW is still #1 in scoring defense and #2 in total D in the conference, despite giving up 40 to Washburn and a ton of yards to both Washburn and FHS. This will be a big test for NW's secondary, but Central is second in the conference in INTs thrown and Ryan Jones does lead in INTs, so look for him to be a factor.

Neither pass defense is a team strength so watch for major yards through the air.

The Outcome
This is Central's last regular season game of the year, so they are going to be ready to leave it all on the field. Their should be a ton of offense, especially through the air. Looks for Czllajldjfaski and Bolles to have big days. Even though Svoboda would like nothing more than to stick it to his old boss and break NW's MIAA winning streak, never count out Mel. I mean he's Mel Freakin Tjeerdsma! Maryville will have a statue of him across from Molly's in the square before it's all said and done, where freshman will come and worship each and every fall.

The key for the Bearcats is going to limit their mistakes and capitalize on Central's. If they can do that I think they have just enough defense to pull the victory out and justify their higher ranking over Central. NW 52 - UCM 47.

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