Monday, November 10, 2008

Cardinal Preview: Miami

vs.

Ball State vs. Miami (Ohio)

Location: Oxford, OH
Time: 7:00 pm
Television: ESPN2

What better way to celebrate Veteran's Day than by watching MAC football on the WorldWideLeader?! Walter watched his buddies die face down in the muck so that we could all sit back on our fat asses and watch Ball State steamroll another opponent into oblivion. This week's victim? Miami of Ohio. Prepare yourselves, peasants, as a real team rolls through your Oxford village to rape, pillage, and rape some more. (Metaphorically speaking, of course)

The Basics:
Ball State University Cardinals:
Location: Muncie, IN
Record: 9-0 (5-0 MAC)
Last week: W 45-14 Northern Illinois

Miami University Red Hawks:
Location: Oxford, OH
Record: 2-7 (1-4 MAC)
Last week: L 17-37 @ Buffalo

Offense: The only thing offensive about Miami's attack is the ineptitude with which they run it. 11th in the conference at 327 ypg, and it's no secret that this RedHawk attack just isn't very potent. They are weakest in the run, averaging just a shade over 116 yards per game, and that bodes well for this Ball State defense. Starting RedHawk QB Clay Belton will also not be playing in this game with what is qualified as a "sore chest". Which considering the stakes of this game, makes him a gigantic bitch. I'm not sure where on the continuum "Sore Chest" ranks, but I'm thinking it's right below "Hang Nail" and right above "Minor Ouchie".

For Ball State, the offense decided to come out of its proverbial shell and torch Northern Illinois last Wednesday. QB Nate Davis, who threw for 300 yards and 4 TDs in the victory, played only 3 quarters or so as did the rest of the first-team. So expect a well-rested, recently clicking, hungry offense to show up looking for dinner. MiQuale Lewis also should have a rather large day at the office as well.
Advantage: Gigantic advantage offensively for the Cardinals. They're a better unit overall, and facing a significantly worse defensive unit. Expect a field day from both Davis and Lewis.

Defense: Miami's defense is surprisingly not bad against the pass, and not that great against the rush. In their last two games, they've given up 300+ on the ground to Kent, and 216 on the ground to the Buffalo Bulls. Combined with the fact that they haven't played any of the Big 3 from the MAC West (CMU, WMU, BSU) and this is an offense that will have never seen the sort of precision in the passing game that the Cardinals have. This defense is going to get torched, plain and simple.

For Ball State, it's simply a matter of continuing to do great things at crucial times. For a unit that is often overshadowed by the offense, this defense is surprisingly stout. There is good penetration, good coverage, and a flight to the football that's quick, aggressive, and hard-nosed. Good things are happening on the defensive side of the football, and there is no reason to believe that they won't continue against a hapless Miami team.
Advantage: The quality of the opponent is nowhere close to even. Miami's defense has no chance at shutting down this Cardinals offense without help from Ball State in the form of unforced errors, penalties, and turnovers.

Coaching: Brady Hoke... damn good coach. Shane Montgomery... damn. Miami used to be the cream of the MAC crop, but heavy is the head that wears the crown, I reckon. Long gone are Big Ben and most of their trendy JCrew wearing richkid fanbase. Welcome to mediocrity, suckers!!
Advantage:

Mascot:
Miami:

Swoop the AIDS Bird Redhawk. Not only unoriginal in its name, what the hell is with the costume? It looks like a junior high sewing project. White beak and feathers? How Aryan of you, Miami. Watch out!! Obama did win last week!

Ball State:

Charlie Cardinal. The most vicious Robin-sized bird in all the land. And not racist at all.

Advantage: I hate teams that change their mascot from an Indian-themed one to a non-Indian themed one. If you're the Redskins, be the Redskins. It's not like your the Miami Litter-Hating Casino-Owning Alcoholics. Quit being gigantic blubbering vaginas.

Overall: This game will come down not to whether or not Ball State wins, it will come down to by how much, and how much time can the starters rest. Normally a mid-week MAC game would worry me, but spending some time after the game with the players and Coach Hoke last week has convinced me this team is focused, hungry, and ready to rip it up. Look for BSU to pour it on early, sit the starters as much as possible in the second half, and get ready for what may be the biggest game in program history to date... Central Michigan.

Prediction:
Ball State 35
Miami 14

1 comment:

Dustin said...

Well, I'm an SEC Fan and just trying to get a take on this game through the boards for betting this game. I'm pretty sure I'll take BSU to cover regardless what the ubsurdly high # is posted tonight. Just thought I'd say hey, and that I LOVE your blog. Nice Delivery! I'll be bookmarking and checking back. Yall have a heck of a TEAM, good luck in bustin into the BCS!