Kent State football is confident heading into 2013.
In fact, they maybe more confident this year than any Kent State football team has ever been in their not-so rich history.
Speaking with several of their key contributors, it is clear that this team has lofty goals. Finishing .500 is beyond expected, MAC East champions would not be near enough, a MAC championship would be nice but even then. This team has their eyes set on a BCS bowl game, and they are not messing around.
This type of attitude has apparently spread throughout their locker room. secondary player Luke Wollet spoke about how tough it was to watch Northern Illionis in the BCS game last year, and punter Anthony Melchiori told me that it was important to him to be the best punter in the MAC because he wants to help his team reach all of their goals.
And to be fair to them, they do have the weapons necessary to accomplish their goals.
They have two of the best skill players in the league with Dri Archer and Durham. They return key secondary guys with Wollet and Darius Polk. And they have the best defensive line anchored by former defensive player of the year Roosevelt "Rosey" Nix. The main worry, as pointed out by SB Nation's Bill Connelly, is the fact that they have a new quarterback and coach.
Sophomore Colin Reardon was named the starter just a little over a week ago. The confidence in the your signal caller is minimum, as Kent's new head coach Paul Haynes was sure to leave a huge gap open for him when he said that the starting quarterback could be a weekly decision. That's not a good sign at all.
And the MAC is so tough. The East is filled with competitors. Bowling Green's on the way up and OHIO is going to be a heck of a bout. You can go ahead and double the challenges in the West. They will have to play Northern Illinois and Ball State. They may have to face Toledo in the Championship. This is not going to be an easy task.
There is just too much turnover this year. Their goals are too lofty, and I fear that if they fail early in the season, that again Connelly alluded to in his article, the season may collapse.
If Kent starts 1-3, which they very well may, I predict a 5-7 season. If they are able to take down Bowling Green then I will give them 8-4. I feel that the BG game could determine their season, and they play that week two.
Regardless, the Flashes are not playing in the BCS this year. They are not beating LSU or Penn State. The voters would have to be out of their minds. ... I guess it is possible after all.