The Miami Redhawks make the trek up I-75 to US-23 to meet up against the Eastern Michigan Eagles at Rynearson Stadium.
The Miami Redhawks stand at 2-3 (1-0 MAC), with their last game a resounding win over Central Michigan. The Eastern Michigan Eagles have a 3-2 (0-1 MAC) record, with their opening MAC game ending in a loss against Northern Illinois. Can Miami nab another cross-divisional game to solidify a potential tiebreaker? Can EMU right the course and get back gto .500 in MAC play? Saturday will have a lot to do with the direction of those respective teams.
The Miami RedHawks have scored an average of 24 points per game, while allowing an average of 25 points per game. They have rushed for 138 yards per game while giving up 179 yards. Their leading rusher is Keyon Mozee, with 44 yards per game. The Redhawks gain an average of 238 yards per game in the air. Quarterback duties are split between Brett Gabbert with an average of 184 yards per game, and A.J. Mayer with an average of 91 yards per game. Both have thrown two interceptions. Their main receivers are Jack Sorenson and Mac Hippenhammer.
On defense, they have three players with multiple tackles for loss in the form of Mike Brown, Lonnie Phelps and Ben Kimpler. Those three players account for at least 15 tackles for loss, and the team as a whole has 10 sacks so far. They only have two interceptions and one fumble recovery. However, based on other information, the Eagles offensive line is going to have its hands full.
Eastern Michigan has scored an average of 32 points per game while allowing 25 points per game. On the ground, they have gained 140 yards per game while giving up 204 yards. Their rushing game is led by Jawon Hamilton with 63 of those yards per game. The Eagles have an average of 236 yards per game with the bulk of that total coming from Ben Bryant. He has only been intercepted once this season. The leading receivers are Hassan Beydoun, Dylan Drummond and Zack Westmoreland.
The Eastern Michigan defense has three interceptions and four fumble recoveries. Like the RedHawks, they have 10 sacks. I would have to say, if there is a dark spot in the defense, it has been their coverage against the run.
If Eastern Michigan wants to win, they have to establish their running game while stopping the RedHawk running game. It’s something they’ve struggled to do in much of their games this season, having to rely on the air game when put in a pinch, but also unable to stop teams from using ball control offense to find their way back into games.
They were unable to do that in DeKalb against the Huskies and ended up with the loss. On paper, the teams look about evenly matched but with the Eagles at home, I would give them the edge. I am going to expect a close game, and hopefully the Eagles find themselves on top.