The best team in the MAC East goes against the worst in this midweek MACtion. This game may not mean much for the already ineligible Golden Flashes but this game give the Falcons a chance to clinch a second straight trip to Detroit for MAC championship game.
The Falcons come into this game hot after a huge win over Akron. The Falcons have been helped by their defense which has been playing like the league's best out of late. Early in the season our defense struggled, but it seems to have gelled nicely. The return of DJ Lynch and Ryland Ward has been huge for this defense as Lynch has been toughening them up against the run while Ward has been a real play maker at the safety spot. This defense should have a field day against the struggling Kent State Offense. This Kent State Offense will either be led by Colin Reardon or Nathan Strock. In the game against Toledo, Reardon got benched in favor of the more mobile Nathan Strock. All Nathan Strock did was pass for two touchdowns and rushed for 71 yards (65 on one play). But Strock did have a bit of trouble throwing the ball evidenced by his meager 3.7 yards per attempt. Reardon who is expected to start knows that he'll need to play well in order to keep his job. I just don't feel Kent has enough play makers to score often.
On offense, the Falcons have been inconsistent as of late. It just feels like something is missing compared to the explosive showings they have shown against Indiana and UMass. Their offense takes a hit with the loss of Travis Greene, but I don't think it will matter much as BG has two very talented running backs in Fred Coppet and Andre Givens. Both of these backs were able to rush for the century mark during Greene's absence. In the passing game the Golden Flashes will have a very hard time defending the Falcons deadly trio of Roger Lewis, Ryan Burbrink, and Gehrig Dieter, who is back after suffering a knee/ankle injury. If Knapke can put the ball in the hands of his receivers this game could be over by halftime.
A lot would need to go right for Kent State to stay close with the Falcons, but as we've seen time and time again anything can happen in the wild world of #MACtion.
Key Matchups: Gabe Martin vs Casey Pierce. One of the few good receiving tight ends of the MAC and Kent's most dangerous aerial threat goes against one of the best coverage linebackers in the MAC.
Nick Johnson vs Chris Humphrey. Nick Johnson has been playing great recently. It will be interesting to see if Kent even throws his way. Judging by his 2 interceptions, throwing to his side of the field might not be a good idea.