MVFC – Week 2 in Review

MVFC LogoNine Missouri Valley Football Conference games this week, with Illinois State taking an early bye week.

Robert Morris at #8 Youngstown State

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
RMU 0 0 0 0 0
YSU 6 7 3 14 30

Quick Hits:

  • YSU – SO QB Nathan Mays threw for 149 yards and 1 TD and ran for 63 yards and a TD
  • YSU – Put up 429 total yards of offense vs RMU’s 147
  • YSU – First shutout for the Penguins since 2012
  • YSU – Starting SR QB Hunter Wells injured on 5th play from scrimmage, was out the rest of the game.
  • YSU – JR DE Justus Reed had 5 tackles including 3 sacks and 3 QB hurries and earned the MVFC Newcomer of the Week award.
  • RMU – JR LB Adam Wollet tied his career high of 12 tackles

Pretty much as expected. Robert Morris only put up 13 points a week ago in their win against Dayton. It was probably a credit to their defense that they held the Penguins to only 30 points.

Next week, Youngstown State hosts Central Connecticut State (0-2, NEC) for their “Hall of Fame Game”. Robert Morris will head back home to take on the VMI Keydets.

My Pick in Review:

I said – Penguins by 32
It was – Penguins by 30

Pretty close pick, I’d say.

Indiana State at AP #25 Tennessee

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
INSU 0 0 7 0 7
TENN 14 14 7 7 42

Quick Hits:

  • ISU – JR DT Rex Mosley had 4 tackles, 1 sack, 1 forced fumble, and a fumble recovery.
  • ISU – FR QB Cade Sparks had his first start and threw his first collegiate TD pass, a 23-yard toss to SR TE Jacquet McClendon.
  • ISU – Defense had 7 TFL for the second-straight game, allowed no 100+ yard rushers or receivers.
  • ISU – Led TOP by 1:46

Pretty much “as expected” when a Top 25 FBS team takes on a team picked to finish last in their FCS conference. I think ISU did about as well as they could hope for in this game…there were some flashes of solid play at times, but not enough to overcome what the Vols were bringing to the field.

Indiana State will have another tough game next week when they head down to Virginia to take on a team transitioning to the FBS…Liberty.

Tennessee will take on the Gators of Florida in The Swamp next weekend.

My Pick in Review:

I said – Tennessee by 35
It was – Tennessee by 35

I don’t see how you get much closer than that pick.

#2 North Dakota State at #7 Eastern Washington

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
NDSU 9 10 7 14 40
EWU 7 3 3 0 13

Quick Hits:

  • NDSU – JR RB Bruce Anderson led the Bison with 167 rushing yards and 1 TD
  • NDSU – JR RB Lance Dunn also had a great game with 148 yards and 3 TDs, plus 1 6-yard catch
  • NDSU – Defense held the Eagles to 204 total offensive yards
  • NDSU – Bison had the ball for 42:40…over 71% of game time.
  • NDSU – JR SS Robbie Grimsley had 2 INTs, 2 pass breakups, and 4 tackles, earning him the MVFC Co-Defensive Player of the Week award.
  • EWU – SO LB Jack Sendelbach recovered fumbles on back to back Bison drives in the 2nd quarter

Bison started off the first quarter a little slow, going into the 2nd with only a 9-7 lead and then turned the ball over twice early in the 2nd Quarter. From there it was all NDSU though, as they held Eastern Washington to 2 FGs over the rest of the game, and put up 31 points themselves.

NDSU will now take a week off to clear the smoke out of their lungs (from the nearby wildfires) and will host the currently 1-1 Robert Morris Colonials the following weekend in their “Trees Bowl” game.

EWU will head to NY and take on the 1-1 Fordham Rams next weekend.

My Pick in Review:

I said – 3 point Bison win
It was – 27 point Bison win

Ok…so I kinda underestimated the Bison defense or overestimated the Eagles offense (probably a bit of both). Margin quite a bit more than I expected, but I did get the pick right.

Cal Poly at #21 Northern Iowa

1st 2nd 3rd 4th OT Final
CP 7 14 3 14 0 38
UNI 0 28 7 3 7 45

Quick Hits:

  • UNI – SR WR Daurice Fountain has 5 catches for 75 yards and 3 TDs
  • UNI – JR QB Eli Dunne throws for 325 yards and 4 TDs (1 INT)
  • UNI – SR LB Jared Farley gets 11 tackles, and a 48-yard fumble recovery->TD, earning a MVFC Co-Defensive Player of the Week award.
  • UNI – JR LB Duncan Ferch leads the team with 15 tackles, 1 for loss.
  • CP – JR QB Khaleel Jenkins passes for 238 yards and 4 TDs and runs for 102 (net) and 1 TD
  • CP – SR FB Jared Mohamed runs for 112 yards
  • CP – SR SB Kyle Lewis and SO WR J.J. Koski each has over 100 yards receiving and 2 TDs.

I don’t really know if UNI just had more trouble than they expected with the Cal Poly Triple Option, or if the Panther defense is not quite as good “as advertised”. The Mustangs rolled up 543 yards of offense on UNI, and if it weren’t for a couple of false start penalties on the part of Cal Poly during the overtime period, this game could very well have had a different result.

Next week, 1-1 Northern Iowa heads out to Cedar City, Utah, for another Big Sky matchup…this time with 1-1 Southern Utah.

Cal Poly meanwhile, drops to 0-3 and will head home to face fellow Big Sky member, 0-2 Northern Arizona.

My Pick in Review:

I said – 14 point UNI win
It was – 7 point UNI win

I guess I overestimated the Panther defense…still, got the pick right, and within 1 score on the margin.

Missouri State at #11 North Dakota

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
MSU 0 0 0 0 0
UND 3 21 0 10 34

Quick Hits:

  • UND – JR RB Brady Oliveira ran for 164 yards (10.2 yards per carry).
  • UND – SO WR Noah Wanzek caught 117 yards and 2 TDs on 7 receptions.
  • MSU – SO QB Peyton Huslig threw for 132 yards and 1 INT.
  • MSU – FR CB Zack Sanders had 4 tackles, 1 pass breakup, and an interception.

Back in 2014, Missouri State shut out North Dakota, 38-0. Three years later and the Fighting Hawks flipped the script, shutting out the Bears. Is UND’s defense just that good?…is Mizzou’s defense just that bad?…Are the Bears just a fairly young team who are probably going to have a very “up and down” season?…I don’t know for sure, but my guess is a “yes” to all three.

Missouri State is now 0-2 and will head back down to Springfield to take on the (possible future MVC member) Murray State Racers, who sit at 1-1.

North Dakota picks up their first win to go to 1-1 and will take on a likely much tougher MVFC opponent next week when they head down to take on the 2-0 South Dakota Coyotes.

My Pick in Review:

I said – UND by 7 points
It was – UND by 34 points

Not really what I was anticipating following last week’s offensive performance, but I did figure UND would win the game.

South Dakota at FBS Bowling Green

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
USD 21 0 7 7 35
BGSU 3 6 7 11 27

Quick Hits:

  • USD – One-Man-Offensive-Powerhouse SR QB Chris Streveler threw for 306 yards and a TD and ran for 119 yards and 3 TDs and earned the MVFC Offensive Player of the Week award.
  • USD – FR WR Kody Case caught for 130 yards and 1 TD
  • USD – JR DB Danny Rambo led the team with 9 tackles, 2 for loss
  • USD – SR DB Doug Lewis had 5 tackles as well as a 25-yard interception return
  • BGSU – QB Morgan James threw for 311 yards 2 TDs plus 1 INT.
  • BGSU – WR Datrin Guyton caught for 158 yards.

The Coyotes blew open a 21-3 lead in the 1st Quarter. Eventually, the Falcons regained their composure and started to claw their way back into the game, but USD had enough offensive capabilities to stay ahead of them until the end. I think this one kinda surprised me…not so much that USD ended up winning, but more that the game was essentially dominated by the Coyotes.

USD is now 2-0 will head back home and welcome past (and future) conference rivals UND (1-1) to the DakotaDome next weekend.

Bowling Green is 0-2 and will head to Chicago to take on the 1-1 Northwestern Wildcats.

My Pick in Review:

I said: BGSU by 3
It was: USD by 8

Missed this one. To be fair, I did say that “it would not at all surprise me to see South Dakota win a close game in Ohio”, but I didn’t think they’d come away with the win.

#22 Western Illinois at Northern Arizona

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
WIU 7 10 14 7 38
NAU 0 7 6 7 20

Quick Hits:

  • WIU – SO RB Max Norris runs for 103 yards and 1 TD
  • WIU – SR WR Jaelon Acklin has 101 yards and 1 TD receiving and 65 yards and 1 TD rushing (second straight game with 1 TD each receiving and rushing)
  • WIU – SR LB Brett Taylor leads the team with 12 tackles
  • WIU – JR DL/FB Khalen Saunders has 4 tackles, 1 for loss, ½ of a sack, 1 forced fumble, 1 pass break up, and 1 QB hurry.
  • NAU – SO QB Case Cookus throws for 221 yards, 2 TDs, and 1 INT
  • NAU – True-FR QB Stone Smartt goes in later in the game and rushes for a TD

I know it’s still early, but the Leathernecks have looked strong in their first two games, allowing a total of 57 rushing yards in two games (28.5 per game). They are 4th in the FCS in that stat, but guess what…they’re also 4th in the MVFC in that stat, because 1, 2, and 3 are SIU, IL State, and NDSU. They went into NAU’s home stadium…sitting at 7,000 ft above sea level…and took on a strong offensive team, and came away with a larger margin of victory than they did last year in Macomb.

The Leathernecks are now 2-0 and have next weekend off before heading down to take on the newly-FBS team Coastal Carolina.

Northern Arizona falls to 0-2 and will head out to Cali and take on 0-3 Cal Poly.

My Pick in Review:

I said – Leathernecks by 6
It was – Leathernecks by 18

I gotta say, I was hoping for a big win, but trying to be conservative in my prediction. So far, Western has exceeded my expectations, especially considering our starting RB has been out for all but the first bit of the first game.

Mississippi Valley State at Southern Illinois

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
MVSU 3 0 0 0 3
SIU 21 20 14 0 55

Quick Hits:

  • SIU – JR QB Sam Straub threw for 191 yards and 2 TDs.
  • SIU – SO RB D.J. Davis ran for 58 yards and 2 TDs on 4 attempts.
  • SIU – R-FR DL Anthony Knighton had 4 solo tackles including 3 for loss (2 sacks).
  • MVSU – SO PK Ruben Piraquive hit a 33-yard FG for the Delta Devils’ only score of the game.

MVSU was back for more from the MVFC after getting rolled by NDSU. Pretty much as expected, SIU also had a field day with the MVSU defense, putting up all 55 points in the first 3 quarters. There’s not too much else to say, I think…Mississippi Valley State was pretty well overmatched by the Salukis in SIU’s season and home opening game.

SIU is now 1-0 and will head just under an hour down the road to take on 0-2 Southeast Missouri State next week.

MVSU is 0-2 and, while they have completed the MVFC portion of their schedule, the road doesn’t get much easier. They have a weekend off and then their home opener with current #24 Grambling State followed by #16 Charleston Southern.

My Pick in Review:

I said – 50 point SIU win
It was – 52 point SIU win

So…there we are then.

#4 South Dakota State at Montana State

1st 2nd 3rd 4th Final
SDSU 10 7 7 7 31
MSU 0 7 14 6 27

Quick Hits:

  • SDSU – JR QB Taryn Christion threw for 267 yards and ran for 57 net yards and 2 TDs.
  • SDSU – SR TE Dallas Goedert had 11 catches for 132 yards.
  • SDSU – SO PK Chase Vinatieri hit a career-long 47-yard FG, was perfect 4 for 4 on XPs, and took a handoff from the holder (planned fake kick) for a 31-yard TD run to put SDSU up for good. He earned the MVFC Special Teams Player of the Week award.
  • SDSU – SO LB Christian Rozeboom led the team with 10 tackles, 1 blocked pass, and 1 QB hurry.
  • MSU – SO QB Chris Murray threw for 311 yards, 4 TDs, and 1 INT, and was the team’s leading rusher with 107 net yards
  • MSU – JR WR Jabarri Johnson and SR WR Mitchell Herbert had over 110 yards receiving and 2 TDs each.
  • MSU – SR LB Mac Bignell had 9 tackles, including 2 for loss and a forced fumble.

The Jackrabbits got ahead early, taking a 17-0 lead midway through the 2nd quarter, but the Bobcats fought back, eventually being down by only 3, 24-21, at the end of the 3rd quarter. SDSU was able to stay ahead of MSU by the use of a fake FG->TD and held on to win the game. MSU actually had more offensive yards than SDSU, 491 to 426.

South Dakota State is now 2-0 and will head back home to become the second SD team to play Drake (1-1) this season after the Bulldogs lost to USD 77-7 in week 1.

Montana State drops to 0-2 and takes a week off before heading up to North Dakota for a matchup with the (currently 1-1) UND Fighting Hawks to open Big Sky play.

My Pick in Review:

I said – SDSU by 17
It was – SDSU by 4

A much closer game than I thought it was going to be with the Bobcats staying close a large part of it.

So, the MVFC went 7-2 overall this week, and 4-1 in the MVFC/Big Sky “Challenge Series”. Next weekend we’ll have NDSU and WIU taking their bye weeks, two more MVFC vs Big Sky matchups, and something of an OOC “Rivalry Week” for a few of the teams. I picked 8 out of the 9 right, missing on USD over Bowling Green, which, added to my 8-1 from last week, puts me at 16-2 so far (this is the “easy” time for picks…gets A LOT harder once conference games start up).

Written by 

Father, runner, drum corps alumnus. Former member of the Western Illinois Marching Leathernecks. Following Leatherneck football and I-AA/FCS football since 1996.

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