MVFC Week 10 In Review


The Scores

South Dakota – 48
Indiana State – 51
3 OT’s

Illinois State – 16
Northern Iowa – 26

Western Illinois – 34
Southern Illinois – 31

Missouri State – 7
South Dakota State – 59

Youngstown State – 7
North Dakota State – 17

South Dakota at Indiana State

The host Sycamores struck first on an 11-yard TD pass from QB Ryan Boyle to WR Dakota Caton, but the Coyotes were able to respond on their next drive with a bunch of plays, mostly runs, ending in an 8-yard TD run by RB Canaan Brooks to tie things up. A decent kick return gave ISU the ball at midfield to start their next drive and they were able to get that one into the end zone on a 20-yard run by the QB Boyle. In the 2nd quarter, ISU was only able to pick up 8 yards on a 3rd and 13, but an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty on USD gave them the 1st down and they were able to march down the field for another TD, this time a 14-yard TD pass to WR Dante Jones II to put ISU up 21-7. A few drives later, USD started on their own 8 yard line and took 16 plays to get the the other end of the field. With a 4th and goal from the 3, QB Austin Simmons threw a TD pass to RB Kai Henry, but it was negated by offsetting penalties (replay the down), so USD had to give it another go, this time hitting WR Dakarai Allen on a 3-yard TD pass to pull within 7, making the halftime score 21-14 for the Sycamores.

Late in the 3rd, USD was in the red zone, but a completed pass turned into a fumble forced by ISU LB Jonas Griffith and picked up by LB Katrell Moss. Indiana State wasn’t able to do anything with it though, picking up only 1 first down on their next drive. Nearing the end of the quarter, though, the Coyotes QB Austin Simmons hit a 28-yard TD pass to WR Levi Falck to tie things up at 21. In the 4th, ISU got down to the 5 yard line on a 37-yard pass to WR Caton, but had to settle for a FG. USD responded similarly, using a 40-yard pass to WR Shamar Jackson to get close, eventually to the ISU 2, but also settled for a FG. On their next drive, Indiana State QB Boyle ran for 39 yards, got an additional 15 yards on a USD penalty, then on the next play, ran 25 yards in for the TD to take the lead with under 3 minutes left. South Dakota then took all but the last 16 seconds to work their way down the field and finish with a TD pass to TE Brett Samson, tying things up at 31, and they were on to “bonus” football.

In the first OT period, USD QB Austin Simmons ran 24 yards to the 1, and then was taken in by RB Henry. ISU needed only one play to answer with a 25-yard TD pass to WR Dante Hendrix.
In the second OT, ISU took an eternity (comparatively) of 6 plays before TE Zach Larkin caught a TD pass, but it was USD’s turn to answer after 3 more plays on a 10-yard run by Henry.
On to the third overtime period, South Dakota started with the ball, but wasn’t able to move it much of anywhere and had to come away with a 27-yard FG. On Indiana State’s turn, though, Boyle was able to run 15 yards to get them close, and a few plays later pick up a TD on a pass to Hendrix, securing the 3-point win (you don’t try for the XP in that situation).

USD QB Austin Simmons threw for 375 yards with 3 TDs with 94 yards going to WR Shamar Jackson and 88 yards and a TD to WR Dakarai Allen. RB Kai Henry ran for 113 yards and 2 TDs. LB Alex Gray led the team with 12 tackles (6 solo) and CB Isaac Armstead forced a fumble recovered by LB Alex Coker. ISU QB Ryan Boyle threw for 193 yards and 5 TDs while running for 187 yards and 2 TDs. The combined 7 TDs was a school record and it earned Boyle both the MVFC Offensive Player and Newcomer of the Week awards. RB Titus McCoy also had 123 yards on the ground, while WRs Dante Hendrix and Dakota Caton had 111 yards w/ 2 TDs and 53 yards and 1 TD respectively. LBs Katrell Moss and Jonas Griffith continued their domination with 18 tackles and a fumble recovery for Moss, and 16 tackles with 1 sack and a forced fumble for Griffith. For his performance, Moss was awarded the MVFC Defensive Player of the Week award.

South Dakota drops to 3-6 overall with a 2-4 conference record and will head back home to host Western Illinois in a week. Indiana State is now 5-4 and is 3-3 against MVFC teams and will stay home hosting Illinois State next weekend.

Illinois State at Northern Iowa

Right off the bat, ISU started with good field position after a failed onside kick by UNI gave the Redbirds the ball at the UNI 28. A few runs later, they had the first points on a 27-yard FG. UNI answered with their own 30-yard FG by PK Austin Errthum on their next drive, which then became a defensive stalemate until the 2nd quarter, when UNI was able to get another 30-yard FG, moving ahead 6-3. UNI got down to the 9 on their next drive after holding ISU to a 3-and-out and picked up another 3 on a 27-yard FG. In the time honored words of band directors everywhere…”do it again”…another 3-and-out for ISU, another 11-play drive ending in a FG for the Panthers, this time from 43 yards out. On ISU’s next play from scrimmage, QB Jake Kolbe threw a pass to UNI LB Duncan Ferch who was able to take it 31 yards to the end zone to put UNI up 19-3. Late in the 2nd, UNI QB Eli Dunne threw his own INT to ISU DB Devin Taylor in the Panther’s end zone to hold the UNI lead at 16 going into halftime.

In the 3rd, ISU QB Kolbe threw another pass to someone in purple, this time UNI DB Korby Sander. Two plays later, RB Marcus Weymiller ran for 14 yards into the end zone to go ahead 26-3. Defense reigned the rest of the quarter, as it wasn’t until nearly halfway through the 4th when the next points showed up on an 11-yard pass by Kolbe to WR Spencer Schnell to pull back within 16. On their next drive, ISU again found their way to the end zone on a 38-yard TD pass to WR Braxton Haley, but the 2-pt conversion would fail, giving the Redbirds a 10-point deficit with under 4 minutes remaining. UNI was then able to pick up a couple of first downs and eat the remaining time, coming away with a 26-16 victory.

ISU QB Jake Kolbe had 180 yards and 2 TDs through the air, with WRs Braxton Haley and Spencer Schnell catching those TDs. RB James Robinson was held to 40 yards rushing and was kept out of the end zone, something only two other teams had been able to do this season (MSU and SDSU). DB Luther Kirk led the Redbirds with 10 tackles (6 solo) and DB Devin Taylor had a solid game with 5 tackles, 1 INT, 1 pass breakup and 1 QB hurry. Punter JT Bohlken averaged 42.9 yards per on 8 punts. UNI QB Eli Dunne threw for 262 yards and 1 INT. WR Briley Moore topped the receiving list with 4 catches for 76 yards, but Marcus Weymiller handled most of the ground game, picking up 109 yards (out of a team total of 125 yards) and 1 TD. DB Korby Sander led the Panthers with 10 tackles (4 solo) and an INT, while LB Duncan Ferch had 5 tackles to go along with his INT->TD. Punter Michael Kuntz had 5 punts averaging 43.8 with 4 dropping within the 20, but it was kicker Austin Errthum who nailed 4 FGs (long of 43), had 7 kickoffs averaging 65 yards, converted 2 XP attempts, and came away with the MVFC Special Teams Player of the Week award.

Illinois State falls to 5-4 overall and 2-4 in conference and will head over to Terre Haute to take on Indiana State next weekend. Northern Iowa is also 5-4, but has a 4-2 conference record and will head out east to take on Youngstown State in a week.

Western Illinois at Southern Illinois

The weirdness started early in this game, when 4 plays in, SIU RB D.J. Davis was stripped of the ball by WIU DT Shabar Wilson, which was landed on by LB Zach Glisan. 3 plays into WIU’s drive, QB Sean McGuire threw a pass to SIU S Jeremy Chinn. Not to be outdone, 3 plays later, SIU QB Matt DeSomer tossed one to WIU DB Darron Wheeler. So…10 plays, 3 turnovers…and we weren’t even 5 minutes into the game. A bit later though, SIU had figured out how to hold onto the ball and got it into the end zone on a 4-yard run by RB Davis. WIU responded on their next drive, when RB Max Norris got WIU down to the SIU 1 yard line on a 40-yard run and RB Steve McShane took it in to tie things up. In the 2nd quarter, WIU took the lead on a 14-yard pass to RB Clint Ratkovich. SIU took their next drive to the WIU 19 and had to settle for a FG to pull within 4. After pinning the Leathernecks deep at their own 3 and the Saluki defense holding them to a total gain of 2 yards, a punt from the end zone and a 13-yard return gave SIU the ball at the WIU 39, which they were able to take into the end zone on a 20-yard pass to WR JeQuan Burton, giving SIU a 17-14 lead into halftime.

WIU started with the ball in the 3rd on the 50 after a failed onside kick on the kickoff and were able to get down to the SIU 1 yard line but were stopped on 3rd and goal. The 19-yard FG was good, but a roughing the kicker penalty gave WIU another chance to get it into the end zone (or to keep the points). Now, it’s hard to tell from the video, but it looked like WIU had the ball at the 1, kicked the FG, took the penalty (which the ref said was half the distance to the goal and replay the down) but then put the ball back at the 1 yard line. I can’t confirm that, but I know that one of our radio guys was absolutely livid about it. Anyway, the 4th and goal attempt from the 1 failed, which essentially felt like the “turning point” of the game. SIU then drove 98 yards in 12 plays including a couple of big passes to WRs Raphael Leonard and Landon Lenoir and RB Jonathan Mixon was able to run the final 2 yards for a TD to give SIU a 10 point lead. Two plays into the next drive, WIU QB McGuire threw a low pass right into the hands of SIU DE Anthony Knighton. 6 plays later, SIU QB DeSomer had thrown a 30-yard TD pass to WR Leonard and SIU was up 31-14 going into the final quarter. WIU was able to get down to the SIU 16 and get a 34-yard FG from kicker Sam Crosa to pull within 14, then on SIU’s next play from scrimmage, WIU DE Kyle Williams forced the ball from the hands of SIU RB Mixon, which was recovered by DT Shabar Wilson. The Leathernecks were able to move down the field and top it off with a 4-yard TD run by RB McShane, bringing them within 7. WIU’s defense only allowed 1 first down on the next drive, forcing a punt that pinned WIU at their own 4 yard line…which was when everything completely went off the rails for the Salukis. An incomplete pass turned into 15 yards from a pass interference. Another incomplete pass…another pass interference…another 15 yards. A completed pass to RB Steve McShane popped out of his hands and right into the hands of a SIU defender…but was negated because what helped cause the fumble was someone yanking on his facemask…15 more yards for WIU. Then, a couple of incomplete passes later, an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty against the SIU bench (radio guys said it was actually against AD Jerry Kill who was still upset about the facemask penalty nullifying the turnover. So, now that SIU had spotted WIU 60 yards from penalties, the Leathernecks were able to finish the rest of the way, eventually hitting a 5 yard pass to TE Adam Conrady to tie things up at 31 with under 4 minutes left in the game. SIU took 2 minutes on 6 plays during their next drive but were only able to advance the ball a net 3 yards, and WIU used a 26-yard pass to WR Isaiah Lesure to get close enough for PK Sam Crosa to hit a 33-yard FG to go ahead by 3. The Salukis were able to get just across the 50 with very little time left on their next drive before WIU LB Pete Swenson sacked DeSomer and forced a fumble that was picked up by DE Khalen Saunders. Saunders, in his excitement, started running with the ball and got 8 yards before he realized the situation and just downed the ball, effectively ending the game, completing the epic comeback, and sealing the win, 34-31 for the Leathernecks.

WIU QB Sean McGuire threw for 283 yards and 2 TDs but also had 2 INTs, with 71 yards of those going to WR Tony Tate. RB Max Norris had the most ground yards with 91, while RB Steve McShane had 32 yards and 2 TDs. LB Quentin Moon led the team with 10 tackles (5 solo), 1 sack, and 1 forced fumble. LB Pete Swenson had 7 tackles (6 solo), with 2 sacks and 2 forced fumbles. DE Kyle Williams and DT Shabar Wilson also had forced fumbles with Wilson, LB Zach Glisan and DL Khalen Saunders all recovering fumbles. SIU QB Matt DeSomer had 208 yards and 2 TDs through the air with 1 INT, and ran for 15 yards (his fewest in a starting role by quite a bit). WR Raphael Leonard caught 6 passes for 97 yards and 1 TD and RB Jonathan Mixon led the ground game with 71 yards and 1 TD. S Qua Brown led the Salukis with 10 tackles (7 solo) and a forced fumble. S Jeremy Chinn had 8 tackles and an INT with 2 pass breakups, and DE Anthony Knighton picked up an interception as well.

Western Illinois moves up to 5-4 with a 4-2 conference record and will head up to the DakotaDome to take on South Dakota next weekend. Southern Illinois drops to 2-7 overall and 1-5 in the MVFC. They’ll have a tough last couple of weeks starting with their final home game against South Dakota State next weekend (then at NDSU to end the season).

Missouri State at South Dakota State

A few drives into the game, SDSU got their first of many points on a 1-play drive that was a 55-yard TD run by R-Freshman RB Pierre Strong Jr. A pass by SDSU QB Taryn Christion was intercepted by MSU S Jared Beshore, but the Bears weren’t able to do anything with it. In the 2nd quarter, SDSU’s Strong ran for another long TD, this time from 54 yards out. A while later, a 34-yard pass to WR Cade Johnson made it 21-0 Jackrabbits. 3 plays from scrimmage later, LB Christian Rozeboom picked off MSU QB Peyton Huslig, and SDSU used 1 play and 5 seconds to score again on a 42-yard TD pass to WR Johnson. MSU was held to a 3-and-out on the next drive and SDSU used a 32 yard run by WR Deyon Campbell to get close enough for a 45-yard FG by PK Chase Vinatieri, pulling ahead 31-0, still with over 4 minutes left in the first half. MSU Tyler Currie finally got the Bears on the board after a 7-play, 75-yard drive with a 10-yard TD catch, but the Jackrabbits answered right back a few plays later with a 32-yard TD run by QB Christion, making the halftime score 38-7.

In the 3rd, MSU QB Huslig had a pass intercepted by SDSU CB Jordan Brown, but they weren’t able to turn it into points, missing on a 53-yard FG attempt. At this point, MSU put in R-Freshman QB Dalton Hill, who had his 3rd pass attempt intercepted by LB Logan Backhaus. It wasn’t until 2 drives later that SDSU would start at the MSU 37 and a couple of passes later, find the end zone again on a 12-yard pass to WR Adam Anderson. 3-and-out for MSU on their next drive, but SDSU gave it right back on another interception by MSU’s Beshore, but the Bears weren’t able to get anywhere with it. In the 4th quarter, QB Christion again hit a TD pass to WR Anderson…this time from 19 yards, putting them up 52-7. MSU was stopped again on their next drive and to add insult to injury, had their punt blocked giving SDSU the ball nearly in the red zone. A few plays later and RB Blair Mulholland took it 1 yard into the end zone. MSU then put in QB JT Granato, who also had his third play result in an interception, this time by SDSU S Jarek Berg. SDSU would miss a 27-yard FG, keeping them under 60 points, but still the Jackrabbits were able to finish the game with a 59-7 victory.

MSU QB Peyton Huslig had 134 yards passing with 1 TD and 2 INTs (and the two other players in at QB had 19 total yards and 2 INTs). 78 of those passing yards and the lone TD went to WR Tyler Currie. LB Angelo Garbutt had 11 tackles in the game (7 solo) and S Jared Beshore had 4 tackles to go along with his 2 interceptions. SDSU QB Taryn Christion threw for 259 yards and 4 TDs with 2 INTs and ran for 32 yards and 1 TD. WRs Cade Johnson and Adam Anderson each had 2 receiving TDs, with Johnson getting 130 yards and Anderson with 85. RB Pierre Strong ran for 136 yards and 2 TDs. LBs Eric Kleinschmit and Logan Backhaus along with DE Ryan Earith led the team with 5 tackles each. Backhaus had an interception and Earith had a sack. LB Christian Rozeboom, S Jarek Berg, and CB Jordan Brown all had interceptions as well.

Missouri State falls to 4-5 after losing their last 3 and are 2-4 in conference. They’ll head back home and host North Dakota State next weekend for Senior Day. South Dakota State meanwhile is 6-2 with a 4-2 conference record and head down south to take on Southern Illinois in Carbondale in a week.

Youngstown State at North Dakota State

Defenses were solid in this game, with the longest play in the first quarter being 13 yards and the most interesting thing a fumble by NDSU RB Ty Brooks forced by YSU LB Armand Dellovade and recovered by DB Avery Larkin. In the 2nd, a 52-yard missed FG by NDSU kicker Cam Pederson kept the game scoreless until nearly 6 minutes into the quarter when QB Easton Stick threw a couple of big passes…50 yards to WR Desmond Cain to set up a 30-yard TD pass to RB Lance Dunn and giving the Bison a 7-0 lead. Later in the quarter, a NDSU punt was blocked, giving YSU the ball at the NDSU 12 yard line. A couple of plays later, on 3rd and 10 from the 12 QB Nathan Mays completed a 9-yard pass, but apparently didn’t realize that they hadn’t gotten the 1st down because he immediately took the snap and “clocked” the ball…turning it over on downs 3 yards away from the end zone. NDSU was able to just down it to run out the clock in the half, up only by a TD.

In the 3rd quarter, it was much of the same defensive battle, until about 3 minutes left in the quarter when YSU would tie things up with a 21-yard TD pass to TE Miles Joiner. Early in the 4th though, NDSU would get a lead that they would not relinquish after a drive that ended in three straight runs by QB Stick totaling 11 yards and a TD. The Bison held the Penguins to a 3-and-out on their next drive and were able to get close enough for a 36-yard FG to go up by 10. YSU then put in QB Montgomery VanGorder (who had been their starting QB for most of the season) but was only able to get just about to midfield before an incomplete pass on 4th and 2. NDSU’s next drive ended with another failed FG attempt, this time from 42 yards out and while YSU was able to move the ball 46 yards to the NDSU 30, VanGorder’s pass was intercepted by NDSU S Robbie Grimsley. From there, the Bison were able to just kneel and walk away with a 17-7 victory.

YSU QB Nathan Mays threw for 120 yards and 1 TD while running for 58 yards and QB VanGorder had 85 yards passing and 1 INT. TE Miles Joiner had the lone TD reception along with 39 yards receiving and WR Jermiah Braswell led the Penguins with 60 yards on 3 catches. LB Armand Dellovade led the team with 16 tackles (7 solo) and the forced fumble. NDSU QB Easton Stick threw for 197 yards and 1 TD and ran for 43 yards and 1 TD. RB Lance Dunn finished with an even 100 net yards on the ground and 1 30-yard TD catch, while WR Darrius Shepherd came up 1 yard short of triple-digits with 99 yards on 8 catches. LBs Jabril Cox and Dan Marlette each had 8 tackles, each with 1 tackle for loss, and S Robbie Grimsley had 6 tackles to go with his interception. DE Greg Menard had 1.5 sacks and 2 QB hurries.

Youngstown State is now 3-6 on the season with a 2-4 conference record. They’ll host UNI for Senior Day next weekend. North Dakota State is still undefeated, 9-0 overall and 6-0 in the MVFC and have officially locked up the conference championship again. They’ll travel to Missouri State next Saturday.

MVFC Standings

Team, Overall (MVFC) – last two games
North Dakota State, 9-0 (6-0) – @MSU, SIU
South Dakota State, 6-2 (4-2) – @SIU, USD
Northern Iowa, 5-4 (4-2) – @YSU, MSU
Western Illinois, 5-4 (4-2) – @USD, INSU
Indiana State, 5-4 (3-3) – ILSU, @WIU
Illinois State, 5-4 (2-4) – @INSU, YSU
Missouri State, 4-5 (2-4) – NDSU, @UNI
South Dakota, 3-6 (2-4) – WIU, @SDSU
Youngstown State, 3-6 (2-4) – UNI, @ILSU
Southern Illinois, 2-7 (1-5) – SDSU, @NDSU

As usual, “Professor Chaos” over at has written an excellent breakdown of each team’s playoff chances and they need to do…you can go check out here.
The short version is essentially:
NDSU has locked up the conference auto-bid.
SDSU needs to win 1 of their last 2 to make it in.
WIU, UNI, ILSU, and INSU all could make it into the playoffs if any of them win their last two. They can’t all win out as INSU still has games against ILSU and WIU to finish out the season.
MSU, USD, YSU, and SIU are all effectively eliminated

How’d I Do?

USD at INSU – I thought INSU 30-27. It was INSU 51-48. So, I had the margin right, and the score at the end of regulation was tied at 31, so I was close with those numbers too…only got higher because of the 3 OT periods.

ILSU at UNI – I thought ILSU 28-21. It was UNI 26-16. I should have listened to the UNI fans that informed me that “farley-ing it up” meant that they’d crush the Redbirds and then somehow lose to Missouri State at the end of the season.

WIU at SIU – I though WIU 32-24. It was WIU 34-31. Pretty close overall, although I did not expect how it played out. I did say it felt like a “trap game” and WIU has always had a hard time in Carbondale (this was the first win there since 2000), so it wasn’t a huge surprise that we struggled.

MSU at SDSU – I thought SDSU 41-21. It was SDSU 59-7. Ok, so they just flat out destroyed MSU. My predictions did say “I think SDSU’s offense will probably tear apart MSU’s defense”…so that’s pretty much correct.

YSU at NDSU – I thought NDSU 56-7 and that the Bison could “name their score”. It was 17-7 in a defensive struggle that could have easily been tied at the end if one or two plays had gone a slightly different direction (like not directly at the ground on 4th down). I don’t feel like I can count this as a “win” in terms of my prediction…it was NOTHING like I expected to see.

Previously I was 11-9 in my picks. 3-2 this week, so I’m 14-11 now.

Only two weeks remain in the regular season. Up next weekend is Northern Iowa at Youngstown State, Illinois State at Indiana State, Western Illinois at South Dakota, South Dakota State at Southern Illinois, and North Dakota State at Missouri. UNI, WIU, and the two ISU’s need to keep winning to keep their playoff hopes alive, so that means that one of the ISU’s will effectively be eliminated next weekend and two other games will have significant impact on some “bubble teams” playoff chances.

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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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