Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Playoff Prediction - Mesa State at Abilene Christian

Congrats to the Wildcats who received LSC honors. For several it is the first of numerous accolades they will receive this fall.

Offensive Back of the Year - Bernard Scott, ACU
Receiver of the Year - Johnny Knox, ACU
Offensive Lineman of the Year - Nathan Young, ACU

FIRST TEAM OFFENSE
RB Bernard Scott ACU Jr. Vernon, Texas
FB Emery Dudensing ACU R-Fr. Rule, Texas
WR Johnny Knox ACU Jr. Houston, Texas
WR Jerale Badon ACU Sr. Abilene, Texas
OG Nathan Young ACU Sr. Plainview, Texas
OT Joseph Thompson ACU Jr. Dallas, Texas
C Sam Collins ACU Jr. Denton, Texas
PK Matt Adams ACU Jr. Abilene, Texas

FIRST TEAM DEFENSE
DT Jacob Passmore ACU Sr. Dayton, Texas
ILB Cody Stutts ACU Sr. Mesquite, Texas

SECOND TEAM OFFENSE
QB Billy Malone ACU Jr. Paris, Texas
TE Kendrick Holloway ACU Jr. Dallas, Texas
TE Chris Johnson ACU Sr. Fort Worth, Texas
OG Cody Savage ACU Sr. Atlanta, Texas
OT Matt Raesner ACU Sr. Nashville, Tenn.

SECOND TEAM DEFENSE
CB EJ Whitley ACU Jr. Austin, Texas
CB Corey Jordan ACU Sr. Garland, Texas

HONORABLE MENTION
WR Edmund Gates, ACU, R-Fr.
DE Travis Carpenter, ACU, Sr.
DE Julian Humble, ACU, Sr.
S Tony Harp, ACU, So.



From the looks of the LSC honors, it is clear the ACU has a potent offense. Their line is the best unit in the conference, and does good work both run and pass blocking. Billy Malone is a very good QB (161 QB efficiency rating), and last week became the all-time LSC leader in passing yards. He has two outstanding targets in Johnny Knox ( the LSC receiver of the year ) and Jerale Badon (the all-time LSC leader in receptions and only 265 yds short of that record as well). The key to the Wildcats is Bernard Scott - the Blinn JC transfer led the LSC with over 1,700 yds rushing (8 yd per carry) and had 479 more receiving. Stop him and you have a chance (UCO and WT held ACU to under 100 yds rushing). Malone also needs to cut down on his INTs - he has thrown multiple interceptions in each of the last 4 games, after going 18 straight games with one or fewer.

Mesa State's offense is balanced as well, but has been much less explosive. They have scored 40 points just once this season (the opening game against Mesa State) and gained over 400 just twice (season high 420 against Mesa State the second time they played). They have run the ball over 62% of the time, though they average just 3.6 yds per carry. Bobby Coy led the team with 1,160 yds and 5.1 yds per carry. Phil Vigil is the QB, throwing for 1,800 yds, 11 TDs, 8 Ints, 53% of his passes, and a QB rating of only 117.9. His favorite target is Drew Bohanan, who caught 41 passes for 735 yds and 7 TDs. As a unit, the Mavs average 319 yds, 168 rushing, 151 passing and 25.5 points per game.

ACU's defense has not been very good Compare the first 6 weeks of the season to the last 5 weeks. They suffered a similar decline last year.
  • Scoring from 16.3 to 40.8 (from 3rd to 8th in LSC)
  • Run D from 144 to 220 (from 10th to 11th)
  • Pass D from 162 to 335 (from 2nd to 10th)
  • Total D from 306 to 555 (from 4th to 11th)

Mesa's defense is much better, at least on paper. They have allowed 12.8 points, 60 rushing, 177 passing for a total of 237 per game. Pass efficiency defense was an RMAC low of 93.5 They sacked opponents 26 times, and picked off 22 passes. Their red zone defense was second in the RMAC allowing the opposition to score on only 57% of their trips inside the Mavs 20. In what could be an important stat, they were a plus 17 in turnover margin.

Prediction: The Wildcats have the most balanced, and probably the most explosive offense possibly in the nation, but almost certainly in the SW region. Their downfall will likely be their defense - its not a championship caliber defense, but it is good enough to win this week.

Abilene Christian 38 Mesa State 24

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

How can you rank TAMUC ahead of Southwest OK after the Bulldawgs beat them just last week? Better yet, how can you rank TAMUC or SWOSU ahead of ENMU? The Greyhounds were undefeated against the North teams. Guess Lion Fan is behind LSC Scoop. Nobody else who gives a rip about the Lonestar thinks TAMUC is that good.

Anonymous said...

I think Commerce is probably the better as well ... one games doesn't a season make. Are you prepared to rank UCO over ACU. The Bronchos did beat them this year, you know.

Anonymous said...

If you've talked to Lion Fan recently, he wouldn't put them higher than 9 or 10 probably.

This year was just weird. The top four are pretty clear. After that....it gets cloudy to say the least. ENMU started strong, but finished weak. TAMC was finishing strong, but stumbled. SWO has a winning record, but one of those is OPSU and one is an NAIA school. SEO was OK, but inconsistent. Maybe the 5-13 teams should have all been lumped together as a tie.

Personally, I think the Javelinas should be higher given their surge at the end of the season. But they didn't get on track in time. Next year, the learning curve should not cost them games early in the season.

JavsFan

Anonymous said...

atomicfootball.com has them (TAMUC) ranked ahead of the others as well, using their crazy mathematical formulas.

There was a 5 way tie in the north for christ's sake. Picking any of them over the other is going to have 4 other teams yelling at you.

It would be impossible to rank that mess after the big 4 teams. They all suck.

Anonymous said...

I guess LionFan runs atomicfootball.com too

Anonymous said...

What's your fascination with Lion Fan? Did he dump you for someone younger and prettier. You sound like a little junior high girl.

Anonymous said...

LionFan does have a nice toosh

Chad S

Anonymous said...

Oh you ACU boyz.....

LionFan said...

WOW...I'm famous!!! And apparently very busy...thanks! HAHA

Anonymous said...

In defense of the "crazy formulas" we use to rank teams at www.atomicfootball.com, this year we began using some of the same math in a more serious effort to make score predictions. After getting out a few early season bugs, we finished first in prediction accuracy (as measured by mean square error) for the second half of the season (303 FBS games) on The Prediction Tracker (http://www.thepredictiontracker.com/
ncaaresults.php?orderby=mse&type=2
&year=07), marking only the second time in eight years that anyone has beaten the line in points accuracy on that site (see http://tbeck.freeshell.org/fb/
awards2006.html). This includes names like Sagarin and Billingsly. Call us crazy.

Atomic Football

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