Monday, August 11, 2008

LSC Football - Northeastern State Preview

2007 Recap
In 2007, NSU appeared to be going nowhere fast out of the gate, before a couple of big upset wins in the last 2 games of the season saved them from disaster.

Going into the last 2 games of 2007, NSU was staring at a 1-7 record, and games against 2 of the North’s better teams in Southeastern Oklahoma and Central Oklahoma. But the Riverhawks bucked the losing trend, holding both teams to 14 points and pulling off 2 wins to salvage their season.

Even though NSU’s 3-7 record might not show it, there were things to build on. Of the 13 LSC teams, they finished 5th in both Rushing Offense and Rushing Defense. However, the fact that they finished dead last in Scoring Offense, 12th in Passing Offense and 12th in Passing Defense doomed them.

2008 Outlook
Out with the old – CB Cornelius Burks (#2 in LSC in INT’s), LB Shane Cates (#5 in LSC in Tackles), Starting QB Joe Hogan, WR Anthony Alexander, Starting OL Caleb Graier, Starting OL Nick Wilson, Starting OL Jonathan Cruz.

Welcome Back – NSU’s Offense brings back 5 Starters and the Defense brings back 8.

The offensive players returning are highlighted by RB Josh Lewis, who’s 1,173 All-Purpose yards last season led the team. He is joined by NSU’s All-Time leader in Receiving Yards Jarrett Byers.

The Defense is led by LSC North DB of the Year Broderick Mondy. Mondy is a Pre-Season All-American and led the LSC in Tackles in 2007 with 117. He is joined by DB’s Colby Inic and Curtis Mayfield. The LB corps returns LaTauras Sykes. The DL returns Nick Jones, TJ Raymond, Brad Girtman, and Brad Jones.

In with the new – QB Woody Wilson appears to be the front runner to take over the reigns at Starting QB. RB Triston Thomas, DB Michael Norteye, will figure into the mix as newcomers.

All Conference Candidates -
Jarrett Byers (WR, 6-0, 195, Sr., Kansas City, Kan.) (All American candidate)
Jon Evans (LB, 6-2, 215, So., Chandler, Okla.)
Brad Girtman (DT, 6-6, 305, Sr., Houston, Texas)
Damien Henderson (WR, 6-0, 200, Sr., New Orleans, La.)
Jared Homer (PK, 6-0, 195, Jr., Mustang, Okla.)
Brad Jones (DT, 6-0, 290, Sr., Stilwell, Okla.)
Nick Jones (DE, 6-3, 240, Sr., Jackson MS)
Joe Kok (P, 6-2, 240, Jr., Broken Arrow, Okla.)
Josh Lewis (RB, 5-9, 190, Jr., Arlington, Texas)
Curtis Mayfield (DB, 5-11, 175, Sr., Dallas, Texas/North Garland HS)
Broderick Mondy (S, 6-2, 210, Sr.,Plano East HS) (All-American candidate)
T.J. Raymond (NT, 6-2, 285, Jr., Grand Prairie, Texas) (All American candidate)
LaTauras Sykes (CB, 5-11, 220, Sr., Calhoun City, MS.)

Big Games
Week 1: For the RiverHawks, the biggest game is the first game of the year against Arkansas Tech on August 28. NSU has dropped five straight to the Wonder Boys dating back to 2003. That will set the set the tone for the remainder of the season.

Best Case Scenario
5-6. With the North being a bit down with recent hits to SOSU and UCO, those games are no longer out of reach. With ECU and SWOSU, those are also possible wins. Tough to see NSU making any kind of a run this season.

Worst Case Scenario
2-9 If they can’t get some kind of production from one of the new QB’s, its going to be a mirror of last season. Passing game cant do anything, and everyone loads the box against the running game.

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