Monday, August 21, 2017

LSC Football Roundup

Scott Wright, NewsOK.com
Running back Jeff Carr is leaving Oklahoma State and will transfer to Texas A&M-Kingsville, according to a report. GoPokes.com initially reported news of Carr’s departure on Monday, which was the first day of classes at OSU.

Carr, a 5-foot-7, 190-pound junior, had seen several freshmen working toward playing time in the Cowboys’ running back rotation behind sophomore starter Justice Hill.

 The Temple, Texas, native is expected to be immediately eligible at the NCAA Division II program, which is a member of the Lone Star Conference. Carr played in seven games last season, carrying the ball 12 times for 85 yards, while also contributing on special teams.

OSU running back Jeff Carr (20) will transfer to Texas A&M-Kingsville, according to a report. [PHOTO BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN]




Sunday, August 20, 2017

LSC Roundup

Kale Steed, Amarillo.com

First-year head coach Hunter Hughes and the West Texas A&M football team is scheduled to host the first of two scrimmages during fall camp at 8:30 a.m. today on Happy Bank State Field at Kimbrough Memorial Stadium.

The scrimmage is free and open to the public. The Buffs, who reported 106 players to fall camp, have had 11 practices through August.

Here are three things fans will want to look for from the today’s scrimmage: (complete story)




and the recap from Kale and Lucas Kinsey...


Kale Steed, Amarillo.com

West Texas A&M fans saw their first glimpse at new head coach Hunter Hughes and the Buffs’ football team after their first of two scrimmages of fall workouts Saturday morning on Happy State Bank Field at Kimbrough Memorial Stadium.

For the first time being on the turf at Kimbrough in a live situation, Hughes was relatively happy with what he saw from his team.

“I’ll have to go back and look at the film to see how I fell overall,” Hughes said. “I was pleased with the effort. I was pleased with how the guys came out. Guys had to separate themselves and I saw some young guys do some things. I just need to go watch the film. That’s where we’re at.”





Lee Scheide, Odessa American

For the better part of two weeks, the UTPB football team’s defense had gotten the upper hand when the Falcons practiced early each morning. Saturday, the offense got a bit of redemption.

The unit was perfect on the goal line to open up the Falcons’ first live scrimmage in preparation for the 2017 season and then moved the ball up and down the field between the 20-yard lines before Bailey Giffen’s 47-yard field goal closed the proceedings on UTPB's practice field.

The spirited workout brought a smile to the face of head coach Justin Carrigan, with a grain of salt.

“I thought our offense played really well; through camp the defense has been ahead,” Carrigan said. “I think the offense came out and started the scrimmage on the goal line, during our goal line segment and just off the top of my head, I think we 6 for 6 in scoring touchdowns.

“So it’s exciting for the offense to come out and answer, but it’s disappointing for the defense. I think our defense is better than what they showed today and that’s what I told them at the end, that I expect more from those guys; but I think the offense answered the bell today.”








Friday, August 18, 2017

Midwestern State 2017 Outlook


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Previous 2017 Previews

2016 Recap
The Mustangs went 8-2 through the regular season making the playoffs for the 7th time since 2004.  It took some good a lot of great fortune to get there.  In week 2, a 74 yard drive leading to a game winning FG with 12 seconds to play at TAMK, two 75 yard drives in the last 5:22 at TAMC, culminating with a game winning TD with 28 seconds in the game, a 77 yard drive leading to the game winning TD with 16 seconds to play against Angelo State, and 74 yard drive leading to the game winning TD with 52 seconds left at Tarleton.  On the four game winning drives, Quade Coward was 16-18 for 253 yards and 2 TDs, and an amazing 243.6 QB rating (the rest of the season he threw for 2,128 yds with a 16-9 TD-Int ratio and a 130.9 QB rating).  Week 10 looked like another miracle finish as MSU scored TDs with 1:12 and 0:52 to play against ENMU, but the Greyhounds turned the tables, going 70 yards with 49 seconds to play scoring a TD as time expired, upsetting MSU 30-28.

The Mustangs traveled to Ferris State in the first round of the playoffs and got off to a good start, taking a 20-10 lead early in the second quarter, putting together TD drives of 65, 59 and 64 yards.  The offense sputtered over the next six possessions (77 total yards) and was all FSU from that point, with the Bulldogs blasting MSU 55-14 the rest of the way.  The playoff loss continues a pattern that has seen the Mustangs excel in the regular season and quickly exit the playoffs - their lone playoff win came in 2006 against Missouri Western.

Statistically, MSU held a 35.3-28.0 scoring edge, while outgaining opponents 426-405.  The run game averaged 189 yards per game and 4.8 per carry, while they picked up 237 through the air (135.2 QB rating).  The defense gave up an LSC worst 215 yards per game, and an LSC second best 190 yards passing (QB rating 120.9).  Individually, Vincent Johnson was the leading rusher, with 745 yards and an impressive 19 TDs.  Adrian Seales, Dante Taylor and Nicholas Gabriel added another 797 yards and 5 TDs.  Coward had 2,381 yards and 18 TDs passing and the late game magic intangible that cannot be quantified.  Breion Evans led an octet of players with double digit receptions.  He and Jerryl Yarbrough were the players most often on the recieving end of the late game Coward passes.  Defensively, Sir'Vell Ford led the team with 80 tackles and 2 interceptions, while Darian Childers-Brown had a team high 14 TFL and 7.5 sacks.

Named to the All-LSC first team were OL Joel Onyia and Akoakoa Paleka-Kennedy, DT Childers-Brown and DB Ford, with Paleka-Kennedy named OL of the year.  Second team choices went to RB Johnson, return specialist DeAndre Black, and DE Harold Wills.  Honorable mention honorees were OL Islam Sbeih, OL Denzell Dotson, OL Kevin Fisher, QB Coward, RB Seales, TE Dorian Johnson, WR Evans, WR Statron Jones, DL Edgar Luna, LB Jordan Meyers, DB Jaydon Cunigan, CB Cullen Craft, CB DaMarcus Wilson, P Mitchell Henton and LS Bobby Joe Nielsen.

2017 Outlook - Offense
Another contender needing a new starting QB, but at least there is some experience in this case.  Coming out of spring practice, Javin Kilgo and Layton Rabb led the group of contenders.  Both received limited playing time in 2016, with Rabb garnering a QB rating of 155.5 and Kilgo a rate of 29.4.  Hagen Hutchinson is also returning after a year off due to injury.  He was an honorable mention pick at QB in 2015, throwing for almost 1,400 yards and 10 TDs and rushing for 358 yards and 5 TDs, while splitting time with Quade Coward.

Johnson, Seales and Gabriel return and will have UNT transfer Chris Smith bolstering a group that is always among the LSC's best.  Deandre Black, Jerryl Yarbrough, Dorian Johnson and Brandon Sampson all had double digit receptions in 2017.  Another one to watch for is Xavier Land - he had 4 catches for 121 yards against TAMK last year, including a 49 yard reception on the game winning drive.  Fisher and Sbeih return up front, but the other three LSC honorees will have to be replaced.  D'Andre Despanie (Iowa Central CC) and Austin Ross (Scottsdale CC "Fighting Artichokes") should make contributions.


2017 Outlook - Defense
MSU lost a lot up front with the departures of Childers-Brown, Wills and Luna, but Alec DiValerio (10 TFL), Zach Edwards and Travon Ransom return. The Mustangs play a lot of guys, so look for transfers Christian Figueredo, Nathaniel Nicolas, Giacomo Gonzalez, Brian Guendling,  and Wesley Jacinthe (who redshirted after transferring in last year) to see plenty of action.

Returninh depth is solid at linebacker.  Drew Bolin, Tristan Shearman, Zach McMahen and J. P. Cognasi  are back after combining for 157 tackles last year.

The secondary has even more experience.  Sir'Vell Ford (1st LSC), Cullen Craft (HM), Jaydon Cunigan (HM), DaMarcus Wilson (HM), Jordan Meyers (HM), Marcus Wilkerson (spring game hero with 2 picks), Josh Wydermyer, Robert Grays and Steven Rogers bring back quality and quantity (combined 315 tackles, 6 Ints, 26 passes broken up).  Kevin Hayes, Elijah Kirkland, Jovanne Parkinson, Paul Manus and Will Weaver bring even more depth in as transfers.

2017 Outlook - Special Teams
Mitchell Henton returns at punter after averaging 36.5 yards as a junior.  Jaron Imbriani had 66 kickoffs for a 51.5 average and 12 touchbacks.  A new placekicker will need to replaceTanner Graeber (6-13 on FGs with a long of just 35 yards).  The return positions look to be filled with Deandre Black and Robert Grays handling the majority of returns in 2016.  Black averaged 22.5 on KR and 18.6 on PR with a TD.  Grays had 22.7 on KR and 8.6 on PR.  Long snapper Bobby Joe Nielsen is also back.


2017 Outlook - Non-Conference Schedule
Quincy - See UTPB Preview

West Florida will have the most interesting road venue for MSU this year - Blue Wahoos Stadium, a AA-affiliated baseball stadium.  The Argonauts were a first year program and had a very respectable 5-6 record (4-6 if you take out former ACU opponent Ava Maria).  They play in the Gulf South Conference, one of the tougher D2 conferences.  In GSC play, they went 3-5, including a win over another recent Florida addition to the GSC, Florida Tech.  The Panthers made the NCAA playoffs and defeated Valdosta State, making UWF's win even more impressive.  UWF scored 31 points per game, throwing for 309 ypg and 32 TDs, but only rushing for 99 ypg and 3.2 per carry.  The QB looks to be Grey Jackson, who had 319 yards and 4 TDs as the second string QB.  Ishmael Morrow had over 1,000 yards receiving, while Antoine Griffin added 560.  The top 3 running backs return as well.  The defense gave up 35.5 points, 270.6 yards passing and 130.5 rushing.  Ishmel Morrow was a first team all-GSC selection as well as GSC freshman of the year.  In total, 19 of the top 22 in tackles returns.

Head coach Pete Shinnick also was the HC at Azusa Pacific and had a 53-22 record (and 5 playoff appearances) from 1999-2005 as an NAIA school and another new program at UNC Pembroke where he was 50-24 from 2007-2013.  He led the Braves to the NCAA playoffs in just their third season, fastest in D2 history and again in 2013.






Best Case Scenario
10-0, The Mustangs are constantly good, sometimes really good and occasionally really, really good.  They return a lot and where  they don't they consistently reload with much disruption.  They showed a knack for pulling out dramatic wins and have the attitude that they will find a way.


Worst Case Scenario
5-5.  If Lady Luck doesn't smile on the Mustangs like she consistently did last year.  As we discussed above, last year's 8-2 regular season, required several last minute improbable scoring drives.  They could have just as easily been 4-6.


Prediction
8-2, NCAA Playoffs/Bowl Game

It's true that the Mustangs were fortunate (lucky even) in winning 4 of their 5 games decided in the final minute, but good teams find a way to win.  They could be even better than last year, but not have a better record

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Texas A&M-Kingsville 2017 Outlook


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for all of the team previews


2016 Recap
The season opened well with a road win at FCS Incarnate Word and a 68-7 blowout over Simon Fraser.  The next three weeks sank their playoff hopes as the Javelinas lost to Midwestern State, Texas A&M Commerce and Angelo State by a combined 5 points.  Each loss was a different kind of heartache - MSU marched 74 yards to score the winning TD with 12 seconds to play, at TAMC, the Hogs could not convert a 2 pt PAT w/1:26 to tie the game, then had a game winning 55 yd FG blocked as time expired, while Angelo State recovered their own fumble in the end zone with about 3.5 minutes to play in the game to take the lead.  TAMK would win the final 7 games of the season, including a 24-17 Live United Bowl victory over Southern Arkansas.

Statistically, the Javelinas outscored their opponents 38.3-23.0 and out gained them 414-336.  The running game was third in the LSC with 181 yards per game and they threw for 233 (and an LSC leading 162.4 QB efficiency rating).  The trio of Greg Pitre, Luis Lopez and Nick Pelrean combined for 1,876 yards and 20 TDs rushing and 43 receptions for 382 yards.  Myles Carr set a team record with 31 TD passes to go along with 2,702 yards and a 163.6 QB rating.  Five players had 20 or more receptions, with Anthony Autry leading the group with 44 for 756 yards and 9 TDs.  First LSC honors went to Stuart Sanchez and Bo Villarreal on the OL, TE Stehley Reden, WR Autry, and FB Torrey Thomas.  Carr was the offensive player of the year and OL Aundra Long, RB Lopez and WR Jordan Thomas were all honorable mention choices.

The defense led the LSC in yards allowed, rushing yards allowed and sacks and was second in points allowed.  On the line, Brandon Jones, Quentin Parks and Alex Kuyinu combined for 127 tackes, 34.5 TFL, 21.5 sacks and 19 QBH.  Braedon, Trevor Moses, ZeMarcus Green, Tre Oliver, Caleb Valentine and DeMarcus Spurlock led a deep group of LBs with 280 tackles, 37.5 TFL, 13.5 sacks, and 14 QBH.  Forrest Jones, Jarrod Sanders, Justin Guillory, Emond Hobbs and Devonte Williams were busy in the secondary with 191 tackles, 9 interceptions and 22 passes broken up.    Robinson and Jones were 1st team all conference (with Jones garnering LSC Defensive player of the year, defenensive lineman of the year and All-American honors as well).  ZeMarcus Green, Jarrod Sanders and Devonte Williams were second team selections and Kuyinu and Spurlock getting honorable mention recognition.


2017 Outlook - Offense
A quick look at what's missing.  First and foremost, Myles Carr who threw for 4,995 yards and 52 TDs and   Anthony Autry, a deep threat with 87 catches for 1,587 yards and 16 TDs in 2 seasons.  At running back, Greg Pitre graduated and Luis Lopez is not listed on the teams roster at this time and OL Bo Villarreal and Audra Long were seniors.

The cupboard is far from bare.  Nick Pelrean (568 yds, 9 TDs) and transfer Keith Whitely (1,215 yds in 2014 and 2015 at UNLV) should keep the running game in the upper half of the LSC and Jordan Thomas, Kyle Plum, Stehley Reden and Torrey Thomas (96-1,417-16 TD) will give the QB plenty of targets.  QB?  Who will be the QB?  The returning player with the most playing time last year is....no one.  Conner Smith, Cade Dyal, and Casey Rosellini all red-shirted last year, while Beau Reilly was on the U of Hawaii roster, but did not play.  Who emerges, and how well they play is the key factor for the Javelinas this year.  Stuart Sanchez, Ralph Rubalcaba and Jake Wallace return for the OL, but its not clear who will join them in the starting lineup.  This is key #2 (or 1A) for the 2017 season.

***** Record Watch ***** He won't set any team career records, but Jordan Thomas could quietly move into the top 5 on the Javelina receiving charts in several categories.  He needs 36 receptions, 788 yards and 8 TDs to crack the top 5 in those categories.

2017 Outlook - Defense
The defense looks much more settled.  The line will once again feature Brandon Jones, just a junior.  Newcomer Teke Cheetham-West will help Carlos Cuellar clog up the middle.  At linebacker, they are very deep - Braedon Robinson, Trevor Moses, DeMarcus Spurlock, Tre Oliver, Caleb Valentine and Peyton Tilley combined for 262 tackles, 31.5 TFL, and 15 sacks.  Robinson  is the stats leader with 32.5 career TFL and 153 tackles and twice given All-LSC honors.  Not to be outdone, the secondary has 5 guys back that had 25+ tackles. Jarrod Sanders, Justin Guillory, Emond Hobbs, Devonte Williams and Kuziah Ferebee had 166 tackles, 8 interceptions and 21 passes broken up.  There are a couple of Southland -school transfers that could figure into the mix as well - Jalen Campbell a highly recruited player out high school a couple of years ago and Junior Henderson, who had 64 tackles as a true freshman at ACU in 2015.


2017 Outlook - Special Teams
Julio De la Garza was 11-14 on FGs with a long of 55 and 53-55 on PATs.  His kickoffs averaged 58.5 yards and he had 11 kicks for touchbacks and was named 1st-LSC.  They'll have a new punter, either De La Garza, Trent Sisco (All-Houston kicker by the Houston Chronicle) or Sam Godinez.  Sean Landez averaged 9.3 yards on 21 punt returns, while Nick Pelrean had 8 kick returns for 171 yards (21.4 avg.)


2017 Outlook - Non-Conference Schedule
Central Washington pays a visit to Kingsville in the season opener.  The Wildcats were 7-3 last, dropping games to FCS Portland State and two to Azusa Pacific.  They held a 34-21 scoring edge and 433-340 yardage advantage.  Jonathan Hillel looks to be the starting QB.  As a backup, he threw for 384 yards and 5 TDs backing up Justin Lane.  Running backs Austin Pernell and Jordan Tufaga (425 combined yards) and wide outs Justin Peterson and Christian Gasca (38-684, 6 TDs).  The strength of the defense will be at LB and the secondary, with five of the teams top six tacklers back.

In week 2, TAMK heads up to Canada to face Simon Fraser.  The Clan were winless in 2016, with their closest games against Western Oregon, losing 7-33 in week 6 and 13-40 in the season finale.  They were outscored 51-8 and outgained 441-203.  Let's see if we can find some highlights.... Miles Richardson is back at QB.  He threw for 1,600 yards, but had a 4-18 TD-Int ratio.  Jalen Jana is the leading rusher, with 464 yards and all of the teams 3 rushing TDs.  Also back are the top three in receptions, WR Justin Buren, WR Gavin Cobb, and Jana - they had a combined 109 receptions, 1,092 yards and 2 TDs.  The defense lost their top two players, so its hard to see much improvement here.

In the regular season finale, William Jewell fills the hole in the schedule left by OPSU's departure to NAIA.  The Cardinals won the seaon finale against Lincoln (Mo) to avoid going winless.  They were outscored by a 36-22 margin and outgained 428-347 weekly.  Brad Strauss and Jared Hobby return at QB, the duo combined for 2,234 yards and 12 TDs, but 14 interceptions.  Strauss is also the leading returning rusher, with 268 yards.  Bulla Graft caught 44 catches for 658 yards and 5 TDs, but not much help returns in the receiving corps.  The defense should be better, with the top 6 in tackles back this year.


Best Case Scenario
11 - 0,  The defense was good last year, and should be even better this year.  The offense had some losses, but could reload and be very good once again.  As last season progressed, the Javelinas showed the ability to win some close games that slipped away in the past.  The first two games will give the offense a chance to find its legs and the defense to fine-tune and get ready for Midwestern State and Texas A&M-Commerce in back to back games.


Worst Case Scenario
7-4, If the OL/QB situation does not gel and other LSC step up their game an improved Javelina squad could fare a bit worse in terms of W/L record.


Prediction
9-2, NCAA Playoff/Bowl Game serious contender
Right in between.  The LSC is arguably tougher and deeper at the top with 4 or maybe 5 teams battling it out.  It's going to be difficult for any team to go through unscathed.

No LSC team has shown the same improvement as the Javelinas over the last two seasons.  On the flip side, few programs ventured into the same depths as TAMK.  In year one under Coach Wilkinson, TAMK improved their scoring margin by 20.1 and yardage margin by 77.6.  In year two it was 19.8 on scoring and 133 on yardage.  The two year totals of 39.9 points and 210.6 yards are eerily similar to the improve Texas A&M-Commerce saw in Colby Carthel's first two years, 42.4 points and 189.5 yards.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

LSC Roundup



1. Angelo State (21 first place votes) - 340
2. Tarleton State (9) - 326
3. Texas A&M-Kingsville (1) - 267
4. Texas A&M-Commerce - 236
5. West Texas A&M (1) - 233
6. Eastern New Mexico - 204
7. Western New Mexico - 153
8. Texas Woman's - 120
9. Midwestern State - 106
10. UT Permian Basin - 74
11. Cameron 53























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For the first time in school history, Tarleton will open a season as one of the top-ranked teams in the country after the TexAnns were ranked No. 25 in the nation by the American Volleyball Coaches Association preseason poll Monday afternoon.

“We’re very grateful to all of the coaches who think so highly of our program,” said head coach Mary Schindler. “Looking back on my time as head coach, this is a wonderful step in the development of our program but it’s certainly not the end step. We’ve proven to ourselves that we have what it takes to be one of the top teams in the nation, but now we have to prove to ourselves that that we deserve to stay there year in and year out.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Eastern New Mexico 2017 Outlook


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for all of the team previews


2016 Recap
ENMU got off to a rough start, dropping their season opener at Southwest Baptist and the week 3 matchup with Texas A&M Commerce.  They won their next three, before a five turnover loss to Tarleton in week 7.  Over the final four weeks, ENMU ran all over Bacone and OPSU and turned the tables on MSU, with some last minute magic of their own, upsetting the Mustangs 30-28.  Their 6-4 record against D2 schools earned an invite to the C.H.A.M.P.S. Heart of Texas Bowl, where they dropped a 45-12 decision to Fort Hays State.

The offense scored 31.8 per week.  As expected, the running game led the way with 344.6 yards per game, and 5.7 per carry.  The passing game chipped in 128.8 yards weekly, but an impressive 160.5 QB efficiency rating.  They didn't throw much,  but when they did it was for a big gain - 19.3 yards per catch.  For comparison, TAMC (13.6), MSU (13.5), TSU (13.5) and TAMK (13.3) were the only other LSC teams to average more than 13.  Once again Kamal Cass was the leading rusher with 1,191 yards and 14 TDs.  QB Wyatt Strand started 11 games, rushing for 702 yards and 10 TDs, and throwing for 1,305 yards and 11 TDs, with a QB rating of 170.4 (which would have led the LSC if he had enough attempts).  Six other backs had more than 100 yards rushing.  Aaron Johnson was top target at receiver, with 43 of the teams 80 receptions, 848 of the 1,546 receiving yards and 5 TDs.  Post season honors went to Cass (1st LSC),  Johnson (2nd), and linemen Isaiah Talbert (2nd), Josh Bongiovanni (HM), Jordan Wade (HM) and Strand (LSC Freshman of the Year)

The defense was third in the LSC in yards allowed (342.4) and fourth in scoring (25.9).  They were particularly stingy against the run, giving up just 105.3 yards per game and 3.5 per carry.  The pass defense was middle of the pack, both in yards allowed (237.2) and QB rating (134.8).  They did allow an average of 42 points in their five losses however.  Individually, LB Brad Hardin (1st LSC), S Todd Countee (1st), Samula Tupou (2nd), Desmond Blue (2nd), DT Dakota Montoya (HM) and DT Keandre Hall (HM) were recognized by the LSC.

Josh Lynn has moved on to Nebraska Kearney and Kelley Lee takes over the head coaching position.


2017 Outlook - Offense
No mystery here, ENMU will field a strong run game.  Seven of the top ground gainers are back, including Cass and Strand.  And don't sleep on the other five - they picked up 1,574 yards, 9 TDs and averaged over 7 yards per carry!  Up front Talbert and Bongiovanni are back as is starter Lane Cummings.  The big question is at WR.  And while they don't throw it much, they need someone to make defenses pay.  Kai Roberts and Russell Montoya are the "experienced" returnees, each had two receptions, combining for 58 yards and zero TDs.

****** Record Watch ****** Kamal Cass is seeking his third 1,000 season and is 1,349 yards behind Tom Manley for the ENMU top spot.


2017 Outlook - Defense
Dakota Montoya and Keandre Hall anchor the defensive line.  The duo combined for 38 tackles, 12.5 TFL, 5.5 sacks, and 6 QBH.  Not a lot of other returnees though.  At linebacker, Brad Hardin and Desmond Blue were the leading tacklers, combining for 144, with 22 TFL, 5.5 sacks, 11 QBH, 3 interceptions and 8 passes broken up.  Also back are part time starters Cory Harris, Neami Tuifua, Clarence Cowart, and Michael Dunlap, as well as several reserves with experience.

The secondary has Todd Countee, fellow starters Quavshaun Branch and De'Aundre Sanders and reserves Gary Thibeaux-Moore and Charles Countee leading the way.  They were busy with 165 tackles, 8 interceptions and 20 passes broken up.

It looks like an improved defense with the quality and quantity of returning players.


2017 Outlook - Special Teams
Bailey Hale did double duty last year as a redshirt freshman.  The ACU transfer was 11-16 on FGs, with a long of 47, 37-42 on PATs, averaged 36.2 yards on punts and 60.8 on kickoffs with 23 touchbacks.  Lots of kick returning experience 7 players back that had at least 2 returns.  Backup QB Leondre Williams had the most returns (8 for 132 yards), while running back D'Maujeric Tucker averaged 25 yards on 5 returns.  Not much back for punt returns, Quavshaun Branch had 3 returns for 21 yards.



2017 Outlook - Non-Conference Schedule
A season-opening rematch, which Southwest Baptist won 49-35.  ENMU rushed for 444 yards, but turned the ball over 4 times (two inside the ENMU 15 which led to 14 SBU points, and one inside the SBU 30 which killed a promising ENMU drive) and allowed 550 yards defensively.  SBU did gone to make the NCAA playoffs, dropping a 63-35 decisioin to Colorado School of Mines.  QB T.J. Edwards returns to lead a potent offense (42.1 points, 504 yards per game).  Edwards threw for 3,242 yards and 34 TDs (7 Ints) and rushed for 685 yards and 10 more TDs.  His top targets are back - Kendrick Payne and Cassian Foreman combined for 126 receptions, 1,947 yards and 20 TDs.  One concern for SBU - all of the running backs listed on the roster are freshmen or sophomores with no carries last year.  The defense was a bit leaky, allowing 413 yards and 29 points per game.  Just 3 of the top 11 tacklers return.  This should be fun shootout to open the season with.  ***  This is prior to D2Football or AFCA polls, but Street and Smith has SBU at #7 coming into the season ***

West Liberty was 4-7 last year, with 5 of the losses coming by 7 points or less.  The offense was balanced, rushing for 145 ypg and throwing for 231, leading to 26.2 points weekly.  The defense gave up 25.5 points, 145 yards rushing and 232 passing.  That's about as close as you can get to parity in your offense and defense (similar to WTAM).  They'll have to replace Dakota Conwell.  The Arizona-transfer led the Hilltoppers in passing and rushing.  His top two receivers (who accounted for 60% of the receiving yards and 21 of the 26 TD receptions) are gone, but WLU does return three of their top four running backs.  The defense will have to replace 7 of the top 11 of the leaders in tackles.  


Best Case Scenario
8-2, The defense will need to play well every week and not give up 40+ to the top teams, and they will need to find someone at WR to keep defenses honest.  If they do, another postseason appearance is within their grasp.

Worst Case Scenario
4-6, Can ENMU muster up enough of a passing game to keep teams from loading up for the run?  The defense was exposed in several games last year, and while it is experienced this fall, several LSC teams look to have upgraded.  Also, there's no Bacone or OPSU on the schedule this year.  This could be a rebuilding year for the Greyhounds.


Prediction
5-5 , Once again we are probably underestimating ENMU.  Under Josh Lynn, the Greyhounds were consistently underrated in preseason polls, topping the prognosticators in three of the past four seasons, and that certainly includes us.  This year's fourth place selection is second highest they were picked during that time.  That being said, the Greyhounds under new leadership and will have to prove the critics wrong all over again.

Lee is the new head coach, but he's been the offensive coordinator for the past five seasons. So don't expect much change in what ENMU tries to do.  There have been a few in-program promotions in the LSC in the past few years.  It didn't work out at all for Texas A&M-Kingsville, Tarleton sunk into the bottom half of the LSC and West Texas A&M slid from a consistent playoff team to mediocrity.  That's not to say we expect the same result here, but having a familiar person take over doesn't not ensure success.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

LSC Football Roundup





********   AFCA Preseason Poll   ******** 
Top 5, Plus Super Region 4 Teams

1. Northwest Missouri (unanimous)
2. Grand Valley State
3. Ferris State
4. Emporia State
5. Texas A&M-Commerce
10. Minnesota-Duluth
12. Colorado State-Pueblo
13. Azusa Pacific
16. Colorado School of Mines
17. Sioux Falls
20. Minnesota State
23. Mesa State
24. Midwestern State
25. Bemidji State
RV. Texas A&M-Kingsville, Augustana, Central Washington

other LSC opponents
6. North Alabama (plays Texas A&M Commerce in season opener)
18. Southwest Baptist (Play ENMU in season opener)



Donnie Palmer, special to Times Record News

Midwestern State returns a stable of running backs that saw significant playing time last season led by scoring machine Vincent Johnson, who rushed for 745 yards and 19 touchdowns.

Johnson’s running mates Adrian Seales (80-399-3) and Nick Gabriel (28-163-2) are looking to pick up where they left off in the Mustangs' ground game.

“Johnson, Seales and Gabriel are the core guys of the running back group. It's going to be a three-headed monster. All three of those dudes can go," MSU running backs coach Don Nelson said. “They all bring a different dynamic to the team and I look forward to the season.

(click on the headline for the complete article)







By Kale Steed, Amarillo.com

When Hunter Hughes accepted the head coaching job at West Texas A&M, he thought of three names to build his coaching staff around.

Those names were J.T. Haddan, Miles Kochaver and Ryan McDonough. That trio are now all an integral part of the WT coaching staff.

Haddan is the assistant head coach and defensive line coach. McDonough is the offensive coordinator and Kochaver is the defensive coordinator.

“Just like a team needs a core group, a coaching staff needs a core group,” Hughes said. “I got some guys in here I trust and will give me an honest opinion about things. They’re going to keep me on path if I get away from the edge I need be on.” (click on headline for complete story)






by Brad Keith, The Flash Today



Saturday, August 12, 2017

Tarleton State 2017 Preview

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for all of the team previews


2016 Recap
The Texans were much better than 2015, though the 5-6 record does not fully reflect the improvement.  Five of the losses came to FCS or D2 post-season teams.  They lost just two D2 games by double digits, compared to five in 2015, and they improved their scoring margin by 12 points and yardage deficit by 28 yards per game.  

The defense showed the most improvement, allowing 25.5 points and 438.7 yards per game, compared to 49 and 559.6 in 2015.  Cody Burtscher (117 tackles, 6 for loss, 4.5 sacks and 3 interceptions) was the LSC linebacker of the year (and 1st team All-LSC), while E. J. Speed (2nd), Chase Varnado (HM), Basil Jackson (HM), Dominique Martin (HM), and Tristen Ridge (HM) were also recognized by the LSC.  Speed and Varnado each had 13 TFL and combined for 14 sacks, while Ridge picked off 3 passes and had 9 passes broken up.

Offensively, the Texans actually took a step back.  It wasn't the passing game, where the Texans threw for 262 yards per game, but the run game was almost non-existent, averaging just 96 yards per game and 3 yards per carry.  Zed Woerner completed 61.3% of his passes for 2,445 yards, 24 TDs and a 146.0 QB rating.  Joseph Sadler added 613 yards rushing and 210 receiving with a combined 8 TDs. Del'Michael High, Bubba Tandy and Jeff Thomas were a potent receiving trio, combining for 130 receptions for 1,990 yards and 20 TDs.  LSC honorees included High (1st), Tandy (2nd), and FB Brant Bailey (2nd).


2017 Outlook - Offense
The QB situation is in good hands with Zed Woerner back, as well as Derek Kiser and Alex Craig, both of whom have on-field experience.  Returning to the team is Matt Bishop, a 2012 signee out of Aledo.  Ben Holmes comes in from Nassau CC, where he threw for almost 3,000 yards and 29 TDs in 18 games.  Both Bishop and Holmes are listed as SQ.

Ditto wide receiver, where High and Thomas return and are joined by JUCO All-Americans Savon Rollison and De'Jai Whitaker.  Rollison had 77 catches for 1,396 yards and 16 TDs at Tyler JC, while Whitaker had 60 for 1,331 and 15 TDs at Cerritos JC in 2015.  

With Sadler finishing his eligibility last year brought in Adam Berryman (Trinity Valley CC) and Xavier Turner (Navarro JC).  They combined to rush for more than 1,500 yards last year.  Also listed on the roster as squadmen are D'Anthony Hopkins (Blinn JC) and Justice Anyanwu (El Camino CC).  Hopkins was highly recruited out of HS, and rushed for 1,114 yards and 18 TDs last year, while Anyanwu added 479 yards at El Camino.  At this time it is unsure if either will be active this season, or will redshirt.

Up front, returnees include Dylan Whitacre (started all 11 games)  Noah Perez (7 starts, before injured), Justin Reasons and Doudly Aujour.  Coach Whitten also added several transfers - Jovan Pruitt (TVCC),  Shawn Best (Arizona Western), Deon Sheppard (Navarro), Israel Lorenzo (East L.A.), Wesley Hooks (Ark Tech), and Chase Woods (Lamar U.).  Pruitt originally signed with Arkansas out of HS.  Pousima Galoia (Ventura JC) is anther addition, but he is listed as a squadman.


*** Record Watch ***  Woerner comes into 2017 with 6,269 yards and is 1,934 yards behind Steve Kelly for tops on the TSU list.  He already has the passing TD record with 59, so every additional one is gravy.


2017 Outlook - Defense
There are some holes to fill, with Burtscher, Ridge, and Martin using up their eligibility last year, but plenty of talent returns.  Up front, that includes Chase Varnado (62 tackles, 13 TFL, 8 sacks, 10 QBH), David Solomon (39 tackles), Tavaris Owens (44 tackles) and Chris Radford (15 tackles, 8 QBH as a true Fr.).  Newcomers include David Fangupo (Cerritos JC), Fredarian Tompkins (Kilgore JC), Tyrell Thompson (TVCC), Mohamed Inoussa (Glendale CC) while Collin Carrell and Kamron Yarbrough switch from the OL to the DL.  Thompson was the 247sports.com #12 DT in the nation and a 3 star prospect by Scout.

Linebacker will be a strength once again.  E. J. Speed, Basil Jackson, Ronnell Wilson, and Azizullah Fifita, combined for 246 tackles, 26 TFL, 11.5 sacks, 15 QBH, 3 interceptions, and 6 passes broken up.  They will be joined by Will Johnson (Arizona Western), Michael Knobloch (Cisco JC), and Marquis Lomax (Santa Monica CC), who redshirted last year, 

Devin Hafford (54 tackles as a true freshman), Elliott Hart (29 tackles), John Bellfield (25 tackles), Cord Norris (20 tackles as a true freshman), Chris Gordon (25 tackles), and Jordan Smith (13 tackles) bring back the most experience.  But as everywhere else on the team, there is an influx of transfers.  Daniel Ezeagwu (Iowa Western CC), Thomas Warren (Pima CC), Jackson Burrell (Colorado Mesa), and Johnnie Hankins (Independence CC).  Ezeagwu played at Maryland prior to Iowa Western CC, and Warren spent his freshman year at New Mexico.  Andre Plata played for the Texans in 2012 and 2013 as WR, but is moving to the secondary on his return to the team.  Listed on the roster as SQ are Aaron Brown (Navarro) and Mookie Carlile, a Stephenville native who played at UTEP.


2017 Outlook - Special Teams
Sergio Sroka returns as the kicker.  He went 11-16 on FGs, twice hitting 44 yard attempts.  He also averaged 59.5 yards on kickoffs, with 11 touchbacks.  Ron Reid will have to be replaced at punter, but freshman J. R. Fullen averaged 44 yards at Eastland HS.  Taylor Massey averaged 19.3 yards per kick return last year, but no other returnee had more than 2 returns and no one returns with any punt returns.



2017 Outlook - Non-Conference Schedule
In most years, Delta State would be considered a premier non-conference opponent.  The 2000 national champion and 2010 runner-up, struggled to a 4-6 record last year, losing their last three games.  The offense was good, averaging 36.9 points and 449.7 yards per game.  Touchdown machine Chris Robinson returns at running back, after picking up 976 yards and 19 TDs on the ground and 551 yards and 5 TDs receiving.  Collin Willis, who threw for 304 yards and 1 TD in 2 games, is the lone experienced QB.  The defense was pourous, allowing 39.3 points and 420.3 yards per game.  Linebackers Chandler Ector and Landry Tullo lead the returnees.

Week two sees Oklahoma Panhandle State come to Stephenville.  And why not?  Tarleton has defeated the Aggies three times in the past two seasons averaging almost 60 points per game in the process.  The scrappy Aggies did not enjoy many wins in the lone year in the LSC, but they did play hard.  They were outscored 22.8-42.2 and outgained 401.3-494.3. The passing game was the strength of the offense, averaging 292.6 yards per game, but Shane Truelove was a senior last year.  In fact, there will be a lot of new faces this year.  D.J. Scott looks to take over at QB, after seeing limited action in 2016 as a freshman and Cedric Agyeman is the only returning RB.  The current roster does not list any returning WR and no OL at all, so this is a fluid situation.  It's hard to picture OPSU being very competitive in this game.

The Texans were able to get a late season matchup with Western Oregon.  Here's the outlook for WOU from the previously posted WNMU preview.


--------------------------------------------------

Now we turn to Brad Keith.  In 2004, Brad received the Kirk Hill award, given by the LSC to the sportswriter of the year.  He has covered Tarleton athletics for as long as we can remember and knows the Texans as well as anyone.

Brad, it's and understatement to say there's been some changes at Tarleton this offseason.  What do you think will be the challenges for the Texans this fall.

Brad Keith - Challenges for the Texans: That’s easy - chemistry. I know that sounds cliche, but in his second year back in Stephenville, head coach Todd Whitten made the most of his first full year to recruit. His staff has overseen major overhauls at every position except quarterback and receiver.

There are all new running backs, a new offensive line except for Justin Reasons and Doudly Aujour, a new defensive line except for end Chase Varnado and new faces in the secondary everywhere except for one corner spot that appears anchored for this season and two more by Devin Hafford, who steadily improved while winning the starting job as a true freshman and was quite impressive down the stretch. 

That's a lot of new faces in new places, so the development of chemistry must happen within position groups as well as team-wide. It's something head coach Todd Whitten says he is paying particular attention to early on. 

Another challenge directly from Whitten to his offense is to be more physical. I classify this as a absolute must for the Texans to be successful. 

Whitten said it best himself: “Our run game at times last year was non-existent,” he said. Trouble running the ball becomes a compounded issue when defensive coordinators smell blood in the air and have their units pin back the ears nd go get the quarterback. Hence the 38 times Tarleton QB’s - mostly Woerner - were sacked in 2016. Whitten actually said Thursday it isn’t even fair to evaluate Woerner based on last season, and that he “deserves a medal” for what he endured. 

I would have listed physicality ahead of chemistry as the primary challenge if didn’t feel the issue was addressed so thoroughly through recruiting. There was obviously an emphasis on finding not just talented offensive linemen and skill guys, but very physical ones, like Jovan Pruitt, a guard who once signed with Arkansas, and Shawn Best, a 6-8, 340-pound giant of a tackle. 

Running backs Adam Berryman and Xavier Turner, both compact, powerful runners out of the Southwest Junior College Football Conference, have shown a physical style Whitten has been pleased with in spring ball and the fist week of preseason camp. The combination of physical linemen and backs have provided not only a spark on the offensive side, but a whole new identity.

What do see as the team's strengths?
Brad -Team Strengths: Perhaps the biggest are the receiving core and the front seven on defense. Concerning the receivers, Whitten if they aren’t the best in the conference they have to be right there close. He later said the team very possibly has the most talent Talreton has ever had along the defensive line. 

It’s easy to see why he feels so strongly about both. Del’Michael High is the leading returning receiver in the LSC, and Jeff Thomas was also putting up good numbers before suffering a season-ending knee injury that cost him the last four-and-a-half games of the season. He’s back, and the combination of the two can really stretch a defense, especially now that fast, dangerous Savon Rollison, another JUCO pickup, is in the slot. The list can just keep going here, including guys like tight end Brant Bailey, Baxter Kirven and Taylor Massey, just to name a few. 

On first impression, I have to agree with Whitten concerning the defensive line. The collective talent of the group is something that you just won’t ordinarily find at the Division II level. In fact, I would venture to assume the majority of FCS teams would feel blessed to have the four starters Tarleton will put out there on September 2 at Delta State. 

Trinity Valley transfer Tyrell Thompson, 6-4, 300, is one of the newcomers Whitten seemed most excited about a long preseason interview Thursday. More than one FBS suitor tried to land him amidst eligibility issues, as he has true NFL potential. In high school ran a 4.69 in the 40, reported on his Tarleton online bio to be a Copperas Cove record for linemen. He is praised as the No. 12 JUCO DT in the nation by http://247Sports.com

It isn't a reach to say 6-2, 380-pound Cerritos College (Calif.) transfer David Fangupo, who is popular on YouTube thanks to a video of him playing, yes, running back, in high school back home in Hawaii, doesn’t also have a pro future ahead. He's shown breaking off numerous long scoring runs before ultimately moving to DT in college. Quantavius Cheatham redshirted last year after transferring from MIAA member Fort Valley State. Cheatham, at, 6-3, 305 certainly passes the eye test and Whitten seems impressed. 

There's a good senior leader in defensive end Chase Varnado, who everyone by now knows is just a very solid football player and has been since before helping Stephenville High School to a state title in 2012. 

Two other interesting names at end are David Solomon, who played tackle last year, and Mohamad Inoussa from Stockholm Sweden, who at 6-5, 270 has positive upside.

There are so many newcomers to choose from.  Can you pick out some who will have an immediate impact?
Brad - Most impactful transfers When a roster is retooled the way Tarleton's has been this could get to be a long list. I'll stick to the primary ones in running backs Adam Berryman and Xavier Turner running behind another JUCO transfer in 6-8, 340 pound Shawn Best and…When I asked Whitten, what is the most noticeable difference Average Joe sees from the bleachers his first time to see the Texans on Sept. 9 (first home game) against Oklahoma Panhandle State, he said run game, and then further elaborated that as overall physicality on the offensive side of the ball. Those four guys are the biggest reasons for that. Rollison in the slot, too, with his production stemming off that of the run game and the success of High and Thomas outside. 

Tyrell Thompson and Quantavius Cheathum bring a lot to the the table defensively, and linebacker Will Johnson is part of a very deep group at that position after earning three stars from http://247sports.com coming out of JUCO and before that signing with Nebraska out of high school. 

Keep an eye also on athletic safety Johnnie Hankins from Miami via JUCO, and 6-3 corner Jackson Burrell, who graduated from Mesa and came to Tarleton to spend his last semester of eligibility with Texan defensive coordinator Marcus Patton, who was previously in the same role at Mesa. 

Okay, what does all of this mean for Tarleton?  What is your prediction for the season? (Drumroll.....)
Brad - Prediction: I’ll be honest. All summer, I was told about this and that and how Tarleton will be so good, and I cautiously reminded prople Texas A&M-Commerce, Texas A&M-Kingsville, Midwestern State and others all felt the same about their teams, and Commerce has won three straight LSC titles for crying out loud. Then I got to looking around at the players and sniffing around the internet some, as well as talking to some guys who I assure you know their stuff in Division II football. Coach Whitten has done an impressive job, and his staff, too, in recruiting some great talent to Stephenville. Will they gel? We’ll see. 

They could be the real, real deal, and go 10-1 (I just hate even saying the word undefeated until a season is over). 

If they don’t gel, if it’s just individual talent scattered around worried about themselves, somebody still has to stop a full arsenal of weaponry, so 7-4. I just can’t see this group with Whitten in charge doing worse.
Thanks Brad.  It should be a great season.  

----------------------------------------------------------------------

That's a great segue for our predictions...

Best Case Scenario
10-1  If the offensive line gels and the running game improves, the offense should be potent.  The non-conference games are winnable, and Texans should do better in LSC play.  Remember, they led MSU until the last minute, TAMK 17-0 at the half and didn't give up the lead until 2:36 to go, and pulled to within 6 of WT with five minutes to play on the road.


Worst Case Scenario
5-6  What if the offensive line does not gel? or the defense regresses some? or both?  The top two thirds of the LSC is improved and will prove to be tough slog for all of the teams, and you never know when Delta State is going to pop back up with a top 10 team.


Prediction
8-3   It's been a while since we've seen so many transfers.  A few years ago it was the norm, but now it is pretty rare.  All said, we wouldn't be surprised if 12-15 new transfers aren't starters this fall. 

The last two LSC teams to show the same statistical turnaround in the first year with a new head coach were Texas A&M-Commerce in 2013 and Texas A&M-Kingsville in 2015.  In both cases, the improvement carried over to the following year and resulted in bowl game appearances.  With the influx of so many immediate impact-type players, there's no reason to believe the Texans won't show a similar track.  However, the top LSC teams didn't sit idly by - they'll be better also, so it's unlikely TSU will get the benefit of all the breaks - most of the breaks maybe, but not all and it might take time for the team to gel.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Angelo State 2017 Preview

Just a friendly reminder that you can easily make a donation by clicking on the Paypal link to the right, or you can email us at lscscoop@yahoo.com to find out more information. 


for all of the team previews


2016 Recap
The Rams won their last two games to finish the season 5-6.  The best win of the season was a 22-21 win at Texas A&M-Kingsville, while the worst loss would be either the 62-14 setback to Texas A&M-Commerce or the 14-20 loss to WNMU the following week.

The defense played well, giving up 27.4 points per game and 341.5 yards.  The numbers were a little better in the LSC games, 25.2 points and 330.9 yards.  Teams rushed for just 120.5 yards per game and 220.9 passing, with an LSC best 117.2 pass efficiency.  Individually, Markus Jones and Justin Jackson were named first team All-LSC, Bright Ihegworo, Willie Brown, Fred Lawrence and Richard Franklin were second team.  Only Brown and Franklin were seniors.

The offense did not play well, averaging 25.9 points and an LSC worst 340.6 yards per game.  That represents a drop-off of 16.7 points and 219.7 yards weekly.  QB was the primary culprit, with Jake Faber and Carsen Cook splitting the majority of snaps and neither proving to be very productive.  Combined the Rams completed 49% of the passes with a 14-19 TD to INT ratio and an LSC worst 98.8 QB rating.  The run game was better, averaging 180.3 yards per game, but just 3.8 per carry.  Josh Stevens was a second team All-LSC pick with 1,030 yards and 6 TDs.  Donovan Thompson led the receivers with 50 receptions, but for just 8.9 yards per catch and 1 TD.  Mark Munson and Lawson Ayo combined for another 48 catches for 733 yards and 9 TDs.  Up front Tyler Hamilton, Rance Layton and Reggie Harris were honorable mention All-LSC.


2017 Outlook - Offense
You should expect improvement when your top two QBs, top RB and two of your top three receivers return.  However, Hamilton, Layton and Harris were senior last year, leaving Andre Gillette and Blake Harrison as the lone returning starters on the line.  Look for Emmanuel Henry, a first NJCAA team All-American to see plenty of playing time.  The Rams also added a couple of transfers at  wide receiver - Davin Reynolds from Southwestern College and Ben Thiel (a track star at Oregon).  But the key will be the quarterback.  Will it be one of the returning starters - Jake Faber or Carsen Cook?  Will Northern Illinois transfer Charlie Rotherham get a shot?  Or could one of the three freshmen signees figure in the equation? 

***Record Watch ***With 48 receptions and 1,041 receiving yards, Donovan Thompson would become ASU's all-time leader in both categories, but the QB play will have to improve for that to happen.


2017 Outlook - Defense
The strength of the Rams defense should up front.  Markus Jones was one of our 5 players to watch this fall.  The junior had 54 tackles, with 16 for losses and 7.5 sacks.  Joining him, Bright Ihegworo, Grant Coonce, Michael Walling and Matthew Andre combine for 115 tackles, 14 for loss and 6 sacks.  At linebacker, Justin Jackson (98 tackles, 12.5 TFL) and Grant Aschenbeck (64 tackles, 6.5 for loss) should have big years.  Fred Lawrence headlines the secondary.  He had an LSC leading 13 passes broken up last year.  Myron Turner, Gilbert Gildersleeve and Josh Lewis will have expanded roles as well.


2017 Outlook - Special Teams
Casey Eyman handled both punting (40.0 avg) and kicking duties (6-9  FG), while Connor Flanigan was the kickoff man (59 yd avg, 8 touchbacks).  Donovan Thompson had 11 punt returns averaging a paltry 2.5 yds per return.  Fred Lawrence is the leading kick returner - he averaged 18.6 yards on 8 returns.



2017 Outlook - Non-Conference Schedule
The season opener is a rematch with McKendree.  The Bearcats won their final games last year to finish 8-3, their second straight 8 win season.  The offense was not explosive, averaging just 28.6 yards and 357 yards per game.  Reece Metcalf is the most experienced QB returning.  He saw action in 4 games, throwing for 630 yards and 4 TDs.  The top two running backs are back - Shayeen Edwards and Preston Thompson combined for 1,168 yards and 9 TDs.  The defense was good, only giving up 18.4 points and 315.7 yards per game.  Darrion Simmons and Tobias Cook are back up front.  The duo combined for 19.5 sacks and 29 TFL.  Linebackers Kyle Kirkpatrick and Austin Weltha had 125 tackles together.

Northern Michigan had very much the opposite season, going 3-8 and losing their final six games.  The Rams squeaked by last year, 47-41 in triple overtime.  There is no returnee at QB, but thousand yard rusher Jake Mayon and Aaron Harris are back at running back as is almost all of the receiving corps.  The defense was porous, allowing more than 40 points and 500 yards per game.

Best Case Scenario
7-3 could be within reach if the QB situation improves a great deal, and the Rams win the close games.   The defense will need to continue to be in the upper echelon of the LSC.

Worst Case Scenario
2-8 is also a possibility if the defense slips a bit and the offense does not get more productive.  The Rams should beat Northern Michgan and UTPB, but could conceivably lose the remainder of their games.

Prediction
4-6, the Rams should be about the same team as last year.  With the uncertainty at quarterback, we just can't envision the Rams competing for the top of the LSC.  If they surprise there, they could be a dangerous team.

Lone Star Conference

Angelo State News

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Eastern New Mexico University

MSUMustangs.com

Texas A&M-Commerce

Tarleton State University

Texas A&M-Kingsville

Texas Woman's College

University of Texas of the Permian Basin

West Texas A&M University

Western New Mexico

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