MIAA Week Eight Column

October 20th, 2022 9:05pm

MIAA Week Eight Column

The two big games in Kearney and Maryville shook up the MIAA this week. 

The playoff chase is heating up. Let’s take a look at the teams with two or fewer losses in Super Region Three.

GAC (4): Ouachita Baptist (7-0), Harding (5-2), Henderson State (5-2) and East Central (5-2).

GLIAC (4): Grand Valley (7-0), Davenport (6-0), Ferris State (5-1) and Saginaw Valley (5-2).

GLVC (3): Indianapolis (5-1), Truman State (5-1) and Quincy (4-2).

MIAA (5): Pittsburg State (7-0), Central Oklahoma (5-2), Emporia State (5-2), Nebraska-Kearney (5-2) and Northwest Missouri (5-2).

That is 16 teams battling for seven spots. There are a couple games that could knock teams from playoff contention this week:

Quincy (4-2) at Indianapolis (5-1)

Central Oklahoma (5-2) at Washburn (4-3)


Let the madness begin.


Week Seven Game Recaps

Emporia State 44 Nebraska-Kearney 21

I have talked about Braden Gleason a lot in this column, but let’s give a shout out to the Hornet’s offensive line and running backs Billy Ross Jr and Canaan Brooks here. Emporia State ran for 277 yards on 7.5 yards per carry in the road upset at Nebraska-Kearney. As good as the Hornets offense played, the defense played great as well. Not many teams can hold TJ Davis to 53 yards rushing on under four yards per carry. The Lopers went up 7-0 and it was Emporia State the rest of the way, going on a 44-7 run including a 27-0 run spanning 19 minutes of game action in the late second quarter into the early fourth quarter. 


Northwest Missouri 32 Washburn 30

A tremendous football game in Maryville. Northwest Missouri took a 23-10 lead into halftime. After a scoreless third quarter, things got nutty in the 4th quarter. Four touchdowns, 29 total points, four lead changes, 292 yards of offense and a game winning field goal in the final seconds of the fourth quarter. Kellen Simoncic is a tough kid for Washburn. Simoncic threw for 314 yards and three touchdowns despite being sacked seven times by the Bearcats defense. James Letcher Jr and Peter Afful are nearly unguardable on the outside. For Northwest Missouri, the running game was nonexistent (73 yards on 2.1 yards per carry) so they had to lean on the arm of Mike Hohensee. Hohensee did not start in the last two games due to an injury but he played a fantastic game against Washburn. 24 of 31 for 366 yards and four touchdowns. Some of the throws Hohensee made in the fourth quarter were big boy throws. Kashan Griffin and Jamar Moya were on the receiving end of those throws and were a big reason the Bearcats offense came back to life.


Central Oklahoma 35 Fort Hays 23

Fort Hays controlled the first quarter and led 10-0 early on. Central Oklahoma scored the next 22 points including an 80 yard touchdown pass from Stephon Brown to Oscar Hammond off play action. Fort Hays was able to make it a one score game going into the fourth quarter but a couple more Stephon Brown passing touchdowns secured the win for the Bronchos. 


Central Missouri 20 Missouri Southern 17

Talk about a must needed win for Central Missouri. The Mules have played a brutal schedule so far and Central Missouri controlled this game despite it being a three point win. The Mules ran 20 more plays, had 111 more yards, 11 more first downs and won the turnover battle. A nice win for Central Missouri, we’ll see if they can build on it next week.


Missouri Western 23 Northeastern State 16

Weird? Puzzling? Baffling? I was trying to find the right word to describe this game in Tahlequah, Oklahoma and I came up short. Just like Northeastern State did in this one. Missouri Western scored the last 17 points of the game (that spanned over a long weather delay) to squeak out a win on the road. This Missouri Western team is too talented to be in a dog fight with a team like Northeastern State. 


Pittsburg State 49 Lincoln 10

Did you expect anything else from this game?


MIAA Week Eight Power Rankings

  1. Pittsburg State –

  2. Emporia State +2

  3. Northwest Missouri --

  4. Nebraska-Kearney -2

  5. Central Oklahoma +1

  6. Washburn -1

  7. Central Missouri +3

  8. Missouri Southern --

  9. Missouri Western -2

  10. Fort Hays -1

  11. Northeastern State --

  12. Lincoln --


MIAA Picks

Last Week: 4-2 (66.7%)

Season: 32-11 (74.4%)


Week Eight Game Previews

Two big games on the docket this week. A third loss will eliminate a team from playoff contention. Let’s dive in.


Game of the Week: Central Oklahoma (5-2) at Washburn (4-3)
Saturday, 1pm
All-time series: Central Oklahoma leads 6-4.
Last Year: Washburn won 29-17.


Central Oklahoma


Points Scored

28.6 (5th)

35.1 (1st)

Points Allowed

19.1 (3rd)

25.0 (8th)

Total Offense

372.0 (8th)

439.4 (2nd)

Total Defense

339.0 (4th)

401.3 (10th)

Pass Yards

212.9 (7th)

309.7 (1st)

Pass Yards Allowed

209.3 (6th)

255.4 (11th)

Rush Yards

159.1 (3rd)

129.7 (8th)

Rush Yards Allowed

129.7 (3rd)

145.9 (6th)

Washburn can score points and in a hurry. As I said early, Letcher and Afful are dudes at receiver for the Ichabods and Simoncic is having himself a nice season. The big concern with Washburn is the defense, the only team worse at stopping the pass in Lincoln. Stephon Brown has steadily improved for Central Oklahoma this season and the Brochos are a sneaky 5-2 heading down the stretch. Defense travels and I like the way Central Oklahoma is playing on that side of the ball. Give me the Bronchos in another nailbiter. 

Central Oklahoma 28 Washburn 27


Emporia State (5-2) at Missouri Southern (4-3)
Saturday, 2pm
All-time series: Emporia State leads 24-22.
Last Year: Emporia State won 24-21.


Emporia State

Missouri Southern

Points Scored

33.4 (2nd)

23.6 (8th)

Points Allowed

21.0 (5th)

22.0 (6th)

Total Offense

463.9 (1st)

324.7 (10th)

Total Defense

339.4 (5th)

358.7 (6th)

Pass Yards

307.1 (2nd)

166.9 (10th)

Pass Yards Allowed

198.0 (3rd)

199.9 (5th)

Rush Yards

156.7 (5th)

157.9 (4th)

Rush Yards Allowed

141.4 (5th)

158.9 (8th)

Who would have thought that Emporia State vs Missouri Southern would be one of the marquee games in week eight of the season? Missouri Southern is a team that will hang around and can pull off an upset if the Hornets are not careful. But Emporia State is playing great ball right now. I expect that to continue down the stretch. The Hornets should be favored over the next three weeks before they host Northwest Missouri in the season finale. A game that could have a playoff spot on the line.

Emporia State 42 Missouri Southern 21


Missouri Western (3-4) at #5 Pittsburg State (7-0)
Saturday, 2pm
All-time series: Pittsburg State leads 35-12.
Last Year: Pittsburg State won 34-14.


Missouri Western

Pittsburg State

Points Scored

22.4 (9th)

32.9 (3rd)

Points Allowed

23.4 (7th)

15.1 (1st)

Total Offense

397.9 (4th)

410.0 (3rd)

Total Defense

336.1 (3rd)

281.7 (2nd)

Pass Yards

197.4 (8th)

267.1 (3rd)

Pass Yards Allowed

180.7 (2nd)

180.1 (1st)

Rush Yards

200.4 (2nd)

142.9 (7th)

Rush Yards Allowed

155.4 (7th)

101.6 (2nd)

Pittsburg State is on a roll and Missouri Western cannot get out of their own way. I am still trying to figure out how a team that is third in total offense and total defense is ninth in points scored and seventh in points allowed. Pittsburg State is campaigning to get another sellout crowd in your homecoming. The Gorillas are the class of the MIAA right now and that continues this week.

Pittsburg State 35 Missouri Western 16


Central Missouri (2-5) at Fort Hays (1-6)
Saturday, 1pm
All-time series: Central Missouri leads 10-5.
Last Year: Fort Hays won 21-17.


Central Missouri

Fort Hays

Points Scored

19.6 (10th)

24.3 (7th)

Points Allowed

28.1 (9th)

32.1 (10th)

Total Offense

341.1 (9th)

372.4 (7th)

Total Defense

408.4 (11th)

396.1 (9th)

Pass Yards

226.1 (6th)

257.7 (4th)

Pass Yards Allowed

233.1 (9th)

222.3 (7th)

Rush Yards

115.0 (9th)

114.7 (10th)

Rush Yards Allowed

175.3 (10th)

173.9 (9th)

Two or three years ago this was a huge game for the MIAA championship race, now it is an afterthought. Both teams cannot run the ball or stop the run. Both teams can pass the ball at a decent clip and struggle to stop the pass. These teams are near mirror images of each other in general. Fort Hays started strong last week and then faded. Central Missouri got a big win and I think the Mules keep that train going.  

Central Missouri 30 Fort Hays 28


Northeastern State (1-6) at #16 Northwest Missouri (5-2)
Saturday, 2pm
All-time series: Northwest Missouri leads 11-0.
Last Year: Northwest Missouri won 59-7.


Northeastern State

Northwest Missouri

Points Scored

16.7 (11th)

28.4 (6th)

Points Allowed

34.9 (11th)

18.0 (2nd)

Total Offense

263.1 (11th)

392.4 (5th)

Total Defense

395.6 (8th)

278.9 (1st)

Pass Yards

150.0 (11th)

239.4 (5th)

Pass Yards Allowed

199.3 (4th)

239.7 (10th)

Rush Yards

113.1 (11th)

153.0 (6th)

Rush Yards Allowed

196.3 (11th)

39.1 (1st)

This needs to be a get-right game for Northwest Missouri. Northwestern State giving Missouri Western a scare last week might be beneficial for the Bearcats this week. With Mike Hohensee back under center, the Bearcats could start to find a rhythm on offense going to an important three game stretch to keep their 17 year playoff streak alive.

Northwest Missouri 45 Northeastern State 6


#22 Nebraska-Kearney (5-2) at Lincoln (0-7)
Saturday, 2pm
All-time series: Nebraska-Kearney leads 3-1.
Last Year: Nebraska-Kearney won 56-0.




Points Scored

29.9 (4th)

10.6 (12th)

Points Allowed

20.4 (4th)

46.1 (12th)

Total Offense

374.7 (6th)

253.4 (12th)

Total Defense

369.1 (7th)

500.7 (12th)

Pass Yards

117.9 (12th)

182.9 (9th)

Pass Yards Allowed

228.0 (8th)

289.3 (12th)

Rush Yards

256.9 (1st)

70.6 (12th)

Rush Yards Allowed

141.1 (4th)

211.4 (12th)

Nebraska-Kearney might run for 500 yards on Saturday. The Lopers are coming off their second home loss of the year and Lincoln cannot stop a nosebleed. This is a recipe for the Lopers to run wild in Jefferson City.

Nebraska-Kearney 60 Lincoln 10