October 14th, 2019 3:41pm
Week Six Review
#6 Northwest Missouri State 38 #17 Pittsburg State 17
We got the good Braden Wright Saturday and it showed. The Bearcats looked like a complete team, especially in the first half. Pittsburg State jumped out to a 7-0 lead after a 78 yard touchdown pass from Brandon Mlekus to Lorenzo West on a play action pass. That was the only points the Gorillas would score out of the veer offense. The Bearcats then reeled off 28 unanswered points, including three touchdowns by the former Blue Springs tight end Marqus Andrews. Andrews was named the MIAA Offensive Player of the Week.
I know I have harped on this all year long, but why does the Pittsburg State insist on running the veer half the game? Especially when the Gorillas play a good run defense like Northwest Missouri State. Pittsburg State was held to 87 yards rushing on the day on 35 attempts (only 2.5 yards per carry). The Bearcats are notorious for shutting down triple option offenses and that is what happened at Arrowhead infront of 14,286 people. The Gorillas coaching staff did not adjust and the Bearcats pounced. It was obvious that the weakness of the Bearcat defense was in the secondary. Mak Sexton could not get a rhythm because of the quarterback carousel. I thought Pittsburg State was just as talented as Northwest Missouri State, but their players were not put in position to win consistently.
Good win for the Bearcats, probably the second best performance of the year behind the blowout of Central Oklahoma. Big props to the Bearcat defense for shutting down the veer and playing fundamentally sound defense.
#15 Central Missouri 44 Central Oklahoma 26
Central Oklahoma jumped out to a 13-0 lead at the end of the first quarter. From that point on, it was all Central Missouri, The Mules outscored Central Oklahoma 44-13 the rest of the way. This is the second week in a row Central Missouri has stumbled out of the gates and then boat raced the opposition. Brook Bolles was his normal self, throwing for over 300 yards and three scores. I feel like Devante Turner was snubbed for MIAA Offensive Player of the Week after rushing for 190 yards and two scores. I really enjoy watching this Central Missouri team put up 40+ points every week.
For Central Oklahoma, after a 2-1 start the Bronchos have been blown out three straight weeks. It feels like every year we buy into Central Oklahoma (I fell victim this year) and every year they falter against the big dogs in the MIAA.
Washburn 70 Northeastern State 13
Mitch Schurig made his return for the Ichabods and looked sharp. Schurig’s stat line: 21 of 24 for 251 yards and two touchdowns. An efficient return against a bad team. Washburn did what you are supposed to do when you play Northeastern State. Impressive stat of the game? Seven different Washburn players had a rushing touchdown. Only Taylon Peters scored multiple touchdowns on the ground, 5 carries for 82 yards and two scores.
Nebraska-Kearney 44 Lincoln 0
I predicted the Lopers would run for 450 yards, they only ran for 393 yards. The Lopers defense came to play though, allowing only 147 yards of total offense at 2.4 yards per carry. Nebraska-Kearney held the MIAA leading rusher Franklin Hosea to 49 yards on 15 carries (3.3 yards per carry). We will see if that defensive performance will continue next week when the undefeated Bearcats come to town.
Missouri Western 43 Missouri Southern 34
Like in every Missouri Southern game, this was an offensive shootout. Also, like in every Missouri Southern game, they lost the turnover battle 3-0. The Lions have turned the ball over 24 times this year and are -17 in turnover differential on the season, both of those are dead last in Division II football. The Lions are an improved football team but have to stop turning the ball over.
For the Griffons, you have to love the balanced attack on offense. Steigerwald threw for 229 yards and three touchdowns while the team ran for 228 yards and two scores. The rest of Missouri Western’s schedule is definitely workable, only two games left against teams with a winning record with games at Pittsburg State and vs Nebraska-Kearney.
Fort Hays State 19 Emporia State 3
The final game of the week was a defensive battle. The Fort Hays defense stifled the Hornets in the first half, this is the Emporia State drive chart: punt, punt, punt, punt, punt, punt and halftime. This included five straight three and outs. Emporia State was able to move the ball in the third quarter, driving deep into Tiger territory three times, but only came away with 3 points. All around great performance by Fort Hays who is starting to figure things out.
The Tigers have to stop settling for field goals though. Three of Dante Brown’s four field goals came when the Tigers drive stalled out in the red zone. While Brown is a terrific college kicker and was named the MIAA Special Teams Player of the Week, Fort Hays needs to get touchdowns not field goals to beat the top teams in the MIAA. This should have been a dominant 31-3 win instead of 19-3 win. I think Fort Hays State will give Pittsburg State and Northwest Missouri State problems over the next month. The Tigers can play spoiler here and push for a bowl bid or even a playoff bid if things get weird.
1. Central Missouri (6-0)
2. Northwest Missouri (6-0)
3. Pittsburg State (5-1)
4. Missouri Western (4-2)
5. Fort Hays (4-2)
6. Nebraska-Kearney (4-2)
7. Emporia State (2-4)
8. Central Oklahoma (2-4)
9. Missouri Southern (1-5)
10. Washburn (2-4)
11. Lincoln (0-6)
12. Northeastern State (0-6)
I will breakdown the regional outlook in the week seven preview.