On the rebound

The past few weeks have not been kind to the BGSU football team. Back to back losses to Temple and Central Michigan and four losses in six games have put the Falcons at 4-5 on the season.

Whether it is bad passes, turnovers, dropped balls, missed tackles, missed assignments or just plain bad football, BG has seen it all this season.

“Every time that happens to one of these kids, their confidence gets tested. A lot of these young kids are making some nice plays, but they are also making some boneheaded plays every now and then,” said coach Gregg Brandon. “We just have to develop some consistency.”

This week may have been the hardest for the Falcons; they broke the nation’s longest losing streak. Temple had redemption on its mind on Saturday and broke their 20-game losing streak against a BG team that put up 70 points on the Owls the past two meetings.

The 28-14 loss may have been the most disappointing loss in Brandon’s tenure. His spirit was not broken, though, as the coach enjoyed some Halloween fun at his Tuesday media luncheon. He put on a monster mask before walking into the televised portion of the luncheon and joked about how scary the loss was for BG.

“I’m a little testy, but losing will do that to you. But other than that, we are going to stay the course,” Brandon said. “We are going to try and win the rest of our games.”

This week BG will travel East to face an Akron team that was a preseason favorite to return to the MAC Championship game. The Zips played well against Penn State and beat North Carolina State to start their season but have had a tough time in the Mid-American Conference going 1-3. They are coming off a loss to Toledo and their only conference win came against a sub-par Miami team.

The Zips are a veteran team though. Led by senior quarterback Luke Getsy, Akron has a solid passing game. Getsy has thrown for 1783 yards and 11 TDs this season. He has been sacked 24 times though which could intrigue the BG defensive line, especially if defensive tackle Brad Williams returns.

“[The Akron game] will be a challenge for us; going against experienced people is always a challenge because they know their jobs and what to do,” said linebacker Terrell White. “They are fundamentally sound. As a defense we just have to come and play hard, get as much pressure on the quarterback as we can.”

Another weapon for the Zips is David Harvey. He has accumulated 644 yards and 6 receiving TDs. Something that worries the Falcons is Harvey’s ability to return kicks. He has 322 yards on just eight returns this season. He has yet to find the end zone but with the way the Falcons season has gone, he may have a chance to reach paydirt tomorrow if BG is not careful.

BG may have to enter the Rubber Bowl tomorrow without ponyback Freddie Barnes. Barnes’ ankle has bothered him the past few weeks and that did not allow him to come in on goal line plays to do his routine draw play that has scored nine touchdowns for BG this year.

“Freddie’s ankle is still an issue. We need to get him healthy. That hurt us big-time at Temple; when your leading scorer is out, it is going to hurt,” Brandon said. “And, we were struggling to score anyway, so it makes it all the more difficult.”

A win Saturday could keep BG in a title hunt. Last year’s finish was very different than it appeared in October with the Falcons coming up on the wrong end.

The game begins at 1 p.m.