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Questions abound after horrific loss

Watching BG’s 38-3 loss to Kent State on Saturday, I was reminded of painful trips to the dentist when I was young, where shots were administered and teeth were being pulled right before my eyes.

Then I remembered that those dentist visits weren’t even close to the same thing, because at the end of the day, those never resulted in losing by 35 points at home to

Kent State.

Apparently, coach Gregg Brandon was one of very few in attendance who could foresee the Falcon massacre.

“I’m not going to lie or try to paint a rosy picture,” Brandon said. “I saw this coming – I saw this coming two weeks ago. We barely beat Buffalo [48-40 in 3-OTs], and beat an FIU team that was OK.

“Our youth has been exposed – that’s what we’re talking about here.”

Youth exposed? The freshmen now have four games under their belt, and in none of the previous three did BG look as inept as it did against Mid-American Conference doormat Kent State on Saturday.

The game will undoubtedly go down as one of the worst defeats in BG football history. Never, in the 40-year history of Doyt Perry Stadium, have the Falcons lost by this great of a margin at home. Lest we forget, the loss came at the hands of Kent State, a team who hadn’t earned a win in Bowling Green since the Nixon administration.

So now as most losses do, it all boils down to two simple questions: What went wrong? And who’s to blame? Although assigning blame is a tricky task, seeing what went wrong in this game is as easy as dunking over a six-year-old on a Fisher-Price basketball hoop.

On offense, starter Anthony Turner was out with an injury, and talented back-up Freddie Barnes struggled with his accuracy. Meanwhile, a lack of creativity in play-calling has bottled up a potentially

lethal offense.

Defensively, Saturday’s game was one giant step backward. The Falcons defense yielded 357 yards to Kent State on only 60 plays, which works out to a gain of nearly six yards per snap.

Ironically special teams was BG’s best phase of the game, going virtually error free and not missing a PAT for the first time this year.

Then again, it’s hard to miss one of those when your team never scores a touchdown.

“That certainly is not Bowling Green football you saw there today, it was embarrassing,” Brandon said.

The 12,967 in attendance Saturday expecting to see “Bowling Green football” saw something entirely different – a team with no true leaders, no sense of urgency and whose effort is being brought into question by Brandon.

Sure, youth is easy to fall back on when things go wrong, but where’s the accountability from the coaches? There is no doubt the team looked vastly unprepared on the field and showed no ability to adjust on either side of the ball. Play calling remained as unimaginative as ever and Kent State was two or three steps ahead of BG for the full four quarters.

Still, Brandon continues to point toward the inexperience and youth of the team.

“We’re kind of a deer in the headlight team right now with a lot of young guys that don’t know how to win right now,” Brandon said.

If this team is a deer in the headlights, let’s just hope that the 2006 season doesn’t end up being a speeding 18-wheeler.

Send comments to John at [email protected].

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