Gridders hope to avoid letdown

After an impressive showing last week at Western Michigan, and a week from the showdown against Northern Illinois, the football team will look to avoid a letdown at Eastern Michigan tomorrow. Eastern Michigan sits in last place of the Mid-American Conference West division with an 0-3 MAC record, and a 1-6 overall record.

In their last game, Eastern Michigan was beaten by Toledo, 49-14. Falcon coach Gregg Brandon said that his team cannot overlook the Eagles, despite their difficult season.

“Eastern has struggled, obviously,” Brandon said. “… The Rockets blew them out last week, but I’ll tell you what … their defensive kids are still playing hard,” Brandon said.

The Falcons have been on the fringe of the top 25 for several weeks, but Falcon linebacker Mitch Hewitt said that the frustration of not being ranked will not affect the team’s play. He said the team learned a lesson about its importance last season.

“I’d be lying if I said no one here ever thought about it,” Hewitt said. “I think last year we were more concerned with the top 25 than winning the MAC title. If we handle every game week by week, everything will take care of itself.”

Brandon said that in order for BG to have a good game, the team will need to continue its success offensively.

We’ve got to take care of the ball like we talk about every week, and exploit our opportunities,” Brandon said. “[Eastern Michigan] can create problems, they run a different [defensive] scheme than we’ve seen.”

On defense, the Falcons will attempt to contain Eastern Michigan’s running game.

In last week’s loss to Toledo, Eagle running back Anthony Sherrill gained 123 yards on 26 carries, and scored a touchdown.

Brandon said that Eastern Michigan quarterback Chinedu Okuru is a threat, despite his recent struggles.

Okuru threw two interceptions in last week’s loss, throwing for 113 yards.

“[Okuru] is a good player, he’s just struggling throwing the ball right now,” Brandon said. “Our defense has to contain them.”

Brandon said that with the game being played in Eastern Michigan, the Eagles should come out motivated. In their last home game, two weeks ago against Western Michigan, the Eagles held a 3-0 advantage at halftime before the Broncos took control.

“Going up there at the start of the game, they’ll be fired up,” Brandon said. “We have to be ready to play, which I think we will be.”