Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

Content Any Way U Want It!

BG Falcon Media

Join our team
Join the Falcon Media team for Spring semester - paid staff positions, internships, volunteer opportunities. Applications open now until October 13. Get the details!
The BG News
BG24 Newscast
September 21, 2023

Follow us on social
  • My Fiction Icks
    By Jay Grummel When you read as much as I do you start to notice common things in fiction that make you annoyed, upset  or even want to put down the book completely. I have a bad habit of not giving books much of a chance when they use some of these personal ‘icks’. However, […]
  • Poetry for Fall
    By Jay Grummel Poetry has a way of connecting us to the external and internal world. In poetry it is easier to feel a season and truly feel a piece due to this. Poetry has a subtle way of making the readers immersed into the world of the poem. With the air getting colder and […]

MAC Championship game first for BG in 10 years

When the Falcons step onto Ford Field in Detroit on Friday night to compete in the MAC Championship game, it will be the team’s first shot at the conference title in 10 years.

The last time the Falcons competed in a Mid-American Conference Championship was in 2003, when head coach Gregg Brandon’s team faced the Miami University squad led by quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, now a two-time Super Bowl Champion and the quarterback for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

BG lost that game 49-27, its second loss that season to the RedHawks. The only other loss in the regular season was to the Ohio State Buckeyes.

Now, after years of rebuilding, and switching from MAC West to MAC East, they’re making another trip to the conference championship to face Northern Illinois, this time with their sights set on taking the title.

“When the season started, our football team expected to be here,” said head coach Dave Clawson at a press conference Wednesday.

Clawson’s first year with BG was 2009, when the team went 7-6 but lost to the University of Idaho 42-43 in the Humanitarian Bowl in Boise, Idaho. The following season, the Falcons went 2-10.

“When we were 2-10, we had a vision of what we wanted it to look like,” Clawson said at the press conference. “Our goal is to become MAC champions.”

Clawson credited the success of the team with a strong senior class.

“Our senior class has certainly given a great example to our younger players,” Clawson said. “They’re the reason we’re in this position.”

Fifth-year senior Ted Ouellet, defensive tackle, was redshirted in the 2009 season. He said he’s proud to be part of the transformation the team has made since then.

“We built up to this game for five years now,” said Ouellet. “It’s been a really big turnaround.”

Jim Elsasser, associate athletic director for internal affairs, was with the Athletic Department in 2003.

That year’s championship was at the Doyt L. Perry Stadium, which drew national attention to the University, Elsasser said.

The level of competition in the MAC is part of the reason it’s been a decade since the Falcons have had a shot at a conference title, said Athletic Director Chris Kingston.

“It says a lot about both the coaching staff and the players and the commitment they’ve made,” Kingston said. “Football games are hard to win and getting to the top, getting to the championship, it’s a process.”

Kingston attributed this year’s success to Clawson, the rest of the coaching staff, the players and the support of everyone at the University.

“This team is prepared for greatness right now and they’re prepared for greatness in the coming years,” Kingston said.

Members of the 2003 team have come to games this season, and they will also be at the conference championship, showing support for the Falcons, Kingston said.

A championship game is a new challenge for all the players, Ouellet said.

“For most of the kids I’ve played with, this is uncharted territory,” he said.

The plan, he said, is to “treat it like any other game.”

Elsasser described 2003’s team as a “high-flying, offensive, thrilling team,” very similar to 2013’s team.

“It’s an exciting brand of football. Bowling Green is very disciplined,” Elsasser said. “[Clawson has] done a tremendous job building the program.”

In 2003, quarterback Josh Harris passed for 3,813 yards and 27 touchdowns. He also rushed for 972 yards and 13 touchdowns on top of that.

Running back P.J. Pope rushed for 1,057 yards and 10 touchdowns during the 2003 season.

Comparatively, current running back Travis Greene rushed for 1,476 this season and 10 touchdowns. Quarterback Matt Johnson passed for 2,802 yards and 18 touchdowns.

The Falcons’ regular season record in 2003 was 10-2. This year they went 9-3.

The 2003 team rushed for 2,750 yards that season and passed for 4,206, with a total of 61 offensive touchdowns. Compared to this year, the team rushed for 2,516 yards and passed for 3,053 with 39 offensive touchdowns.

Senior Luke Zerkle, president of Falcon Fanatics, said the team has shown significant improvement since he was a freshman.

“This is the first time in awhile so it’s nice to witness that transformation as a student,” Zerkle said.

The Athletic Department received 4,000 tickets to sell at the University, all of which are sold out. The Falcon Fanatics had 83 tickets for its members.

“I know students are excited and I’m expecting big things,” Zerkle said. “I think BG definitely has a chance to shock some people.”

Leave a Comment
Donate to BG Falcon Media

Your donation will support the student journalists of Bowling Green State University. Your contribution will allow us to purchase equipment and cover our annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
Donate to BG Falcon Media

Comments (0)

All BG Falcon Media Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *