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La-Monroe Football Preview
by Matt Fargo - 07/29/2008
No. 109 La-Monroe Warhawks
2007 Record ~ 6-6 SU ~ 7-4 ATS
Starters Returning ~ Offense (7) Defense (8)
It was a mildly successful season in 2007 and the Warhawks hope to build on that heading into this season. They finished the year by winning five of their final six games including an improbable victory at Alabama. Also in the mix was a triple overtime win at Florida Atlantic, the Owls lone conference loss of the season. All of this means a chance at a conference title in 2008 but it is not going to be very easy. A lot was lost to graduation and this is a notoriously slow starting team so expect the same.
There are playmakers on the offensive side of things but there are also a couple of areas that will be of concern. Running back Calvin Dawson, the programâ€™s all-time leading rusher, has moved on so it will be up to sophomore Frank Goodin to get the job done. Even worse is that he has to run behind a line that needs to replace four starters. Quarterback Kinsmon Lancaster is a solid quarterback who can run and throw and he has two of the best targets in Darrell McNeal and LaGregory Sapp at his disposal.
The defense had a decent season last year and it should be better thanks to eight returning starters. There were good games and bad games but it was the latter that outnumbered the former. The Warhawks allowed 17 or fewer points five times with three of those to end the season including that game against the Crimson Tide. The entire linebacking corps is back as is half of the secondary and the main asset of the back seven is speed. The defense finished 55th in rushing defense but the line needs to replace two key players.
The win over Alabama showed that any team can beat any other but another upset of that magnitude isnâ€™t likely to happen. The Warhawks face three SEC teams as well as Tulane and Alabama A&M in non-conference action so it looks like it is going to be just one win there. The SBC slate is not bad considering it gets favorites Troy and FAU at home. That win over Alabama last season might take some value away from the Warhawks so it may be wise as a go against, especially against the big boys as it wonâ€™t be taken lightly again.