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Bowling Green Football Preview
by Matt Fargo - 08/20/2008
No. 80 Bowling Green Falcons
2007 Record ~ 8-5 SU ~ 7-5 ATS
Starters Returning ~ Offense (8) Defense (9)
After two down years, Bowling Green got back to its winning ways last season, taking a co-division championship and heading back to a bowl game. The GMAC Bowl is one the Falcons would soon like to forget and they can easily accomplish that with a fine 2008. The pieces are in place for coach Gregg Brandon to achieve the goal of matching his success in his first two years at the school when they went a combined 20-6 including two bowl wins. The MAC is loaded at the top and the Falcons are right up there.
This team is in great shape offensively. Quarterback Tyler Sheehan is a star in the making after passing for 3,264 yards with 23 touchdowns and 11 interceptions in his sophomore season. He gets his nine top receivers back that combined for 300 receptions so finding targets will not be a problem. Handing off wonâ€™t either as the top three rushers are also back. The only question mark of the offense is up from as the Falcons need to replace three-fifths of the line. A small unit to begin with, it needs to gel quickly.
Bowling Green had a defense last season that finished 93rd overall and 94th in scoring. Those rankings will not hold up again this season in a conference loaded with offense and scoring potential. The Falcons got better as the season went along until that bowl game where they allowed 63 points to Tulsa. You can chalk that up to just not being focused and for their sake, hopefully it does not carry over into 2008. The rushing defense allowed a whopping 207.9 ypg so closing those gaps is a great start.
The non-conference schedule will be a true test with three road games at Pittsburgh, Boise St. and Wyoming along with a home game against Minnesota. A 2-2 record out of that would be outstanding. Bowling Green got the best schedule of all MAC teams and it had better take advantage. It missed the three top teams in the West division, Central Michigan, Ball St. and Western Michigan while getting Miami at home. If the defense grows quickly, this will not only be a solid play in MAC games, but also early on.