Quarterbacks (B-) : Maynard looked far better this week, he reminded of his performance against UTEP. He played like a sophomore with a ton of potential, not throwing for 400 yards but not throwing 4 pics. He had a bit of trouble pitching the ball, and missed one open receiver in the end zone by a good 15 feet but on the whole, this tells it all.
A nice controlled game, managed well. If Maynard has a little more touch on the long ball his completion percentage is going to be higher and he probably is 2-1 (or better) in touchdown to interception ratio. UB also made far better use of his legs this week than they have, to date, this season.
Running Backs (A-): I think we have found our new halfback, Ike Nduka was a beast. The 172 that he put up is the kind of game we used to get out of Starks. UB has lacked a reliable running game the whole season and that has made life difficult for Zach Maynard. While no back will get you 172 a game if we have a guy who is consistently at or around 100 yards per game, a back who can get you 4-5 on first down more often than not is just what this offense needed.
Wide Receivers (B+): I saw nothing out of them that was either terrible or brilliant. Hamlin was reliable, Jessie Rack always finds a way to get open and Roosevelt did his damage.
Offensive Line (C+): A nice push against a really good defense, while Nduka owns his success today (he hit holes fast and broke some tackles) the Offensive line did a great job opening up holes and Maynard had enough time to pass most of the game.
Offensive Coaching (D): Sorry, everyone, everywhere knew you were going to run the sneak on fourth. But what really gets me is trying a 45+ yard field goal (on a very windy day) in the first and risking fourth and inches last in the game. But *if* you are going to go for it on fourth try something not so transparent.
Defensive Line (C+): LeFevour and Cotton together were under four yards per carry, that is pretty impressive. The line did soften up a bit on third downs and there was still a lack of consistent push by the front four but it was their best performance of the season. The biggest improvement was tackling.
Line Backers (C+): They got caught out of position a few times, LeFevour made them pay each one. They also struggled when Brown got the ball on the ground. Like the Line their tackling and work on the corners was the best yet this year.
Defensive Backs (C): It's hard to fault them too much for the yardage they gave up CMU has not only the best passer in MAC history but also the only pair of receivers that rivals Roosevelt and Hamlin but facts are facts and way too many YAC's were given up.
Defensive Coaching (C+): The defense kept CMU to twenty points, that is a nice performance. They were solid on 3rd down's (in the second half) and they LeFevour under 300 passing and 100 rushing, thats a step up from last season.
Special Teams (C-): Fardon continues to be an inconsistent punter the guy has a great leg but 3/5 times he leaves it on the sideline. Returning was hugely improved, seems Roosevelt is just what the doctor ordered.
Overall (C+): When you lose, and mange only one touchdown its never better than a C effort. but result aside this was the best all around effort that UB has managed this season. If UB can bring it like this for the next seven weeks a six or seven win season is realistic.
I said last week that their only priority this week needed to be ball control
Their *only* focus in the world for CMU should be "don't turn the ball over". I don't care how many yards per carry we get, if we only get 150 yards of offense -- Bull Run
Well they took care of the ball, and more they out gained CMU, they held the Chips to 20 points, and they were play or two away from taking this game into OT.
This is all well and good but UB has now burned all of their wiggle room for the year before they even made it to homecoming. Despite games against WMU, Bowling Green, and a surprising Ohio team can not drop another game if they want to win the division or be a serious contender for an at large bid.