D2football.com Northwest Region Correspondent
August 29, 2005
August 29, 2005
August 22, 2005
August 29, 2005
There were some terrific games and some blowouts, but generally speaking, the Northwest Region was quite “stable” in week one. The teams that were expected to win did so and there was an absence of the many surprises you normally see in the first week of the season.
The one notable exception was a shocker, however. NSIC power Winona State traveled down to Missouri to take on what appeared to be a rather toothless bunch of Truman State Bulldogs. The Warriors came home 0-1.
These facts should help to illustrate why the Warriors’ 21-16 loss to Truman State was such a surprise:
-Truman finished just 2-9 last year and was picked eighth out of nine teams in its conference in the pre-season poll.
-The Warriors completely dominated the game in blasting the Bulldogs 56-28 last season.
-Truman State has an incredible 73 freshmen and red shirt freshmen on its roster. 15 of those freshmen were on the 2-deep depth chart the school released leading up to the game.
While a loss in the season opener doesn’t ruin a season by any means, Winona State will need to get its act together in a hurry with a very solid Emporia State team and North Dakota on the schedule in the next two weeks. With so many good teams in the region this year, it’s likely that even earned access couldn’t save the Warriors from a 0-3 start.
The Week in Review
Saginaw Valley 9 Northwood 7
Chris Dougherty’s 69-yard touchdown pass to Rick Cottengim with 23 seconds remaining in the game gave the Cardinals the win over the Timberwolves. Dougherty led SVSU with 52 rushing yards and 259 passing yards. Yared Yearby caught six passes for 95 yards and a touchdown to lead Northwood.
Bob’s take: Strange. That is the word that comes to my mind when trying to describe this game. First of all there is the ending. It’s not often that you see a long touchdown pass win a game in the final 30 seconds. Next there is the fact that both teams struggled so badly to put points on the board. Despite the quality of SVSU’s defense, I expected Northwood’s explosive offense to produce much more than one measly touchdown. And then finally, there is the odd decision by SVSU head coach Randy Awrey to not address the media following the game. It was definitely an odd afternoon in Midland.
Northwood is a veteran team that should recover from a loss like this, but it will be interesting to see how the team responds in the coming weeks. It will also be interesting to see if a quarterback controversy develops in the Timberwolve camp. Two year starter Kyle Kolbe was ineffective both running and passing and was lifted in favor of Eric Chrisinske, who completed nine of eleven passes.
The most important thing that this win does for SVSU is buy time for the young offense to improve. SVSU has a week off and with the soft part of the schedule coming up in the next month, the Cardinals will have an opportunity to get their offense going before the tough stretch of the schedule begins in mid-October.