What can we say? Football gets crazy sometimes.
One week going 7-2 and getting all the feels for the Sun Belt, the conference goes 2-6, with the only wins coming against FCS doormats.
Many of the games were never in doubt.
Plenty of interesting tidbits emerged from a forgettable weekend, including...
3. Panthers return to Earth
The undefeated dream is over.
(Wipe away single tear).
Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.
The Panthers were scorched on the ground, allowing the Broncos to gallup for seven rushing touchdowns. The Panthers yielded points on six of their first seven possessions and the offense, after getting 10 points on the opening frame, hit a wall the rest of the contest.
Quarterback Dan Ellington and the offense’s three turnovers did not help a defense that could not get off the field.
Western Michigan racked up 694 total yards on the day, including 450 yards on the ground.
Time to turn the page and concentrate on the start of Sun Belt season this week as they visit Texas State. Plug those gaps, and they will be just fine.
2. Kaleb Barker shows resilience
The Southern Miss offense kept putting up touchdowns.
And the Trojans kept answering.
Quarterback Kaleb Barker threw for 504 yards and four touchdowns, including two strikes in the fourth quarter to respond to Southern Miss touchdowns and knock the deficit to one score.
And the ball distribution was equally impressive.
Four receivers went over the 100-yard receiving mark (Kaylon Geiger- 118; Tray Eafford- 110; Luke Whittemore- 110; Khalil McClain- 104).
No ‘W’, but plenty of heart.
1. Lots of wind sprints coming for defenses
35, 42, 47, 47, 55, 57.
No, not my lotto numbers, but points allowed by these teams against the six FBS opponents this past weekend.
Granted, not all of these points were the defenses’ fault, but those are giant totals to expect offenses to keep up with.
Georgia Southern gets a pass, as their 35 allowed to the Golden Gophers, as a fumble return for touchdown must be factored in.
We’ll also give Troy’s Carlton Martial some kudos for 16 tackles and 4.5 tackles for loss.
Everyone else, you’re on watch.
As conference season begins for two teams this weekend and then everyone else in the following weeks, defensive coordinators must act fast to fine tune defensive pass rushing, which seemed to be inept throughout the Sun Belt.