Bowling Green Falcons
When we look at what Bowling Green accomplished a year ago, I think it’s safe to say they weren’t a pushover and were not a team opponents relished facing. Dave Clawson appears to be captaining a ship that has even better days ahead of it and with nine starters back on offense and defense, the pieces are in place.
Make no mistake, the Falcons were heavily reliant on their defense to get the job done and the numbers say that was a good thing. You name it, this unit did it, as the best in the conference against both the run and pass and total yards, but most important was the less than 17 points allowed. This unit will miss All MAC performers Dwayne Woods and Chris Jones, but with loads of experience and depth, this should be another banner year. The offense wasn’t great in 2012 but do have their top receivers back and an experienced offensive line so the question is who will be under center and who will be running the ball.
Common wisdom says that incumbent quarterback Matt Schilz will be taking the snaps but 55% completions leaves a lot to be desired for a guy that threw for 14 touchdowns and 12 interceptions. Look for James Knapke and Matt Johnson to get looks but I would be surprised if the experienced Schilz doesn’t have the starting job to open the season. The loss of running back Anthon Samuel might be the biggest problem, as he decided not to play in 2013 for undisclosed reasons and that’s 900 yards Bowling Green can ill afford to lose. Look for Clawson to give several players a look as he has to get his offense in a more competitive mode and stop putting so much pressure on the defensive side of the football.
Despite returning 18 starters, the Falcons won’t be better off unless the offense produces consistently. Schilz has to connect with receivers and reduce miscues, while some body has to emerge as a legitimate running threat. Either way, Bowling Green should be competitive based on defense alone, but won’t take the next step without some scoring help