Toledo, OH. The Glass Bowl
By EVAN MEYER
Last Saturday at Dix Stadium, the Kent State Golden Flashes built a 20-0 lead on the Miami Redhawks after three quarters. In the fourth however, they held on for dear life as the 'Hawks scored two touchdowns and were driving in the final moments before a late interception secured a 20-14 victory in the Mid-American Conference opener for both schools.
The Blue and Gold have won two of their last three games as they head to Toledo this Saturday to face a Rockets team that is undefeated and nationally ranked (No. 24) for the first time in three years.
LAST TIME OUT: Kent State opened MAC play Saturday with a 20-14 win over the Miami Redhawks on homecoming weekend at Dix Stadium. KSU built a 20-0 third quarter lead on the strength of two Shane Hynes field goals in the first quarter, a 75-yard end-around touchdown by Antwan Dixon in the second quarter and a 44-yard touchdown pass by Colin Reardon to Ernest Calhoun.
In the fourth quarter, Miami showed life and, using the passing of Drew Kummer, scored two touchdowns. The RedHawks were driving late in the game before freshman S Juante McRae came up with an interception, one of four thrown by Kummer in the contest, to seal MU’s fate.
KSU used a balanced rushing attack, gaining 214 yards while Reardon completed 12-of-21 passes for 136 yards with no sacks or interceptions. Dixon led both the rushers with 72 yards and the recievers with six for 63 yards. Defensively, LB Elcee Refuge had eight tackles (three solo) and a half-sack as the Flashes defense on the afternoon had four interceptions, three sacks, seven tackles for losses a forced fumble, and five pass breakups.
ON THE YEAR: The Golden Flashes opened the 2015 season September 3-4 losing to the Fighting Illini of Illinois 52-3 at Champaign-Urbana…They rebounded the following week in the home opener dominating Delaware State 45-13, then lost a heartbreaker at Minnesota 10-7. The three point defeat was the smallest KSU has incurred against a Big Ten Conference opponent. A double overtime loss to Marshall at home, 36-29, ended the non-conference schedule at 1-3
OFFENSE; KSU is averaging 20.8 points & 327 yards per game
RUSHING: Trayion Durham 70 carries-254 yards 2 touchdowns
PASSING: Colin Reardon 61-133-3 686 yards 6 touchdowns
RECEIVING: WR Earnest Calhoun 10-123 2TD
DEFENSE: The Flashes are allowing 25 points & 252 yards per game
TOTAL TACKLES: DB Nate Holley 21-20-41
TACKLES FOR LOSS: DL Terance Waugh 8-49 yards
SACKS: Waugh 6.5-46 yards
INTERCEPTIONS:DB Demetrius Monday 5-39 yards
PUNTING: Anthony Melchiori 40 – 40.7 avg. per kick
PLACE KICKING: Shane Hynes 4-5 FG / 707 PAT
KICK RETURNS: Rackwon James 11-22.5 yds per return
PUNT RETURNS: Ernest Calhoun 17-3.4 avg per return
KSU NOTES & QUOTES: KSU ended a two-game losing streak in MAC openers with their win over Miami and won the opener for just the second time in the last nine years…The Flashes are second in the Football Bowl Subdivision with 10 interceptions with DB Demetrius Monday having five of them which leads the FBS…KSU is sixth in the FBS in total defense and ninth in rushing defense…DL Terence Waugh leads the MAC with 6 ½ sacks and is fourth in the FBS…WR Antwan Dixon has scored touchdowns in three of his last four games thanks to his 75-yard end-around against MU…KSU's defense has allowed just five touchdowns in regulation over their last four games…RB Trayion Durham moved into the fifth place on the all-time rushing list (2,966 career yards) last Saturday.
THE SERIES: The game is the 46th lifetime meeting between the two schools with Toledo holding a narrow 24-21 advantage…UT has won six of the last seven meetings in the series, including a 30-20 win last November at Dix Stadium. That was a game in which the Rockets opened a 23-0 lead in the third quarter, only to see the Flashes come back and close to within six points early in the fourth quarter. Kent State, however, could not get any closer.
RB Kareem Hunt led the Rockets with 141 yards on 18 carries on this cold wet evening that saw 756 yards of total offense (422 by UT and 334 by KSU)..24th lifetime game in Toledo (first since 2010) with the Rockets holding a decisive 18-5 edge…KSU’s last win in the series with 2006 at Dix 40-14 and have not win in the Glass City since 1977 (23-12)
TOLEDO ROCKETS (4-0, 1-0 MAC WEST)
LAST TIME OUT: Toledo opened MAC play Saturday, traveling to Muncie and defeating the Ball State Cardinals 24-10, improving their record to 4-0 overall their best start in 14 years. Sophomore RB Terry Swanson rushed for 139 yards. Senior QB Philip Ely completed 16-of-22 passes for 164 yards and two touchdowns, while the defense held the high-powered Cardinals attack to just 262 yards overall and just 26 on the ground. The defensive 11 were led by junior LB Jaylen Coleman with eight total tackles. Senior DE Trent Voss had seven stops including a sack and three tackles for losses
ON THE YEAR: Toledo was picked to win the Western Division in the pre-season MAC poll…The season opener against Stony Brook (FCS) was cancelled due to lightning and Thunderstorms with the Rockets leading early in the second quarter…The next week they traveled to Little Rock and defeated nationally ranked Arkansas, 16-12. UT followed that up with a 30-23 overtime home win over Iowa State and a 37-7 rout of Arkansas State (Sun Belt) -- also at the Glass Bowl -- before winning last week at Ball State.
OFFENSE: UT is averaging 26.8 points and 387 total yards per game
RUSHING: Damian Jones-Moore 52 carries-244 yards 4 touchdowns
PASSING: Phillip Ely 73-140-4 874 yards 4 touchdowns
RECEIVING: Corey Jones 21 receptions-182 yards one touchdown
DEFENSE: Toledo is allowing 13 points and 366.8 yards per game
TACKLES: Jaylen Coleman 20-24-44
TACKLES FOR LOSS: Orion Jones 6.5-37
SACKS: Jones 4.5-31
INTERCEPTIONS: Four with one
PUNTING: Nick Ellis 15-39.0 yds per kick
PLACE KICKING: Jameson Vest 8-10 FG/ 11-11 PAT
PUNT RETURNS: Corey Jones 4-11.8 avg per return
KICK RETURNS: Di. Johnson 8-23.8 yds per return
TOLEDO NOTES & QUOTES: Rockets are 24th in this week’s Associated Press poll (Writers) their first ranking since October, 2012…UT has won seven straight games dating back to last season (including their win over Arkansas State in the GoDaddy Bowl)…UT defense has allowed just four scores inside the red zone so far this season (one TD & 3 field goals) second best in the FBS to Appalachian State (Sun Belt) and the offensive line has not allowed a sack in 140 pass attempts over the first four games one of two I nthe FBS the other Air Force (Mountain West)…Their wins over Arkansas & Iowa State marked the first time the Rockets have won two games in the same season over the “Power Five” teams -- tied with Bowling Green (wins over Maryland and Purdue) for most by a MAC school in 2015…RB Terry Swanson was named MAC West Player of the Week for his 139 yards rushing in the win over BSU…WR Alonzo Russell extended his streak of at least one reception to 42 games (second in the FBS to Arizona State’s D.J. Foster) with four against BSU for 45 yards and a touchdown…RB Kareem Hunt has missed the last two games with a hamstring injury…Head Coach Matt Campbell is the third youngest head coach in the FBS (P.J. Fleck-WMU & Neal Brown-Troy the others)…This Saturday is homecoming on the UT campus.