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A six-game mid-season win streak highlighted Westerm Michigan’s turnaround season. The 8-5 overall record included 6-2 in MAC play. Unfortunately for the Broncos, the two losses were against Toledo and Northern Illinois. Like WMU, those two programs will be among the MAC’s strongest once again. Such is life in the MAC West right now.
Jarvion Franklin certainly brought distinction and honor to his No. 31 jersey. He became the first player in MAC history to win both MAC Freshman of the Year and MAC Offensive Player of the Year.
Western’s 33.8 ppg ranked the Broncos second in scoring. Much of the credit went to Franklin and his blockers as he tallied 150 points while picking up 1,525 yards. His scoring total was 36 points better than the second place finisher (Ball State kicker Scott Secor). He recorded three touchdowns in six games.
Then-sophomore quarterback Zach Terrell gave the Broncos balance, finishing third in passing average with 264.8 ypg. He was actually first in pass efficiency (164.4).
With potent run and pass options, Western topped the MAC in third down conversions (48.0%). The Broncos were fourth in total offense (438.2 ypg). Three of the top four teams in total offense stats were from the MAC West.
Daniel Braverman and Corey Davis were quite the receiving duo in 2014. They ranked second and third (MAC) in receptions per game, combining for 164 catches, 2,405 yards and 21 touchdowns.
In addition to a dynamic offense, Western Michigan helped itself with a solid defense. The Broncos finished second in total defense (371.2 ypg) and third in scoring defense (24.9 ppg). They were particularly effective on pass defense (2nd in yardage, 1st in pass defense efficiency).
Western Michigan was first in kickoff returns (24.3 yard average) and last in punt return average (1.7).
Andrew Haldeman was good on 14 of 17 field goals (82.4%). J. Schroeder, meanwhile, upped his punting average to 42.8.
DB Justin Currie is gone after leading the team with 105 tackles, but linebacker Grant Depalma wasn’t far behind – and he IS returning. The senior notched 102 stops last season.