Kelly/Shorts Stadium – Mt. Pleasant, MI
The Ohio Bobcats are within sight of the finish line as far as the MAC East title is concerned. Two games to go, and if Ohio wins either one, the ‘Cats will be headed to the MAC Championship game. Their first chance to nail it down comes Tuesday night at Mt. Pleasant, which Central Michigan awaits.
The Chippewas were at one time considered a strong MAC West title challenger, but they were drubbed by powerful Western Michigan in their MAC opener and are currently riding a three-game losing streak.
Here is more on the two teams:
► The Chippewas last action was back on Nov. 4 at Miami. The RedHawks Gus Ragland threw four touchdown passes in a 37-17 Miami win.
► CMU scored both its touchdowns against MU by the 13:16 mark of the second quarter.
► Senior Jahray Hayes rushed for 60 yards and both Central TDs, but the Chippewas netted just 50 yards on the ground. Hayes has a team-high seven touchdowns on the season. Devon Spalding is back atop the two-deep at RB for this week. He leads the team in rushing with 120 carries for 652 yards (5.4 ypc) with three touchdowns.
► QB Cooper Rush ranks fifth (MAC) in passing yards (276.8 ypg) and is fifth in passing efficiency.
► WR Corey Willis is fifth (MAC) in receptions (5.3 rpg).
► LB Malike Fountain has registered 77 tackles, including 9.0 tfl. DL Joe Ostman has six sacks and 9.0 tfl among his 51 stops. Amari Coleman owns three interceptions.
► Freshman Quinton Maxwell had a big game in the ‘Cats 34-10 victory over Buffalo Nov. 3. He threw for 236 yards and two touchdowns, adding 50 yards and another TD on the ground.
► Ohio scored on the first play from scrimmage against UB. Maxwell hit Papi White on a quick pass that went for 73 yards.
► OU owned a 20-0 lead before Buffalo scored its first points.
► Ohio ranks second in turnover margin (+9/0.90 per game.
► Dorean Brown had just 32 yards on 13 carries against Buffalo. However, he registered 212 yards with 1 TD on 29 carries in the Bobcats big road win at Toledo. It was one of three performances eclipsing the century mark.
► Sebastian Smith is Ohio’s top receiver (43 receptions, 703 yards, 4 TDs). Seven different players have at least one receiving score.
► Ohio tops the MAC in sacks (36 total). Tarell Basham tops the conference with 9.0 sacks.
► Blair Brown is fifth among MAC defenders with 89 tackles (8.9 per game). Freshman Javon Hagan has recorded three interceptions. The team owns three picks, third among MAC teams.
► Ohio ranks seventh in both pass efficiency and pass defense efficiency.