Dix Stadium – Kent, OH
By EVAN MEYER
Last Saturday, the Kent State Golden Flashes held a 14-3 lead over the Miami RedHawks midway through the third quarter in a game that defenses often ruled.
The remainder of the contest belonged to the home team as it scored the winning touchdown with just 1:34 remaining in the fourth quarter for a 16-14 win that gave MU its first 2016 victory and dashed Kent State’s bid for consecutive victories for the first time since the end of the 2013 season.
KSU returns home to Dix Stadium this Saturday to face Ohio. The Bobcats, co-leaders of the Eastern Division, look to rebound after being surprised at home by Eastern Michigan last week.
Here’s more on the two teams . . .
LAST TIME OUT: The Golden Flashes squandered a 14-3 third quarter lead losing to the Miami RedHawks 16-14 at Yager Stadium in Oxford. For the third consecutive game, the KSU offense was centered around QB Nick Holley. He did score two touchdowns but was held to just 175 yards of total offense (84 rushing, 91 passing throwing as he passed only 11 times and completed seven. The Flashes’ defense was led by LB Chris Fairchild and safety Nate Holley each with six tackles.
KSU SEASON TO DATE: The Golden Flashes finished their non-conference schedule with a 1-3 record. The lone win came at home against Monmouth, while the losses were at Penn State, at defending National Champion Alabama, and to North Carolina A&T at home in four overtimes (the longest game in program history). KSU opened MAC play with a heartbreaking home loss to arch-rival Akron before going on the road to beat Buffalo
OFFENSE: KSU is averaging 28.3 points & 311.1 yards per game
RUSHING: Nick Holley 95 carries - 472 yards seven touchdown
PASSING: Nick Holley 33-59-1 465 yards two touchdowns
RECEIVING: Justin Rankin 19 receptions - 271 yards – one touchdown
DEFENSE: The Flashes are allowing 28 points & 353 yards oer game
TOTAL TACKLES: Nate Holley 61-31-92
TACKLES FOR LOSS: Terance Waugh 9-60 yards
SACKS: Waugh 6-45 yards
INTERCEPTIONS: Jerrell Foster 2-33
PUNTING: Derek Adams 43 – 40.2 avg. per kick
PLACE KICKING: Shane Hynes 9-13 FG / 10-10 PAT
KICK RETURNS: Kavious Price 6-20.5 yds per return
PUNT RETURNS: Nick Holley 7-52
KSU NOTES: Nick Holley has six touchdowns in his last two games and leads the Flashes in scoring with 54 points (nine touchdowns overall). He is 14th in the Football Bowl Subdivision in total touchdowns…Nate Holley is third in the MAC in total tackles with 92 (61 solo) and leads the FBS in average solos per game (8.7)…In three of its losses so far this season (Miami, Akron, North Carolina A&T) the Flashes held a lead in the final seven minutes of regulation…KSU has not lost a fumble in its last three games and the defense has held the last two opponents to a combined 17 yards rushing
THE SERIES: The game is the 69th in the series, which dates back to 1936. The Bobcats holding a 41-25-2 edge…Ohio has won the last two games in the series, including last year’s tilt in Athens, 27-0, and the last meeting at Kent in 2014, 17-14, kicking a 44-yard field goal to win the game as time expired
LAST TIME OUT: Ohio lost at home to surprising Eastern Michigan 27-20 Saturday, ending a three-game winning streak. The Eagles took the lead early in the third quarter and never looked back. The ‘Cats offense was led by redshirt freshman RB Dorian Brown, who had 94 yards on 14 carries and a touchdown. Freshman Quinton Maxwell was at quarterback and completed 17-of-26 passes for 188 yards and a score, while senor WR Sebastian Smith collected eight passes for 123 yards.
OHIO SEASON TO DATE: The Bobcats were 2-2 in non-conference play, with wins at Kansas and at home to Gardner-Webb. Ohio was nipped by Texas State in Athens, going triple overtime before a loss at nationally ranked Tennessee. Ohio opened MAC play with wins at arch-rival Miami and at home against Bowling Green
OFFENSE: Ohio is averaging 30.6 points and 424.7 yards per game
RUSHING: Greg Windham 78 carries – 350 yards three touchdowns
PASSING: Windham 120-214-3 1782 eight touchdowns
RECEIVING: Sebastian Smith 32 receptions-504 yards three TD
DEFENSE: The Bobcats are allowing 26.3 points and 366.9 yards per game
TACKLES: Blair Brown (33-27-60)
TACKLES FOR LOSSES: Tarrell Basham 8-58
SACKS: Basham 6.5-55
INTERCEPTIONS: Nelson & Hagan with two
PUNTING: Michael Farkas 35-41.2 average per kick
PLACE KICKING: Louis Zervos 70 pts (17-21 FG/19-21 PAT)
KICK RETURNS: Kyle Belack 6-23.0
PUNT RETURNS: Randy Stites 5-27
OHIO NOTES: Ohio ranks second in the FBS with 17 takeaways, is ninth in turnover margin at +9 and sixth in recovered fumbles with eight…Sebastian Smith had his third 100-yard receiving game of the season with 123 against EMU…Both QB Quinton Maxwell and RB Dorian Brown saw their first extensive action of the season against the Eagles…Head Coach Frank Solich is midway through his 12th season with the Bobcats. That is the fourth longest sting among active FBS coaches ..Solich is 7-4 lifetime against Kent State