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This week in the RMAC

October 28th, 2014 No comments

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The big news in the RMAC this week, for Mustang fans, is Mitch Glasmann’s recognition as the Offensive POTW. Mitch put up 400 yards on 39-54 passing with 4 TDs. It’s his second 400 yard passing game of the year. Bout time he got some more recognition. Great game.

The second best news of the weekend is Adams State’s last second win over Highlands. The Cowboys were up and allowed Highlands to come back and tie the game at 34 but that gave Highlands the ball with just about 3:00 minutes to go in the game. It was setting up to be another game winning driver for Orrender and the convicts. But the Cowboy signal caller forgot what color jersey his teammates were wearing and threw the ball to ASU’s Ray Holland. Holland returned the pass 57 yards for the game winning score. With 2:20 to go, NMHU got the ball back but once again, Holland intercepted a pass and that was all she wrote. It was short rations for Orrender. For his efforts Holland was named the RMAC Defensive POTW.

CSU-Pueblo went to Colorado Mines and pulled off the mild upset. The #12 T-Wolves were able to stifle the #2 offense in the nation, holding the Orediggers to just 12 points in their 20-12 victory. Justin Dvorak, QB for Mines, was held to under 300 yards passing, on 35-47. Cameron McDondle, RB for Pueblo, ran 29 times for 134 yards and a TD. Pueblo ate up a lot of clock and kept Dvorak and his offense on the sidelines. That puts the two teams tied at 5-1 in the RMAC standings. Now Pueblo holds the tie break, which could be huge in a few weeks.

Chadron State got the W over Black Hills in a tight game, 33-28. This game was apparently kind of blase with both teams going through the motions. Not a lot for either team to crow about. Chadron stays tied for third place at 4-2 while BHSU brings up the rear at 1-5.

FLC shocked the RMAC once again, although not quite as much as a couple of weeks ago. However the Skyhawks got the win in Grand Junction over Colorado Mesa, 28-20. That effectively takes Mesa out of contention for any post season bid, although they were going to be a long shot anyway. PJ Hall ran for 166 yards on 39 carries for the Skyhawks, once again keeping the Mavs offense on the sideline and winning the time of possession battle. Mesa just couldn’t get any type of rhythm and falls to 4-2, tied for third in the RMAC with Chadron.

Looking ahead, with Pueblo and Mines tied at the top, Pueblo holding the tiebreak, they have the inside track to get a home game in the playoffs. Both, if they win out, will make the post season but the at large team will have to go on the road most likely. Both teams still have to play Mesa, Mines hosts them this weekend while Pueblo hosts Black Hills. Pueblo plays Mesa on the road in 2 weeks and then has Highlands at home, so it’s not cake walk for them. Mines will go to Western State and close at home with Adams so they have, on paper an easier schedule.

Western State will travel to Ft. Lewis this week, give the Skyhawks the edge. They are playing good football but are still inconsistent. They needed a returned kick off for a TD and big special teams plays to get the win last week.

Mesa will look to really jumble the standings with a win at home over Mines, but that won’t happen. Mines will come back with a vengeance and their passing game will dominate the mediocre secondary of Mesa. Big win for Mines.

Pueblo will have their second stringers in early as they get an easy win at home over Black Hills. It might be close early but BHSU just doesn’t have the talent to hang in for long.

Chadron will put on their body armor as they travel to Vegas for a tilt with Highlands. Chadron just doesn’t have the offense to stay with the Cowboys in a shootout. And their defense has not been able to stop high powered offenses this season so unless Highlands implodes this week after their loss last weekend, Chadron will go home a loser. Either that or Las Vegas PD finally does their job and half of NMHU’s team is in jail on game day.

Adams State will travel south to Silver City for the game with WNMU. It won’t do anything in the standings and won’t likely affect the playoff picture (unless we get to a third or fourth tiebreak) but it’s a big game for both teams as each is at 2-4 in the RMAC & 3-5 overall. A winning season hangs in the balance.

This week in the RMAC

October 24th, 2014 No comments

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Things held fairly true to form this week in the RMAC, as far as teams expected to win. Mines remains the lone undefeated team in conference play while Pueblo and Mesa are one game back. Chadron and Highlands are the remaining two teams above .500 in league games while everyone else is trying to get above the midway point.

Mines of course took out Ft. Lewis in a nationally televised game on Thursday, 56-14. The short resurgence by the Skyhawks didn’t help promote D2 football as they fell flat after knocking off #2 Pueblo the week before. Mines is now ranked #11 nationally.

Highlands won a close game against Western State pulling out a 46-43 victory. Zach Tapia, NMHU’s kicker garnered Special Teams POTW honors as he was 4-4 in both field goals and extra points to tally 16 points in the victory. 3 of those kicks were 45+ yards including the game winner with 5 seconds to play.

Pueblo had a very easy time with Chadron; I thought they’d win but hoped for a close game. Pueblo bounced back from their loss and are #12 in the national rankings. RB Cameron McDondle is the Offensive POTW after he carried the ball 20 times for just over 160 yards, an 8.4 yard per carry average, against a decent running defense. He scored twice on runs of 29 & 18 yards. 111 yards came in the first half and the game was already over at the intermission.

Adams State prevailed in the meaningless game of the week against Black Hills State., 37-27. Auston Hillman and the Grizzlies used the passing attack to get the win, he was 21-28 for 236 yards and a score. Hillman also ran for 63 yards on 11 carries.

Coming up this week in the RMAC is the big game everyone is going to be keeping an eye on; Pueblo visits Mines. If Mines wins, they clearly have the inside track to the regular season crown and the automatic bid to the post season. Their toughest game after this is a home game next week against Mesa. If Pueblo loses, they could very well drop out of the top 20, and be in danger of missing out on the post season. Mines wants a high paced, high scoring game; Pueblo wants McDondle to run the ball a lot and keep the Orediggers offense on the sideline. It might be somewhat close, but look for Mines to prevail.

Mesa will try and keep pace with a game at home against Ft. Lewis. This has the potential to be a trap game for Mesa. They got lucky in Silver City last week and are looking forward to next weeks tilt at Mines. FLC will play hard as John L. was reportedly embarrassed by his team’s performance on national T.V. and is putting them through a hard week of practice. I think this will be closer than expected but Mesa will put it out late.

Highlands didn’t fold last week like I thought they might and are 3-2 in conference play. They’ll take a short trip north to Alamosa and beat up on Adams State. Hillman won’t be able to run or throw against Highlands and the Cowboy offense will dominate the Grizzly D. It won’t be close. I’ll hope and pray for the upset, but those prayers will likely go unanswered.

Losing like they did last week, Chadron has no hope left for the post season or anything but a winning season. Lucky for them they get Black Hills at home this week. BHSU is up and down and could give the Eagles a tough game early but Chadron will come out on top to improve to 4-2.

WNMU of course will be at Western State. More on that later.

This week in RMAC Football – WOW edition

October 16th, 2014 No comments

Well, I could say I told you so, I won’t, but I could. Colorado State University Pueblo is not as good as they have been in past years and this week, guess who took them down? Ft. Lewis College. That of course has to be the big story in the RMAC this week. I didn’t think that would happen this week but give credit to FLC and Coach John L Smith; they did what they had to do. Makes our win against FLC look that much better doesn’t it? It appears to have been a defensive battle with neither team able to throw the ball but FLC ran it 50+ times for over 230 yards. More importantly, they beat CSUP in time of possession by about 17 minutes. Can’t say much else about that as it wasn’t a pretty game but it was a win for the Skyhawks and will make their season. The loss drops CSUP from the #2 in the nation to #14 and into a 3 way tie for 2nd place in the RMAC.

CSM gets a close win over WNMU and I’ll bet they had no idea that if they held on they’d be alone in first place. In fact, I would bet dollars to doughnuts that if you had to guess which team of the two unbeatens would lose on Saturday, even CSM would have said themselves. But they now sit at #15 in the nation and #1 in the RMAC. It’s their regular season championship to lose but it’s going to be a tough road and I’ll bet the eventual RMAC champ has one loss. And by the way, LB Kole Kadavy received RMAC Defensive POW honors for his 18 tackle performance in this game.

Chadron State’s Michael Madkin, RB, just beat out WNMU’s Donald Byrd for Offensive POTW honors as his rushing lead the Eagles to a key road victory over Adams State, 45-31. Madkin ran for 217 yards, 7.2 per carry and added a 74 yard reception in the win. Chadron is now one of three teams tied for 2nd in the RMAC, with their lone loss coming to Mines, in NE. They still have to play Pueblo but have a legitimate shot at a possible at large bid for the post season. But they’ll have to win out and win all those games impressively as they are not ranked, getting votes, but not ranked.

Colorado Mesa salvaged Mustang fans’ weekend as they throttled NM Highlands, 31-19. Mesa took control early and built a 24-0 lead and it was never close. The defense for Mesa did a good job against the passing offense of Highlands, especially tackling the receiver and not giving up a lot of yards after the catch. NMHU QB’s combined to complete 31-51 but for only 250 yards or so. They also picked off 5 passes and Orender was replaced in the 3rd quarter, having not thrown a TD pass. Mesa is the third team tied for 2nd in the RMAC.

Western State got the easy win in the meaningless game of the week over Black Hills, 34-13. Austin Ekeler continued to run very well carrying the ball 20 times for 163 yards, 8 yrds per carry and caught 6 balls for 58 yards; he had 2 rushing TD’s. The win improved WSCC’s record in the RMAC to 2-2, tied with Highlands for 4th.

Looking ahead to this week, CBS Sports has to be extatic that Ft. Lewis beat CSU-Pueblo. FLC and Mines square off tonight on the D2 National Game of the Week on CBS Sports Channel. I know it’s carried on Direct TV. It gives them another story line for the game other than John L Smith as their coach. The game is in Durango and it should be a good game early but expect Mines to pull away late in the first half or early in the second half. Their offense is so much better than Pueblo’s and FLC can’t stay with them all night.

Adams State, the only winless team in the RMAC records, 1-5 overall, will visit Black Hills in this week’s meaningless game. Adams would like to get a win and BHSU is 1-3 in the RMAC; expect them to move to 2-3 as Adams just doesn’t have the defense to slow down the Yellowjackets enough to let the weak offense of the Grizzlies have a chance. Ho hum, BHSU wins.

The big game of the week in the RMAC, Chadron at Pueblo. You would have expected this game to be about Pueblo trying to stay undefeated and Chadron trying to remain with one loss. Chadron has lost to Mines already so they need the win to keep some post season playoff hopes alive. Pueblo still has a chance to win the RMAC title as they play Mines next week. The T-Wolves can’t look ahead to that game; a loss this Saturday not only takes them out of the title race in the RMAC but likely drops them out of the playoff picture all together. They are too good of a team to look ahead and will get the win but it will be close. That will set up a HUGE game for next week and Chadron will go back to playing for pride the rest of the season.

This week in the RMAC

October 2nd, 2014 No comments

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Not much changed in the RMAC this week but guess who is tied atop conference standing with Pueblo & Mines? The convicts from NM Highlands. Isn’t it bad enough that WNMU let one get away again but does Highlands have to be winning too? I know I’ll be partaking of the Mustang lemonade offered by the Little Toad at the beer garden this Saturday. Trust me, it’s great and it helps ease the pain.

Mines remains 4-0, 2-0 in RMAC play with their win over Black Hills State, 48-21. QB Justin Dvorak garnered RMAC offensive POTW honors for his 36-46 529 yard passing performance during Mines’ homecoming victory. He had 4 TD passes of 90, 4, 9, & 17 yards.

Highlands got a road victory of our opponent this Saturday, Ft. Lewis College. Highlands put the game away in the 2nd turning a 3 pt lead into a 24 pt lead. The Cowboys were able to put together long sustained drives for all of their scoring. FLC did rush for 105 yards but only 2.6 per attempt. Their passing game was dismal as they garnered only 113 through the air. Jared Koster continued his stellar defensive play with 15 total tackles, including 3 for losses.

BHSU, Chadron, Mesa & Western State all sit at 1-1 while Adams, FLC and our Mustangs are winless in conference play at 0-2. At least one of those teams will come away with their first win this weekend.

Western State eked out a victory against Adams State at home, 39-37. It was a back and forth affair with each team answering the others’ scores. WSCC got the last score with 6 seconds left as QB Brett Arrivey hit Travis Hanney for a 9 yd TD to cap off a 14 play, 88 yard drive that ate up over 3 minutes of clock. But it was the Austin Ekeler show as he ran for 2 scores and caught a pass for another. Ekeler carried the ball an astounding 44 times for 233 yards and caught 4 balls for 56 yds.

Chadron got a nice bounce back win on the road taking down Mesa State 24-13. Mesa is improving but the loss shows they aren’t quite there yet. Mesa’s head coach is from the Chadron tree so they are very familiar with each other but Mesa doesn’t have the depth of talent. Both teams ran the ball very well, 245 yards for Chadron & 146 for Mesa. Neither throws the ball well, Chadron 14-35 for 138 yards & Mesa 13-32 for 145. Each had a pick and a TD.

Mesa will travel this weekend to BHSU to see who gets to have a winning record both in conference and overall. I’d say a home victory gives the Yellowjackets that distinction. Western State will be at Chadron in a game with similar implications but it will be interesting to see how many rushing yards both teams put up and If CSC can stop Austin Ekeler. This one’s a toss up so give the edge to the home team.

The first key game of the weekend is Mines at NM Highlands. The winner remains undefeated in conference play and challenges CSU Pueblo for the top spot. After seeing Pueblo play this weekend, they are vulnerable this year and either Mines or Highlands can beat them. I don’t like Mines’ inconsistent play and if Highlands gets up early, they can take this one. But I’m giving Mines the edge, partially because I hate NMHU but I think Mines’ defense will get pressure on the QB and he’s not good under pressure; just ask his cellmate.

Adams State will head to Pueblo. Normally ASU has a very good defense and while they are good this year, they’re not great. Pueblo will take this one by outlasting ASU.

This week in the RMAC

September 16th, 2014 No comments

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Things went pretty much as predicted in the RMAC this past weekend; before we get to patting ourselves on the back though, looking at the rankings nationally, CSU-Pueblo remains #2 behind NW Missouri State. Colorado Mines jumped into the top 25, appearing at #22 and Chadron State continues to receive votes, garnering 7 votes this past week. Mines and Pueblo remain the only undefeated teams in the RMAC.

We called it, CSU Pueblo not only gave DI Sam Houston State a tough time, they came away with a win against the #15 team in the FCS division and it was on the road. It wasn’t even close as the T-Wolves ran away 47-21. Our first home game is going to be tough, winnable, but tough. CSU Pueblo is definitely one of the best regular season teams in the country. DE Darrius Allen garnered RMAC Defensive POW honors for his 4 sack, 1 FF performance.

Mines had an easy time against William Jewel College, 46-0, although they put up only 508 yards of offense. They threw it 60 times and rushed 32 times; once again a high paced, quick moving offense that saw Mines up by only 15 at the break. Really it was a solid performance but a couple of concerns as they only converted 4-14 on third down. That’s got to improve. They also fumbled 3 times.

Chadron State ended up giving Idaho State a scare, losing 39-34 but they were not in the game until the fourth quarter making a furious comeback. It was a solid performance and Idaho’s starters did remain in the game.

We thought Adams State would give Eastern a tough time but they lost in Portales 42-14. It wasn’t a close game and Coach Thomas, who watched film of Highlands/ENMU said Eastern is the real deal this year, so don’t think Adams will be down, they just ran into a very tough team on the road.

Colorado Mesa nearly came away with a huge win in TX as they lost 17-14 to Texas A&M Kingsville. The home team got off to a 14 point first quarter and held on for the win. Mesa’s defense held TAMUK to just 294 yards of offense but only put up 332 themselves. Hubbard ran for 128 yards. The defense got 2 safeties in the game.

Ft. Lewis went on the road to get their first win of the year, 45-38 over Oklahoma Panhandle University. In fact, OPU held big leads for most of the game getting out to a 14-0 lead then up 28-7 at the end of the first quarter. QB Jordan Doyle engineered a comeback that earned him RMAC POTW honors on the offensive side of the ball. He ran for TDs of 17 and 33 yards; threw for a 3rd score in the 4th quarter alone to get the win. Overall he ran for a team high 86 yards and was 25-45 373 yards and 2 TDs. That’s our homecoming foe…

This week’s opponent, NMHU was easily handled by Northern Arizona, 62-23. QB Lance Orender was able to put up yards through the air, 24-44 336 and 4 TDs. Tyler Slavin caught 11 of those balls for 126 yards and 2 of the scores. Yes, much of it came after the game was decided but even NAU’s second team is comparable to a good DII team in talent. Don’t let this game fool you into thinking Highlands is not a talented team.

In one of the ‘see where we are games’, Western State went to Angelo State and got whipped, 38-6. They gave up 21 first quarter points on long drives, including an 11 play, 99 yard drive as time expired in the first. Austin Ekeler accounted for the only WSCC score with a 24 yard run in the 2nd. He carried the ball 22 times for an even 100 yards and was the leading receiver with 6 catches for 82 yards. The defense doesn’t give up big plays but will give up long sustained drives and that hurt WSCC.

With WNMU getting the win, things went pretty much as expected in the RMAC. Everyone is pretty much even, CSU & Mines at 2-0 with everyone else at 1-1; except Highlands; career rehab college is 0-2 but they are better than some of the 1-1 teams.

Coming up this week is opening weekend in the RMAC. It starts off with a huge game as Mines goes to Chadron. Early on we’ll see which team is going to have the inside track to challenge Pueblo for the conference crown and automatic bid to the postseason. Pueblo will have to hit the road for a potentially tough game at Western State but the lack of offensive weapons for WSCC will make this a win for Pueblo.

Fort Lewis will visit Black Hills in a relatively meaningless game, mainly to see which team will not go winless in the RMAC. The winner will get confidence and be a tougher out for the middle of the pack teams. Mesa will travel to Adams State as each team looks to delude themselves into thinking the winner will have a shot at winning the conference. Of course, WNMU will travel to Highlands looking to improve upon their last performance in Las Vegas.

This week in RMAC football

September 10th, 2014 No comments

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It was the opening weekend for football and for RMAC teams to make choices. Do they go for a money game and play a DI opponent, go for a win and play a lower division or lesser program or do they try to get ready for a playoff run and play a good DII program. It ran the gamut in the RMAC this weekend. Six teams came away with wins this weekend while four teams were on the short end.

Adams State took the low road and handled Oklahoma Panhandle State, a perennial doormat, 23-7. They got a good win against an NAIA team that has athletes but not a lot of discipline. CSU-Pueblo played West Texas A&M, a good DII team from the Lonestar Conference. CSUP is always looking beyond the immediate game and expects to be among the best in the nation and in the playoffs. They easily handled WTAM 35-6. That’s a win that should impress voters when polls start coming out.

Chadron State took on Missouri S&T an up and down program from a very good conference. It was a 42-25 win for the Eagles. Western State showed they are trying to improve their program with a good win over another solid DII program, 38-21 over Wayland Baptist.

Fort Lewis went for a money game losing to UC-Davis 52-17. Black Hills also took the same route getting routed by Montana State 57-10. Colorado Mesa took on Dixie State coming away with an impressive 44-37 win in a shootout. NM Highlands took on Eastern NM and lost 44-21; way to go Greyhounds! Colorado Mines took on SD Mines getting an easy 43-19 victory.

A couple of observations: Western State may be the real deal; Austin Ekeler ran for 247 yards on 31 carries tallying 2 TDs. That’s pretty good for a RB that was solid as a freshman and is now only a sophomore. Jaden Terry, LB, had 2 scores for WSCC as he returned both a fumble and interception for TDs.

The RMAC has strong offenses once again; Mines led the way (big surprise) with 638 yards of total offense; Chadron ran up 563 yards and five other teams tallied over 400 yards. But defense wasn’t too bad either. Pueblo and Adams both gave up single digits to their opponents but 4 teams held their opponents to under 400 yards of total offense, including the Mustangs. Mines gave up 402 yards, most of it late when the 2nd and 3rd teams were in the game.

Key games coming up this week, all non-conference games for RMAC schools will see more of the same; some money games and some ‘see where we are’ games. Mines should have it easy against William Jewel while FLC will take on Panhandle hoping for an easy win. Black Hills will see if they have any hopes for wins later as they host SD Mines. Chadron will go for a money game but don’t count them out against Idaho State. Adams will head for Portales to beat up on Eastern NM and Mesa will get a test at TAMU Kingsville. Pueblo will also see where they stack up against Sam Houston State; that should be a good game. Highlands will sacrifice themselves at the money alter against Northern Arizona. Western State will get a test at Angelo State. Of course the Stangs will look for a win against new program, Arizona Christian.

This week in the RMAC

November 6th, 2013 No comments

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There were almost a whole bunch of surprises in RMAC action this past weekend but the higher ranked teams were able to pull out some victories in the end. Probably the biggest surprise and the most heart warming for Mustang fans is the loss by NM Highlands to previously winless Black Hills State, 48-45. I know that will give the Yellowjackets some momentum going into our game but I love it when NMHU loses.

Ft. Lewis got a mild upset by downing rival Adams State 27-24 in a nail biter. Ft. Lewis is making strides and could be a tough opponent in the RMAC next season under John L.

Colorado Mines struggled and had to come from behind late in the game to pull out a 1 point victory against Western State, 14-13. I said WSC is a young team with some talent and they showed it against the Orediggers but just couldn’t hold on for the win.

CSU-Pueblo got another W taking down Colorado Mesa 34-6. Mesa has one of the best defenses in the nation, #1 in red zone defense in DII, but Chris Ashe, a sophomore RB, put up 170 yards and scored twice on runs of 8 and 6 yards. Pueblo is clearly the best team in the RMAC; the rest are playing for 2nd place. The T-Wolves remain unbeaten at 9-0, ranked #3 nationally and should remain #1 regionally.

Chadron’s victory over WNMU pushed them up in the national rankings; we’ll see if it’s enough to push them into the coveted top six in the region. The only ‘bright spot’ to WNMU’s performance is that none of the RMAC players of the week came out of our game.

Chadron remains in 2nd place by themselves. Mines is in third alone after Mesa lost. The Mavs are tied with Adams State for 4th with surprising Ft. Lewis on the cusp of a winning season at 3-4 in the RMAC, 4-5 overall right behind them. WNMU is 2-5 ahead of BHSU and WSC at 1-5 while the Cowboys are 1-6 in RMAC play and bringing up the back end.

Looking ahead there are some good games in the RMAC. Pueblo will travel to Las Vegas to take on Highlands. Highlands will be up for the game but who knows which players will be suspended or on the field. Outside chance at an upset but highly doubtful. If Pueblo loses this one, they should drop out of the top 25 and the regional rankings as well.

Ft. Lewis at Chadron would be more intriguing if the game were played in Durango but FLC will still be a tough out for Chadron. The Eagles will need to play like they did in the 2nd half against WNMU to pull out the win but should do so.

Colorado Mines at Adams State will likely be a good game; the top passing defense in the RMAC, Grizzlies, against what was a top passing game in the nation until the last few weeks. Given Mines’ lackluster performances in the past few weeks, I’ll pick the hometown team in a mild upset.

Colorado Mesa will host Western State. The Mavs should win but if WSC puts last week’s disappointing loss out of the their minds and concentrates on playing top notch defense, they can stop the Mavs offense. It will likely be a low scoring affair with host Mesa getting the W.

WNMU of course travels to Black Hills State for the first time ever. We’ll try and break that one down tomorrow.

This week in the RMAC

October 5th, 2013 No comments

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Things went pretty much as anticipated in the RMAC this past weekend as 3 teams remained undefeated in conference play. Pueblo went to Adams State and dominated, probably more so than we thought, as they came away with a 48-7 win. The one thing that means for Mustang fans is the ASU game becomes a more likely win than it was appearing last week.

Chadron State went to Western State and we found out that WSC is not as good as we thought. The Eagles came away with an impressive 35-13 road win. Given the loss by Adams State, whom WSC had almost beaten a week prior, and both teams’ performances this week, WSC is not as good either. Put another potential win in the Mustangs’ column.

Mines rounds out the undefeated teams after their 30-10 home victory of New Mexico Highlands. Mines’ offense was not as productive as they have been and really it’s the first time they’ve faced an athletic defense. What was more evident, is that Mines’ defense is better than we thought or maybe they just haven’t garnered a lot of attention because of the offense’s play. Our offense ran up and down the field on these guys last year putting up over 50 points. Not likely this year as they are more athletic, especially at the LB position.

Mesa had an easy time against Black Hills with a 49-11 win to pull back to .500. The loss by Adams and the win by Ft. Lewis leave those three teams tied with NMHU at 1-1 and have delusions of still being in the conference race.

WNMU, BHSU and WSC all remain winless in RMAC play and just hoping to be able to get a win and try for a winning record this season.

I think the one thing the action in the RMAC shows this week is that there are clearly 3 teams far and away better than the rest of the pack. I’ll keep Mines in that conversation for now given their good play against Highlands, who has a lot of talent but is, as we’ve said so many times, undisciplined.

Realisitically, I think Mines is going to have to be lucky to stay in the race and be there at the end; their schedule only gets tougher but so does the schedules of Pueblo and Chadron. I just think Chadron and Pueblo are better coached and play at a higher level more consistently…

This week in the RMAC

September 19th, 2013 No comments

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WNMU had a bye this past week but everyone else was in action. The two big games garnering national attention because they were played in Cowboys’ Stadium and shown on national T.V. were the Chadron State and CSU-Pueblo games. Then #17 Chadron started things off on Thursday night taking on #4 West Texas A&M. Chadron got off to a fast start with a 21-0 lead at the end of the first quarter and if I remember correctly, lead 21-3 at half. But West Texas rallied in the second half on both sides of the ball and pulled out a 34-31 victory. The loss dropped Chadron to #21 in the rankings.

#5 CSU-Pueblo followed on Saturday with an easy win over a not so good Angelo State team. Pueblo was able to put up over 600 yards of offense on their way to a 45-24 victory with a pretty balanced attack. Just over 400 yards of offense came on six plays highlighting the big play ability of the T-Wolves.

Adams State joined Pueblo as the only other undefeated team in the RMAC getting a 26-10 road win at perennial doormat Oklahoma Panhandle State, 26-10. Their defense was solid holding the Aggies scoreless on four red zone appearances and forcing 5 turnovers. The offense continues to use a two QB rotation which caused some problems for the Aggies.

Black Hills State was able to put up 35 points but it wasn’t enough to get by their arch rival, South Dakota School of Mines 43-35 to fall to 0-2. Colorado Mesa fell to 1-1 after a loss to the #3 team in DI FCS Montana State, 26-0. Colorado School of Mines joins Mesa at 1-1 after a strong outing against #11 Carson Newman, losing 27-24 at home. QB Matt Brown continues to be the Orediggers’ offense amassing 465 yards of offense; 133 on the ground in just 23 carries including a TD run and 31-48 for 332 yards and 2 TDs through the air.

Ft. Lewis improved to 1-1 with a home field win over Oklahoma Baptist, 23-14. Dewayn Wesley garnered RMAC Offensive POTW honors with a 22 carry, 161 yard, 2 TD performance. The good news of the week for Mustang fans was NM Highlands getting whipped at Abilene Christian 52-28. ACU is a very good team so the loss was not unexpected and Highlands still has some good athletes especially at WR position. Michael Harrison caught 8 balls for 97 yards and 2 TDs to pace the Cowboys’ offense. Western State remained winless at 0-2 after a 29-3 loss at DI Idaho State. That’s really not a bad performance and WSC continues to develop a young team. Austin Ekeler a true freshman RB carried the ball 20 times for 105 yards against a good ISU defense.

This upcoming weekend will begin RMAC conference play with all teams in action. Among the games that will begin to weed out potential contenders is Colorado Mesa at Chadron State. These are the two teams most likely to challenge Pueblo’s stranglehold on the conference title. Mesa is still a younger team with a relatively new coaching staff but they’ve got talented players and are becoming a good team rapidly. Chadron will be angry and expect them to win at home. We’ll see if either Western State or Adams will step up to be a dark horse contender as the Mountaineers go to Alamosa. Adams State always plays hard, as does WSC, and this should be a good game but expect the home team to win.

Colorado Mines should have an easy time at Black Hills State as their offense should put up 40 plus points. BHSU is always an athletic team and will scrap but they’re no match for the Orediggers. We’ll begin to find out about Highlands and Ft. Lewis as the Cowboys visit Durango. FLC doesn’t have much to build on but they have John L. Smith as coach and he’s the x-factor especially against an undisciplined but athletic Cowboy team.

WNMU of course will be at Pueblo; we’ll have the game preview up tomorrow…

This week in the RMAC

September 11th, 2013 No comments

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Two teams from the RMAC are ranked nationally in D2.com poll. CSU Pueblo moved up one spot to number five while Chadron moved up four to number seventeen after both teams won their games this past weekend. In the AFCA poll, CSU is also at five moving up from eighth and Chadron is eighteenth moving up from number twenty last week.

CSU-Pueblo defeated Northern Colorado, a D-I team, 41-36. CSU was trailing for most of the first half and was down at one point by three scores before getting things going. They seem to have changed the focus of their offense and are passing more. But the defense came up with 2 INTs returned for touchdowns to help them win the game.

Chadron got a 40-34 win over Missouri S and T in Rolla MO. It was a 2 OT affair that saw Chadron get a 79 yard INT return for a TD to win the game. CSC threw the ball 58 times for only 159 yards and ran the ball 31 times for 169. They gave up 500 yards to Missouri.

Overall six of the ten teams in the RMAC won their season openers with Mines dominating South Dakota Mines 72-6; Highlands slipped by Eastern New Mexico 31-28; Colorado Mesa beat Menlo easily 34-0; Adams State handled Wayland Baptist easily 44-0. Watch out for Black Hills State, they lost but to a traditionally very good team at Angelo State, 38-26; FLC lost to D-I Southern Utah 49-0 and Western State was beaten by West Texas A&M 48-21 at home.

The non-conference match ups will continue for most RMAC teams next week as Chadron will play in Cowboys Stadium against West Texas A&M so we’ll see just how good Chadron might be; Mines will have another relatively easy test hosting Carson Newman and Mesa will get ripped by Montana State as will Western State as they go to Idaho State. Adams will be at Oklahoma Panhandle for another win and Highlands will be tested by Abilene Christian. Pueblo will also be at Cowboys Stadium to take on Angelo State. The Mustangs have a week off to recover from injuries and work on a few things before heading to Pueblo.