Friday, September 30, 2011

CMU vs. NIU Live Chat

Join me at 3:15 p.m. on Saturday for a live chat during the CMU-NIU football game.

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Wednesday, September 28, 2011

President Ross on Athletic Issues

Central Michigan University President George E. Ross talked football to a group of alumni in Midland Tuesday night.
“I know you’re paying attention to football. We’ve had a rough start. I’ll remind you we’ve had new coaches before with rough starts. I am very supportive of Dan Enos and very supportive of the football players,” Ross said.
He foresees good things in the future for the team.
“I think the turn-around is coming. I will ask for your patience. For those of you who might not quite believe, I have two words for you—Detroit Lions. Its coming,” Ross said.
Coach talk and “playing clean”
“When I talk to coaches on campus, the athletic director and staff, I tell them ‘we are going to play clean at CMU.’”
“Since 1953 the NCAA has been tracking major violations across athletics. There’s 17 programs in America that have never had a major violation and CMU is one of them. We gotta play clean,” Ross said.
Money talk
Ross said the university athletics program needs financial support and he needs the help of the coaches to raise money.
“They do a pretty decent job, but we can do better. I can do better raising funds too,” he said.
Alumni survey
Ross told the group of alumni that a survey was conducted last year where 5,000 surveys were mailed out. He said 67 percent of the alumni said the number one reason they stay attached to CMU was athletics.

The event where Ross spoke took place at the Great Hall Banquet and Convention Center in Midland and was sponsored by CMU’s Great Lakes Bay Region Chapter.

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Monday, September 26, 2011

The Extra Point 9-26-11

Join me at 7 p.m. tonight for The Extra Point where we will talk about the CMU quarterback situation and the MSU loss as well as this week's upcoming game with Northern Illinois.

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Friday, September 23, 2011

CMU vs. MSU Live Chat

Join me starting at 11:45 a.m. for a live chat during the CMU vs. MSU game on Saturday. I will be joined by Ross Maghielse, who covers the Big Ten for the Oakland Press. We will be taking your comments and questions all game long.

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Q&A with LSJ's Joe Rexrode

Joe Rexode, who covers Michigan State football for the Lansing State Journal, and I exchanged some questions about Saturday’s game. Here were Joe’s thoughts on Michigan State and Saturday’s game.

How much anticipation has MSU had for this game following the loss in 2009?
A: That's tough to say. This is a classic "sandwich" game, placed between Notre Dame and Ohio State, so it's not like the Spartans have been pointing to this week in the offseason. But they're definitely talking about that 2009 game this week. I'm sure that was a rough day for Mark Dantonio, but he probably doesn't mind it as much now because it should help him get his team's attention. The problem with the revenge thing is that most of the players who beat MSU that day don't play for CMU anymore.

How do Spartan players or fans view the CMU football program given the all-time series between these two?
A: I think players have respect and fans probably have a lot of ill feelings. I mean, 4-3, that says a lot. And just wait until next season, when MSU has a new quarterback, CMU should be better and the Spartans travel to Mount Pleasant. Older MSU fans remember the early 1990s -- and back then, losing to a MAC team was a much bigger setback than it is today.

Given the injury issues with the offensive line, what are the big concerns in regards to the MSU offense and how the CMU defense could capitalize?
That's the concern. MSU is strong at every skill spot but that doesn't matter nearly as much if you're offensive line isn't getting the job done. This will be the Spartan's third OL starting lineup in four games, with a redshirt freshman center who has yet to play a down in college. MSU has very high hopes for Travis Jackson, but that's a tough position for a second-year player. If I'm CMU, I blitz often, take some gambles, try to get some sacks and turnovers and really rattle that line.

How is the team dealing with the loss to Notre Dame? Does the fan base already feel like this season is trending toward a disappointment?
A: Well, some fans are going to panic after any loss -- or even unimpressive wins -- but I'd say there's definite cause for concern after the performance at Notre Dame. The defense was not bad but the special teams continue to suffer critical errors and the offensive line ... well, you know. The team seems pretty upset by the loss, and justifiably so. It'll be interesting to see if the Spartans can come with effort and fewer mental errors Saturday.

What concerns did the loss to Notre Dame raise about this team?

A: Again, we're going back to that offensive line. I hate to keep harping on it, but that's that concern. Of course, that was all the talk in preseason camp, too. Special teams would be the area that has been surprisingly poor. Last year, I'd argue MSU had as strong and impactful a kicking game as anyone in the country. Also at Notre Dame, the defensive line wasn't quite as disruptive as it expected to be or needs to be as the season continues.

What chance do you give CMU to win and what are the keys to the game in your eyes?
A: I give CMU a very slight chance. I think in a matchup like this you need a great quarterback playing at the highest level (as we saw with a certain QB for CMU in 2009), and the Chippewas don't appear to have that right now. I agree with you that the start of the game will be very important for CMU's confidence, and perhaps to give the Spartans a little doubt. Radcliff needs to go off, CMU needs to win big in turnover margin and the Chippewas need to batter that offensive line. That's a lot of conditions. I like MSU by about four touchdowns.

Here is the link of my answers to Joe's questions:

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Monday, September 19, 2011

The Extra Point for 9-19-11

Join me at 7 p.m. on Monday night to share your thoughts on CMU-Western and the upcoming Michigan State game.

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Friday, September 16, 2011

Central-Western Live Chat

What is a Central-Western game without a live chat? Join me on Saturday at 11:45 a.m.

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Monday, September 12, 2011

The Extra Point for 9-12-11

Chat starts at 7 p.m.

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Friday, September 9, 2011

CMU vs. Kentucky Live Chat

Join me starting at 11:45 a.m. for a live chat during Saturday's game.

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Sunday, September 4, 2011

The Extra Point - 9/5/11

Join me at 7 p.m. on Monday to talk about CMU's win over South Carolina State and this week's game with Kentucky.

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