- TOP PLAYERSOffensePABLO S. TORRE | August 20, 2012
- TAMPA BAY buccaneersENEMY lines WHAT A RIVAL COACH SAYSJune 28, 2012
- Faces in the CrowdJune 11, 2001
It will be, but so will Missouri and Kansas and Iowa State. Missouri, if for no other reason than that its coach, Dan Devine, is a very smart and very resourceful man, is favored to win the conference title. Devine overlooks nothing in teaching individual and team play. He is also a brilliant recruiter, as many a Big Ten school has discovered to its dismay, and he has a knack for adapting his style of play to his material. His 1960 team was noted for its devastating sweeps. Last year, when it turned out he didn't have the backs for the sweeps, Devine stressed defense. Missouri won four games in which it failed to score more than a touchdown.
The enthusiastic and silver-tongued Jack Mitchell of Kansas, like Devine, is a persuasive recruiter. He did his job so well two years ago (see below) that, despite the loss of such backs as John Hadl, Curtis McClinton and Bert Coan, he expects to be as good or better than last year.
The best teams of the Mid-American Conference—Bowling Green, Miami, Ohio and Kent State—can, as they have already proved, play with the lower rung of the Big Ten and Big Eight, and sometimes win. The top five, however, are: 1) Ohio State, 2) Michigan State, 3) Missouri, 4) Purdue, 5) Kansas.
There's a joke around the Mid-American Conference that Coach Doyt Perry spends the first half of the year teaching his teams cannibalism and the second half staying out of their way. Over the past seven years the Falcons have produced a 53-6-4 record, the best compiled by any NCAA team. Perry sees some weaknesses at end and quarterback, but his victims have heard that one before. In those same seven seasons, 22 Bowling Green players have made first string on the all-conference team. Perry annually has a first-team tackle, and will again this year with 6-foot-6, 260-pound Bob Reynolds. All-MAC Guard Gary Sherman, Center Ed Bettridge, Guard Joe Grant and Tackle Willis Jones complete an awesome inner line. Halfbacks Don Lisbon and Roger Reynolds need no introduction, and Fullback Ray Bell, who made 36 points and gained 416 yards in 1961, is back. Should he need relief, any of three sophomores could start in his place.
CONCLUSION: Bowling Green's "problems" have a most disquieting way of vanishing at midseason. So do the school's opponents.
Two years ago, after Cincinnati managed to gain 250 yards per game and get 153 first downs while being outscored 150-113 and losing six games, new Coach Chuck Studley was brought in. Sure enough, the Bearcats stopped wasting so many yards and first downs. They gained under 200 yards per game, made only 130 first downs, were out-scored 142-97 and lost seven games. Having lost the best of that team—including All-America Tackle Ken Byers-Cincy must rely on sophomores. Exceptions are the very fast Rufus Simmons at guard, bruising Fullback Phil Goldner, End Jim Paris (16 catches, 185 yards in 1961) and Halfback Fred Hynoski, who both kicks and runs well. Bruce Vogelgesang and Larry Harp, teaming at quarterback, are just adequate. Best and most needed sophomores may be fast Halfbacks Al Nelson (6.3 at 60 yards), Errol Prisby and John Smedley, but Cincy, rightfully, is nervous about its line.
CONCLUSION: Last year Cincy lost seven games, six by a touchdown or less. Improvement should be easy, but it won't be.