After each weekend of the season, I am going to track how our future opponents' seasons are unfolding while also keeping track of how past opponents react to not having us to kick around anymore.
How to read the post: A capsule for each Pack opponent, including the team's record and most recent result, is listed under the heading "Week 1," "Week 2," "Week 3," etc. based on what week during the season that the Pack plays that opponent. The future/past opponent is listed in bold.
Week 1: Tennessee (3-1) 47, Akron (1-3) 26
Tyler Bray rebounded from a disappointing effort against Florida to post 401 yards passing and 4 touchdowns against the hapless Zips, but this was not an impressive effort overall for Tennessee, which struggled to a 23-23 first half tie. With each week State's loss to the Vols grows more and more unpalatable.
Week 2: Western Michigan (2-2) 30, UConn (2-2) 24
The Huskies had a forgettable trip to Kalamazoo. Despite outgaining Western Michigan by nearly 100 yards, UConn dropped the ball on the road, literally. The Huskies lost the turnover battle 0-2, and Desmond Bozeman's 53-yard scoop and score of a Chandler Whitmer fumble was the difference in the game. The Broncos have beaten the Huskies for two straight seasons, and with each week State's narrow 10-7 win over the Huskies grows more and more unpalatable.
Week 3: Mississippi State 30 (4-0), South Alabama (1-3) 10
SOAL's quarterback play continued to bite it in the butt. C. J. Bennett and Ross Metheny were both picked and the Jaguars put up a goose egg in the first half, allowing the Bulldogs to mount a comfortable 20-0 halftime advantage. A week after "beating" the Wolfpack in the second half, the Jaguars tied the Bulldogs after intermission, so David Amerson among active players.can take that and his blood money to rebuild his squad's pride after its tour of the BCS. Johnathan Banks picked off his 15th career pass in the game for Mississippi State, second only to Mr.
Week 4: North Carolina State (3-1) 52, The Citadel (3-1) 14
Amerson picked off his 3rd pass in as many games and true freshman Shadrach Thornton had a memorable debut, reviving the Pack's moribund run game with 145 yards rushing and two touchdowns as N. C. State got the rare treat of breathing easy against the Bulldogs, who many thought would make a game of it after consecutive victories over perennial FCS powerhouses Georgia Southern and Appalachian State. Rashard Smith electrified the Carter-Finley crowd with a 73-yard punt return to the casa, and a Pack defense which has been excellent since the opening quarter of the season held The Citadel to just 226 yards of total offense. State gave up 22 points in the first quarter against Tennessee but has yielded just 43 points in the 15 quarters since then, now ranking 27th in the FCS, giving up 15.8 points per game.
Week 5: Miami (3-1, 2-0) 42, Georgia Tech (2-2, 1-2) 36
Wild and wacky stuff from the ATL on Saturday: The Hurricanes jumped out to a 19-0 lead, yielded 36 straight points, and then rattled off the game's last 23 points to clip the Jackets in overtime. Miami's much-maligned quarterback, Stephen Morris, entered the game as one of the FBS's lowest-rated signal callers, but threw for 436 yards against Georgia Tech's Swiss cheese secondary. Mike James rushed for 3 touchdowns for the Hurricanes, including the game-winner in OT. James (247 yards/5.3 yards per carry on the season) and really, really scary freshman Duke Johnson (320/8.0) present quite a challenge for the Pack's run defense Saturday in Coral Gables.
Week 6: #4 Florida State (4-0, 2-0) 49, #10 Clemson (3-1, 0-1) 37
A little trickeration from the Tigers in the form of a Sammy Watkins 52-yard pass to Andre Ellington gave Clemson a 28-14 lead early in the second half, and then Florida State of old happened. The Seminoles won going away thanks to a 35-3 burst over a 17-minute stretch of the second half. E. J. Manuel went all Heisman on Dabo, throwing for 380 yards and eclipsing the century mark on the ground as well. Chris Thompson also went over 100 yards and scored twice. One gets the feeling that Florida State is still figuring out just how good it can be, and just how good it can be may be national championship good.
Week 7: Bye
Week 8: #8 West Virginia (3-0) 31, Maryland (2-2) 21
With each passing week it seems more and more possible that these are not your 2011 Fighting Edsals, as Maryland hung tough on the road against a top 10 opponent. If not for 3 turnovers, the Terps could have had a major shocker here. Shocking in its own right is that Maryland's Perry Hills, who entered the game ranked 100th in QB rating among FBS programs, went 20-for-29 for 305 yards and 3 scores. Perry, I don't know you anymore.
Week 9: North Carolina (2-2, 0-1) 27, East Carolina (2-2) 6
Gio Bernard put up a pair of six pointers in his return from a knee injury and the Tarheels snapped a two-game skid with their win over in-state rival EZU. Bryn Renner did what he seems to do every weekend, throw for 300+ yards, as UNC climbed back in the race for the mythical state championship. The Tarheels demonstrated clear gridiron dominance over their neighbors to the east, but the debate rages as to which campus is the better bet for scoring drugs.
Week 10: #17 Texas Christian University (3-0) 27, Virginia (2-2, 0-1) 7
Mike Rocco, you incomplete me. The Hoos' quarterback connected on just 13 of 28 passes and was picked twice before being lifted in favor of Phillip Simms, who didn't fare much better (5-for-12), and the Hoos failed to scratch against the Horned Frogs until the 4th quarter. We may have ourselves a QB controversy in Charlottesville. Virginia needs to find an answer for its stale offense in a hurry, as wins over Louisiana Tech and Duke in the next two weeks seem like musts ifis going to take his squad bowling again this season. How far has Virginia fallen? The Hoos are a dog in the La. Tech game according to Vegas.
Week 11: Wake Forest (3-1, 1-1) 49, Army (0-3) 37
The Deacons surrendered 37 points to a winless Army squad over 3 quarters but finally solved the triple option in the final frame to hang on for their 3rd win. Up next: the also 3-1 Duke Blue Devils. When was the last time Duke and Wake squared off when both teams had a winning record? When was the last time there were two 49-37 games in the ACC on the same weekend? When will Wake develop a receiver to complement Michael Campanaro, who had 153 of his team's 221 receiving yards?
Week 12: #4 Florida State (4-0, 2-0) 49, #10 Clemson (3-1, 0-1) 37
You can always count on Clemson to crap the bed once it gets close to glory. Top 10 ranking = imminent loss. It's automatic. But at least the Tigers were playing a genuine championship contender this time, and the Tigers gave the rest of the ACC some measure of hope by putting 37 points on the board against a team that had yielded just 3 points in its first 3 games.
Week 13: Boston College (1-2, 0-1)
The Chase Rettig show took the weekend off.