Make no bones about it, this 42-20 smackdown was one of the most important wins in the history of Ball State football. It's kind of a weird thing to say, being that conference should be most important and IU just isn't that good.
But it's clear this Ball State team is on a mission for something special. IU was just another step in the race for a 12-0 season, albeit an important one. One of the posters on Peegs kept saying that "this was our Super Bowl." Yeah, I don't think so. This was step two, step one was beating Navy. Step 3 is navigating the tough MAC West. Toledo looked great in losing, 55-54 to No. 25 Fresno State in double OT. Along with Central Michigan, who should've beat Purdue but let it slip away. Should be fun. I think it's pretty clear that there isn't a defense on our schedule that can stop our offense even without Dante Love. I fully expect Briggs Orsbon to fill the No. 1 receiver role.
Let's break down the IU game, kiddies.
1. MiQuale Lewis
Oh my, what a difference a running game makes. Last year, we were very one-dimensional. This year, the offense is unbelievably awesome. Lewis ran the ball 29 times for 166 and — duh duh duh — four touchdowns. Remember in 2006 when Larry Bostic led the team in rushing with something like 519 yards? Yeah, those days are long gone. MiQuale, you get a helmet sticker from me and ESPN.com.
2. The Offensive Line
The big nasties had their way with Indiana's defensive front seven, creating huge holes for Lewis and giving Nate plenty of time on almost nearly every play. There were times when Nate stood back there for literally 5 seconds. So Robert Brewster, Andre Ramsey, Kreg Hunter, Mike Switzer and Dan Gerberry, I salute you guys. Great job all the way around.
3. Second-half defense.
An amazing TSBB tip-of-the-cap to defensive coordinator Mark Smith, who for the first time since he started coaching here, made all the right halftime adjustments. I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw running backs and quarterbacks being stopped for 1 and 2-yard gains, and on a couple occasions, stopped in the backfield. Brought a tear to my eye.
4. Davis' TD pass to Myles Trempe
That was just a thing of beauty. The timing of it was impeccable too, just a few plays after Dante Love left the game with. Davis was running to his left and then decided he could throw the ball 45 yards on the button to Trempe, who made a heck of an adjustment on the ball and coasted into the end zone.
1. Nate Davis
Nate is at the point now where he can do basically whatever he wants. It didn't even seem like he was doing anything, yet he finished with 239 yards and a touchdown pass. Where those numbers go the rest of the year will depend on how the team responds without Love.
1. These hands
"These hands they are my own, they're not yours they are my own." Yes, that's a lyric from a crappy Jewel song. I know, I'm well aware. But I feel like our receivers and tight ends need to start embracing the ability to catch the ball. Madaris Grant flat-out dropped a pass in the end zone. Darius Hill, for everything great that he does, had a tendency to drop passes and had a few Saturday too. Hopefully this doesn't become anything major.
1. Indiana's pass offense
Take away the two deep completions to Andrew Means, and holy crap, Kellen Lewis is a terrible passer. As great as he is running the ball, he's as terrible throwing. Yeah, Lewis ran for 148 yards and sure, LeFevour will probably put up something simliar, but I was esctatic to see him actually throw the ball. And I think the reason he took off so many times is because he has no confidence in his arm. He neglected to throw to open receivers in order to take off.
All in all, a great win for the beloved Bird. On to Homecoming and Kent State.
FIGHT TEAM FIGHT FOR BALL STATE!!
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