Here's an update on the Falcons as they begin this week's preparations for their contest Saturday at the Doyt against Rhode Island ...
- If the latest two-deep for the Falcons looks familiar, there's a reason: There were no changes from last week. What's more, Bowling Green is expected to have the players who were injured during the Virginia Tech game back for the contest against the Rams Saturday.
The most notable names on that list are cornerback Cameron Truss, who left the VT game because of an injury and did not return, and wide receiver Ryan Burbrink, who came out of the lockerroom at halftime wearing shorts instead of football pants and did not return to the game.
Other players who were injured during the first half -- including D.J. Lynch, Anthon Samuel and Gabe Martin -- returned to the game at some point.
- One of the best quotes of from Monday came from Rhode Island coach Joe Trainer. He was talking about the BG defense, and he said, "They have an absolute 'war-daddy' at defensive tackle in Chris Jones." Is that a great phrase or what?
- Back to the two-deep. For those wondering, Matt Schilz is listed as the starter at quarterback, with Matt Johnson returning as the back-up; the kicking situation remains an "or" between Stephen Stein and Tyler Tate; the defense remains unchanged from last week; and the running backs are listed in this order (which is NOT the order they played Saturday): Anthon Samuel, John Pettigrew, Jamel Martin, Andre Givens and Jordan Hopgood.
Speaking of "order of play," the wide receiver starters remain Burbrink at the "slot" ahead of Heath Jackson; Shaun Joplin at the "X" in front of Herve Coby; and Chris Gallon at the "Z" in front of Je'Ron Stokes. Note that when Joplin did not start, the third receiver who started was Stokes, not Coby.
- Virginia Tech quarterback Logan Thomas suffered an injury to the nail on his right thumb while running for the Hokies’ third TD against the Falcons. “My fingernail just got peeled back, about midway through all the way back to the base,” Thomas told Virginia Tech reporters after the game. “It was one of the worst pains I’ve ever felt. [Blood] was just squirting. All you could see was the meat underneath my fingernail and just blood covering it.”
The broken nail may have affected his passing in the second half. Thomas completed 9-of-17 for 127 yards and two scores before the injury but was just 2-for-9 for 17 yards and an interception after. now
- Coach Dave Clawson said that, after watching the film, it looked as if the Falcons' biggest problems offensively remain with execution. "Offensively we did not execute well at all," Clawson said. "We struggled throwing the football, and we ran it at times fairly well, but we were behind for so much of the game that we kind of abandoned that -- maybe a little earlier than we should have. In the second half we moved the ball better, but we just didn't get points on the board."
- Clawson hinted that there may be changes this week -- but the changes would be subtle. "Is the depth chart the same? Yes,” Clawson said. “But who gets the most [plays] during the game is up in the air depending on how players practice.”
That makes things interesting at deep positions such as wide receiver -- where the play so far this season has been inconsistent at best. Injuries have hampered Shaun Joplin, Ryan Burbrink and Heath Jackson at different times this season, and good play during practice may lead to increased playing time for Chris Gallon, Herve Coby, Je'Ron Stokes and Travis Greene.
- Rhode Island coach Joe Trainer said he thought part of Bowling Green's problems early this season are a function of their difficult schedule. “The schedule they have played coming out of the gate is as competitive as anybody in their conference,” Trainer said. “They know that’s going to pay off for them when they enter conference play.”
While Clawson agrees, he's not using it as an excuse for a 1-3 record. "Some of these challenges we have handled well, some we handled not-so-well," he said. "We still have all of our goals in front of us. The only thing we control is getting better as a football team and practicing better.
"Our confidence is going to have to come from performing at a high level in practice, knowing that we're getting better. If those things happen, the results will take care of themselves. I watch this team practice every day, and I believe we're a good football team with good players."