This week around the state of Michigan, our weekly roundup will be a bit more condensed. The Eastern Michigan Eagles are off this week after collecting a 16-13 win on the road at Rutgers last weekend.
It was the first win in 39 tries against Big Ten opponents for Eastern (2-0) and the first win in 59 tries against Power 5 schools. To say it is their biggest victory in program history would be an understatement.
No matter, both Central Michigan and Western Michigan are back on the field this weekend with some intriguing storylines for both.
CENTRAL MICHIGAN CHIPPEWAS
LAST WEEK: W @ Kansas, 45-27
Albeit against one of the weakest Power 5 programs in the country, Central Michigan put together an impressive performance on the road last weekend against Kansas.
The Chippewas’ offense exploded for 590 yards of total offense against the Jayhawks defense. A large chunk of that came off the hand of Shane Morris. The Michigan transfer was 28/37 for 467 yards and five touchdown passes. A group of five different running backs combined for the remaining 123 yards of offense, with Devon Spalding punching it in once.
CMU now carries the momentum of a road win over a Power 5 school into another such matchup this weekend. This time, they head east to play at Syracuse (1-1).
After dominating FCS opponent Central Connecticut State, 50-7, in Week 1, the Orange stubbed their toe at home last weekend, losing 30-23 to Middle Tennessee. While they are not expected to be a contender in a loaded ACC this season, Syracuse is hoping to get back to a bowl game for the first time since 2013, a year that finished a stretch of bowl games in three of four years.
- DATE: Saturday, September 16
- KICKOFF: 3:30 p.m. ET on ACC Network
- LINE: SYR -10
- O/U: 67.5
WESTERN MICHIGAN BRONCOS
LAST WEEK: L @ Michigan State, 28-14
Western Michigan has put together two impressive performances, albeit both in losing efforts, to start the season. After giving top-5 Southern California a big scare in Week 1, they made Michigan State sweat a little in East Lansing.
But the Broncos’ offense was stymied against the Spartans’ defense last week. They were held to under 200 yards of total offense and just 11 first downs. Conversely, the WMU defense was gashed for 296 rushing yards by MSU after allowing 232 yards on the ground to the Trojans.
However, despite the results ending up in the loss column, the belief is that the early tough tests for Western will pay off moving forward, especially when conference play rolls around.
The Broncos will have their 2017 home opener on Saturday when they welcome in Idaho for their final non-conference. The Vandals, who are in their final season as a member of FBS for the foreseeable future are off to a 1-1 start in 2017, a victory over FCS opponent Sacramento State and a blowout loss to UNLV. Idaho is looking to answer the bell this season after turning arguably their best year in program history last season when they finished 9-4.
- DATE: Saturday, September 16
- KICKOFF: 7 p.m. ET on ESPN3
- LINE: WMU -20.5
- O/U: 54