With the 2011 MIlitary Bowl coming up I thought it would be good to get some knowledge from a passionate Toledo Rocket fan. So, I reached out to Lets Go Rockets and exchanged some questions with them. Go check out their site and read the Q&A for the questions they asked me.
Now here are the questions I sent to them:
1. With Tim Beckman leaving Toledo for the Illinois job do you think there will be a drop off in production, particularly with the offense?
With the promotion of Matt Campbell from O.C. to head coach, we'd expect to see less drop off than with an outside hire. Campbell is familiar with the schemes we've been running the last few seasons because he was instrumental in helping to create them. Obviously, losing a head coach before a bowl game is less than desirable and will affect the team in more ways than we can illuminate here, but the hiring of Campbell helps minimize the impact of the change and should add some stability, not just in this game, but in the next few seasons as we adjust to life after Coach Beckman.
2. The run option offense that Air Force runs is unique, does Toledo have the front seven to contain this rushing offense.
That's the plan. The Rockets have been banged up on defense at every position this year. Having said that, they have also had great contributions from relatively unknown players. That's truly all you can ask for in a 2nd and 3rd team player - step up when needed, and for the most part, they've performed better than expected. The option offense that Air Force will attack with requires discipline at each position to know where they should be at what they should be doing. We're confident in the coaching staff that they spent a lot of time working on how to stop the attack.
3. Who are key players on offense and defense that Air Force needs to pay attention to?
Air Force definitely needs to pay attention to Eric Page while he's on the field. He's shown time and again that he is more than capable of breaking a big play and racking up the stats. The same can be said for RB's Thomas, Williams and Fluellen. The Falcons should also be aware of where LB Dan Molls is because he can really lay the hammer down when he makes a hit. Desmond Marrow should have an excellent game as well as he prepares for his final game in an injury riddled career as a Rocket.
4. Toledo's defense gives up a lot of points and yards per game, but they are +16 in the turnover margin. However, in the MAC offenses light up the scoreboard making defenses look bad, so basically how efficient is the Toledo defense.
The defense definitely gives up too many points. Honestly, the opposing offenses haven't been so talented and efficient that they should be scoring 60+ points in back to back games. The saving grace has been creating/forcing turnovers. The defense has the personnel to be productive, they just need to put it all together at one time.
5. Who wins and why?
The team with the defense that adapts the quickest will win this game. Both defenses will face potent offenses and whichever defense can adjust to the play of their opponent the fastest will have the advantage. Turnovers look to be a major factor in this game as Air Force will dominate the clock and slow things down so Toledo's experience with creating turnovers could be a breaking point in this one.
There you have it folks, some nice Toledo coverage about the Military Bowl. Again, a big thanks to the folks at Lets Go Rockets for doing this, and go check out their site leading up to the bowl game.
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