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Published: Sunday, 4/17/2005

Falcons notebook: Brandon happy with effort of defense


BOWLING GREEN - The Bowling Green State University defense didn't exactly keep much out of the end zone. But the Falcons can take a few strong points away from yesterday's game.

One fumble recovery for each side, 11 tackles for losses including six sacks and one nice interception and a 57-yard return by junior Van Johnson kept coach Gregg Brandon happy.

"When you split a defense, like we did today, you're going to see some erratic play," BG coach Gregg Brandon said. "We'll be ready."

Nose guard Mike Thaler said the defense's morale was decent despite the cartoonish first half.

"Guys got on each other and you had to kind of pick each other up," he said. "The young guys are going to make mistakes, and you just got to keep on playing."

BEST THROW: Omar Jacobs' high looper to Luke Alexander for a 68-yard touchdown.

BEST CATCH: A one-handed grab by Derrick Lett in the third quarter.

BEST RUN: Steve Sanders' 61-yard end-around for a touchdown.

BEST HIT: Sophomore defensive back Deaudre Perry on Lett after Lett's route led him across the middle. "I was a little woozy, but I was cool after I caught my breath," Lett said.

NEW KICKER SHINES: Joe Timchenko was 8-for-8 on extra points and also hit a 36-yard field goal in his debut as the replacement for Shaun Suisham.

Suisham set the NCAA record for extra points made and attempted in a career, going 226-232.

ACCIDENTAL CONTACT: On the Orange team's first series, Jacobs found a surprise at the end of his run: a tackler.

Redshirt freshman Nate Waldron brought Jacobs down despite the spring's don't-touch-the-quarterback mantra.

"It was a rookie mistake, it's no big deal," Jacobs said. "A little hit is always good."

EXTRA POINTS: Defensive tackle Monte Cooley did not dress for the game. Brandon said Cooley sprained his ankle a week ago but is doing OK. Senior linebacker Jamien Johnson was out with a knee injury at the beginning of spring practices, but played yesterday and had five tackles. Perry was not listed on the spring depth chart but played yesterday and had five tackles, one for a five-yard loss. He had been concentrating on academics for most of the spring, Brandon said.

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