The last time we saw the University of Toledo football team, Cody Thompson was swiping the ball off the punter’s foot and the Rockets smashed VMI. Thanks to an odd early-season bye week, that was nearly two weeks ago.
And boy, is this Saturday going to be different.
Maybe the overmatched opponent in Week 1 and a bye last week will help give the Rockets (1-0) more time to prepare for No. 21 Miami (1-1), which visits the Glass Bowl at noon Saturday. Or perhaps that lack of ultra competitive activity will have dulled UT a bit.
Either way, a powerhouse and five-time national champion visiting town is the type of game every Mid-American Conference school dreams about. It shouldn’t be hard for the Rockets to get pumped up for this opportunity.
WEAKENED STORM: The Hurricanes went out last season and started 10-0, rekindling the nation’s visions of dominating Miami teams of the past. Since then, though, the Canes have gone 1-4 with its only win a 77-0 beating of hopeless overmatched Savannah State last week.
And remember that turnover chain that saw so much T.V. time last year? It’s been fairly nonexistent in the last five games, with Miami only netting six takeaways in the last five games. If UT wants to pull the upset, that chain needs to stay in its box.
WILL HISTORY REPEAT ITSELF?: The second of Miami’s 10 straight wins to open the 2017 season was a 52-30 win over the Rockets in South Florida. The Rockets actually held a 16-10 lead at halftime before the Canes reeled off 18 straight points in the third and early fourth quarters.
The teams combined to gain more than 1,000 yards in the contest, with the passing game chewing up 675 yards. Miami quarterback Malik Rosier completed 27-of-36 passes for 333 yards and three scores, and he’s back for another go this year.
GUADAGNI’S FIRST REAL TEST: First-year starting quarterback Mitchell Guadagni’s line against VMI was efficient and impressive — 11-of-16 for 265 yards and three TDs — but let’s be honest, that was VMI. The Canes are going to provide the first significant challenge in the sophomore’s short career.
In last week’s win over Savannah State, Miami held the Tigers to 48 passing yards and two interceptions. All told, Miami has allowed 188 passing yards and no TDs in its first two games.
MAKING HISTORY: This is Miami’s fourth game against a MAC school in history, with two games against UT and another against Miami, Ohio. It will be Miami’s first visit to a MAC stadium, with the previous three wins all taking place in Miami.
Miami’s ranking in the Associated Press poll make it the highest ranked opponent to play in Toledo since No. 20 Northern Illinois visited in November, 2013.
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