NCF Nation: Tyshon Goode

Non-AQ Players of the Week

October, 25, 2010
10/25/10
3:00
PM ET
Here are your non-AQ players of the week, as selected by each league.

Conference USA

Offense: Tulane WR Casey Robottom. Had a career-high 10 receptions for a career-best 151 receiving yards and two touchdowns in a 34-24 win over UTEP. His 43-yard touchdown catch gave the Green Wave the lead for good with 5:30 remaining in the game.

Defense: Houston LB Sammy Brown and UCF DE Darius Nall. Brown led the Cougars with eight tackles, two sacks and a forced a fumble in a 45-20 win over SMU. In the past two games, Brown has recorded nine tackles for loss and four sacks. Nall had 2.5 sacks, forced a fumble, had a pass pressure and tied for the team lead with six total tackles as UCF defeated Rice 41-14.

Special Teams: Houston KR Tyron Carrier. Scored on a 91-yard kickoff return for a touchdown in a win over SMU. It was the sixth of his career. Clemson's C.J. Spiller holds the NCAA career record with seven kickoff returns for touchdowns.

Mid-American

East Division

Offense: Kent State WR Tyshon Goode. Had a career-high 12 catches for a season-high 158 yards and two touchdowns in a 30-6 win at Bowling Green. He also extended his consecutive games with a catch streak to 15.

Defense: Temple DT Muhammad Wilkerson. Led the Owls with six tackles and a career-high 2.5 sacks in a 42-0 win at Buffalo. Temple had its first shutout since 1992 and first shutout of a BCS opponent since 1984.

Special teams: Kent State K Freddy Cortez. Scored 12 points in a 30-6 victory at Bowling Green. Cortez tied his career-high with three field goals (29, 32, 30), while making all three extra points. He missed a 51-yarder.

West Division

Offense: Western Michigan WR Juan Nunez. Had six receptions for a career-high 192 yards and three touchdowns in a 56-10 win over Akron.

Defense: Northern Illinois LB Tyrone Clark. Had two interceptions in a 33-7 win over Central Michigan. Both came in the second quarter to stop Chippewa drives and ensure that the Huskies would have a halftime lead.

Special Teams: Toledo KR Isaiah Ballard. Returned three kickoffs for 103 yards, including a 56-yard return, in a 31-24 win over Ball State.

Mountain West

Offense: TCU RB Ed Wesley and Utah QB Jordan Wynn. Wesley had a career-high 209 yards rushing and two touchdowns on 28 carries to help the Horned Frogs beat Air Force 38-7. Wynn completed 23 of 29 passes for 321 yards and three touchdowns in three quarters of action in a 59-6 win over Colorado State.

Defense: BYU LB Brandon Ogletree. Had career highs of five solo tackles and three tackles for loss in a 25-20 win over Wyoming. Four of the tackles came on Wyoming’s final drive of the game, and two were for a loss.

Special Teams: BYU KR Cody Hoffman. Had 104 kick return yards in the victory over Wyoming. In all, Hoffman averaged 26.0 yards on four kick returns.

Sun Belt

Offense: Western Kentucky QB Kawaun Jakes. Went 18-of-22 for a season-high 262 yards and one touchdown in a 54-21 win over Louisiana, snapping a 26-game losing streak. He also picked up 28 rushing yards and scored two rushing touchdowns. He led the Hilltoppers to scores on nine straight offense possessions.

Defense: Arkansas State DB Adrian Hills. Recorded a career-high two interceptions, including one returned 37 yards for a touchdown, over the final 10 minutes of a 37-16 fourth-quarter comeback victory against Florida Atlantic.

Special Teams: Western Kentucky K Casey Tinius. Score 12 points in the Hilltoppers’ victory over Louisiana. His 47-yard kick as time expired in the first half tied a career long.

WAC

Offense: Hawaii running back Alex Green. Ran for a career-high 172 yards and four touchdowns on 14 carries in a 45-7 win at Utah State. He had a career-long rush of 60 yards for a touchdown in the fourth quarter.

Defense: Hawaii linebacker Corey Paredes. Had a game-high 10 tackles and two interceptions at Utah State. Paredes helped anchor a defense that held its opponent to 181 yards of total offense, the fewest in a game for the Warriors since 2005.

Special Teams: Fresno State K Kevin Goessling. Made all four of his field goal attempts in a 33-18 win at San Jose State. Goessling was also 3-for-3 on extra point attempts to run his consecutive streak to 116 -- 12 shy of the all-time WAC record.

Non-AQ Weekend Rewind

October, 25, 2010
10/25/10
2:00
PM ET
Let's take a look at the good and the bad for the non-AQs in Week 8.

The good: Pollsters might not have noticed, but Utah is on an incredible tear. The Utes are No. 3 in the nation in scoring offense, having scored more than 50 points in four of their wins. They are outscoring opponents 183-36 in league play – the latest a 59-6 win against Wyoming that was one of their most complete games of the season. People have slammed the Utah schedule, but the Utes did beat Iowa State 68-27 – the same Cyclones team that just beat Texas.

TCU is on a tear, too, outscoring its opponents 141-10 in four Mountain West games.

[+] EnlargeGee Gee Greene
AP Photo/Rich SchultzRunning back Gee Gee Greene and Navy dominated Notre Dame, 35-17.
You have heard all about Navy’s impressive 35-17 win against Notre Dame. Those Navy seniors are now the third class in Academy history to beat Notre Dame three times, joining the classes of 1937 and 1964.

Meanwhile, the past two weeks have seen two winless teams win. Western Kentucky became the latest on Saturday in a 54-21 win against Louisiana. One interesting nugget from the win -- the victory was the first career coaching win for head coach Willie Taggart. It came on the same field where he played his last collegiate game, in 1998, when the Toppers dropped the season finale.

Say what you will about the WAC, but the league has five teams that are .500 or better right now.

The bad: Two MAC bowl teams from last season are having a difficult time of it in 2010. Bowling Green, which went 7-6 last season with a trip to the Humanitarian Bowl, has been eliminated from bowl contention after a 30-6 loss to Kent State. The Falcons have dropped five straight and are 1-7, including 0-4 in the MAC. Injuries have hurt, but so has the loss of several key players from last season. Bowling Green has struggled to run the ball, averaging 1.9 yards a rush, and has had trouble stopping the run, too. “We’ve got to find a way to play much better than we’ve been playing,” Bowling Green coach Dave Clawson said.

Defending West Division champion Central Michigan is at 2-6 and needs to win out to even be bowl eligible, but that would give it no guarantees for getting into a game. The Chippewas went 12-2 last season and have made four straight bowl games. But they have a new head coach in Dan Enos and are without quarterback Dan LeFevour, one of the best players in school history.

Meanwhile, Utah State has been outscored 69-13 in its past two WAC games. … Winless Akron has failed to score more than 17 points in its four MAC losses.

The heartache: UAB has read through this script before, and the Blazers have got to hate the results. Yet again, they came oh so close to upsetting an SEC team before coming up just short. UAB pulled ahead of Mississippi State 24-23 with 10 minutes to go in the game, but failed to hold on. The Bulldogs kicked two field goals to squeak out a 29-24 victory. No need to relive the 32-29 overtime loss to Tennessee earlier in the year that featured five missed field goals. Oh, wait. We just went there.

The off-balance: BYU coach Bronco Mendenhall said his team would go with a power run game more in the final part of the season. He wasn’t kidding. The Cougars had a season-low 81 yards passing in a 25-20 win against Wyoming, while racking up 217 yards on the ground. This is not necessarily good news, considering Cougars fans probably want to see more out of true freshman Jake Heaps. Is he not developing or does he not have playmakers around him? BYU has to win three of its final four to become bowl eligible. With games against UNLV, Colorado State and New Mexico, that remains a possibility.

A few more helmet stickers: Kent State receiver Tyshon Goode had a career-high 12 receptions for a season-high 158 yards and two touchdowns in a win against Bowling Green. … Western Kentucky quarterback Kawaun Jakes’ 262 passing yards and 290 yards of total offense in a win agaist Louisiana were the most for him since his first career start when he passed for 276 yards and posted 320 offensive yards at Navy last year.

A few injury items to note: San Diego State running back Ronnie Hillman has a hip pointer, but isn’t expected to miss any games. … Air Force isn’t going to get any of its injured players back this week for Utah. Jared Tew (leg) and receiver Kevin Fogler (knee) are still out, and nose tackle Ryan Gardner (groin) and receiver Zack Kauth (ankle) won’t practice this week.

Week 9 look-ahead: Plenty of big games ahead this weekend. No. 8 Utah begins the tough stretch of its schedule with a trip to Air Force. East Carolina travels to UCF for a big Conference USA showdown. Western Kentucky might even be able to put together a two-game winning streak as it hosts North Texas. The Mean Green will be playing their first game since coach Todd Dodge was fired.

Non-AQ spring surprises

February, 19, 2010
2/19/10
1:54
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As spring practices get underway, I thought I’d highlight five teams that are worth watching this spring. These are teams that didn’t have great 2009 seasons, but could make some noise in 2010. Some teams have new coaches still trying to figure out their personnel and some are teams with coaches trying to hang on to their jobs.

1. San Diego State: I haven’t been shy in talking about my affinity for what Brady Hoke and his coaching staff was able to do in one year at SDSU. Yes, the Aztecs won just four games, but they showed progress offensively and defensively. This spring is going to be key in developing the running game. The Aztecs are breaking in a new offensive line and have a slew of running backs to try out. This spring also will be key for a defense that was plugging holes last year. This year, defensive coordinator Rocky Long has the athletes to play his 3-3-5 system, so it should be fun to watch.

2. Louisiana Tech: It’s amazing how one coaching move can change the entire outlook of a team. I thought Louisiana Tech would be OK this year under new head coach Sonny Dykes, but adding Tony Franklin as the new offensive coordinator makes the Bulldogs a far more formidable team than they were three weeks ago. Franklin is a proven coordinator and he’s already shown the ability to turn teams around in a hurry. The biggest question this spring will be whether he can find a dynamic quarterback. That was the reason for his success at Middle Tennessee and it will what moves Louisiana Tech forward in 2010.

3. Toledo: The Rockets were one of the more disappointing teams in the MAC in 2009 because despite a new coaching staff, they still returned a lot of talent. Most of that talent and leadership is gone and the Rockets are building with young players. Toledo returns quarterback Austin Dantin and receiver Eric Page, who was a freshman All-American, and has seven members of its recruiting class on campus this spring, including wide receiver James Green and cornerback Taikwon Page. With Central Michigan and Western Michigan rebuilding, the Rockets have a good chance to challenge Northern Illinois for the MAC West this year.

4. Kent State: The Golden Flashes were so close to notching their first winning season since 2001, but slid in their final three games to finish 5-7. The Golden Flashes hold the second-longest drought without a bowl berth (1972), but could change those fortunes this year with a slew of young players such as quarterback Spencer Keith and receiver Tyshon Goode. The Golden Flashes also return running back Eugene Jarvis for a sixth season. The MAC East is going to be tough this year with Temple and Ohio returning several key players and both bringing in good recruiting classes, but Kent State should be able to challenge for a postseason berth.

5. North Texas: Call this a gut feeling. After winning five games in his first three seasons as head coach at UNT, Todd Dodge might have this thing figured out. If he doesn’t, he’ll be out the door. Dodge was spared after the 2009 season because he seems to have the program pointed in the right direction. Despite a 2-10 finish last year, the Mean Green lost five games by four or fewer points. The offense will have more cohesion this year, but the defense will be key. The Mean Green defense has held the team back under Dodge and that will be the difference in turning this thing around. The Mean Green have the talent to win six games and spring will be key in making sure the players believe that.

Mid-American Conference season wrap

December, 9, 2009
12/09/09
3:45
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Dan LeFevour couldn’t have scripted a better end to his Mid-American Conference career.


Leon Halip-US PRESSWIREQuarterback Dan LeFevour finishes his Central Michigan career as the Chippewas leader in many offensive categories.
LeFevour helped the Chippewas to an undefeated MAC season and a conference title. He won his first game against an AQ opponent, became the MAC’s all-time leader in passing and the country’s all-time leader in touchdowns.

LeFevour not only finished his career as the face of Central Michigan, but also the face of the conference.

And it was a good year to showcase the MAC.

For the first time since 2004, the MAC had three teams with at least nine wins and for the first time since 2005, the conference has five teams with at least seven wins. Both the West and East Divisions came down to the final weeks of the regular season to decide a championship and teams such as Ohio and Bowling Green played the final fourth of the season like a series of elimination games. Ohio earned its first division championship since 2006 and Bowling Green was the only team with a new non-AQ head coach to finish the regular season with a winning record. Both teams are going bowling.

And then there was one of the biggest success stories of the season in Temple. The Owls fell a game short of their first divisional title and conference championship berth, but still managed to finish with their best record since 1979.

Not to mention there is a ton of young talent in players like Toledo’s Eric Page, Kent State’s Spencer Keith and Tyshon Goode, Temple’s Bernard Pierce and Ball State's Kelly Page that will be able to keep the conference on an upswing.

The MAC still has a ways to go to catch up to some of its non-AQ brethren, but this year could be the breakthrough season it was looking for.

Offensive MVP: Central Michigan quarterback Dan LeFevour

There’s no doubt that LeFevour was the best offensive player in the conference this year. While his numbers might have been down from his sophomore season, he was still the most complete and dangerous player in the league. LeFevour finishes his career as the leader in total offensive yards (15,140), attempts (1,669), completions (1,110), passing yards (12,255) and is tied for second in touchdown passes (99).

Defensive MVP: Temple defensive end Adrian Robinson

Robinson led the MAC and tied for tenth in the country with 12 sacks. He also had 42 tackles, 12 tackles for loss, five forced fumbles and one interception. He helped Temple become the 20th-ranked rushing defense in the country.

Newcomer of the Year: Temple running back Bernard Pierce

Pierce led the MAC and ranked 13th in the nation in rushing with 1,308 yards on 224 carries and 15 rushing touchdowns. He was the Owls most effective offensive weapon and helped them rank 21st in the country in rushing with an average of 192.3 yards per game.

Coach of the Year: Temple’s Al Golden

In his fourth season as head coach, Golden led the Owls to a 9-3 overall record, 7-1 in the MAC. That record included nine consecutive wins during the season. The Owls have improved every season under Golden. In 2006, they won one game, four in 2007 and five wins a year ago.

Biggest Surprise: Temple

When Temple opened the season with a loss to FCS opponent Villanova, no one expected much from the Owls. But in a loss to Penn State, the Owls discovered they could play with any team in the country and rattled off nine consecutive wins to become one of the most talked about teams in the country. With a lot of talent coming back, Temple should be the favorite to win the East next year.

Biggest disappointment: Toledo

With so many senior leaders and playmakers returning this season, it was disappointing to see the Rockets win just five games. Two of Toledo’s loses came to teams with losing records, including Miami-Ohio, which only won one game this season.

Game of the Year: Temple 34, Miami-Ohio 32, Nov. 5

A loss a winless Miami-Ohio team not only would have stopped the Owls winning streak, it would have still put them a game out of securing a bowl and taken them out of first place in the MAC East. The Owls needed a Brandon McManus field goal with three seconds remaining to notch the win that would be their seventh in a row.
Posted by ESPN.com’s Graham Watson

No rattling the undefeated: Neither Boise State nor TCU were rattled this week by weaker opponents and remain the top two contenders for a potential BCS bowl berth. While both wins were impressive, TCU’s defensive prowess continues to be the shining star for the Horned Frogs. TCU defeated UNLV 41-0 and absolutely suffocated the Rebels on defense allowing just 160 yards of total offense. It was the Rebels' lowest offensive yardage output since TCU held them to 157 yards in 2005.

The kids are all right: A few non-AQ freshmen had big games to secure victories for their teams. Temple running back Bernard Pierce rushed for 267 of his team’s 311 rushing yards and scored the game-winning touchdown. SMU quarterback Kyle Padron threw for 354 yards in his first start, a school record, and led the Mustangs to a 27-13 win over Tulsa. Kent State quarterback Spencer Keith and receiver Tyshon Goode had career days to give the Golden Flashes a win over Western Michigan and put them a game away from bowl eligibility. And quarterback Zac Dysert threw for 344 yards to give Miami-Ohio its first win of the season.

Still winless: Nine weeks into the season and there are still four winless teams among the non-AQs. Rice, New Mexico, Western Kentucky and Eastern Michigan each are 0-8 this year. Both New Mexico and Western Kentucky had opportunities to get their first wins on Saturday as both led in their respective games, but couldn’t hold on. It was one of the few times both teams had been competitive in their contests. Time is ticking away and the opportunities for victories are starting dwindle.

Coach of the Year: Idaho coach Robb Akey and Temple coach Al Golden should both be considered for the National Coach of the Year award for the turnarounds their teams have performed this season. Temple came from behind to defeat Navy and notch its sixth consecutive win and gain bowl eligibility for the first time since 1990. If the Owls go to a bowl, it will be the first time since 1979. Idaho was down 13 points in the fourth quarter and scored two touchdowns in the final six minutes to earn a 35-34 win over Louisiana Tech and secure a bowl berth. Both coaches won one game when they took over their respective programs.

It’s not over: Of all the non-AQ conferences and divisions, Conference USA East is the only division that does not have a bowl-eligible team, but that could change tonight with Marshall’s game against Central Florida. Marshall (5-3, 3-1 C-USA) is currently a game behind East Carolina in the race for the East title. The Thundering Herd would not only need to win out, but also have an East Carolina loss to move into a tie for the division championship. Marshall lost to ECU earlier this year. Marshall has lost to Central Florida four consecutive times; the last two have been by an average of 25 points.

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