POPEYES BAHAMAS BOWL WEEK 6 NOTEBOOK
THIS WEEKEND: The Week 6 schedule begins Thursday night when in-state C-USA rivals Florida Atlantic and FIU battle for the Shula Bowl. Both schools look to go 2-0 in the East and keep pace with division leader Middle Tennessee (2-0), which hosts Southern Miss on Saturday. Also Saturday, lone C-USA unbeaten Marshall (4-0) begins conference play at Old Dominion in an East Division game, UTEP opens league play with a division game at West leader Louisiana Tech (1-0) and UAB is at WKU. Six conference games highlight the Saturday MAC schedule: West Division leader Toledo (2-0) travels to Western Michigan, Buffalo plays at Bowling Green in a game between two of the East tri-leaders, and the other East leader, Ohio, is at Central Michigan. Northern Illinois, which has the MAC’s best overall record (3-1) and a 27-game home win streak, opens league play at home vs. Kent State, Central Michigan is at Akron and UMass travels to Miami for an East Division game.
POWER-FUL MAC: The MAC has four victories over Power Five (ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC) conference opponents, which is tied for first (Mountain West) among the Group of Five conferences. The MAC has victories over Big Ten foes Indiana, Northwestern and Purdue, and last Saturday, Akron got its first victory over a Power Five/BCS conference automatic qualifier since 2008 with a 21-10 victory at Pittsburgh.
OWLS FLY PAST ROADRUNNERS: Florida Atlantic had a furious fourth-quarter comeback to beat UTSA 41-37 last Saturday in both schools’ C-USA opener when Owls QB Jaquez Johnson threw a 15-yard TD to WR Nate Terry with 20 seconds left. Trailing 37-27, the Owls’ comeback began when Johnson hit WR Lucky Whitehead for a 21-yard TD with 4:10 left. After a punt, Johnson led the Owls on a 93-yard drive for the winning TD. UTSA returned the ensuing kickoff to the Owls 13, but FAU DB Cre’von LeBlanc broke up a pass in the end zone as time expired.
WHOLE LOTTA YARDS: Last Saturday, Bowling Green beat UMass on the road 47-42 in a game that featured 1,306 total offense yards, third-most in MAC history. Bowling Green had 668 total yards to UMass’ 638, 589 from the arm of grad student QB Blake Frohnapfel. Frohnapfel was 39-of-61 passing with five TDs for the Minutemen.
FBS NATIONAL LEADERS: WKU senior QB Brandon Doughty is second in pass yards (1,846) and passing yards per game (461.5). Western Michigan freshman RB Jarvion Franklin is first in rush TDs (11) and scoring (66 points).
#PassportToKickoff is not only our hashtag, but a reminder that all U.S. citizens must have a valid passport to travel to the Bahamas & the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl. For passport info:
WEEK 6 SCHEDULE
Thursday, October 2
* Florida Atlantic at FIU (FSN)
Saturday, October 4
* Marshall at Old Dominion (FSN)
* Southern Miss at Middle Tenn. (ASN)
North Texas at Indiana (BTN)
New Mexico at UTSA (ASN)
* UTEP at Louisiana Tech (FCS)
* UAB at WKU
Hawai’i at Rice (ASN)
Saturday, October 4
Ball State at Army (CBSSN)
* Eastern Michigan at Akron (ESPN3)
* UMass at Miami (ESPN3)
* Buffalo at Bowling Green (ESPN3)
* Ohio at Central Michigan (ESPN3)
* Kent State at Northern Illinois (ESPN3)
* Toledo at Western Michigan (ESPN3)
(TV/digital network in parenthesis)
* – conference games
WEEK 5 RESULTS
Friday, September 26
* Middle Tennessee 41, Old Dominion 28
Saturday, September 27
Kansas State 58, UTEP 28
* FIU 34, UAB 20
WKU 36, Navy 27
Auburn 45, Louisiana Tech 17
* Florida Atlantic 41, UTSA 37
* Rice 41, Southern Miss 23
Saturday, September 27
Akron 21, Pittsburgh 10
Virginia Tech 35, Western Michigan 17
Ohio 34, Eastern Illinois 19
* Bowling Green 47, UMass 42
Virginia 45, Kent State 13
* Buffalo 35, Miami 27
* Toledo 42, Central Michigan 28
* – conference games
WEEK 5 INDIVIDUAL HONORS
QB Jaquez Johnson, Florida Atlantic: The junior completed 24-of-34 passes for 295 yards and three TDs, and he also ran for a score in a 41-37 victory over UTSA for C-USA Offensive Player of the Week honors.
DB Richard Leonard, FIU: The senior had three tackles and a pair of interceptions, including a 25-yard return for a TD, in a 34-20 victory at UAB for C-USA Defensive Player of the Week honors.
S Kevin Byard, Middle Tennessee: The junior returned his first career punt 76 yards for a TD in a 41-28 victory at Old Dominion for C-USA Special Teams Player of the Week recognition.
QB Blake Frohnapfel, UMass: The graduate student completed 36-of-61 passes for a UMass and MAC single-game record 589 yards and 5 TDs in a loss to Bowling Green for MAC East Division Offensive Player of the Week honors.
LB Jatavis Brown, Akron: The junior had 11 tackles (nine solo) and an 8-yard sack in a 21-10 victory at Pittsburgh for MAC East Division Defensive Player of the Week honors.
K Tyler Tate, Bowling Green: The junior scored 11 points on two FGs and five PATs in a 47-42 victory at UMass for MAC East Division Special Teams Player of the Week recognition.
QB Logan Woodside, Toledo: The sophomore completed 23-of-34 passes for a career-high 339 yards and two TDs in a 42-28 win over Central Michigan for MAC West Division Offensive Player of the Week honors.
DB Ronald Zamort, Western Michigan: The junior had three tackles, one interception, one pass breakup and two passes defensed in a loss at Virginia Tech for MAC West Division Defensive Player of the Week honors.
P Ron Coluzzi, Central Michigan: The sophomore had three punts over 50 yards, averaging 52.7 yards, in a loss at Toledo for MAC West Division Special Teams Player of the Week.
POPEYES BAHAMAS BOWL MEDIA PREDICTIONS
Organization (Media Member) – Date: C-USA vs. MAC Matchup
ESPN.com (Brett McMurphy) – Sept. 28: North Texas vs. Western Michigan
ESPN.com (Mark Schlabach) – Sept. 28: Marshall vs. Toledo
CollegeFootballNews.com (Pete Fiutak) – Oct. 1: UTEP vs. Northern Illinois
USA Today (Erick Smith) – Oct. 1: Florida Atlantic vs. Ohio
NFL.com (Mike Huguenin) – Sept. 30: Old Dominion vs. Ohio
The Sporting News (Bill Bender) – Sept. 29: UTEP vs. Akron
SB Nation (Jason Kirk) – Sept. 29: Marshall vs. Toledo
Phil Steele Magazine – Sept. 29: Louisiana Tech vs. Toledo
Brant Parsons (Orlando Sentinel) – Sept. 28: WKU vs. Bowling Green
CBSSports.com (Jerry Palm) – Sept. 28: UTSA vs. Central Michigan
SI.com (Zac Ellis) – Aug. 27: Middle Tennessee vs. Toledo
FOXSports.com (Stuart Mandel) – Aug. 26: Florida Atlantic vs. Northern Illinois
NationalFootballPost.com (Dave Miller) – Aug. 25: Marshall vs. Toledo
POPEYES BAHAMAS BOWL PARTICIPANT SELECTION
The highest-ranked team by the College Football Playoff Selection Committee from either the American Athletic, Conference USA, MAC, Mountain West or Sun Belt will play annually in one of the College Football Playoff bowls.
Conference USA’s champion will select which bowl it would like to attend, and the remainder of the selections will follow after that, with no particular set order of bowls. C-USA has 2014 tie-ins with the Popeyes Bahamas, Boca Raton, Gildan New Mexico, Hawai’i and Heart of Dallas bowls, with a secondary tie-in with the Duck Commander Independence Bowl (if either ACC or SEC does not have enough eligible teams).
The Mid-American Conference will provide a bowl-eligible team for the Popeyes Bahamas Bowl. The MAC has 2014 tie-ins with Popeyes Bahamas, Boca Raton, Famous Idaho Potato, GoDaddy and Raycom Media Camellia bowls, with a secondary tie-in with the San Diego County Credit Union Poinsettia Bowl (if Navy is not bowl-eligible or the Mountain West does not have enough eligible teams).
The participants for the 2014 Popeyes Bahamas Bowl will be announced Sunday, December 7.