If there ever was a brother/sister blog to Red and Black Attack, it would have to be Ball State blog Over The Pylon. They rock, so go visit and visit often. Here is a set of questions that I asked to the BSU expert and you can view my answers to his questions here.
We will also be co-hosting a Live Chat here starting at 4:30 for the game, so make sure to stop by again and say hi!
RABA: What will Ball State's offensive gameplan be against the Huskies, considering that we own the #1 rushing and total defense in the MAC? Will we see a lot of RB MiQuale Lewis?
OTP: To be truthful, I'm far from optimistic about BSU's chances running the ball. A great rushing defense going against a young and inexperienced offensive line is making me quite uncomfortable. Like a lot of games this season, Parrish and the offense will run Quale if he does well, others if he does not, but run they must since the passing game has been hamstringed by Tanner Justice and his limited abilities. The bottom line in answering the question is yes... NIU will see a ton of Quale unless he isn't effective. Which certainly is sort of explanatory.
RABA: Ball State's defense is ususally very tough. How will they slow down the Huskies run game? Any players to watch out for?
OTP: They won't if the beginning part of this season is any sort of indicator. The defense last year was far from dominant or jaw breaking... it simply bent but rarely broke and could come up with a "big play" when needed. That isn't the case this season. The d continues to give up big plays and breaks more than Windows Vista. The two players that need to be contained are Sean Baker at safety and Robert Eddins up front. Both of those guys are tremendous in creating chaos in the passing game... the passing game that NIU won't be relying on.
RABA: As the season winds down, what are the Cardinals focusing on now that will help them next season and beyond? Is there hope for next season?
OTP: Hope, to borrow a line from Shawshank, is a dangerous thing. Hope can make you overlook blatantly obvious problems or things that are going wrong with no hope of getting better. That sort of blind hope is neither warranted or happening. The hope that is happening is that the administration and the staff somehow pulls it all together and the lack of success is more a result of youth and inexperience as opposed to incompetence.
RABA: Have you gotten a picture with the 'Bronze Stalk'? You might want to, considering it's going to be in Dekalb for a while after Thurs.
OTP: I am certainly not hunting down lame-ass rivalry trophies to try and photograph. And if that prediction comes true, and it resides in Dekalb for a while, that's probably a good thing since it was presumably becoming bored with its location in Muncie. However, I hope not only the fans but also the team and staff come into this game with that self-inflated sense of entitlement and victory... that will bode well for us.
RABA: Are you surprised the line is -17? I find that very high. Predictions?
OTP: It's the MAC so anything is possible. Last year I expected a shoot out or a hard fought victory, and we took NIU behind the woodshed. This year, I expect a woodshed beating from NIU, so hopefully, the opposite will happen, as it did last year. I will say NIU by 10-14, and any result better than that is reason to celebrate.