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UMass Players to Watch vs. NIU

UMass Minutemen players to watch as they play the Northern Illinois Huskies on Saturday.

Jared Wickerham

UMass is far and wide the worst team in the MAC and quite possibly the worst team in the nation, but they do have

The Minutemen offense is ranked dead last in the MAC at 13th. They have some good players on this team, but you have to dig deep to find them.

RG Nick Speller was supposed to be the team's best offensive lineman, but he is just now returning vs. NIU after a three-game suspension for academics. He'll be back, but he won't start vs. the Huskies. QB Mike Wegzyn is the least efficient passer in the MAC. He's only 123 of 239 (51.5%) for 1,207 yds on the season with 4 TDs and 7 INTs. So let's talk about some other players...

Offense

  • #5 RB Michael Cox (6'3" 214 SR) leads the team in rushing with 488 yds on 128 carries, which ranks 13th in the MAC. Cox is a 5th year transfer from Michigan, where he was a career backup.
  • #3 WR Deion Walker (6'3" 206 SR) leads the team in receiving with 40 catches for 475 yds and 2 TDs. He averages 67.9 ypg, 11th in the MAC. His catches rank 8th. He is also a 5th year transfer, this time from Notre dame where he was a career backup.
  • #74 LT Stephanie Milhim (6'5" 315 SR), Mihim has started 32 games for the Minutemen, the most out of any offensive lineman. He was also 3rd Team All-CAA LY

Defense

The defense is a little better ranking 10th in the MAC. They're 10th also in rushing defense, but 13th in pass efficiency D.

  • #44 MLB Perry McIntyre (6'1" 240 SR) is 4th in the MAC with 84 tackles. He is also on on Phil Steele's 1st Team All-MAC Midseason Team. He also has 34 career starts for the Minutemen.
  • #27 S Darren Thellen (6'2" 207 SR) has 51 tackles, 2 INTs and 4 PBUs on the season. He is the team's most experienced starter with 36 career starts.