It’s time for a first look at the next opponent for the Dukes, the Flyers of Dayton. This is a familiar rivalry on the basketball court, but the football games can be contentious as well. As evidence, I submit the close Duquesne win last year, made possible by the late-game heroics of Patterson and McCoy.
In the football side of the rivalry, Duquesne owns the series recently, winning five of their last six.
Dayton will come into the game nursing their wounds after a loss to Youngstown State University. Quarterback Will Bardo was not impressive, throwing below 50% and getting picked off twice. The Flyers did finally put up points in the 3rd quarter, but it was too little, too late. Two thirds of Flyer yardage came as the game was getting out of hand. They went down 28-10.
Youngstown State is a good FCS team, though that’s another article for another time. What can the Dukes learn from the game tape as they prepare to face Dayton?
The Flyers running game is falliable.
Dayton likes to run, and with many different people. The Penguins held them to 75 yards. Duquesne recently limited a team that also liked to run and will need to do so again. Especially because…
Bardo is average and will make mistakes.
Nothing on Bardo – he plays better than I would. That said, he is not a gifted passer. When made to be one-dimensional, he was exposed and picked off twice. The Dukes DBs could come away with paydirt. He will not perform as well as Albany’s Fiacchi when forced to pass and the Dukes MUST exploit this.
You can run on the Flyers…
YSU likes to run, and run they did. 376 yards and all four touchdowns came by way of feet rather than hands. Ho and the rest of the RBs should have the opportunity to gain ground. At the very least, some quick, short passes will accomplish the same thing, much in the way that we saw Duquesne do early against YSU.
…but QBs, be careful.
YSU’s QB was not impressive – 9 of 19 with two picks, an unusual stat line for a quarterback who completed 63% last year and had twice as many touchdowns as interceptions. Buechel will need to be very precise with his passes and certainly the offense will watch some tape on the positioning of Flyers DBs.
We’ll have more Dukes vs. Dayton later this week!