It’s another bye week for the Dukes, but that doesn’t mean that there isn’t a lot to look at! Let’s get some quick hits below and see what’s happening with Duquesne and around the NEC!
- Dillon Buechel was once again named the rookie of the week in the NEC, and he is well deserving. One of the few bright spots in the loss to YSU, Buechel did not succumb to the pressure that came with being made one-dimensional by the run defense of the Penguins. Congrats, Dillon!
- Dorian Bell is getting tackles at half the pace he did last year. This is a problem for the defense as a whole, as they’re having some difficulty tackling in general.
- Unfortunately, as mentioned in last weekend’s NEC Roundup, the Albany win is looking less and less impressive. They dropped another game and will likely have a difficult time in their new conference.
- Only two teams in the NEC – Bryant and Sacred Heart – currently have a winning record. The big matchup this weekend – Bryant vs. Wagner in what is the first conference game of the year. This game is important for both teams. Wagner needs to show that their defensive failings in the loss to the DII school are in the past – a tall order against a prolific Bryant offense. Bryant needs to show that their position near the top of the conference is legitimate and that they’re deserving of more than the 3rd place prediction at the beginning of the season. A big game indeed.
- Wagner has the top two teams in the conference before heading to the Bluff to face the Dukes in the big Alumni Homecoming game.
- SHU vs. Bucknell is the other big game to follow. The Bison have been pretty lousy over the last several years, but so has SHU. The Pioneers haven’t played Division I competition in two consecutive weeks. I wonder how they’ll respond. Their last good year was a flash-in-the-pan in 2008, and they haven’t been better than mediocre before or since.
Don’t forget to check back here on Sunday to see how the NEC fared during the weekend of play. We have the first big conference game of the year this week and, of course, eyes are on SHU to see if they can continue their undefeated streak. Stay tuned!