Photo credit: Indianapolis University Twitter
Author: Jon Kuzma
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After taking time to reflect what went wrong for the Grand Valley State University Lakers in their season opener, it becomes overwhelming obvious that the run defense was the problem for Matt Mitchell’s team. Grand Valley State University not only allowed a 200 yard rusher in Al McKeller who finished the day with 206 yards for the Greyhounds. They also allowed a 100 yard rusher in Andrew Walker (105 yards) and you can’t allow two players to rush for 300 yards and still expect to win. Indianapolis didn’t even have to get their passing game going (finished with 56 yards total) in this contest, they just handled the ball off and watched their offense roll. Run defense is so fundamental in football and if you can’t clamp down on opposing team’s running backs its a bad precedent of what’s to come. Grand Valley State University might have to consider adjusting their scheme to get some more favorable match ups, that’s about all they can do at this point. Now there were other problems in this loss as well. Grand Valley was out to a 13-0 lead early in the game, and eventually lost that lead on a huge 17 point swing by Indianapolis. The fact that the Lakers offense put up 403 yards and 20 point on the board lets you know that they aren’t the problem. Instead it’s the lack of mental toughness that Grand Valley State University has on the defensive side of the ball. The offense put this team in the lead and in the driver seat. The defense had a meltdown and let all GVSU’s dreams slip away. It will be up to this football team to hold themselves account and make any changes on defense that can put them in a better chance to succeed. Other than that the only thing you could ask of the offense is to try to win the time of possession battle, the Lakers had the ball for 26 minutes while Indianapolis had the ball for 33 minutes. Time of possession is so key because it lets your defense rest, which should result in more defensive output. The bottom line though in West Michigan is the defense as a whole has to be better and the front 7 have to put this loss squarely on their own shoulders.
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