2014 BALL STATE FOOTBALL PREVIEW
June 13, 2014INDIANA SPORTS PAGE
2013 Record: (10-3, 7-1)
Pete Lembo is back on the sidelines after getting attention from larger programs. Lembo signed a long term contract in the off-season that will keep him in Muncie for a long time. That’s good news for Cardinals fans who saw their football team win 10 games and received an invitation to the GoDaddy.com Bowl. Now Lembo has to find a QB after losing Keith Wenning to the NFL. Last year he threw for 4,148 yards and 35 touchdowns with just seven interceptions. Now the job is up to Sophomore Ozzie Mann and freshman Jack Milas. Neither secured the job in the spring. Wenning may be gone and the QB position is up for grabs but the running game is in good hands. Jahwan Edwards is back after rushing for 1,110 yards and 14 touchdowns. Horactio Banks added 595 yards and seven touchdowns. The Cardinals return three starters on the offensive line in Steven Bell, Jacob Richard and Jalen Schlachter. WR Jordan Williams, who caught 72 passes for 1,050 yards and ten scores a year ago is back as the top playmaker. The Cards lost all everything WR’s Willie Snead and Jamill Smith. KeVonn Mabon will need to step into the starting line-up and fill the shoes of Snead and Smith.
Ball State’s defense has been overlooked by their offense. The Cardinals gave up 413 yards of total offense in 2013 and allowed 24.7 points per game. They did create turnovers for the offense with 13 interceptions and 18 fumble recoveries. Key returning players include FS Dae’Shaun Hurley who had 83 tackles in 2013. Seniors CB Eric Patterson and SS Brian Jones are back with a years’ experience under their belts. The defensive line returns just one starter in DE Nick Miles. The strength of the defense will be linebackers Ben Ingle and Zack Ryan return. Ingle led the team with 116 tackles and Ryan had 92 tackles as a freshman.
Coach Lembo has brought a winning attitude to Muncie and now the expectations are high again for 2014. Despite having a winning program for the last three seasons, the Cardinals haven’t won a MAC Championship. Winning the MAC title may be hard in 2014 with an inexperienced QB.