Were it not for a fourth and goal stop by Millikin University late in the fourth quarter, in the first game of the 2019 season, Hope’s record could potentially be unblemished. Since that stop they have been unbeatable, seven straight victories while performing like a well-oiled machine. Their average margin of victory during this streak is over 33 points!
But, their last 2 MIAA foes, Olivet and Alma, both eyeing a share of the top spot in the conference had come to wrest that throne away, if possible. The margin of victory in those two games…7 points! Fortunately, Hope plays a style of football that lends itself to success in tight games, they rarely turn the ball over. In only 1 game so far this season have they had a turnover…they escaped that game with a 2 point victory. In addition, they are most likely the least penalized team in the state as well, averaging 3.5 flags per game.
Hope Uses Strong Ground Game To Defeat # 2 Olivet And Remain #1 In Week 9 TPR(c) Rankings!
October 30, 2019
By Tony Dixon, For COLLEGE FOOTBALL WRAP-UP(c)
Ypsilanti, MI —
On what was perhaps the wettest Saturday of the college football season in Michigan, a variety of teams rode the backs of their offensive line, and the legs of their best back to survive and advance towards their collective team goals this past weekend.
In the case of the GAME OF THE WEEK, # 1* Hope rode on the shoulders of quarterback Mason Opple’s 213 yards of rushing to defeat # 2* and formerly unbeaten Olivet to seize first place in the MIAA.
Meanwhile, Siena Heights was on the road, in Indiana, pulling off the program’s first ever upset of a Top Ten nationally ranked school to vault into the vacancy at # 2* that was created by Olivet’s defeat. SHU also tied MSU for the second strongest TPR for the season at 15.5. # 1* Hope has scored two 20 point performances so far this season.
Grand Valley State also took advantage of a rainy Saturday night to move back into the Top Five* with it’s solid performance, a 27 – 7 victory over Davenport-GR.
Nationally ranked at #2, and the only remaining unbeaten team in the state, Ferris State is closing in on a Top Five TPR(c) spot at #6*. The Bulldogs rode the shoulders of their senior QB Jayru Campbell in a different manner, he threw for a career high 347 yards and 2 TDs, while leading FSU to a victory over Saginaw Valley St.
Wayne State took advantage of a visit to Northwood to add a notch in the Win column with a road victory, 31 – 10.
U-M also moved up with an unusually strong performance against a higher nationally ranked opponent in Notre Dame. The Irish had no answers for the bright lights, rain and the Wolverines smothering defense in a 45 – 14 thrashing.
Western Mich. joined U-M and WSU in the even dozen club this week, by scoring a 12 in it’s domination of Bowling Green, 49 – 10. The Broncos had 399 yards and six TDs on the ground. Senior running back LeVante Bellamy led the ground forces with 178 yards and 4 TDs.
The TEAM PERFORMANCE RATING System or TPR(c) is a simple system that rates each teams performance in it’s game against a stated set of numerical values. The numerical values are then totaled (The Points Score for the game) and then every week’s Points Score is added up and divided by the number of games played to determine the TPR(c) for the team, for the season so far.
Here are the Criteria and The Numerical Values Assigned to the Criteria:
Win The Game……………………………………………..+ 4 points
Total 150+ Net Yards Rushing…………………….+ 2 points
Total 225+ Net Yards Passing……………………..+ 2 points
No Turnovers For The Game………………………+ 2 points
Give Up Less Than 150 Net Yards Rushing.+ 2 points
Give Up Less Than 225 Net Yards Passing..+ 2 points
BONUS — Road Victory………………………………..+ 3 points
BONUS — Takeaways………………………………….+ 1 point PER Takeaway
DEDUCTIONS — Penalties…………………………..(- .50) point PER Penalty Assessed
The TPR(c) System was created by Tony Dixon, and is used exclusively for the TPR(c) Rankings. No other source except numerical data from the game itself is used to score the rankings.
When the weather forecasters get it right, they get it right! All week long the forecast had been for day long, heavy rains…the kind of weather that would heighten the need for a strong ground game and a good grip on the football.
Michigan on this Saturday was not a place to showcase your “air-raid” attack! It was a place for your offensive linemen to show what those long, hard hours in the weight room had wrought. Fullbacks and running backs were full of anticipation of the coming game, knowing that they would be the focus of this week’s game. It was also the place where a mobile quarterback could prove…invaluable!
Case in point, the CFWU’s GAME OF THE WEEK, # 1 (TPR) Hope on the road at # 2 (TPR) Olivet…with sole possession of 1st place in the MIAA on the line! The Flying Dutchmen rushed for 310 yards, led by their senior QB Mason Opple’s 213 yards, 8.5 yards/rush and 2 TDs on the ground, on their way to a 21 – 7 victory. Opple is listed at 6-3, 236 pounds, and when his head coach was asked about the performance, he replied…“What can you say about Mason Opple? He’s a beast,” Stuursma said. “It’s like tackling a dump truck. He saddled us up and put us on his shoulders and carried us.”
Case in point, #2 nationally (# 6 TPR) Ferris State invited an old and familiar foe, # 10 (TPR) Saginaw Valley State out to Top Taggart Field to make their case for being the best team in the GLIAC. FSU’s senior QB Jayru Campbell had a monster day with over 400 yards of total offense and 2 rushing TDs. Oddly enough, 347 yards of those yards came through the air, as Ferris remained unbeaten and in first place in the conference, with a 31 – 10 victory over SVSU.
The COLLEGE FOOTBALL WRAP-UP(c)’s Other Games Of Interest results:
#5 (TPR) Grand Valley State grinds out a water logged 27 – 7 victory over #14 (TPR) Davenport-GR under the lights at Lubbers Stadium.
#4 (TPR and #18 nationally) Siena Heights goes on the road and upsets #4 (nationally) Saint Francis 24 – 14. It was the program’s first victory over a nationally Top Ten ranked opponent.
#19 (nationally) U-M shines under the lights at the Big House as they take #7 Notre Dame apart on national TV with a 45 – 14 victory.
#1 versus #2…The Battle for Supremacy…The Game of The Year…The Showdown For First Place! So many cliches can be used to describe Saturday’s upcoming game between Hope’s Flying Dutchmen and the Olivet Comets, but in the end, the game comes down to two very solid, and common denominators.
First place in the MIAA Conference – The unbeaten Comets and the unbeaten (in the conference) Flying Dutchmen will put a serious dent in one or the other’s plans to win the conference with a victory. Both are currently in first place, and undefeated in the MIAA race.
The end of a winning streak – Olivet is undefeated (6 -0) and Hope (5 – 1) has won it’s last five games in a row. Only unbeaten Ferris State (7 – 0) has a longer winning streak this year in the state of Michigan.
An interesting side note to this game is that Hope has put together 3 of the top TPR scoring weeks of the year. It has scored 20.0 points twice this year, and has the third highest performance with a 16.0 performance also. Michigan State has the next highest performance this year (15.5).
Speaking of Ferris State, the state’s true juggernaut on the gridiron currently (and for the last 5+ years, if you do the research), they will be busy defending their turf against an old and familiar foe, Saginaw Valley State. The Cardinals are in the midst of a 2 game losing streak, but will be up for their annual GLIAC tussle.
Wayne State has been inconsistent this year, but it has been a true problem for any team not named Ferris State that has ventured into the confines of Tom Adams Field in Detroit. They have upset not 1, but 2, Top Thirty nationally ranked schools at home this year, including their double overtime victory over Ashland (OH) this past weekend.
EMU racked up a solid victory over WMU this past weekend both on the field as well as in the TPRs. It was also the Eagles third victory secured in the last 30 seconds of the game this season!
Lawrence Tech cracked the Top 20 in the state this week, by putting up the semblance of a struggle against Siena Heights.
Finlandia and Northwood remained winless on the season. Finlandia ran into a buzzsaw when they played #1* Hope. While Northwood’s foe was none other than the aforementioned Ferris State Bulldogs, ranked #2 nationally.
Hope Storms Back Into #1 Position In TPR(c) Ratings!
Hope College turned in the second highest TPR scoring for the season in upsetting # 24 and two-time defending MIAA Conference champion Trine this past Saturday in Indiana with a 51 – 0 road victory.
Hope’s TPR scoring was 16 points for it’s complete dominance of Trine (IN) University. Hope has also turned in the highest scoring weekly scoring for the season with it’s 20 point performance in a victory over Defiance (OH), 80 – 6 in week 2 of the season.
Three of the previous week’s Top Five teams remained in or rose in position, while Michigan Tech made it’s return and Alma joined the elite group. MTU profited from having a Bye week and a revision in the TPR(c) scoring process. Alma rose as a result of it’s stunning 4th quarter dominance of Albion in a 32 – 28 victory last Saturday.
Grand Valley State saw it’s # 1 TPR ranking disappear due to Ashland’s 4th quarter miracle this past Saturday at Lubber’s Stadium. But, no time to lament that wasted opportunity as The Battle of The Valleys is on the horizon.
That’s right, this week’s GVSU vs. SVSU, The Battle Of The Valleys is the CFWU(c) GAME OF THE WEEK! Saginaw Valley rebounded from it’s upset loss to Wayne State at Tom Adams Field, by downing Northwood University, 55 – 29 in the 45th edition of The Axe Bowl game.
Ferris State finds itself in another battle, right after last week’s tussle with then unbeaten Davenport-AA.
The # 11 and #12 teams found themselves recovering from losses in both games and positions. MSU was treated rudely in it’s visit to #4 (Nationally) OSU, 34 – 10.
EMU also faired poorly on the road in it’s matchup with Central Michigan, 42 – 16.
Wayne State, fresh off it’s upset of SVSU continued it’s winning ways, adding a road victory over NMU to it’s current 3 game winning streak. (Editor’s note: WSU stat’s were recorded in error, it’s corrected TPR(c) Scoring for the past week is actually 7.3, which puts it into the Top Ten at # 10. We apologize for the mis-calculation.)
WSU will have little time to rest on it’s laurels as 2018 National Championship Runner-up, and # 2 ranked nationally Ferris State is coming to Tom Adams Field to test WSU commitment. FSU has a strong defense and rushing attack and will provide a strong measuring stick for WSU’s 2019 campaign.