Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

UMass travels to Ypsilanti for Week 3 matchup with Eastern Michigan

Minutemen on the road for the third time in four weeks
Kayla Wong

After last Saturday’s game, which saw nearly six hours (346 minutes) of delays, the Massachusetts football team once again hits the road, taking on Eastern Michigan on Saturday, Sept. 16 from Ypsilanti, MI.

This matchup is familiar for the Minutemen (1-2), as they faced the Eagles (1-1) in 2022 to the tune of a 20-13 loss. The starting quarterback for UMass on Oct 1, 2022, was Gino Campiotti who now changed positions to tight end. Brady Olson was his backup that day, and it looks like Olson’s role will remain the same in the 2023 rendition of this matchup.

After suffering an undisclosed injury in the fourth quarter of the Minutemen’s last game against Miami of Ohio, Carlos Davis exited the game and was relieved by Olson. However, Davis should be good to go for Saturday’s matchup according to head coach Don Brown.

Davis finished last Saturday completing 22-32 passes for 244 yards and three touchdown passes. Discounting his three sacks taken, Davis added 23 yards on the ground.

“We should be fine, [Davis] should be fine,” Brown said. “We checked him out [on Sunday] and he should be good to go.”

After beginning the season with back-to-back long road trips, Brown emphasized that this past Saturday’s game might have been the toughest of the three. Still, his team looks to put the past behind them and focus on the upcoming opponent.

“Our guys will be very excited,” Brown said. “That was a good tilt last year for us, we played pretty well … we got out on the right foot … we got up 13-0, a ball hit the returner in the leg, it goes against us and away we go. We just [got to] make sure that we take care of our business … how do you do that? Just finish, finish every play.”

The Eagles and Minutemen are in the same boat when it comes to point differential as both teams get scored on more than they score. Eastern Michigan doesn’t reach the highs that UMass does on either side of the football, as it has averaged 19.5 points per game while allowing 24 points in its two games played. The Minutemen by comparison average 27.67 points per game while allowing 43.33 points through their first three games.

The Eagles average just around 30 more yards in the air per game than they do on the ground (123 in the air compared to 95.5 on the ground). Their leading rusher is Samson Evans who has 125 net yards on the ground with an average of 4.6 yards per carry. Only one play-caller has been used for EMU this season, Austin Smith. He has a completion percentage of 58.33 percent and has thrown one touchdown to two interceptions.

“[EMU wants] to run the ball, they’re a big run team … they run the ball right at [you],” Brown said. “They’ve got a banger, they’ve got a quick guy, they kind of play off each other. I think we’ll be ready to go. I’m excited about our guys … [it’s] a good opportunity to get our second win.”

After falling behind 21-0 against Miami (OH) in the first quarter, Brown and the Minutemen hope to start the game faster. However, according to Brown, Davis settled in at the start of the second half.

“Maybe [Davis was] a little slow starting, but he just stayed the course, trusted his reads,” Brown said. “He was able to get himself going in a good fashion … I’d like to see us get more targets for [Campiotti] but I thought [Davis] sprayed the ball around pretty good.”

Kickoff is scheduled for 2 p.m. from Rynearson Stadium. The game can be viewed on ESPN+.

Johnny Depin can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @Jdepin101.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All Massachusetts Daily Collegian Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *