|MAC schedule impacted by ESPN (11-01-12)|
|Written by JACK CARLE Sentinel Sports Editor|
|Thursday, 01 November 2012 10:12|
Because of the money being thrown around by ESPN, the Mid-American Conference football schedule takes on a different look in November.
Starting tonight and continuing through Nov. 20, the MAC has six mid-week games scheduled to be televised on the ESPN family of networks. With mid-week games, teams are getting a Saturday off and the most games scheduled on any Saturday this month are four for the 13-team conference.
Bowling Green has only one of the mid-week games this year, at Ohio next Wednesday. Kickoff is at 8 p.m., and the game will be televised on ESPN2.
Ohio and Toledo are each playing three mid-week games this month.
"There have been years in the past where we've had at least two, if not three of them,'' BG head coach Dave Clawson said. "We don't get a full bye week, but we get two kind of half bye weeks. If you talk to our players, they kind of enjoy it. It's nice to get a little break
"Football coaches, especially, we are creatures of habit,'' Clawson added. ''Our week is very structured in terms of what we do, in terms of game-planning and meetings. When you play a Wednesday game at 8 o'clock at night it throws your rhythm off.''
With the extra days between games, the Falcons were able to take two days off from practice and have an extra day to prepare for Ohio.
BG has been practicing during the morning with players taking care of classes in the afternoon.
With the 8 p.m. start at Ohio, Clawson is having the team practice in the afternoon and at night later this week.
"Sometimes when you have a game at 8 o'clock at night on a weekday you're at a disadvantage when you are a morning practice team,'' Clawson said. "Our guys are used to getting up at 5-5:30 in the morning and being here at 6-6:15 and practicing between 8:30 and 10:30.
"We are going to use the weekend and Friday to practice later, to try to get their body clocks used to sleeping in a little bit more and practicing later in the day,'' Clawson added.
One thing to avoid with extra time to prepare, Clawson said, is trying to add more things to the game plan that you normally would during a normal week.
"Sometimes you hurt yourself by getting too much ready,'' Clawson said. "We've got to be careful that we don't take that extra time and overload our players and give them too much.''
TOP: BG's offense is not as efficient as Clawson would like, but it did the job in time of possession to secure the 24-3 win over Eastern Michigan last Saturday,
The Falcons held the ball for 34:50 in the game, including the final 9:10 of the contest.
"When you hold on to the ball for 35 minutes and when you can hold on to the ball for 9:10 to finish the game, that's good offense," Clawson said. "It doesn't show up in points, but that's hard to do.''
Clawson added it's especially hard to do at the end of the game when everyone knows that you are going to be running the ball.
"The offense is doing what it needs to do for us to win games," he said.
FUTURE GAMES: BG continues to revise the future football schedules.
In addition to a game at Oregon in 2018, home-and-home series with Memphis (2015 and 2016) and South Alabama (2021 and 2022) have been added. Also, the Falcons are set to play at Kansas State in 2019.
The home-and-home series with Texas State in 2015 and 2016 is no longer on the schedule. The Memphis games are currently in those slots.
TV: The announcers for the BG-Ohio game will be Mark Neely (play-by-play) and Ray Bentley (analyst).
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