Northern Division Dog fight, Bowie wins, ECSU caught napping, WSSU rolls
by, 10-10-2012 at 11:21 AM (10156 Views)
The Northern Division of the CIAA has turned into a dog fight. While Chowan and Elizabeth City are still the division leaders, they have opened up the door for Bowie State.
Before I go further, I must apologize to the Bowie State faithful. I've been hard on Bowie. Part of my harshness towards Bowie is that I'm still emotionally scarred from picking the Bulldogs to win the CIAA when they had 18 returning starters. I want to especially apologize to our faithful follower Vbeach31, who called me out, but rightfully so. I can admit when I'm wrong.
Believe it or not, Bowie State controls their own destiny in the Northern Division. With four games remaining, Bowie's toughest opponent will appear to be ECSU in the final game of the season. They play a winnable game at home against Virginia State, two winnable games on the Road against Virginia Union and Lincoln, and then the season finale at home against ECSU. If Bowie wins their remaining games, they would hold the head to head tie breakers against both Chowan and ECSU and would be in Durham for the CIAA championship.
For Chowan and ECSU, they both also control their won destiny, if they win out, they'll be in Durham.
While the Northern Division seems to have a lot of clutter, the Southern Division appears to be a lock with WSSU. The Rams look unstoppable, but their biggest division test appears to be this weekend against St. Aug. If St. Aug can pull off the upset, it would send shock waves across the D2football world and St. Aug can win the division if they would win out. But don't look to far, the Shaw Bears also appear to be getting their swag back and could contend with some key victories. Though Livingstone on paper appear to be in the hunt, which by the way, gave St. Aug all they could handle last week, no one is taking LC serious with their 2-1 division record.
Game of the Week
St. Aug (4-2, 2-1) at #5 Winston Salem State (6-0, 3-0)
The #5 ranked Winston Salem State Rams knocked the snot bubbles out of the Golden Bulls of Johnson C Smith 63-7. This game was a joke and the score was 49-0 at halftime. Rams QB Kameron Smith had 5 TDs in the game. The Rams had 553 of total offense in this game and the Rams defense was stellar, they held the Golden Bulls to 43 yards rushing. For St. Aug, they were pushed to the brink against an upstart Livingstone squad. While initially St. Aug had a commanding lead 23-7, the Falcons allowed LC back in the game and but ended up winning 32-27. Many CIAA enthusiast think this is the game that determines who wins the Southern Division. I happen to agree. This is the game between the CIAA power of WSSU and a Falcon team looking to take their thrown.
My prediction: Winston Salem State 35 St. Aug 28
Virginia Union (3-3, 1-2) at Chowan (3-3, 2-1)
Chowan lost a very winnable game last week against Bowie State 35-31 on a late game 53 yard run by Bowie RB Keith Brown. This was a heartbreaking loss for the Hawks. This team will be hungry to get back on the winning track. The Hawks offense is explosive. Virginia Union won last week 61-13 against Lincoln. The Panthers desperately needed that win in order to avoid back to back losses to Livingstone and Lincoln. Based on the Panthers offensive explosion, you can tell this team was angered by their previous weeks disappointment. Both teams are 3-3, but one team looks more realistic than the other.
My prediction: Chowan 42 Virginia Union 21
Johnson C Smith (2-4, 1-2) at Fayetteville State (1-5, 0-3)
These two teams are turning into this years seller dwellers. JCSU came in with high expectations. Fayetteville was predicted to finish fourth in the conference. FSU got hammered last week against Shaw 45-28. JCSU, got hammered harder by WSSU 63-7. The question here is, which team will finish at the bottom of the division?
My Prediction: Fayetteville State 28 JCSU 17
Shaw (3-3, 2-1) at Livingstone (2-4, 2-1)
Shaw looks to have gotten their swag back by winning 45-28 against Fayetteville State. They actually have a chance to win the division if they win out, but many think this team might need another year. Livingstone looks like a completely different team. Though they lost to St. Aug 32-27, they look much improved and actually shook St. Aug. Not only that, CIAA enthusiast see this is a much improved Livingstone team than can put a scare into teams if LC is taken lightly. Since LC wants me to pick against them for the rest of the season, I will comply.
My Prediction: Shaw 32 Livingstone 31
Elizabeth City State (3-3, 2-1) at Lincoln (1-5, 1-2)
ECSU looked lethargic last week and got upset by VSU 28-17. It appears as if the Vikings were looking past VSU thinking they were just going to roll over, but the Trojans of VSU held strong in the upset. Lincoln ran into a hungry Virginia Union team and got blasted 61-13. This game should be a no-brainer!
My prediction: ECSU 62 Lincoln 14
Virginia State (2-4, 1-2) at Bowie State (4-2, 1-2)
Bowie State seems to have the comeback gene this year. They pulled off a ferocious comeback earlier this season against Fairmont State and last week fought all the way to the final seconds with an unbelievable late game 53 yard run by Bowie RB Keith Brown to beat Chowan 35-31. Virginia State pulled off the massive upset last week against ECSU 28-17. Though VSU still has a chance to be in Durham, but a lot has to happen.
My prediction: Bowie State 21 Virginia State 14
Fans, Time to hear from you
I'm hearing conversation around the league from different fans saying "This is Winston Salem States last year of dominance". Their argument, this is WSSU's third year in the CIAA and any D1 talent left over will graduate. I can see their point, but I think recruiting and coaching will prevail. Fans, what do you think? Who will win the Northern Division? Will someone sneak by? Can St. Aug upset WSSU?