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           ***** NCAA Football Preview - Toledo Rockets *****
 
 By Lucas Gulotta, Associate College Football Editor
 
 Philadelphia, PA (Sports Network) -
 
 2012 SEASON IN REVIEW: After Tim Beckman left the program to take over at
 Illinois, Matt Campbell's head coaching career began with a thrilling, 42-41
 victory over Air Force in the 2011 Military Bowl. The Rockets were a
 legitimate MAC Championship contender despite having a rookie head coach in
 2012 after they brought back many of the key components from the team that led
 the MAC in total offense, turnover margin and scoring offense the year before.
 
 Campbell's first regular season as a head coach didn't yield the results he
 wanted though, as Toledo lost, 24-17, in its opener at Arizona. The Rockets
 went on a roll from there, winning their next nine games including decisions
 over Bowling Green (27-15), Cincinnati (29-23) and Buffalo (25-20). Their 9-1
 record with three games remaining helped them claim the 25th spot in the BCS
 rankings, but the stay in the top 25 was short lived. Toledo lost its next two
 games versus Ball State (34-27) and at Northern Illinois (31-24). It concluded
 its regular season by defeating Akron, 35-23, but suffered a 41-15 setback to
 Utah State in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl.
 
 Campbell was the youngest head coach in the FBS in 2012. He won three Division
 III national titles while playing at Mount Union and began his post playing
 career there as an offensive coordinator and offensive line coach at the age
 25. He was the offensive coordinator of Toledo's 2011 team that ranked eighth
 in the nation in scoring offense and 10th in total offense.
 
 2013 ANALYSIS:
 
 OFFENSE: The Rockets did not have the best offense in the MAC last season, but
 they weren't far off the mark, ranking third with 445.2 yards per game. They
 were one of the most balanced teams with a steady halfback and a pair of
 capable passers. Austin Dantin's graduation left Campbell with only one passer
 for the upcoming season.
 
 "Yes, it's a little different. We have one quarterback, (senior) Terrance
 Owens, who took about 80 percent of the snaps last year," said Campbell. He's
 a veteran and it shows. He's more comfortable now as a leader on this team. We
 can put a lot more of the offense in his hands and let him run with it. He's a
 fifth-year senior now and has a right to claim the starting position."
 
 Owens is always a threat to take off and scramble for yardage, but he
 struggled with injuries last season. His decision making was usually on point,
 but he had three games with multiple interceptions, including three in a key
 game at NIU.
 
 He has plenty to work with as he looks to put up better numbers as a senior.
 Sophomore Alonzo Russell and senior Bernard Reedy are both reliable targets at
 wideout. Reedy tallied a team-high 88 receptions for 1,113 yards and six TDs,
 but Russell's big-play ability yielded five scores and 960 yards on just 56
 grabs. Justin Olak and Dwight Macon give Toledo great depth at the position.
 
 Toledo's offensive attack revolved around its star senior tailback David
 Fluellen. As a junior, he finished eighth in the FBS with 1,498 yards and 13
 TDs on 259 carries. He accounted for almost 60 percent of the team's rushing
 yards despite missing the regular season finale and being limited in the bowl
 game. He should be one of the premier rushers in the conference as a senior
 with four of last season's starting offensive linemen back.
 
 Toledo's offensive line could be the strongest in the MAC. All-MAC senior
 center Zac Kerlin leads group of four juniors up front for a group that weighs
 an average of 301 lbs.
 
 DEFENSE: The Rockets had a bend but not break mentality in 2012. They gave up
 a lot of yards (473.2 ypg) to rank 11th in the MAC in total defense, but they
 placed fifth in scoring defense (28.4 ppg) due to their knack for forcing
 turnovers.
 
 Toledo graduated Dan Molls, who finished second in the FBS in tackles.
 Sophomore Trent Voss may become the team's next stops leader as he developed
 into one of the top defenders on the squad towards the end of his rookie year.
 Redshirt freshman Jaylen Coleman will see the field in his first eligible year
 at middle linebacker.
 
 The secondary is one of the strongest points on the defense with junior
 Cheatham Norrils (6-0, 195) and sophomore Juwan Haynes (6-0, 185) on the
 corners. Senior strong safety Ross Madison has played in 39 games in his
 career coming into 2013.
 
 The defensive line has some of its playmakers back. Senior end Jayrone Elliot
 registered a team-high 6.0 sacks along with a third-best 7.0 TFL in 2012.
 Christian Smith started at defensive end for the first five games last season
 before an injury put him on the sidelines for the rest of the year. He was a
 first-team all-state selection in Oklahoma as a high school senior. Senior
 tackle Elijah Jones also made an impact in 2012 with 31 tackles, 7.5 for loss
 and two forced fumbles.
 
 SPECIAL TEAMS: The Rockets have all of the important pieces back on special
 teams. Junior kicker Jeremiah Detmer was an All-MAC selection after he made 17
 consecutive field goal tries to close out the season. Senior Vince Penza
 averaged 40.5 yards per punt and placed 36 percent of them inside the
 opponents 20-yard line.
 
 Reedy scored four special teams TDs last season and was put on the All-MAC
 team as both a kick and punt returner.
 
 OUTLOOK: Toledo has a very tough road this season. Its first two games are
 both on the road against a pair of difficult BCS opponents in Florida and
 Missouri.
 
 "The only thing we can control is us," said Campbell. "Our players will be
 excited to play schools like Florida and Missouri. In our conference, if you
 don't show up, you will get beat. When you play opponents like Florida and
 Missouri right off the bat, if you don't show up, not only will you get beat,
 you will get humiliated. That helps your focus. It's very exciting to play the
 best of the best. We'll find out a lot about where we are very early in the
 season."
 
 The Rockets will have their Glass Bowl debut versus Eastern Washington before
 kicking off MAC action on the road at Central Michigan and Ball State. They
 host two in a row with Western Michigan and their final non-conference
 opponent, Navy, both visiting from outside of the Buckeye State. Toledo does
 not face Kent State this season, but it has some formidable conference foes
 with Bowling Green, Eastern Michigan, Buffalo, Northern Illinois and Akron
 lined up to conclude the year.
 
 Toledo has played in a bowl game in three consecutive years. It appears that
 it has all that's necessary to push that number to four, but the inexperience
 and inadequate defense will prevent it from capturing its first league title
 since 2004.
 
 
 
 08/19 11:45:50 ET

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Local
Final
CREI 65
NCCU 45
 
Final
NCSU 68
SFLA 65
Final
MIA 94
CHA 93
Final
MIA 94
CHA 93
Final
MEM 107
LAC 91
Final
BOS 88
POR 94
Final
OKC 86
GSW 91
3rd
LAL 67
DEN 69
 
Final
GMAS 60
COC 61
Final
FSU 69
UMASS 75
Final
SHSU 53
WOFF 64
Final
UNCG 67
YOUNG 76
Final
CMICH 75
ARKPB 43
 
Final
ILLCH 60
SILL 67
Final
MORE 46
AMER 51
Final
CORN 59
DREX 61
Final
CCST 60
COOK 65
Final
ARKLR 94
CSNO 88
Final
LEH 44
CLMB 54
 
Final
USB 89
MERMAR 54
 
Final
NMU 51
TEXAM 64
Final
STLU 56
TAMCC 62
 
Final
FAIR 80
SD 72
Final
EMICH 79
LONG 48
Final
ND 74
PROV 75
Final
RAD 88
CATAWBA 52
 
Final
DEN 80
COPST 54
 
Final
UAB 58
JST 50
 
Final
WICHS 105
NWM 57
Final
OKLA 90
NWST 68
Final
KSU 59
YALE 66
Final
CREI 65
NCCU 45
 
Final
NCSU 68
SFLA 65
Final
UCR 102
STKAT 49
 
Final
PSU 63
USC 61
Final
HC 101
NICHOLSCOL 70
 
Final
BC 53
DAY 65
Final
MON 75
TOWS 79
Final
HOF 93
WAGN 71
 
Final
CIN 54
EILL 49
Final
UGA 74
FATL 61
Final
BRAD 58
NCAT 50
 
Final
LATU 76
PBY 48
Final
RUTG 76
Terriers 73
 
Final
SAMF 64
UMKC 55
Final
NAVY 70
BING 68
Final
SHU 85
GWEBB 67
Final
UNT 58
IONA 78
Final
KENT 86
MNTST 28
Final
FORD 57
MLOWELL 64
 
Final
UCF 76
USCU 69
 
Final
SCAR 63
AKR 68
Final
WVU 78
UCONN 68
Final
CALST 70
DEL 52
 
Final
HOW 78
HOOD 51
 
Final
OSU 106
SHU 48
Final
VANDY 78
TENST 46
Final
NE 65
MAN 51
Final
COLST 75
MERC 62
Final
MISS 80
NARZ 74
Final
WASH 76
PAC 69
 
Final
LMU 82
SDCHR 60
 
Final
CHAR 58
MIAMI 77
 
Final
GAELS 72
UCI 69
 
Final
ILLST 64
ODU 45
 
2nd
UCLA 46
LBSU 35
 
1st
SEAT 22
MONT 21
 
Final
WIN 2
STL 4
Final
NYR 5
MON 0
Final
ANA 2
ARI 1
2nd Intermission
VAN 1
CHI 1
 
Final
HOU 13
CIN 22
Final
ATL 24
CLE 26
Final
NEP 34
DET 9
Final
MIN 21
GBP 24
Final
IND 23
JAC 3
Final
CHI 21
TAM 13
Final
PHI 43
TEN 24
Final
SEA 19
ARI 3
Final
SDC 27
STL 24
Final
DEN 39
MIA 36
Final
SFX 17
WAS 13
4th
NYG 21
DAL 24