Well, folks, the time has come. Robert Morris faces off against Central Connecticut State this afternoon at high noon. Coach Clark and the youngmen at RMU are set to play the biggest game of their lives if they win today RMU will clinch their first NEC title since 2010. The task is a tall one facing against nationally-ranked CCSU (19th), but Coach Clark and these battle-tested Colonials are ready to fight to the death if need be.
Is CCSU Slipping?
In two straight weeks, CCSU failed to dominate against sub-par opponents in St. Francis last week and Wagner the week prior. With the previous week’s game needing to go into overtime against a 4-5 St. Francis, it leaves RMU fans foaming at the mouth and ready to play the once feared Blue Devils. If RMU can play the way they have played during this five-game winning streak, CCSU should be afraid of this young Colonial team.
RMU’s Running Game
RMU is facing one of the best run defenses in the FCS, allowing only 65.6 per game. In return, RMU is averaging roughly 160 yards per game. Somethings must give, and if I were a betting man, I’d put my money on leading touchdown getter Terence Stephens (6TD’s) and leading rusher (857) Alijah Jackson. One side note I must mention is Alijah Jackson’s health last week coach Clark did tell me his shoulder hindered his play against Duquesne. Hopefully, it is fully healed, and his 5.4 yards per rush lead RMU to victory.
Contain Dual Threat QB, Aaron Winchester
Ranking 3rd in the NEC in passing yards (2,123) and 4th in rushing yards (620) Winchester is a dangerous dual-threat QB RMU needs to contain to secure the victory today. Lead by last week’s defensive leader Mason Gray (2 Pick Sixes) and Aniello Buzzacco (1 INT) RMU will need to rely upon these two defensive stars and force Winchester to make uncharacteristic mistakes.
Stay Mistake Free
Last week against a great team in Duquesne, RMU played mistake-free football committing no turnovers and forcing seven against Duquesne. RMU also didn’t commit any penalties if they can continue this style of play against CCSU it will be hard to see any conceivable way for the Colonials to lose this game.
Keys To Victory
Win the time of possession battle: Last week, RMU held the ball for 35 minutes and 24 seconds as compared to Duquesne’s 23 minutes and 33 seconds.
32.7: This is the number of points per game CCSU averages. Defensive Coordinator Dave Plungas needs to maintain his defenses dominate play over this five-game winning streak.
Live in the moment: Most, if not all, of these guys, have never played in this big of a game. These fans haven’t seen a winning team since 2010, so we know the pressure is there for these Colonials. They need to play Colonial brand football and stay composed even if things don’t go to plan right away.
Win or lose Coach Clark and his entire staff has given hope to the future of this Colonial program. Today in New Britan, Connecticut, we will see a hard-fought game, and I expect to see Coach Clark’s crew to come out hard and ready to play. If RMU stays true to their assignments and plays smart, we could be seeing the Colonials crowned king of the NEC.