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Friday, October 26, 2007

MU football story for Saturday Press/You may also make post game comments here

By TONY GRAHAM
STAFF WRITER

It has not been a pleasant two weeks off for the Monmouth University football team since its 45-16 thrashing at the hands of Wagner.
""There wasn't a person, coach, or player associated with our program who was happy with our performance'' said Monmouth coach Kevin Callahan. In the game his team endured it's worst home loss in 15 years of football at Kessler Field.
So when Monmouth (1-5, 1-2) visits Central Connecticut State (5-2, 3-0) Saturday in a Northeast Conference game should fans of the Hawks expect major changes?
Lineup moves? Coaching staff shake ups?
The answer would be - none of the above.
""What we've done over the last two weeks is work on fundamental techniques, areas where we felt we needed to improve, areas where we've broken down,'' said Callahan.
From defensive failures to offensive miscues, including a seemingly weekly round of false start penalties, it would seem the list is a lengthy one.
""The worst thing that any coach could ever do is completely go into panic and throw everything out that you've built up over 15 years and say, "OK, it doesn't work all of a sudden,'' Callahan said.
Monmouth entered 2007 with 36 victories and three Northeast Conference championships over the last four years.
But the departure of of nine 2006 starters on defense plus all-time passing leader Brian Boland has proven difficult to overcome.
""We know what we do works,'' said Callahan. ""It's stood the test of time.
""The last thing you want do do is send a message to your team that all of a sudden the coaches have lost confidence in what they believe in. There's nothing drastic like that going to happen whatsoever.
""We have good players on this team and hopefully the more experience they get, the more they're in the front line of fire, the more they have to react in a competitive situation in real game speed, the better they will become.
""And we will become better.''
Monmouth will try to do that Satursday against the Blue Devils who lead the NEC in offense and defense.
Using a multitude of backs including quarterbacks Aubrey Norris and Ryan Holmes as runners they rank first in the NEC in rushing yards, averaging 289.7 yards on the ground per game while also average an NEC-best 29.3 points per game.
Monmouth tailback David Sinsi will bid to extend his touchdown scoring streak to 19 games against a CCSU defense that yields a league low 275.1 total yards per game, including a league-best 111.3 yards per game on the ground.
CCSU linebacker Chris Stimmel is sixth in the league with 64 tackles. ""It's an offensive attack, particularly in the run game stand point, that will test you in a lot of areas,'' Callahan said.
He said Monmouth must also be wary of play action and option passes. CCSU has thrown for five scores this season and has been intercepted just twice.
NOTES...Callahan said back up quarterback Andrew Mandeville, corner back and kick returner Brian Robinson (shoulder injuries), and free safety Jon Stolarz (neck) will not see action.

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