Oct 10 / Todd

Richmond Ticks @ JMU Preview

ticksWell, it’s one of those weeks.  One of the only weeks we’ll miss when the CAA is finally behind us – Tick Week!  Thankfully for us fans, it’s heated already and we haven’t even reached the end of the week.  Time to forget about conference realignment, forget about suspended hoops players, forget about the Carr Report, the UD collapse, coach resignations, and even forget about firing other coaches.  The only thing that matters is the answer to a single question: You rootin’ fer Dukes, bud?!

The Bad Blood

First, we’re being referred to by the Philly/Villanova press as “hill people” in advance of this one. Not even entirely sure if they’re calling us bumpkins or trying to negatively reference our DC-centric alumni-base, but needless to say, we’ll be storing this bullshit up for an enormous Homecoming showdown, complete with a massive JMUSB tailgate in Godwin Lot, on November 2 against Villanofun.

More important to the matter at hand, Stephon Robertson correctly noted during a radio interview Tuesday that “Richmond, oh it’s just such bad blood. It’s such bad blood. They don’t like us. We don’t like them. And it’s going to be that way, probably, Saturday.” Going on to specifically discuss the Dukes ugly OT loss in Poormond in 2010, the nation’s best defensive player by a country mile said “I’ll just never forget that game specifically because their fans were really just obnoxious, and I just think it was the way they were, and then the players, the way they were. I didn’t like it.”

ItsyBitsyTick Wide Receiver #29 Stephen Barnette than started running his stupid maw by responding with “We don’t like their fans. Heck, I don’t like their professors. I don’t like anything about JMU, their gold or purple. So we’re just fired up, ready to go.”  His stupid ass then took to Twitter (@Scooba_Steve29 – have fun everybody!) where he announced “Hahaha Stephon Robertson is wack!!!! I can’t wait to talk some (S) Saturday!!!”

Needless to say, we’ll be terrified for two reasons the first time this little kid goes over the middle this week for two reasons. First, we really need Steph to avoid anything that gets him a 15 yarder, but second, we’re also legitimately concerned for this young man’s safety.  Good luck kid.

The Purple Wave

There’s a huge JMU fan out there (DP) many of you may know that used to post for years on the old CAA Zone message board as The Purple Wave and produce a weekly newsletter/preview of the same name during football season, often filled with solidly humorous hatred of the week’s opponent.  But like so many of us, life got in the way and he was forced to hang it up.  But thankfully for all of us, he resurfaced this week with a special edition of the Purple Wave just for Tick week that is so good that we feel like we have to share: https://sites.google.com/site/thepurplewave/ Enjoy! And please take his tailgating/rootin’ suggestions to heart.

The Basics

The Ticks have switched to an almost entirely pass-focused attack this year. Given the spotty play of our defensive backfield this could be trouble, but as we’ve seen before when a Dukes front seven knows they can pin their ears back and rush the passer, they can make it ugly in a hurry.  Just ask “The Hoodie” himself Aaron Corp about the black-shirted JMU defense two years ago!

Ticks are coached by former Liberty HC Danny Rocco, who has always produced a decent gameplan for facing JMU.  Of course, that was mostly during the MM/Durden/Thorpe days and it will be interesting to see if the O’Cain/Birdsong combo can orchestrate a little sumpin’ sumpin’ this weekend!  After all, it was at Poormond last year that the legend of the Ginja Ninja began when he came off the bench, ran the hell over some Tick defender for a touchdown, and very nearly led the Dukes to a stunning comeback in his first collegiate action.

On the Line

There is no overstating the ramifications of this game for either team.  It’s a true desperation situation for the Ticks as they’ve started 2-3, 0-1 with a home loss to CAA contender Maine and an out-of-conference loss to another likely bubble team out of conference in Gardner-Webb.  For the Dukes this is very likely the make-or-break game in the season. Win and they move to 5-2 with the toughest part of the schedule to come after next week’s bye.  That would mean a 3-2 record down the stretch would give them a great shot at a playoff berth.  Lose, fall to 4-3 with ‘Nova and @ Towson yet to come, and it will be severely uphill all the way in.

Coverage

BFS is the place to be, but just in case, it’s pretty cool to know this is the NATIONAL game on NBC Sports Network this week.  Production will be top-notch, but check your local listings for what channel to find NBCSN on as it’s moved around a bit lately on some providers.

Beer of the Week

Found this incredible surprise this summer and have been saving it for a worthy opponent and some actual fall weather (screw the rain by the way and don’t discount the Purple Wave’s suggestion of bourbon in case of inclement conditions). Seriously love everything about this balanced (i.e. perfect for fall and not even crazy hoppy as is my usual) offering from Indeed Brewing Co. in Minneapolis.  My favorite “find” of the year is definitely their Midnight Ryder American Black Ale. The only place I’ve found it is at Red, White & Bleu in Falls Church, but if you see these rather artistic cans, do not hesitate and buy as much as possible.

Can the Dukes repeat what they did to Aaron Corp two years ago?!  We think they'll give it a good run!

Can the Dukes repeat what they did to Aaron Corp two years ago?! We think they’ll give it a good run!

Prediction

Pain for the Ticks. Also, Ticks are seriously the worst living organism on the planet (well, besides ODU “fans”).  Not sure the Dukes can match the sacktastic domination of two years ago, but Robertson, Steele, and Marlowe are the type of game-changing players on the defensive side that the Ticks just haven’t seen this year. We think the Dukes ride a very balanced attack with contributions from DQS, Abdullah, Cheatam, Brown, Smith, and Hunter all helping the Ninja finally achieve a signature victory.

Dukes 30, Ticks 21

 

14 Comments

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  1. MRD2012 / Oct 11 2013

    I’m not an overly superstitious person, but I wouldn’t mind seeing the Dukes in black uni’s this weekend.

  2. 2004 Duke / Oct 11 2013

    That picture makes me feel like I need to go shower.

  3. 2004 Duke / Oct 11 2013

    I hate… HATE richmond. The #1 reason I hate them so much is because they are essentially a D-III school who has won a national championship and keeps beating us. I know that is unbelievably harsh, but it’s true. If they are an FCS team, that makes us the Pro-Bowl team, and with a vastly superior set of talent and resources, we only manager to achieve similar results as they do. THAT royally pisses me off.

    Stat: We have lost to suckmond 3 of the last 4 games.

  4. Dukie95 / Oct 11 2013

    If you can’t be there, PLEASE watch on TV, DVR it, tell your friends. Having nice ratings for this certainly won’t hurt our FBS position.

  5. Kevin / Oct 11 2013

    Tick weekend puts me in a bad mood all week long leading up to Saturday. I wear my hate on my sleeve and I’m easy to irritate, quick to lash out, and my decision making ability is spotty and full of short sighted, rash actions based on anger. It all comes to a head on Saturday morning as I smolder silently while trying to coax my family out the door in time to arrive for a solid 4 hour tailgate when the wife believes anything longer than 2 hours is over doing it. I hate Richmond so much that the thought of losing to them and having to live with that for the next 12 months makes me just want to go to sleep on Friday, wake up on Sunday and have it over with one way or another. Instead, I’ll cart my surly ass down to the Burg, spend 4 (2) hours in D2 getting my head where it needs to be, and roll into BFS ready for some rootin’.

  6. Johannes / Oct 11 2013

    Our D line is going to have to CRUSH their O line and be in the face of Strauss throughout if we’re going to win this game. He shredded us last year in a painful way. Also, and obviously, our young secondary is going to have to step it up big time, and we’ll need a few turnovers.

  7. deepsouthduke / Oct 11 2013

    I can’t decide whether to assemble the few Dukes living in MS together to watch the game Saturday… or to make everyone watch on a different TV to help with NBC ratings. Either way.. PUNCH EM IN THE NECK

  8. Todd / Oct 11 2013

    deepsouth – Have ’em all leave a tv tuned in at home, but assemble to root!

  9. Anthony / Oct 11 2013

    would be great if you could include media coverage of the game – how can out of town alumni see/hear the game etc.

    thanks!

  10. Todd / Oct 11 2013

    Anthony – thought we included that but maybe it was confusing. This is a national broadcast on NBC Sports Network. Pretty much everyone in the country should be able to see this one on any cable or satellite provider.

    Madizone Audio-only available and Madizone Video and Audio available outside the US only.

  11. tedward / Oct 11 2013

    Ugggh… I live less than a mile from their campus. My Dad and many other family members went there and I grew up a Spider fan. With all that said, I hate Spider football. I have numerous bets with many this week. We better win. It’s time for a breakout game from Birdsong.

  12. JMU2002DUKE / Oct 11 2013

    Giants are 0-6, Rangers are 1-3, Yankees are playing golf (and probably getting injured in the process)… Come on Dukes, you’re all I have left!

  13. JMUDRU / Oct 12 2013

    Is JMUSB tailgating today? Would love to meet you guys.

  14. Rob / Oct 12 2013

    JMUDRU, I’ll be there with my kindergarten son, so I’ll probably be doing a little more bookstore, moon bounce, playing with other friends’ kids than tailgating.

    Our big JMUSB tailgate is going to be for homecoming. We’ll post details as it gets closer and obviously, everyone is welcome.

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