Bison football preview:
Prairie View A&M
Published: Thursday, September 20, 2012
Updated: Thursday, September 20, 2012 12:09
The Herd will storm back into the Fargodome Saturday as they are set to take on the Panthers of Prairie View A&M at 3 p.m. Another sellout is expected as the Bison play Prairie View for the first time in school history.
The top ranked Bison are riding a seven game winning streak into Saturday’s game against the Panthers who have stumbled out of the gates starting this season 0-3.
The Panthers are coming off a loss in a shoot-out against fellow Southwestern Athletic Conference school, Alabama A&M. Turnovers have been the Achilles heel for the Panthers, giving the ball away five times against AAMU, and already eight times in this young season.
Saturday we expect to finally see the Bison defense tested as they go up against an offense that is averaging just under 400 yards of total offense per game. The potent Panther offense is led by an option attack with athletic quarterback De’Auntre Smiley and running backs Fred Anderson and Courtney Brown. The Panthers are averaging over 205 yards on the ground per game, good enough to rank in the top 25 of FCS.
The Bison defense will have their hands full trying to contain the speed of the Panthers offense. These are the types of games the Bison will miss having the fast and physical Colton Heagle at the strong safety position. Heagle will be out the rest of the season with a knee injury and the defense will need everyone to turn it up a notch in his absence.
Early in the season the Panther offense was shutout against Lamar, only accumulating 249 yards of total offense. The key for the Bison defense to be just as successful will be to stick to their assignments. There is a lot of movement in the option style offense making it infinitely more important to stay disciplined and avoid over perusing.
The Panther defense is giving up an average of 39 points a game, which ranks them near the bottom of the FCS. They will have no choice but to pick their poison against a great Bison offense.
Brock Jensen is expected to have a field day against an incompetent Panther secondary that is allowing over 260 yards through the air per game. The Bison hope to have veteran wide receiver Ryan Smith back after missing the Colorado State game. Smith will provide the x-factor for the offense that hopes to stretch the field against a weak secondary.
Saturday will be considered a “trap game” for the Bison who start their tough Missouri Valley schedule next week. It is important for them to lockdown and take care of the business at hand. If they aren’t careful, be prepared for the Panthers to crash the party. Barring another bomb threat or catastrophic meltdown, the Bison should have this game wrapped up at halftime. See you at the game and please, tailgate responsibly.