TOLEDO – It is the sometimes forgotten facet of a football game, but coaches and players know the importance of special teams.
In the Central Michigan football team’s 50-35 loss against the Toledo Rockets, the special teams units didn’t perform very special.
“In the first half, we did a good job, but in the second half, we missed some tackles,” said head coach Dan Enos. “Give them credit; they have good skill back there.”
After CMU went three–and–out on its first offensive possession, junior punter Richie Hogan punted the ball 37 yards. Toledo junior wide receiver Bernard Reedy caught the kick and returned it 53 yards to the Chippewa 15-yard line. The return set up the first score of the game for the Rockets.
In the third quarter, with CMU clinging to a 21-17 lead, Hogan again kicked to Reedy, but this time he weaved through the CMU coverage team and returned it 66 yards for a touchdown, giving UT the lead for good. Reedy finished the game with 201 return yards.
“I’ll have to go back and look at it on video to see where we had some breakdowns,” Enos said.
Hogan is averaging just 38.86 yards per punt this season. That mark is 86th in the country.
On the flip side of things, CMU returners did not give it good field position all day. The longest was a 27-yard return by sophomore wide receiver Dafarrel Davis.
The Chippewas next game is Friday night when they return home to face the Navy Midshipmen at Kelly/Shorts Stadium.