The Owls enter the first of two 2019 season bye-weeks riding a three game win streak.
Coach Lane Kiffin and staff will use this week as a time for recovery, before the team next embarks on five straight weekends of crucial CUSA play.
This gauntlet will begin with back-to-back home games on October 12th, when Middle Tennessee travels to FAU stadium, followed by a Friday night matchup against Marshall.
Below is our Mash up at the mid-week point of 2019 bye week one.
With the Owls being off this weekend, we take a look a quick look at how the 2019 FAU team compares with the 2018 team after 5 games.
Also, given a roster addition and a few surprise appearances in the media room, we also bring back OwlBytes.
Crunching The Numbers
- The Run Game The FAU backfield has fallen short of duplicating last year’s production through five games. Last season, the backfield averaged 4.9 yards per carry. This year they are averaging 3.1 YPC. However, the run game has been trending upwards. Redshirt freshmen Malcolm Davidson posted 83 yards on 13 carries against Charlotte last weekend. Expect to see Davidson featured more as we dig into the season. His speed can make for a great compliment to true freshmen Larry McCammon III.
- Points off Turnovers Lane Kiffin hired former Charlotte DC Glenn Spencer in the offseason to provide a new look to the Owls defense. In his first season in Boca, Spencer`s defense has shown disguised DB coverage and a rotational front. One such DB who has made an impact is that of Meiko Dotson (photo), who has 2 INT on the year. Also, depending on opponent and situation, the Spencer defense has formations with three and four down linemen. Through 5 games last season, FAU had only 14 points off turnovers. Currently, FAU already has 38 points off turnovers. “The goals to me over the years are points per possession, turnovers, red zone defense, third down defense”. Glenn Spencer said when discussing the foundations of his defense.
- The Hayball Effect One of FAU`s huge improvements from last season is the punting game. In the spring, FAU lost incumbent punter Sebastian Riella. This opened the door to newcomer Matt Hayball. The Aussie punter was relatively inexperienced entering this season. With Hayball punting, the net punt average has increased from 29.5 to 36.4.
- Owls add a WR The Owls added another name to their wide receiver room in adding former St. Thomas Aquinas WR Matthew Akuchie. The Ft. Lauderdale native joins the team after announcing his commitment to FAU as a preferred walk on in early May. Among the schools that offered Akuchie were Army, Columbia and Yale.
- Coordinator Surprise The media room received a great surprise late Wednesday morning, as both Glenn Spencer and Charlie Weiss Jr. were made available for questions. Spencer gave praised the recent work of his defensive line, telling reporters how impressed he has been with DE Tim Bonner, “He is playing with another gear that I didn’t see in the spring,” said Glenn Spencer. Second year offensive coordinator Charlie Weiss said one of the keys to the recent offensive success is QB Chris Robison`s maturity, “this year he is very calm, he knows everything in the playbook, it allows him to play really fast and really well.”
Defensive Coordinator Glenn Spencer, Offenesive Coordinator Chalie Weis Jr, and QB Chauncey Mason headline Video Play.