College Football News Preview 2020: UMass Minutemen Keys To The Season
Biggest Key To The UMass Minutemen Offense
Out of all the issues the offense had in the first year under Walt Bell, the inability to get the ball foes the field was the biggest problem. The Minutemen averaged just 5.2 yards per pass with 15 touchdowns and 16 picks, and that’s where JUCO transfer Kyle Lindquist comes in.
The O failed to hit the five-yard-per-pass mark six times and didn’t get past seven against any FBS team. To put this into perspective, only 12 teams averaged fewer than six, and only Northwestern was more inept at getting the ball down the field.
Biggest Key To The UMass Minutemen Defense
Stop the run. Please. The Minutemen were dead last in the nation in run defense, and it wasn’t even close.
No one allowed more than 37 rushing touchdowns – UMass gave up 50.
No one allowed more than 3,200 rushing yards – UMass allowed almost 3,600. It gave up almost 50 yards mer per game than anyone else, giving away 299 per game with seven of the last ten teams on the slate coming up with well over 300. Akron was the only team to fail to hit the 200-yard mark.
New Mexico State was the only other team to allow more than six yards per carry – UMass allowed 6.54.
Nothing else works for the Minutemen this year until this is tightened up.
Key UMass Minutemen Player To A Successful Season
DT Billy Wooden, Soph.
6-2, 275-pound sophomore Wilson Frederic has to be a factor on the nose, and the 6-2, 290-pound Wooden has to rise up at tackle.
To keep hammering on this, nothing works for UMass this year. The run defense isn’t going to be a rock, but it has to stop being totally miserable. There might not be a ton of beef up front, but there are more options. Coming off a 19-tackle first season, Wooden – or someone – has to start gumming up the works.
Key Game To The UMass Minutemen Season
at Liberty, Nov. 28
Where is the program going to be at in late November? Obviously there’s no conference title to play for, and in this crazy year, just finding enough games to play are going to be tough. The goal under Walt Bell is to keep improving. Get the program in a position to be a whole lot better in 2021 and beyond, and the regular season finale will matter.
– UMass Schedule Breakdown & Analysis
2019 UMass Fun Stats
– 2nd Quarter Scoring: Opponents 260 – UMass 75
– Average Yards Per Catch: Opponents 14.5 – UMass 9.3
– Penalties: UMass 83 for 764 yards – Opponents 44 for 433 yards