Central Michigan Chippewas Preview 2022: Previewing, predicting, and looking ahead to the Central Michigan season with what you need to know and keys to the season.
Central Michigan Chippewas Preview
Head Coach: Jim McElwain, 3rd year at CMU, 20-13
9th year overall, 64-40, 2021 CMU Preview
2021 Record: Overall: 9-4, Conference: 6-2
Keys To The Season | Season Prediction, What Will Happen
Central Michigan Top 10 Players | Schedule
Central Michigan Chippewas Preview 2022
This is going well under head coach Jim McElwain.
He might have had a rough landing as he got bounced out from the Florida job, but he got the Gators to two straight SEC Championship games.
In his three years at CMU he and the program won at least a share of two division titles, went to two bowls, and has a solid 20-13 record overall and a 15-7 clip in conference.
No, he and the Chippewas haven’t been able to take that extra step and win the conference title, and that’s going to be a whole lot harder to do this year.
The team is good, the coaching is great, but the success has been a slight problem as teams have poached the program for some of the top talents, especially on defense. Combine that with the NFL losses on the offensive line, and this isn’t going to be easy.
Rebuilding isn’t all that new, though, for Central Michigan and McElwain. The team will still be a player in the MAC race.
Central Michigan Chippewas Preview 2022: Offense
The offense managed to crank up enough to efficiently get the job done. The Chippewas were 24th in the nation in total offense, the running game was good, the passing attack was the second-best in the MAC, and the production was steady over the second half of the season. But …
The offensive line loses some massive parts. The interior is good with decent size and depth, but you don’t get better after losing tackles the caliber of Bernhard Raimann (Indianapolis Colts) and Luke Goedeke (Tampa Bay Buccaneers).
The backfield gets back leading rusher Lew Nichols – he ran for 1,848 yards and 16 touchdowns – and welcomes back Kobe Lewis from a knee injury that cost him last season.
Veteran QB Daniel Richardson isn’t too much of a runner, but he was terrific as he grew into the job as a passer last season, throwing for 2,583 yards and 24 touchdowns with just six picks. Now he needs more options to throw to.
Leading receiver Kalil Pimpleton is off trying to become a Detroit Lion and JaCorey Sullivan is gone, but Dallas Dixon is back after making 45 catches for 701 yards and eight scores. Junior Joel Wilson will once again be one of the MAC’s best pass-catching tight ends.
Central Michigan Chippewas Preview 2022: Defense
The defense got poached, and it’s going to hurt. Star safety Devonni Reed (South Carolina), LB Troy Brown (Ole Miss), and LB George Douglas (SMU) are gone along with leading tackler Greg Kreski and top pass rushers Troy Hairston (Houston Texans) and Amir Saddiq (Charlotte).
The D was the best in the nation at coming up with tackles for loss and was fourth in sacks. It led the MAC against the run, but it was hammered through the air. On the plus side …
The secondary has enough experience to potentially be okay. At the very least, the veteran corners are in place and the safeties have good size – even if they’re a little green. They all need help from the defensive front that has to rotate in new parts. There’s decent size in the interior, and the new ends are hybrids who’ll keep on coming.
The linebacking corps is undergoing the biggest overhaul. Sophomore Kyle Moretti is a 230-pound sophomore who made 48 tackles, sophomore Justin Whiteside got in enough work to be ready, but the developed depth isn’t there.