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2011 Ball State Season Rewind: Cards Go to the Movies Part 1.

Rather than just do a standard year in review I looked at the 12 games this season and matched them to movies that came out in 2011. Hope you find it entertaining.

Captain America: Ball State 27 Indiana 20

Who knew Hollywood got their ideas from Ball State football in 2011?

I must confess I was unhappy the game was moved to Indy but this night could not have gone any better for Ball State. Beating IU had a “patriotic” feel to it as the “cupcakes from Bloomington,” as Coach Pete Lembo labeled the Hoosiers, were sent packing.

It was amazing seeing the Ball State offensive line that had been pushed around by the likes of New Hampshire and Liberty under Stan Parrish open up a can on a Big Ten Conference team. Granted, Indiana is the high school dropout turned drug addict member of the Big Ten but that does not take anything away from this win.

Transformers Dark of the Moon: South Florida 35 Ball State 7

Expectations were out of control as some people I knew actually thought Ball State would win this game. Reality hit us all as we were reminded that South Florida is bigger, faster, and playing their home opener after defeating Notre Dame.

It was kind of like my expectations for the recent Transformers movie. I was pumped to see the battle scenes but then remembered that Shia LaBeouf was the star, Megan Fox had been replaced with someone with even less talent and Michael Bay was still the director. The high expectations came crashing down.

Lincoln Lawyer: Ball State 28 Buffalo 25

Ball State came out swinging in this game and built a lead going into half. Then things started slipping away as Buffalo took 25-21 edge in the fourth quarter. Ball State faced a fourth and 13 but Keith Wenning channeled Tim Tebow and pulled it out. The Cardinals then converted on a fourth and seven and scored the touchdown to win. It was the moment where we all knew Keith Wenning was growing into something special.

Wenning’s performance on the drive was similar to Matthew McConaughey’s role in “Lincoln Lawyer.” McConaughey made a late comeback in the courtroom while Wenning made a late comeback on the field. That fourth quarter drive was probably the most thrilling series I saw Ball State make. After so many failures, many in the stands expected Ball State to fold. The offense would not let that happen.

X-Men First Class: Ball State 48 Army 28

This was a complete team win as Ball State dominated every aspect of the game. Seeing Ball State blow out a FBS school that beat Northwestern took me by surprised. I took pictures of the scoreboard just to make sure what I was seeing was real.

Everything came together just as each player brought something to the table like each of the mutants having their own distinct power in X-Men. Wenning had his best game. Barrington Scott and Jahawn Edwards were great running the ball. Willie Sneed had his coming out party at Wide Receiver. The defense shut down Army’s triple option and Sean Baker had another interception. Army did not earn a single yard passing. This was the best performance Ball State has had since Nate Davis was chucking the ball to Dante Love.

scoreboard

We support our troops in Muncie. Just not on the football field.

Harry Potter: Oklahoma 62 Ball State 6

Ball State needed some magic to beat then No. 2 Oklahoma but Harry Potter was nowhere to be seen. I wish Ball State did not schedule this game. Fans pay more attention to you when you play a top team in the country but at what cost? Students kept saying “Didn’t we lose 62-6” for weeks afterword as the Oklahoma game became the only score a majority of the student body could recall. The Army win and momentum from it was virtually erased.

The following Monday safety Joshua Howard gave a doctor’s excuse to my professor for being late to our class and told her he was being tested for a concussion. Losing was bad enough but the injuries on defense were worse. I fail to see how the $900,000 Ball State was paid to take the beating made up for it. The game did not even provide much media exposure either.

If you are still convinced this game should have been scheduled picture what might have happened if Ball State played a Sun Belt conference school like Florida Atlantic and got the win. With seven wins Ball State probably would have played a bowl game. Hope that money buys something nice. If you thought this was bad enough…

Paranormal Activity 3: Temple 42 Ball State 0

A three hour horror movie on a football field. I will try to focus on the positives … uh, Ball State only played Temple once.

What is really damaging is this game discouraged many students from going to another game this season. Finding a buddy to go to a Ball State game with became like trying to find a Republican in California. The defense was depleted with injuries so I guess that is a good excuse. I guess?

The school has to do their homework in the future when it comes to scheduling a homecoming opponent. Ball State students are 95 percent casual fans who only pay attention to the home opener and homecoming. If the Cardinals lose either of those games badly students are not coming back next time. The casual Ball State student does not know the difference between Temple and Eastern Michigan. They just know the Cardinals lost 42-0 to a MAC school at home and therefore Ball State must be terrible. All MAC schools are the same to them. Get a cupcake next year Tom Collins. One with vanilla icing and sprinkles please.

Part 2 of the year in review will come out next week. With the Temple game out of the way I guarantee it will be more upbeat.

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