ATN Podcast: Do we re-evaluate Mount Union?

A handful of voters switched their No. 1 vote this week, giving UW-Whitewater six nods for the top spot compared to Mount Union’s 19. But what do we make of Mount Union’s close win at Capital? What does history tell us about past Purple Raider teams?

Keith McMillan and Pat Coleman discuss that and more in this week’s Around the Nation podcast.

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14 thoughts on “ATN Podcast: Do we re-evaluate Mount Union?

  1. I always enjoy the podcasts. Usually a nice way to catch up on the weekend activities. My problem has always been all this focus on “conferences” with automatic bids. The conference automatic bid system allows many weak teams to make the palyoffs and then get destroyed in the first round of the playoffs. I guess it is somehow makes sense but it certainly does water down the overall quality of the playoff off teams. You must have, at least three or four times during the podcast, talked about teams that have lost one or two games outside their conferences but that still have a good chance of making the playoffs by winning their conference. Some research would most likely show those teams lose and lose by rather big margains in the first round of the playoffs after getting an automatic bid because the won a playoff spot by winning a weak conference. A case in point is LaGrange College which won its conference last year with a 9-1 record and then lost in the first round to Millsaps 51-26. They step outside of their conference this year to play a quality team like Wesley and lose 56-7. If luck is with them they might even win their conference title and make the playoffs again. To what end?

  2. Thanks for your comment, though I’m not sure where you’re heading with it. LaGrange didn’t get an automatic bid last year because its conference didn’t have an automatic bid. This year LaGrange isn’t even in a conference.

    That’s a really vague generalization. The range of conferences is pretty wide, and because of the geographic restrictions on playoff brackets, not everyone’s first-round opponent is equal.

  3. Love to listen to the Pod casts during the week. At to re-evaluation of the top teams. When top teams play other top 25 teams aren’t they supposed to be close games. Mt. Union in the first five games of the season played 2 teams in the top 25 & 1 team with points. Sometimes I think it is odd that a team ranked 15th gets beat by a 5th ranked team and they loose places in the rankings, weren’t they supposed to get beat? To make the top 25 rankings a good thermometer of the whole Div. III field then any game between these teams should be close. If not maybe the team did not belong in the list.

  4. I really felt at the beginning of the season and clearly continue to believe Whitewater will win the championship this season. Stacked team with so much talent! It’s a shame that other DIII non-conference schools seem afraid to play them. Would love to see a WIAC-OAC Challenge in Week 1! Or MIAC and WIAC! That would keep the Warhawks from essentially playing two high schools (very lowly NAIA programs) and then lowly Puget Sound.

    As for the Purple Raiders, they just don’t have the offensive firepower. Now, before we jump ship too quick, recall they came back against the #21 team on the road and have had to defeat what was then #9 Ohio Northern in Ada. They are not playing cupcakes.

    However, in the end, look for the Warhawks to come out on top. Just a complete team!

  5. Why are we to believe Mount is as good as last year. Maybe the lost of the 2 best players in school history. There schedule had been far more tougher than UWW so far. Not bad for a school thats 3 to 4 times smaller than UWW. Lets see what happens when the real season starts in 6 weeks or so….The OAC does have some good teams…….

  6. As I stated earlier, where did the post go???, I echo what Bob and airwis say. Whitewater is the class of Division III to me … great team on offense, defense, and special teams. Mount Union needs to improve their confidence on the offensive side of the ball to be a threat against the Warhawks title hopes. No question that as of right now, Mount Union has played a more difficult schedule with two ranked opponents on the road, not to mention at St. John Fisher. Gotta love Division III football! Can’t wait for the playoffs.

  7. It really is tough to compare teams until the playoffs with few common teams played. Mount fans have been fortunate over the years to have such a great team its hard to look at this years good team and make comparisons. I also feel good that more teams of Div. III are gaining strength and bringing good football to more fans and showing others that Div III is viable football.

  8. As I said at the start of the year, I firmly believe this is the year of the Warhawk. I am living in Houston this year, so I haven’t really been able to follow the team, but I am excited for the playoffs (just don’t overlook anyone Whitewater).

  9. Given the budget cuts facing the state of Wisconsin and its potential effect on WIAC athletics (football travel, etc.), it would be interesting to see more out of conference play between the WIAC and the MIAC schools. Saint Johns seems to already do this with games against UW-River Falls and UW-Eau Claire.

    I would like to see more of this, based on the quality of the two conferences and the geographical proximity of the schools. I can’t see how a quality loss between these conference schools would hurt playoff chances, since they are non conference games against good opponents. SJU, UST, Bethel, Concordia-Moorhead have been steady teams. (Could also include Saint Olaf, even Carlton in the mix).

    I don’t think this would work between the WIAC and the private schools in Wisconsin, based on the strength of conference rankings of the Midwest Athletic Conference. Just my two cents.

  10. Half of the issue with the WIAC is the number of non-conference dates that the conference needs to fill. UW-Superior adding football would fill 8 of those non-conference dates with a conference game, and decrease the number of non-conference games from 24 games for 8 teams over 4 weekends to 18 non-conference games to be filled over 3 weekends. Conference play would also begin in Week #3.

    The MWC is a 10-team conference and plays one non-conference date. Perhaps we football fans should be glad that they have not cut the football schedule by 10% as they have the other sports. (The MWC does begin conference play in Week #2 and have the schedule practically completed by week #10. That leaves only one week, Week #1 for a potential WIAC-NWC match-up.)

    The MIAC is a 9-conference team and has 2 open dates. They are in conference schedules by week #3 of the season, and may choose not to use the open date in conference play as a week to play other non-conferences teams. If Macalester ever rejoins the MIAC, then there goes one of the non-conference dates.

    The WIAC then, basically must find games in Week #3 and #4 to fill the schedule, when the teams around them have begun conference play.

    The CCIW can play non-conference games in weeks #1 – #4, but the teams have chosen to split the open dates between Weeks#3 and #4, before commiting Week #5-11 to conference play.

    The same can be said for the 8-team NATHC. Are they really your peer institutions in football?

    The 7-team Northwest Conference has shown a desire to travel and so a home-and-home is a good deal for a MIAC team to go with an PLU-St Olaf or a PLU/GAC match-up. UWW did fly to Puget Sound this year.

    The Quality Loss may impact on Pool C chances. As it is working out now, the Pool C bids seem to have one conference loss and then a premium non-conference win(s). It is uncommon for a Pool C to have 2 in-region losses, but it has been seen.

    As frequently seen, the ASC teams are always needing games, if you want to travel home-and-home.

  11. Mount Union is still the defending champs and should remain number one until they are beaten. Teams are defined by their character and Mount showed character in coming back and winning the game. Playoff time will define who will reach the championship game. No matter how you slice, dice or cut it teams have to go through 1. Mount Union 2. Whitewater 3. UMHB.

  12. As far as out of conference play is concerned Mt. Union has done its share. Played Whitewater home & away in 2002 & 2003. Oshkosh is next 2010 & 2011. The OAC teams have only 1 open date.

    Strength of schedule results are interesting. It seem that the OAC has some teams, besides Mt. Union, that are gaining in the development of strong programs.

  13. lets just settle down on the re evaluating. a few years ago mount lost to ohio northern still went on to win it all. there offense is a little more stagnet than it has been. but kehres always finds a way. that being said im not to happy with the run game. maybe im spoiled by watching kmic for 4 years.

  14. Always a good podcast the E 8 review was perfect…when S J F came to Ithaca they were ready to win…Ithaca has a lot of work to do..time will tell..

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