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September 28, 2012
With Western Michigan's MAC opener against Toledo just hours away, BroncoBlitz.com's staff members submit their final predictions on the outcome.
David James: The more I look into this game, the more I think WMU has the edge. In the end I feel it comes down to Toledo's lack of defense. The Broncos simply have a more well-rounded team, particularly with their new-found running game.
The game will stay close into the second half, but we won't see late fireworks. Western Michigan pulls away in the fourth quarter for a surprisingly comfortable win.
Western Michigan 38, Toledo 26
D.J. Duckett: With WMU starting backup quarterback Tyler Van Tubbergen, I'm not sure what to expect from the Bronco passing game. I think the emergence of Chance could really help take the pressure off of the new signal caller.
Toledo features a good offense, as usual, but I personally think that their defense is lacking a bit this year. I think this will be a close, four quarter game, coming down to a big play in the final frame. Jaime Wilson will be the difference maker. Wilson's big play is the difference, as the Broncos get the W in their alternate uniforms.
Western Michigan 34, Toledo 30
Brian Persky: The thing that everybody has been talking about all week (and deservedly so) is the Alex Carder injury and backup quarterback Tyler Van Tubbergen. VanTubbergen looked a little shaky when he was unexpectedly inserted into the game against UConn last week in wake of Alex Carder's hand injury. I think with a week of preparation, he will have put some of the nerves and psyche issues behind him.
There's no doubt that Bill Cubit has an equal amount of confidence in Tyler Van Tubbergen, and that was proven in last year's Akron game when the Broncos came right out slinging the ball on the Broncos opening drive (5 passes, 0 runs) that ended with a 22-yard touchdown pass to Jordan White. And with Toledo's secondary, I think we'll see pretty close to the same Tyler Van Tubbergen we saw against Akron last year. I think Cubit will call this one just as aggressively, also possibly inserting some trickeration to keep the Rockets defense off balance at times.
I could honestly see this game going a million different directions, however I would be surprised if it was low-scoring. I do think Toledo will have its way with the Western Michigan defense for most of the game, but I think Western Michigan's defense wins this game in the final minutes and ultimately comes up with a stop in front a large and rowdy night crowd at Waldo Stadium.
Western Michigan 38, Toledo 35
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