Schedule Breakdown And Predictions: Central Michigan

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Oct 11, 2014; DeKalb, IL, USA; Central Michigan Chippewas wide receiver Titus Davis (84) reacts after the game at Huskie Stadium. Central Michigan Chippewas defeat the Northern Illinois Huskies 34-17. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Meet the Chippewas

CMU is actually an all-time Top 25 Division I FBS program in winning percentage, and top five among all FBS teams from non-automatic qualifying conferences in wins.

They have played in five bowl games in the last seven years, going 2-3. CMU finished in the AP Top 25 and USA Today Coaches Poll in the final rankings released in January 2010, going 12-2 and winning the MAC conference.

Central Michigan currently has 11 players in the NFL, including Pro Bowlers Antonio Brown, Joe Staley, and J.J. Watt, who spent his freshman season at CMU as a tight end before leaving to walk on at Wisconsin.

Tennessee’s Butch Jones and Brian Kelly of Notre Dame both made stops in Mount Pleasant en route to their current positions, and both won MAC championships.

Dan Enos, who succeeded Jones in 2010, didn’t quite have the same success as Jones and Kelly, compiling a 26-36 record in his five seasons, although the Chippewas finished at .500 or above the last three seasons. He resigned and left for Arkansas after the Bahamas Bowl to serve as the Razorbacks’ offensive coordinator, and was subsequently replaced by John Bonamego, a Central Michigan alum who had been an NFL assistant since 1999.

The Chippewas had some mild success last season, defeating rivals Northern Illinois and Eastern Michigan on their way to the Bahamas Bowl against Western Kentucky, which saw CMU fall behind 49-14, and then charge back with 38 points in the fourth quarter behind quarterback Cooper Rush’s FBS bowl-record seven touchdown passes, which included one of the most ridiculous Hail Mary passes/plays of all time.

Unfortunately, the Chippewas couldn’t convert the ensuing two-point conversion, and lost 49-48.

Next: Offense