Massachusetts Minutemen 2023 College Football Preview
June 9, 2023
Record – 1-11
ATS – 5-7
Year one of the second go-around for head coach Don Brown didn’t go that well. Minutemen fans were weeping in their CLAM CHOWDER as they lost to every FBS team on the docket and only managed to defeat something called Stony Brook (W 20-3). Just two of their losses were by 7 points or less. They didn’t have much talent to work with so maybe, just maybe, there’s a possibility of better times ahead?
Massachusetts Minutemen 2023 Outlook
It was a disgusting mess last season as the Minutemen averaged a mere 12.5 PPG (#130 FBS) whilst ranking a dismal #125 in passing offense. The 4-14 TD to INT mark posted by the quarterback room was absolutely hideous so the Minutemen decided to add some FRESH MEAT for 2023. Georgia Tech transfer Taisun Phommachanh will likely get first crack at the starting QB gig given his raw talent but they also brought in Carlos Davis from Western Carolina. We expect better things from the THROW GAME as Miami Florida transfer Mark Pope and Anthony Simpson (Arizona) will give returning #1 WR George Johnson III some much needed assistance. UMass did some decent work on the ground LY (149 YPG, #67 rushing offense) and we expect a good season from apparent #1 Kay’Ron Adams who gets to run behind an experienced and fairly sizeable offensive line. Our DEEP MINUTEMEN INSIDERS are projecting significant improvement on this side of the football.
Last year’s stop unit wasn’t horrible for a 1-11 team (#67 vs the run, #9 passing yards allowed, #85 pass efficiency defense) but they only managed to book 18 sacks (#115) and they definitely had trouble with the better offenses on their schedule (e.g.,Tulane, Toledo, Liberty). We expect noticeable improvement on this side of the ball as well given that Don Brown and company have brought in several transfers (8 or so) from Power 5 conferences. That bodes well for a defense that was #11 (!) on 3rd downs LY and that brings back seven starters including their fine DT Billy Wooden, #2 tackler safety Tyler Rudolph, and ace CB duo Jordan Mahoney and Josh Wallace. If Don Brown and DC Keith Dudzinski can figure out how to spice up the pass rush this defense could be pretty good. Particularly when you check out their schedule (see below).
PK Cameron Carson returns for duty (13/18 FG, 13/13 XP LY) which is a good thing. Punter CJ Kolodziey is also back in the mix but note that the Minutemen were #129 in net punting LY and a superb #131 (dead last) in punting average (36.8). That’s gotta get better. We have high hopes that Arizona transfer WR/KR Anthony Simpson will add spice to the return game.
Overall – There are a small handful of guaranteed blowout losses (e.g., at Auburn, at Penn St) but there are (don’t laugh) SEVERAL winnable games on the docket.
Potential ATS Trouble Spot – at Auburn (Sept 2)
This doesn’t appear to be a great time to back the yuuuuge underdog. Auburn will a bloodthirsty STREAK of Tigers playing in their home opener whilst the Minutemen have a long trip from Las Cruces after playing New Mexico St. **
** yup, a group of tigers is called a ‘streak’. #KnowledgeBomb
Season Win Total
Market consensus, June 9 <wide variety of lines are available>
Over 2.5 +110
Under 2.5 -130
You have to believe that they’ll take care of the thing known as Merrimack. The rest of the schedule features five or six legitimately winnable games. We noticed an “over 2 -130” out there which seems fairly interesting. Hey, you know we like DUMPSTER DIVING on season win totals, yo.
The most famous player from their football program is former New York Giants WR Victor Cruz who helped lead the team to a Super Bowl victory over your boy Tom Brady and his New England Patriots in 2012. Cruz gets full marks for battling through academic struggles in college and he managed to dominate on the field when getting the opportunity to start. And who can forget the SALSA DANCE touchdown celebration? ***
*** Easy, Karen. It’s just a dance, not cultural appropriation. Nobody had their feelings hurt.
The movie “Malice”, a disappointing Nicole Kidman vehicle, was filmed in a number of spots in Massachusetts including Amhurst, home of the Massachusetts Minutemen. We have confirmed that Alec Baldwin did NOT shoot anyone on the set, although Sully was really getting on his nerves.
We feel pretty good about the talent infusion across the entire roster. This is still going to be a team that struggles to win football games but they definitely have a license to win three or four contests along the way. They might even SHOCK the WORLD at some point and win a game as double-digit dogs. They don’t have much depth so they’ll need to avoid a major bite from the injury bug.
Go Minutemen. Yous better bag those wins wicked hard or else. Do it for Southie.