Monday, March 21, 2011

Rhode Island Rams 2010 Review

2010 Record: 5-6 (4-4), Tied 5th Colonial
2010 Postseason: None
2010 Schedule/Results: @ Buffalo, L 31-0, @ Fordham, L 27-25, New Hampshire, W 28-25, Brown, W 27-24, @ William & Mary, L 26-7, @ Delaware, L 24-17, Maine, L 28-23, @ Towson, W 30-20, Villanova, W 17-14, @ Richmond, L 15-6, UMass, W 37-34


     The Rams were a perplexing team in 2010. They lost games to Fordham and Maine, but yet beat Villanova, Delaware, and New Hampshire. It makes you scratch your head in wonderment. The Rams major problem was finding a consistent tone to take. That being said, it seems as if Joe Trainer is getting the Rams on track, and winning is just right around the corner, especially if they can find that consistency.
     The passing game was not the best, but the Rams have spent the last 3 seasons trying to move away from an option game to a passing attack. That being said, Steve Probst was a one man band at QB, as he passed for 1876 yards with 9 TDs, and he led the Rams in rushing as well with 455 yards 7 TDs. He had a ton of pressure on him, and the pressure showed in the passing game, as he was picked 12 times in 11 games, causing him to rank 8th in the conference in passing efficiency.
     Ayo Isijola, Anthony Ferrer, and Travis Hurd all provided some time at RB, but nobody blew the lid off of the position. The three combined to put together a line of 267-923-5. Isijola and Hurd will be back in 2010, while Ferrer will be on his way.
    Anthony Baskerville and Brandon Johnson-Ferrell both did a quality job in helping Probst develop as a passer. Baskerville put together a line of 48-500-3, while Johnson-Ferrell put together 39-400-1. It's not perfect, but it's better than it's been. Tyquan Bynum was the only other receiver that went over 20 receptions, with a season of 22-208-2.
     The defense had its moments in 2010. The run defense only gave up 126 yards per game rushing, but the pass defense was not nearly as solid, having given up 238.7 yards per game through the air. Again, an instance of consistency, and as I have said, inconsistency kills.
     The Rams are developing on defense, and Trainer is a former DC, so he will likely work this unit over. Matt Hansen finished the season with 114 tackles, as he finished 3rd in the CAA. Chris Edmond finished with 83 tackles. The Rams are still trying to find other playmakers to give this unit depth.
     The Rams were very active up front, giving an example of how they were able to control the run. Joseph Harris led the team and the league with 24 TFLs on the season. Willie McGinnis (13), Matt Hansen (12), and Matt Rae (10) all finished with double digits. Matt sheard came up just short with 9. The passing D suffered because nobody had more than 3 sacks, giving the QBs all day to get the ball downfield.
     Jarrod Williams and Stanley Dunbar combined to knock away 12 passes in 2010, but the rest of the secondary was lacking playmakers. Williams also led the team with 4 picks, but again, nobody else was stepping up to make the big plays.
     Louis Feinstein was highly lacking as a PK in 2010, having only connected on 11 of his 19 FG attempts. The best thing that could happen would be to have a new face arrive on campus and win the job. Tim Edger was off at Punter as well. Edger averaged 38 yards per punt on the year, which is not getting it done.


This is where I get real. I have been to URI, and have seen them play a few times, as having been a former resident of the state. I enjoyed my time there, and found the people in the program to be very open and inviting to promotingtheir program. The reality is that the Rams are not up to the job of competing long term in the CAA, as their facilities are horrible. The stadium is a glorified high school facility, and recruiting solid players to Kingstown has to be next to impossible. The Rams are lucky to get who they get, and they luck out every now and then. It would seem that the Rams are finally realizing this issue, and are now on the verge of leaving the CAA for the Northeast Conference in the very near future. This move would be bad for basketball, but necessary to support a football team that struggles financially and is on the crux of being extinct, an option that was on the table in the last 12 months, which would have them joining fellow CAA rivals Hofstra and Northeastern. The move makes sense, and it would also allow URI to play on a more even field, as most teams in the NEC have the same issues that the Rams have. More news as this develops.

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