Column: They’re not called Flashes for nothing

Jonas Fortune

After Kent State lost to Army in week two, I was ready to raise hell. I told the sports editor I couldn’t take it anymore, and I planned to write a column that would ruffle a few feathers. At the time, I thought Kent State football was a total disgrace.

But that week I made an interesting decision: I gave the team one week of reprieve. I thought they would lose the following week anyway, and losing a dozen games in a row sounds way worse than 11.

So, after the Flashes squeezed out a win against Miami, I still wanted to write a column chastising our putrid squad. The win had the feel of that little league team everyone had in their league that never won a game before, so all the excitement and Gatorade dumping was just depressing to see.

How pathetic, the Flashes didn’t even know how to act after winning a game, I remember thinking. But I didn’t want to be a party pooper and rain on everyone else’s parade. So I bit my lip and didn’t write anything about it that week either.

So now we sit 4-0 in the MAC heading into the bye week of the season. Whoa! Let me say that again. 4-0 in the MAC. It still doesn’t sound right. Flashes, what have you done? You’re not supposed to be a winning football team!

This is the first time in university history the Flashes have started 4-0 in the MAC, and they aren’t just beating teams, they are dismantling them: 38-3 against Bowling Green, 37-15 against rival Akron and 40-14 against Toledo.

If you forget about the opening night massacre by Minnesota, Kent State has outscored their opponents 173-80 this season. Who are these guys? They went from worst to first in a flash.

Sophomore quarterback Julian Edelman has completed nearly 60 percent of his passes and has an impressive 139.04 quarterback rating. Only 38 other quarterbacks in college football have a better one. He is also the Flashes’ second leading rusher and has five touchdowns by foot.

Perhaps the reason for Edelman’s impressive quarterback rating is the talented Najah Pruden. He has become one of the best receivers in all of college football. Pruden is the sixth highest player in receiving yards in Division I-A college football.

It was only a month ago when I was ready to rip this team apart, and now that seems like a distant memory.

Apparently I wasn’t the only person who felt this way; Dix Stadium is beginning to fill up. The last three home games have seen crowds of more than 20,000, a feat never accomplished once last year. It’s amazing what winning a few games can do for morale.

So now I sit here and reflect on this season so far. I never got to write my “Fire coach Martin” column. I never got to write about how much of a disgrace our football team was, and I couldn’t be happier about that.

Contact sports columnist Jonas Fortune at [email protected].