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O-Line Tweaks

   There might be some more mixing and matching along the FIU offensive line this Saturday against ULM.

   The offensive line play improved somewhat in last week's game against Toledo. After a little tweaking,


the Panthers line helped the running game rush for 148 yards. 

   Freshman Dave Istanich started at right tackle and alternated with senior Joe Alajajian.

   "David did a nice job and has earned himself some playing time," MC said. "Then Joe got in there and did a nice job as well. Kind of like with a wide receiver or a quarterback, if a guy gets hot you want to leave him in there. They were blocking well. The offensive line was jelling. Overall, they were blocking well."


   Although right guard Cedric Mack was elevated to co-starter with Luis Abril on the depth chart, he did not play Saturday.

   Instead it was another junior college transfer that stood out against Toledo.

   "[Mack] has to get better," MC said. "The bottom line is we need offensive linemen to step up. If he steps up enough, he will play. Just like the last game when [Kevin] Van Kirk stepped up, Van Kirk played. It will always be based on reality, that’s why we don’t delve into all the nonsense. Van Kirk has been playing well. Cedric Mack obviously was a well-publicized player coming in, but he needs to get in shape and he needs to be better for him to play. Van Kirk did a real good job. He’s going to see a lot of action this week."

   Van Kirk, a junior, transferred to FIU from Santa Rosa College after being an All-Broward County

Van kirk

lineman at Plantation American Heritage High (MH photo, left).

   In case you missed it in yesterday's paper, safety Ash Parker is out for the season for the second consecutive year with the same knee tear. AP is a redshirt junior so he does have one more season of eligibility.

   Kreg Brown is slated to start in his place, but you might see plenty of rotation back there depending on whose play stands out.

   Tight end Eric Kirchenberg is out 3 to 4 weeks with an abdominal/groin strain. Good thing there is depth at the position with DLP, Jonathan Faucher and Colt Anderson.

   Receiver Marquis Rolle is out a couple of weeks with bone bruise on his knee.


The FIU/ULM game is blacked out, but been told Sports Grill is working on getting the game on anyhow. As soon I get an answer about the game's availability I will post it on here for you.


What is the most important key to Saturday's FIU/ULM game. The thought here is the Panthers have to score early to spring the upset against the much improved Warhawks, because FIU cannot keep trying to come back in the second half. That's too much to keep asking of the D. Here are some other choices. Pick one and tell us why.



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Mack needs to play. He's our best option at Guard position. As for Parker, I really hope they rotate players for that position. There is some young talent, hopefully somebody steps up and takes the job.


POOH BEAR? Red shirting or not good enough to play?

or hurt?

He has played every game but on special teams

o-line because they are the weakest link n the team. seriously, they are terrible. Prove me wrong o-line!

We have miles to go this season. The performance against Toledo was lackluster at best. It looked like we were outcoached and outplayed all night. This week is a chance to turn the season around.

My take on the season so far:
1. the offensive line has been a HUGE disappointment;
2. it doesn't look to me that we are playing our best players or giving them meaningful playing time;
3. our secondary has has been devastated by injury, grades, and recruits that haven't worked out.

I really don't get what's going on with the offensive line. Not only have the guys who we expected to play not played up to expectations (Alajajian, Serini, Leavine), but guys we expected to see have been missing in action (Mack, Cawthon, Bailey, Bryan, Bryant, White). Kevin Van Kirk playing significant minutes and no Cedric Mack? Are you kidding me? Let Mack play and then decide if he needs to be on the sidelines. Where was Matavao last game? I thought Bailey and Cawthon were pushing hard for playing time?

On the DL, where is James Jones and Reggie Jones? When is Jonathan Jackson coming back? I haven't seen enough of Kambriel Willis or Andre Pound either. To me, those guys are our best D linemen. Kasey Smith seemed to make some plays last game and earned some more playing time. Where is Pooh Bear and Kenneth Dillard at LB? Pete, you mentioned during recruiting season last year that if Pooh Bear and Dillard signed with FIU, they would both start immediately for FIU this year. I'm not looking for them to start, I just want to see them get in the game on something other than special teams.

In the secondary, Souarin and Taylor should be playing more. The secondary is probably the area where we've had the fewest recruits stick. Some of our better recruits over the past several years have been DB's who never saw the field for FIU--A.J. Grant, Marcelus Manear, Devin Parrish. There have been others as well--Jecorey Quarterman, Jermaine Malcolm, and Chris Charles. We have to do a better job recruiting quality guys that can qualify.

I'm still bullish on this team and think they can win the Sun Belt, but the season starts this week and they have to come out with some fire and not let up the rest of the season.

Im pretty sure if they arent on the field because they just haven't proved they deserve to be on the field. As a coach I wouldn't put in players that were supposed to be good enough to start. I would play them in practice and see if they play good enough to contribute.

Hey PP, if you're going to borrowing my thoughts, at least give me credit. ;)


"The thought here is the Panthers have to score early...because FIU cannot keep trying to come back in the second half. That's too much to keep asking of the D."

****FINNEGANS RIVER**** downtown Miami

Will be broadcasting the game for the FIU FAITHFUL, several of us alumni made some inquiries and they will reserve the interior bar/seating area for us and show the game on all screens.

Drink and food specials for those 21 and over !!!!

Hello Pete. I know the game is on channel 63, CSS, for those who have comcast. Is it blackout on that channel as well?

Sorry for the typo there...Drink Specials for those 21 and over and food is available to those under 21, LOL !!!!

Yeah southpaw... AJ Grant is my favorite recruit we had so far and I never was was able to see him play. RIP. The guy totally dissapeared and fell of the map.

FiuFootballFan, it will not be blacked out on CSS.

My prediction:

FIU 42
ULM 27

*Welcome Richard.

My prediction:

ULM 35
FIU 27

Until FIU can prove to me they can come up with a complete game, have to go against them.

Sorry, hope I am wrong.

As FIUPIKE pointed out a few of us alumni were able to get in touch with Finnegan's on the River and they will be showing the game for us.

We need as many people as possible to show up and give Finnegan's a reason to support our Golden Panthers.

CarolinaGoldenPanther, No one has signed with FIU yet. All these kids are committing to the program not signing. BIG difference. They could still be entertaining offers from other programs. Terrance Taylor is a perfect example... committed to Rutgers but is now at FIU.

You know what I meant Danny. I typed it fast while at work.

ULM 35 FIU 21

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