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Meet The Rockets

2012 Record: 9-4 (6-2 MAC); Lost to Utah State in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl

Returning Starters: 11: Offense: 9, Defense: 3

Key departures: MLB Dan Molls (San Diego Chargers undrafted free agent, nation-leading 166 tackles), SS Jermaine Robinson (4 INTs, including two for touchdowns, New Orleans Saints undrafted free agent), OLB Robert Bell (second on the Rockets with 100 tackles), OT A.J. Lindeman (former walk-on with 13 career starts as a fifth-year senior, undrafted free agent of the Chicago Bears)

Player to watch offense: WR/return specialist Bernard Reedy – Florida’s deep secondary will get a first-hand look at one of the nation’s most explosive, but unheralded receivers. Toledo’s senior wide out caught 88 balls for 1,120 yards and six touchdowns in 2012, while also chipping in four return touchdowns. Reedy, a Lakewood High alum and first-team All-MAC performer, is super shifty.

Player to watch defense: DE Jayrone Elliot – With the Rockets returning just three starters from last season’s 11th ranked MAC defense, the pickins’ are a tad slim here. Elliot -- a senior -- recorded six sacks and seven tackles for loss as Toldeo’s top pass rusher in 2012. But with gaping holes at linebacker (especially) and in the secondary, the Rockets desperately need Elliot to develop into more than just a situational edge rusher. Elliot’s tag-team partner Christian Smith is another defensive end to keep an eye on.

2013 Outlook: Potentially promising: Toledo is expected to seriously compete for its first conference title in a decade.

Reedy is a seasoned star, as is Rockets junior tailback David Fluellen, the nation’s 12th leading rusher (1,498 yards and 13 TDs). Senior southpaw quarterback Terrance Owens is finally Toledo’s cemented starter after splitting time with the departed Austin Dantin the previous three seasons.

The Rockets also return four regulars from their offensive line.

The Rockets have two major obstacles if they want to win their first outright MAC title since 2004: Northern Illinois and an inexperienced, overhauled defense. Toledo hasn’t beaten its division rival since 2009 and the Huskies return their bulldozing duel-threat quarterback Jordan Lynch.

Toledo finished 2012 with the nation’s 113th ranked total defense, but the Rockets were surprisingly successful at forcing turnovers (25th nationally with 27).

However, top-tackler Dan Molls (3 INTs) and safety Jermaine Robinson (4 INTs, 2 FFs) no longer wear Toledo’s blue and yellow, and those are two monumental losses for a defense that already struggled with consistency.

The offense will undoubtedly score points in bunches, but with three new starters in the secondary and the team’s leading returning tackler a cornerback (Cheatham Norris), it could be tough sledding for the Rockets if their young unit doesn’t mature quickly.  

Florida hosts Toledo on Saturday at 12:21 p.m. (SEC Network)

Follow me on Twitter @JesseReSimonton

Comments

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......COmE mEet thE GAyTorS, ViSiting HOurs Are POsTed!

So Toledo is better defensively than the sorry canes, numbers don't lie. They also sport a winning record with 9 wins, something out of reach for the current cane regime. Seems like our first game will be the tougher one of the first two.

Toledo has gone 8-5/9-4/9-4 the last 3 years with 3 Bowl games ...

Better than u ...

With toledos schedule we would be undefeated every year! For gators that means you finish a season with no loses.

Those Toledo Rockets remind me of the '85 Bears from "back in the day."

I remind myself of the douchebags from back in the day.

Common sense also says Toledo will have a program in a year, canes....probably not.

Posted by: common sense101

Toledo's schedule is very similar to that of the sorry canes yet Toledo posts 8, 9, and 9 wins in the past 3 years to the canes 5, 6 and 7 wins. Again, Toledo is better than the canes.

For Gators playing either schedule that would definitively be no losses and MAC or ACC champs every year, something the sorry canes cannot fathom. Yet Toledo is closer to that MAC title than the canes to the ACC title. Toledo is better yet again.
Anyway you slice it Toledo comes out ahead of the sorry canes.
That is common sense 101.

Haha, are you joking? Toledo's schedule is similar to the Canes??????

Man, you just exposed yourself as having absolutely no clue at all about college football!

Did a 3rd. grade Art student give Stephen Morris that hideous crooked u/17 thing tattoo on his puny right bicep ?

Should have had it stamped to his melon forehead, there's more room.

Toledo is gonna wop us....I can't sleep in this tiny cell

Man they must be playing with 15 defensive players

What happens the first time Toledo flattens me with that swiss cheese O line I have. Bye Bye appendix, thankfully I wont have to play against Miami.

Stupid and unoriginal cane trolls, all talk in the summer and come fall "wait til next year".

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