However, in both cases, the winning coach was less than thrilled about his team’s performance. For Miami, that’s because the Reds led 26-7 at halftime and allowed the Spartans to score three tries in the second half.
“I’m frustrated,” Miami coach Jared Moore said about the 45-28 win. “I just know we’re going to have to play much better against better teams.”
One of those better teams is Bowling Green (35-12 winners), coached by Tony Mazzarella. He was disappointed in his Falcons' performance, as they led just 15-7 at halftime and didn’t put Purdue away as soon as he'd like.
“We played pretty well until it came to finishing off some tries that we really had some chances at,” he said. “We had a chance to stretch the lead a little bit more and put them out a little bit earlier, but we had some knock ons here and there and some indiscipline.”
Rust, says Mazzarella, wasn’t the culprit.
“We’ve been paying the last couple weeks in some tune up games, so we can’t use that as a excuse. We certainly are getting used to not having some key players, most notably Nick Viviani,” he said.
“So I think that’s a little bit of a work in progress still, and as good as a player as he was, I think he was a pretty good leader, so we’ve got a new leadership group and some guys playing some new positions. The rust isn’t really an excuse, but we’ve got a bit of a learning curve.”
That curve gets a lot steeper next week when Bowling Green takes on Indiana, who beat defending Midwest Champs Wisconsin in the preseason.
Miami has a bye next week before taking on the Mudsharks.
(This article originally incorrectly quoted Miami as 35-12 winners over Purdue. The Reds won 45-28 against Michigan State, while Bowling Green beat Purdue 35-12.)