Western Michigan Football 2011: Year in Review

Nathan PalcowskiContributor IIIDecember 29, 2011

Western Michigan Football 2011: Year in Review

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    The Western Michigan Broncos this year went 7-6 and played up and down the whole season.

    The Broncos star players were third team All-American Jordan White, and MAC defensive player of the year Drew Nowak. 

    The Broncos made it to their fifth bowl in school history and third in the past five years.

    Here now is a look back at the 2011 Western Michigan football season.

Week 1: Western Michigan Loses to Michigan

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    In a shortened game that ended in the third quarter, the Broncos held tough with the Wolverines for about a half. Western Michigan hung with the Wolverines early but turnovers doomed the Broncos, and Michigan took advantage.

Week 2: Western Takes Care of Nicholls State Early

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    In the first win of the season, the Broncos got off to a hot start. By halftime, the Broncos were leading 28-7. They went on to win 38-7 as quarterback Alex Carder threw for 143 yards and two touchdowns.

Week 3: WMU Beats Rival Central

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    In one of the biggest in-state rivalries in Michigan, Western put a whooping on Central. Right from the get-go, the Broncos were scoring. The Broncos ended up winning 44-14. Alex Carder threw for 355 yards and three touchdowns. Jordan White was the player of the game and Western Michigan took back the trophy between the two schools. This game gave the Broncos a two-game winning streak after losing their first game.

Week 4: Western Loses a Close Game to #24 Illinois

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    Western Michigan yet again played with the big boys of the Big Ten and just barely came away with the loss. The Broncos had a chance late in the fourth quarter but couldn't pull off the upset. Alex Carder threw for 302 yards and two touchdowns, while All-American wide receiver Jordan White had 14 catches for 132 yards and one touchdown. The Broncos lost 23-20 and ended their two-game win streak.

Week 5: WMU Tames the Huskies

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    The Broncos took on the defending Big East Champion Uconn Huskies and took it to the Huskies. Western's passing attack was running on full cylinders that Saturday as quarterback Alex Carder threw for 502 yards and a whopping seven touchdowns. Along with Carder, wide receiver Jordan White had 12 receptions for 173 yards and two touchdowns. WMU beat the Huskies 38-31

Week 6: Western Torches Bowling Green

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    On a hot fall day in Kalamazoo, Western Michigan took care of Bowling Green 45-21. The game gave the Broncos their second two-game winning streak of the season. Though the weather was hot, the WMU offense was even hotter as Alex Carder threw for 212 yards and three touchdowns. The All-American Jordan White added on yet another 12-catch performance for 156 yards and two touchdowns. The win brought the Broncos' record to 4-2 and 2-0 in the MAC

Week 7: WMU Gets Rocked Against NIU

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    With the top two teams in the MAC West at the time, NIU ended Western's two-game winning streak with a convincing win 51-22. Though the game was close early on, Northern Illinois pulled away in the second half and gave Western its first loss in MAC play. The defense of Western did not show up to play as they gave up 679 total yards against the Huskies.

Week 8: Eastern Michigan Soars Past Western

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    In a close game, the Broncos came up just short losing the contest 14-10. It was an off day for the Western offense as wide receiver Jordan White only accumulated seven catches for 70 yards. This gave Western their second loss in a row and second consecutive loss in the MAC West.

Week 9: White's Record-Breaking Day as Ball State Goes Down

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    In a 45-35 win, the overall score was not the highlight of the day. Wide receiver Jordan White had nine receptions for 172 yards and two touchdowns. Along with that, White became WMU's all-time leader in receptions. Western got back to their winning ways, ending their two-game losing streak and keeping them undefeated at home.

Week 10: Record Night for WMU in a Loss

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    Coming off a bye week, the Broncos got to play in primetime against the Toledo Rockets. The Broncos ended up losing the game 66-63. The score was only half of it as two MAC records were broken. In total, both teams combined for 1,439 yards and 129 points. Both MAC records. Also once again, quarterback Alex Carder threw for 548 yards and seven touchdowns. In the loss, Western Michigan slimmed its chances of winning the MAC West.

Week 11: Western Beats Miami (OH) in Primetime

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    For back-to-back weeks, Western Michigan was on primetime Tuesday Night Football on ESPN and they finally came away with the win 24-21 against Miami (OH). In the primetime quarterback Alex Carder threw for 429 yards and three touchdowns. All-American Jordan White got to showcase his talents as he had nine receptions for 127 yards and two touchdowns.

Week12: Western Caps off Perfect Season at Home Against Akron

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    With back-up quarterback Tyler Van Tubbergen, the Western Michigan offense did not miss a beat as they put a beatdown against Akron, 68-19. Tubbergen in the back-up role threw for 252 yards and a whopping six touchdowns. Leading him to the MAC player of the week. Jordan White in his final home game had seven catches for 138 yards and two touchdowns. With the win, Western ended the season with a perfect record at home and gave the Broncos their third two-game winning streak ending the season.

Bowl Week: Hot N' Ready Broncos Get Cooked Against Purdue

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    A close game against the third Big Ten team, the Broncos faced this year but just coming up short yet again. The Broncos were looking for the first-ever bowl win in school history. Western had a chance at the end until quarterback Alex Carder was stripped with two minutes left to go. Purdue won the game 37-32. Western Michigan ended the season with a 7-6 record and had an All-American in Jordan White and MAC Defensive Player of the Year Drew Nowak. All-American Jordan White finished his senior year with 140 catches for 1,911 yards and 17 touchdowns. Junior quarterback Alex Carder finished the year with 3,873 yards and 31 touchdowns.