Somewhere in Muncie, Indiana, Ball State head football coach Pete Lembo has a smile on his face. Why? Because he knows something the rest of this country doesn't: the Ball State Cardinals are the best college football team in Indiana.
The Cardinals have one of the better offenses in the nation, coming in at 18th in the country at 332.5 passing yards per game, and 23rd in the country at 45.5 points scored per game.
Senior quarterback Keith Wenning is a big part of Lembo and the Cardinals' success. In a text to me today, Wenning told me he thinks this team can be what Northern Illinois was last year: a small school who stirs a little mid-major BCS controversy.
Which Indiana college football team do you think is the best in the state?
I think we do (have that chance). We have a lot of older guys back with a lot of experience in big time games that will help us each week against our opponents.
Through two games vs. Illinois State and Army, both at home, Wenning has been spectacular. Keith has completed 65.2 percent of his passes for 665 yards (10th in the country) and seven total touchdowns (five through the air, two on the ground).
Not only that, of the 42 FBS quarterbacks that have thrown more than 60 times, only five have yet to throw an interception (via Ball State Athletics.) One of those five? You guessed it.
Am I proposing Wenning be considered for the Heisman? Absolutely not, that's ridiculous. I am, however, suggesting Wenning should at the least get some national recognition. When asked about it, Wenning said he doesn't really think about it.
..as far as awards and all that stuff goes, none of that stuff matters too much to me. I'm just trying to do my best to help our team reach out [sic] goal of getting to the MAC championship and to a bowl game.
Following Wenning's performance in the 40-14 rout of Army in Week 2, the quarterback was named the Mid-American Conference offensive player of the week, according Muncie Star Press sports editor Doug Zaleski.
MAC names #BallState's Keith Wenning (offense), Nate Ollie (defense) football players of the week.— Doug Zaleski (@DougZaleski) September 9, 2013
As far as Wenning's post-Ball State career? The senior finance major said he doesn't really know what the future may hold.
If I get an opportunity to keep playing at the next level that would be a blessing, but I'm focused on having a great year in 2013 with Ball State first and foremost.
The Ball State Cardinals will head to North Texas this weekend to take on the Mean Green, who are 1-1 coming off of a 40-6 win over Idaho.