RB Jerry Seymour

2003 Statistics

Coach: Brian Kelly
1st year
2003 Record: 3-9
at Michigan LOST 7-45
at Ball State LOST 14-27
at Bowling Green LOST 3-23
at UCF LOST 13-31
at Western Michigan LOST 21-44
at Navy LOST 34-63

2003 Final Rankings
AP-UR, Coaches-UR, BCS-UR

2004 Outlook

"Mount Pleasant: a drinking town with a football problem". That's been the (unfortunate) adage around the Central Michigan campus ever since their last MAC title, ten years ago. Sensing urgency, athletic director, Herb Deromedi (CMU's all-time leader in coaching wins), nailed DeBord and brought in a proven winner- Kelly. Kelly carries a 118-35-2 (74 % winning percentage) record, which includes two national titles. In 13 years at division II Grand Valley State, he has yet to suffer through a losing season.

Though their optimism flows like the Chippewa River, Central fans must keep their hopes in check. Remember that Kelly did coach at a D-II school, which is two (marginal) steps down from the "big boys". He's making quite the leap and will need some time to get things going. Still, we believe he's the perfect man for the job. He's a player's coach with boundless enthusiasm. He realizes the challenge that lies ahead and sees an enormous amount of potential in this program. "I'm excited about the opportunity of waking a sleeping giant". Slightly exaggerated, but he's on the right track.

CMU is finally starting to pull some quality athletes from recruiting hotbeds all over the country. The addition of Kelly, a great recruiter and motivator in his own right, will mean even better athletes down the road for the lagging Chips.

Take our word - don't count the Chippewas out of being competitive in the MAC…really. They certainly won't win their division, but (at least) they'll show up against their MAC counterparts, more than most "experts" will prognosticate. The defense is improved and the offense now has legitimate big-play capability. Stopping the run will be their biggest challenge, but getting it done will bring a "snow-balling" confidence this team. Given their recent history, the Chippewas are in the perfect situation to be an "ambush predator" - not many expect them to win, so they sit in a position to topple the ranks. Early games against Indiana and Michigan State (games which Kelly honestly expects to win) will toughen them up for the MAC slate, where the real battles begin. Hang on, Central fans; victory is just around the corner.

**This preview was written by NationalChamps.net analyst Tim Chapman, who is currently enrolled at Central Michigan University.

Projected 2004 record: 5-6
LB James King
QB - 2 DL - 2
RB - 3 LB - 2.5
WR - 2 DB - 1.5
OL - 3 ..

Passing: Jeff Perry, 105-61-3, 646 yds., 5 TD

Rushing: Jerry Seymour, 205 att., 1117 yds., 8 TD

Receiving: Justin Harper, 45 rec., 441 yds., 2 TD

Scoring: Jeff Seymour, 8 TD, 48 pts.

Punting: none

Kicking: Mike Gruzwalski, 4-6 FG, 35-35 PAT, 47 pts.

Tackles: James King, 143 tot., 103 solo

Sacks: James King, Dan Bazuin - 6 each

Interceptions: Marlin Maxwell, Richard Kiel - 2 each

Kickoff returns: Justin Harper, 33 ret., 19.6 avg., 0 TD

Punt returns: Justin Harper, 15 ret., 5.7 avg., 0 TD


OFFENSE: Derek McLaughlin-OG, Steve Messam-WR, Derrick Vickers-QB, Terrance Jackson-RB
DEFENSE: Ike Ajoku-DE, Eddie Hillery-SLB, Brian Brandt-P

New head coach and offensive coordinator, Brian Kelly, brings a pass-happy, wide-open offense that fans will soon love to watch. It relies on good vision and quick thinking. This gets momentum going before the defense can get into position. Senior Grant Arnoldink showed good command of this offense in the spring. His newfound ability stems from confidence in both himself and the guys around him. He has decent mobility, which compliments a big arm. Kent Smith has better mobility, and while he provides an interesting alternative, the Chips are better off with Arnoldink.

Running Back
Jerry Seymour is the man, no doubt. Though small in stature, he brings a big game to this CMU offense. Seymour ostensibly has a low center of gravity and great leg strength. Along with that is a soft set of hands, making him a dual-threat. Kelly knows what a dynamo he is and hopes to use him effectively in this spread offense. Junior Spencer Lewis is a qualified backup who, despite not seeing much quality time last year, keeps the offense ticking in Seymour's absence. The revamping measures will assuredly prosper with either of these guys.

We called upon Jovan Witherspoon to break out last year, and it appears we spoke too soon. Now, with a system set up to brandish his talents, he's ready to emerge and become an all-MAC receiver. He has great size, big play ability, and large hands to allow him to seize anything directed his way. He can't do it alone, though. Kelly's offenses have preached balance among receivers. It is imperative for this group to succeed as a unit. Scott Gibson has some of the best hands in the MAC. He's certainly not flashy, but very dependable. Justin Harper has been in the receiving corps the longest of the three and has built a sterling relationship with these QBs. He's a valuable receiver but needs to take his game to the next level and fill the big-play needs for this explosive offense.

Tight End and Offensive Line
Tight ends Tory Humphrey and Dave Kurzen had a slow spring as they adjusted to their increased responsibilities for the new offense. Humphrey is an NFL talent with solid hands but needs to establish consistency.

To fit his scheme, Kelly wants this line to be more athletic, and he has worked them accordingly this off-season. Part of that transformation includes moving Joe Staley from tight end to tackle. This will provide a more agile shield for the studying QB. The real gem of the front is all-MAC tackle Adam Kieft. Kieft is a four-year starter with exquisite power and remarkable mobility. New offensive line coach Jeff Quinn immediately hit it off with his players and brings much noise and enthusiasm. This is a talented collection, and playing for a coach they admire will only make them work harder. Any struggles here will be early on, with a strong second half of their campaign.

It wasn't CMU's offensive productivity that was problematic as much as it was the play calling. Mike DeBord ran to the same (running) well far too often in his regime and the results (or lack thereof) prove that. Enter the spread offense, which will actually spread the ball around to, in turn, stretch a defense. Because of this, we see good things on the horizon for the Chips. This offense will evidently improve the passing game, which ranked 96th nationally. It will also justify their short time-of-possession statistic (only 27 minutes a game), as more points will come from these drives of shorter duration. The progress of this passing game will elevate this offense past mediocrity. As Arnoldink relies on his weapons downfield and plays within his own ability, they'll likely double their '03 mark of 17 passing TDs.


OT Adam Kieft


Returning Starters in bold
QB Grant Arnoldink-Sr (6-4, 233) Kent Smith-Jr (6-5, 209)
RB Jerry Seymour-So (5-6, 190) Spencer Lewis-Jr (5-10, 224)
WR Jovan Witherspoon-Sr (6-3, 210) Jemmy Jasmin-Fr (5-9, 157)
WR Justin Harper-Jr (5-11, 185) Damien Linson-So (6-0, 165)
WR Scott Gibson-Jr (6-3, 185) Jacob Brown-Sr (6-2, 205)
TE Tory Humphrey-Sr (6-3, 240) Dave Kurzen-Sr (6-6, 246)
OT Adam Kieft-Sr (6-7, 320) Brandon Zukoff-Fr (6-5, 280)
OG Jeff Jenerou-Jr (6-7, 297) Eric Karbowski-Jr (6-3, 294)
C Eric Ghiaciuc-Sr (6-3, 295) Mike Decker-Fr (6-4, 271)
OG Drew Mormino-So (6-4, 290) Bo Stranger-So (6-4, 336)
OT Joe Staley-So (6-5, 251) Dean Zarafonetis-Jr (6-4, 316)
K Mike Gruzwalski-Jr (5-8, 190) Matt Foster-So (6-0, 164)



Defensive Line
The defensive line is loaded with players harboring unfulfilled expectations. The only exception is DE Dan Bazuin. He has a ceaseless motor that keeps him in every play and wears down opposing linemen. DT Tony Thompson is a stopgap against the run, but we believe he needs to carry his game to the next level. JUCO import Temirez Williams will provide immediate help at the other DT spot. The Chips need support from anybody and everybody against the run, and it has to start with this unit. CMU allowed 5.2 yards per carry last year as a result of these guys getting blown off the ball and allowing opponent's lead blockers to reach "level 2" (the linebackers), thus paving the way for big yardage.

Brian Kelly took his best player, James King, and moved him from safety to outside linebacker. This makes them into a quicker, better tackling unit. King is one of the best defenders in the country, finishing 10th nationally in tackles per game (12 TPG). The only question is will he be playing? At the time of press, King stands under an in-house suspension for violation of team rules. According to Kelly, he has not been re-instated yet. Quickness won't necessarily help them become stronger up the middle, though. Part of CMU's problems against the run (245 yards per game, dead last in the NCAA!) was that the middle of this defense was weak and therefore exposed. We don't see a drastic improvement coming, especially if King is out of the lineup.

Defensive Back
The Chippewas defended the pass almost as poorly as they did the run. Teams could have put up higher numbers through the air, but running against these guys was a greater assurance. Really, why take a risk throwing the ball when a ground attack against the nation's worst run-stoppers is so much more secure? When opponents did go to the air, they completed 64 percent of their passes, claiming 256 yards a game. Though they were a young group, so the trial-by-fire is now (has to be) over - it's time to start producing. Kelly went out and brought in JUCO standouts Mark Lewis and Pacino Horne to give this unit a boost in both experience and depth. Both areas equip the Chippewas with enough resources to get the job done.

Defense wins championships, but even before that, it wins games. The Chippewas didn't win games simply because they could not play defense (115th for total defense in I-A). Spotting opponents 35 points per game really puts you behind the eight /football, regardless of how explosive your offense is. The Chippewas must knock at least 150 yards off their opponents' total offense mark (501 YPG) to even think about winning. They'll get better tutelage from defensive coordinator John Jancek and assistant Mike Elston. These guys bring experience in working with the front seven, and we foresee improvement in (at least) that domain. Through the spring, they've been a quicker, more aggressive squad at making the play. You'll see more stunting, and, while this move is risky, we feel it can only play to their advantage. These coaches preach confidence and persistence in their defense. As that prevails, this defense will begin to hold up. We hope this dimension will not lead CMU into a Prairie View or Northwestern situation of a long-term skid. The stage is set for such, so now is the time to nip this pervading defensive problem.


DE Dan Bazuin


Returning Starters in bold
DE William Brookshire-Sr (6-3, 250) Anthony Rogers-Fr (6-1, 255)
DT Temirez Williams-Jr (6-1, 265) Damon Petty-So (6-4, 304)
DT Tony Thompson-Jr (6-1, 290) Kalani Muragin-Sr (6-2, 301)
DE Dan Bazuin-So (6-3, 250) Eric Tunney-Fr (6-3, 262)
WLB Jonathon Nelson-Sr (6-1, 220) Omari Colen-Sr (6-1, 209)
Leython Williams-So (6-0, 216)
MLB Anthony Tyus-Sr (5-11, 225) Jimmy Reese-Jr (6-1, 231)
SLB James King-Sr (6-1, 215) Jason Smith-Jr (6-1, 209)
Doug Kress-So (6-2, 213)
CB Richard Kiel-Sr (5-10, 180) Mark Lewis-Jr
Derrick Holoman-Sr (5-10, 182)
CB Marlin Maxwell-Jr (5-9, 175) Jesse Dailey-Jr (5-10, 176)
SS Tyrone Kelly-So (6-1, 189) Mike Thomas-Sr (5-8, 189)
FS Orlando Walton-So (6-0, 192) Pacino Horne-Jr (6-0, 190)
P Tony Mikulec-Fr (5-10, 223) Grant Arnoldink-Sr (6-4, 233)



Mike Gruzwalski, a former freshman all-America, has a solid 72 % career field goal percentage. But he carries a long of only 40… and that was pushing it. Matt Foster is their "distance" kicker, though, he missed his only two attempts last season. Be assured, the Chips will be going for it if it's fourth-down with the ball outside the 23-yard line.

Punting was one of the few areas that worked well for Central. This year's punter, Tony Mikulec was inconsistent and unreliable this spring. If he doesn't materialize, the Chips will be forced to use Arnoldink, which should send up a red flag to opponents - quick kicks would soon follow.

Return Game
Justin Harper returned both kicks and punts, and, again, assumes both roles. We don't advise it though, as he will be a key part of the offense. Plugging a backup (or two) with speed, vision, and soft hands will work as well, if not better, in these roles.