2020 Schedule Analysis: Monroe Trojans
By Frank Vajcner
It’s now time to head off to Monroe for a look at the Trojans. Nick Notario had a young team on his hands that took their lumps last year, finishing 3-6. Will the schedule allow for improvement?
Aug 28: Wyandotte
Sept 4: Ypsilanti
Sept 11: Ann Arbor Huron
Sept 17: @ Ann Arbor Skyline
Sept 25: @ Jackson
Oct 2: Saline
Oct 9: Ann Arbor Pioneer
Oct 16: @ Bedford
Oct 23: Chelsea
Gut-Check Game: Saline. The Hornets have ruled the roost in the SEC-Red since 2014, as they have won the last six conference titles, and own a 33-game winning streak in conference play. The Trojans actually hung tough last season before losing 28-14. Can Notario’s bunch avenge last season’s loss and defeat the Hornets for the first time since 2011?
Trap Game: at Jackson. The Trojans must make a 75-mile trek to Jackson for their first SEC-White crossover game a week before Saline. The Vikings went 5-4 last season, and qualified for the playoffs. Plus, the Trojans lost to the Vikings 27-20 back in 2018.
Snoozer: Refer to Bedford’s analysis for info on Ann Arbor Huron, as I see no point in continuing to beat a dead horse.
Non-Conference Challenge: The Trojans might play the toughest out-of conference slate. They will host Wyandotte in Week 1. The Bears have qualified for the playoffs in each of the last 14 seasons, and defeated the Trojans 28-14 in last year’s meeting. In addition to Jackson, the Trojans will host Chelsea in a second SEC-white crossover in Week 9. The Bulldogs went 12-1 last season, losing to eventual Division 3 Champ River Rouge in a tight game. Chelsea has also qualified for the playoffs in 20 of the last 21 seasons.
Notable: Ypsilanti moves to the SEC-Red this season. The Trojans last played the Grizzlies in 2016, and emerged a 20-8 winner…The last time Monroe and Chelsea met in football was also in 2016, and the Bulldogs emerged 28-7…2016 was also the last time Monroe faced two opponents from the SEC-White…The game at Skyline will be on a Thursday night due to the Jewish holiday of Rosh Hashanah.
Thoughts from Frank: The Trojans’ schedule is definitely full of land mines, but having six games, including their three toughest (Wyandotte, Saline, and Chelsea) all at Bunkelman Field is a plus. Trips to Jackson and Bedford will also not be easy. In the end, if Monroe has at least five wins at the end of the season, the strength of schedule could be enough to play into November.
Thoughts from Chris: Not an easy schedule by any means, especially for a team coming off of a 3-6 season. Monroe returns a lot of talent and they will need it in order to make a run at the playoffs.
Thoughts from Gary: Love the opener for Monroe in Wyandotte, a long time GL-8, Wolverine, Mega–Red conference foe. That should be a great game. I’m not so keen on the closer however in Chelsea. Chelsea is a top notch program and are 2 divisions below Monroe. Is the reward worth the risk in this new playoff qualification format? In league, the SEC RED will be it’s normal self.