With a third of their regular season schedule in the books, the Ball State Cardinals cleared their biggest hurdle Saturday with flying colors, waxing the Indiana Hoosiers in their house 42-20.

Nate Davis is the best college quarterback you've never heard of. You'll learn about him soon enough.

Nate Davis is the best college quarterback you've never heard of. He'll get his recognition soon enough.

It was the first victory against a BCS Conference school for the program and is a big step in putting them on the national radar. The Cardinals (4-0) received 16 votes in the latest coaches poll.

Unfortunately, a tragic accident took center stage Saturday as Ball State’s standout wide receiver Dante Love – who led the country in receiving yards entering the game – got the bad end of a viscious collision with an Indiana defensive back and fractured his spine. He’s expected to lead a normal life, but will likely never play football again. A tough break for a kid with a shot at the NFL.

For an offense that returned all 11 starters this season, Love will be hard to replace. Ball State quarterback Nate Davis – currently ranked fifth in the nation with a 182.32 passer rating – will have to put his trust in some less experienced targets as the Cardinals pick their way through a soft schedule.

Even if Ball State runs the table and wins the MAC title game, it’d be hard to imagine they can work their way into a BCS Bowl game unless contending teams begin to fall like dominoes. Regardless, a perfect season and a trip to the Motor City Bowl will give the Cardinals another crack at a Big Ten team and another shot to prove to recruits they’ve got something going out in Muncie. Sounds crazy, but believe it.

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