ok here is the update, there are a few details that I left out yesterday since I was in a hurry.
When I changed the module to e1000e, I finally got to the point where the MD announced itself to the router and then failed the Diskless Setup. The new MD was listed under the webadmin site, but it was listed as AMD64. At this point I was going to finish off the 2nd part of the wiki where you add the module under /usr/pluto/diskless/MD ID... unfortunately this MD was not listed in that directory. Not knowing what else to do I changed the arch to i386 and rebuilt the image using the webadmin, after that the folder for this MD appeared and I tried the 2nd half of the wiki. I rebooted and it didnt announce itself to the router, i just got the good old kernel panic again.
so, why is this MD not creating a folder when it is listed on the web admin? I have a feeling that when I changed to i386 and clicked rebuild that it wiped out the e1000e module and took me back to square 1.