Saturday, October 13, 2007

Now that's Playing to Win

4th Quarter
3:41 remaining
Jackets up 17-14
GT with the ball, 3rd-and-7 on the Miami 35.
Announcers saying the Jackets should stick with the run.

What did you think we were going to do? I know what you were thinking, because I was thinking it too...... here we go again................ but....

However, even though I was thinking it, I was yelling - play to win!!! Play to win!! Don't run the ball.

Guess what? We passed the ball................ a laser shot to DJ Donley, who was covered up............. and he caught it for a 1st down. I was proud on the coaching staff for trusting Taylor to make a play. He did........ 1st down......... they ran out the clock and the rest is history............ Jackets win by a final of 17-14 over Miami.

Run the ball............................. check (265 yards rushing)
Stop the run............................ check (mostly - gave up 169 yards to Miami, most in the 1st half)
Don't turn the ball over......... check (mostly- one INT in the endzone in the 1st half)
Control the clock..................... check (Miami only ran 20 plays in the 2nd half ~10 mintues TOP)

Major props to Tashard Choice, Mike Cox and the O-Line. That banged up group of guys controlled the game in the 2nd half. Choice goes over 200 yards rushing, a career high, most of which came in the 2nd half, as the O-Line controlled the game and the time-of-possession. Just another gutsy outing. We're going to ride this guy into the dirt, but it's fun watching. Last 3 games - 32 carries, 32 carries, 37 carries. Wow.

As impressive as Choice was, Mike Cox once again showed why he will be playing on Sundays. Block after block after block after block. The beat up O-Line was outstanding.

You may love'em or hate'em (our coaching staff), but you have to give them credit for making the right adjustments at the half. Coach Bond pushed the right buttons on the offensive side of the ball, and in doing so, limited Miami's offensive attempts. In the first half, they probably tried passing too many times (easy to say now). Choice had been running well, but they just didn't get it into his hands enough in my humble opinion. Obviously they changed the game-plan in the 2nd half and rode Duece to the promised land. Was it just me, or did it look like an XBox Madden game out there? Run that same play that works every time and just keep doing it? Reminded me of the old Sega Genesis - ride Bo Jackson all the way!!!

The offenses ability to keep Miami off the field gave Jon Tenuta a better opportunity to keep his guys fresh and make the right calls defensively. We did give up 169 yards rushing, but shut down Miami's passing game, and made key stops at the right time.

Nice adjustments today by the staff.

The stats are nothing to go wild about. 11-for-28 for 114 yards, 0 TD's and 1 INT. However, he did run two beautiful bootlegs in for TD's today. He managed the game pretty well, and once again he made some nice throws in the 2nd half. He had two VERY key 3rd down conversions that kept drives alive. He wasn't overwhelming, but he got the ball into the hands of his playmakers. Good job today.

By the way, Bennett did not get sacked today. Just more props to the O-Line. Remember, Miami was 2nd in the ACC in sacks (GT 1st).

The front 7 today did a very nice job. A lot of pressure. A lot of tackles-for-a-loss. A lot of disruption. Nice effort overall. Wheeler was all over the place. Guyton made some spectacular tackles. Vance Walker and D.Richard did a very nice job of getting pressure from the inside.

Is it just me, or do you have a heart flutter every time a ball goes deep to one of our corners? I don't want to take away from an overall good game from those guys, but if Miami throws a few better passes, we lose this game. Their WR's were open a lot.

Now, Miami ended up with only 56 yards passing, so I am not going to take a stab at those guys. Just saying that everytime the ball is in the air, my breath is in waiting.

Nice punting by Brooks - again! Travis Bell hits a game-winning field goal - nice going!! The coverage teams did their job. Tech won the field position battle today, and special teams were a large part of it. Ok - yes, we got faked out on the fake punt, but that's it.

Well, Randy Shannon hired Patrick Nix specifically because Tech always got the best of Miami and he was impressed with Tech's offense the past two seasons. Well, maybe it wasn't Mr.Nix after all. I mean, 17 points is nothing to get all hyped up about, but the ball control and domination in the 2nd half was.

Nix certainly tried to send a message early, going deep with the patented toss-up balls early on. But it was more flash than sizzle.

He missed the game today because his sister was in a car accident and he headed home. Prayers out your family.

Another frustrating struggle in the 1st half and a wonderfully coached and executed 2nd half. This time we walk away with a win. With all that great feeling, we only won by 3 pts. Last week we lost by 2. That's just the way football works.

The Jackets beat Miami for the 3rd season in a row, joining, FSU, VT and Notre Dame as the only teams to do that. Who'd a thunk it? Doesn't matter - they did it!!

Nice job team!