Saturday, October 15, 2005

Football - A Cure for What Ails You - A "W"

Well, I have to be honest with you. I said to myself before the game:

1. A win is a must. Anything less and it's "Houston, we have a problem".

2. I really wanted to see the offense score more than 30 points and the defense hold Duke to less than 10 points.

As I drove to Jeykll Island with my family and listened to the game on the radio, my thoughts were certainly unpleasant with a halftime score of 10-7 Duke. Thanks to an explosion in the 3rd quarter, the Jackets actually accomplished both #1 and #2.

At the end of the day, a win is a win.......... and it's amazing how a win can help smooth over a lot of things. Of, so the Jackets are 4-2, two games away from bowl eligibility. Here are some points on the game, which I did not see, but will have to make based on spotty radio listening and game stats:

1. Tashard Choice goes for his first collegiate 100+ yard game and 2 TD's. He averaged a robust 7.1 yards/carry........ Congrats. While PJ did end up carrying some, he left the game with an injury. Tashard led the way and showed that he's nothing to sneeze at, particulary when PJ Daniels moves on to the NFL. In total, the Jackets rushed for 257 yards - not bad.

2. Offensive explosion in the 3rd quarter. Ok, I'm all for offensive explosions. However, I'm not for offensive sputtering prior to that against one of the worst teams in Div I-A. For the 3rd week in a row, the team goes through a serious lack of offensive production. In this case, they did in fact move the ball, but mistakes were a killer. Fumbles, INT's, 2 roughing the punter calls. Just mistake-heavy football, or else we could have built up a nice lead in the 1st half. Back to basics time.... again.....

3. The Jackets didn't need to pass the ball much, and ended with 147 yards passing, but 9 different guys caught passes. James Johnson caught his first collegiate TD - CONGRATS! Is it just me, or are you getting a "Freddy" Smith vibe with James? I sure am........... Calvin ends up with 4 balls for 73 yards. Reggie Ball left the game with a hip pointer and Taylor Bennett came on to finish, but only went 1-2 passing. Reggie had a decent percentage night at 16-25, even with the INT.............

4. Mistakes - 2 fumbles (one lost) and 1 INT. 2 roughing the punter calls. Was that the Wolfpack in sheeps.... err bee's clothing?.......Needs tightening up.

5. Philip Wheeler continues his INT binge, grabbing #4 on the season, while RS frosh Darrell Robertson grabs an INT and takes it to the house for the first of his collegiate career - CONGRATS!!

6. Robertson wasn't the only "new" guy getting some time. Gary Guyton, Joe Gaston and Travis Chambers all logged sacks, which was nice to see. In fact, Chambers had 6 tackes, 4 of which were solo. Nice.

7. Unfortunately, Travis Bell never got a chance to try another FG. That's too bad in a "blowout". I would like to have seen him try and knock one through and get the monkey off his back.

8. Injuries will be a big issue this week. PJ Daniels - shoulder...... Pat Clark sustained an injury......... Joe Anaoi - ankle.......... Reggie Ball - hip pointer and injury to his throwing hand............ Jamal Lewis - unknown......... Brad Honeycutt and Nate McManus did start today, just as I suspected earlier in the week. Obviously we are going to need to be full strength quickly. We'll hear more this week.

Well, a win is a win is a win, even if it is Duke. And 35-10 is a decent spread. The first half wasn't pretty, but luckily they don't count that score as final. CONGRATS to the team.