Sunday, October 9, 2011

Ag Football Recap: Ags 45 v. tech 40

The tension was high my my living room as I watched this one play out - it was Jennifer's birthday on Saturday so we went out for dinner and after she went to bed I stayed up into the wee hours of the morning to watch the game - and it was so hard to keep quiet and not wake everyone up.

It wasn't our best game, and we certainly looked bad at several points, but I will take a win in lubbock any day - any way necessary.

It wasn't Tannehill's best game, but I thought he did a good job leading the team and being athletic enough to turn a handful of negative plays into positive ones. He threw for 188 yards and 1 TD but ran for 55 yards and added two TDs on the ground.

Cyrus ran for 115 yards and a TD while CMike added 52 strong yards and another TD.

There were two times that Cyrus was whistled down but his knee never hit the turf (he was sitting on a defensive player) - we noticed this also once in the Arkansas game. The coaching staff or someone needs to point this out to the officials because at least two of the three times he got up and took off and they would have been easy TDs.

Everyone has been ranting and raving about the defense over the last three weeks but what might be a bigger concern is the offense consistently disappearing in the second half.
1st Half: 301 yds/20 pts
2nd Half: 170/7

1H: 424/35
2H: 234/3

1H: 326/31
2H: 82/14
Seven of those second half points against tech came on a blocked kick (by Dustin Harris) that was returned by Terrence Fredrick for a TD so the offense doesn't even get credit for it.

This has way more to do with those late game comebacks that we've seen than the defense does.

On the defensive side of the ball three players jumped out at me as guys who stepped up.
  • Sean Porter continues to be our best (and most consistent) defensive player
  • Terrence Fredrick not only returned that blocked FG for a TD but he had a couple of big pass deflections - I thought it was his best game of the season - he also did a great job (along with Porter) at breaking through his blocks on the bubble screens and making the tackle on the receiver
  • True freshman, Howard Matthews, who made his first start of the season - he was all over the field and played the run very well and brought pressure constantly (4 QB hits including a sack)
We had a couple of injuries - Jeff Fuller came out of the game with a concussion and Brandon Alexander dislocated his elbow. Ryan Swope was on the field a lot but was MIA - I think they are really trying to keep him out there as a decoy and not give him the ball as he recovers from his concussion.

Is there a team in the conference that gets away with more holds than tech? It seems like they, more than anyone else, get away with big obvious holds every single time we play them.

While I'm talking about penalties, I'm going to mention the officiating. You aren't allowed to complain about it if you lose so I'm going to do it when we win. They were bad.

I already mentioned the whistles on Cyrus and the holds but there was some sort of phantom pass interference call on T-Fred just before tech's last TD of the first half - probably the worst PI call I've seen in a few years. There was also a really badly missed block in the back on a return where Tony Hurd Jr. was shoved right out of the path of the return guy - right in front of the official.

I know there are missed calls in every game but some of these were egregious.

One thing is for sure - I couldn't be happier to never have to play tech again. I dispise tech more than any other school in the Big 12, including texas, and I pray that the Big 12 still falls apart simply so tech gets dropped to the MWC or something similar/more deserving.

Next Saturday we host the Robert Griffin IIIs in what will be the biggest Battle of the Brazos ever. Not only is there bad blood about the whole SEC move/attempted block but they a) are ranked for the first time we've played them since I've been around; and b) have somehow leapfrogged us in the AP poll after their mighty home win against fellow bottom feeder Iowa State.

Typically, this is a game that is just another blip on my radar because it means that I get to see my Ags play....but this year, I actually care about it. The Bears haven't won a ballgame at Kyle Field since the early-80s and since this is the last time we'll face the Bears there is no one in this state wants that record to hold tight for the rest of eternity than me. I truly hope that we beat them 2003-style.

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