The Sam Houston weekend should have been just a blip on the calender....one that we don't remember anything 5 years from now other than, "Yeah, we crushed them."
Thankfully, my weekend was better than that. One of my best friends, who I met in grad school, flew down for the weekend. Jennifer, myself and him met up with one of our other best friends (and his wife) on Friday night for dinner which really could have lasted x3 as long as it did.
Saturday morning was an early rise for my son's 4-year old soccer game (he scored twice and had the team's first assist of the season) and then it was up to College Station for our old pre-game ritual of Wings'N'More.....mmmmm.
We had to find a place to park, which was a difficult task, and then met up my father-in-law and his wife, who graciously shared their extra seats with us.
It actually started to rain in the first half, which was actually quite comfortable.
We scored on our first possession, and then Sam matched with a Tim Flanders TD run (x2 Southland POY). On our second possession we got into a 1st & goal and Johnny got picked by the linebacker as he tried to hit Cam Clear up the middle.
Flanders finished the day with 170 yards and 2 TDs on the ground and another 33 yards and a TD through the air. He gave us fits.
We ran a handful of end-arounds to Quiv throughout the game, which is something I expect they showed so Bama would have some film on it - then McKinney & Spav will put a wrinkle in it.
Sabian Holmes had a nice game, scoring his first career TD and picking up 60 yards on 5 receptions. Mike Evans is still a beast - with another 155 yards on 7 receptions and didn't take a snap beyond the 6 minute mark of the 3rd quarter. Ja'Quay Williams also had a great game with two highlight reel catches, including his first career TD.
The running backs continued to split the load pretty evenly - Malena had 9 carries for 68 yards and a TD, Tra Carson had 9 for 51 and two more TDs, and Brandon Williams made his debut with 7 carries for 37 yards and a receiving TD (Trey was out with that ankle sprain).
B-Will's TD was met with big smiles and hugs for the excited running back in his first action since 2011.
Johnny made a huge effort not to run, so he threw for 426 yards and 3 TDs (he also came out with about 6 minutes left in the 3rd quarter).
He did have one run worth mentioning. On our fourth possession we were somewhere near the 20 yard line and he started to scramble. As he approached the goal line a DB came up to hit him and Johnny dropped his shoulder and completely bulldozed him. Unfortunately, he stepped out of bounds at the 1 yard line so Malena had to finish off the drive with his TD run.
Johnny also had a 6 yard TD run on his final drive and he got hit by a SHSU player in the endzone 4 or 5 steps after crossing the goal line, which really should have been a flag. You could see him bow up and start to get fired up, but he thought better of it and got himself out of the situation.
We did get to see the debut of Kenny Hill. There is really only one word to describe our introduction to the true freshman QB.....Wow.
On his first snap, he hit Ja'Quay streaking down the left sideline on a beautifully thrown ball and then his second snap was a laser to Travis Labhart for a TD. 2 plays, 51 yards, 1 TD.
At one point in the fourth quarter the defense has 3 non-freshmen on the field (of which, one was the walkon playing as the 12th Man).
After the game we walked around campus reminiscing and then made the hike back out to the car and took off towards Koppe Bridge for a burger.....but they closed at 10 and it was closer to 11pm. Thankfully, Chuy's doors were still open so we grabbed a seat, ate, and then toughed out the late, late drive home.
For a weekend whose game was just a placeholder on the schedule, I had a really great time.