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September 22, 2013

Sunday Morning Comes: North Texas

Let's start with the good stuff. The offense looked really good, especially considering we decided to let North Texas force us into a different game plan than we'd like to run. While I'm unhappy with us not lining up and running at them anyway, you need to give Bobo credit for saying, ok, we can win this way just fine. If I had one real complaint, I'd say we should have converted more 3rd downs (6/13 for the game), but with nearly 650 yards of total offense, that's probably nit picking.

Defensively, I couldn't ask for anything more. They only rushed for 7 yards on 25 carries. That from a team that came in averaging over 4ypc. We kept them to under 250 yards total offense. They only had one drive of any substance, scoring a TD. We had two sacks, both from Floyd coming off the edge.

So that leaves special teams.
  1. Snapping has been an issue. I didn't notice it, but Nathan Theus got fired and walk-on Trent Frix (sounds familiar) came in. Hopefully, that'll help.
  2. Our kickoffs should never, ever, ever be anything but 8+ yards deep in the end zone. I can think of no reason to ever kick a ball short of the goal line. Those five yards you probably gain by sending the team down to make a tackle just isn't worth giving up a free touchdown every third game.
  3. The offensive line did ok with their pass blocking. Aaron didn't seem like he got into too many pressure situations, and when he did he was able to run for positive yardage. He looked tentative to start the second half, but quickly caught up. 
  4. Someone is going to have to explain the timeout thing at the end of the first half. While trying to give Marshall a kick makes sense, what doesn't is calling the timeout on 4th, then punting it if you wanted to get Marshall the kick.  
  5. Wilson looked much better in pass protect. We still have a way to go with pass protection, but I saw far fewer issues with handoff between the LBs and the DBs. It is clear Matthews is still growing into the pass coverage part of his job, his INT was a great example of anticipation an following the play. North Texas' QB mad a bad pass, but Matthews was already moving to position to make a play on the ball before it was even thrown.
I get the urge to panic because it was tied in the 3rd Q, but this was a tail whipping. The tied thing is an interesting talking point, but it is irrelevant. And yes, I know you can't just wish away the special teams things, but we just absolutely owned them defensively and with the exception of a terrible decision by Murray and a couple of weird running plays that made no sense to me, the offense was strong. Friday I was thinking a 21 or so point one win and this game is exactly what I was thinking when I wrote that, although I thought we'd see more separation early.

That is probably the bigger issue from the game being tied in the 3rd: the coaches didn't get as many reps in for young guys as I thought (or they probably hoped).


Dallas F. Smith said...

On the timeout to end the 1st half: if I remember correctly, UGA only had 2 timeouts left, but I can't remember how much time was left on the clock. But if UGA calls timeout after the 1st down kneel, then 2nd timeout on 2nd down, NT still could've run out the clock by kneeling on it on 3rd down. By not calling the timeout on 1st down, Richt made the NT staff think he wasn't going to use the timeouts, then they lined up to take a 2nd knee and didn't run off as much time as they should have. So Richt uses his 1st timeout on 2nd down, 2nd timeout on 3rd down, and NT has no choice but to punt, which gave us a shot at a long FG. Not sure if it was planned that way or if I'm giving Richt & Co. too much credit, but I thought it worked out in our favor.

Kimbrough Pace said...

I think he is referring to the timeout we burned on offense before punting.

Mark1984 said...

Keep in mind that when we punted, we were just trying to burn the clock to get out of the half. However, when our punter pinned them deep, the opportunity to get a potential field goal presented itself. Calling the timeouts when we did were the result of two different strategies. The first, to run out the clock and prevent them from having the time to score. The second, when the field position ended up being very favorable, combined with their determination to simply run up the middle, a shot at a long field goal was possible so we called timeout again.

Hope that clears up the thinking of our coaches.

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