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Football Football Recaps

Sept 11 v Rice — Reaction

above: blurry final score

A heartbreaker.

Yet my heart isn’t broken. The climb back to respectability is long and hard. I see this whole thing as progress.

Where we stand on Dodge’s status is irrelevant. I’ll get into the coaching mistakes later. You have to look at the facts: in two out-of-conference games so far this season, we have played decently. I know an average of 30+ points a game is not something normally called ‘decent.’ This team isn’t normal, though. They have sucked for five years. They have been a team that allows 77 points, 59 points, shitton of points, omfg number of points and so on.

So it is improvement.

What about the mistakes dude?

Okay. We still cannot make a field goal to save our lives. As we were limping our way up the field on that final drive that could have won it, I was hoping we wouldn’t be put in a situation where we had to attempt one. Oh man. That would have sucked. Now that I think about it, I’d rather the situation we did have: Derek Thompson coming in to face a 4th and 15, than to watch a potential game-winner flutter wide right.

So, you are right, old man. What the hell should be done about the horrible special teams? I really can’t say. We can go on and on about how difficult it is to do things at UNT. I really can’t honestly defend the staff however. Judging the coaching staff by Good Coach Standards, you should not see problems with the hallowed Little Things.

The Little Things:

Ball Security
Special Teams
Penalties
Awareness
Any Good Coach will harp on these until it becomes cliche. Then harp some more. He will also instill it so deeply in his players that they’ll harp on it. Then they will believe it. Then they will take care of the ball, be solid on Special Teams, avoid stupid penalties, and have good football IQ.

At least that is the thinking.

So after five years we still make mistakes in those areas. Youth excuse? Gone. New regime excuse? Used it. Not his handpicked guys excuse? Not any more.

Cynical View:

Taking into account the above mistakes we keep making, and the fact that Rice made similar ones, the fact that we were at home in front of a big crowd, and we lost, we blew a huge chance to win.

It was very similar to that Ohio game last year.

From a get-fans-in-here point of view, this is not good because it is a loss. All those new freshmen that came in continued a five year tradition of losing at home their first game.

Brightside:

This performance is a continuation of steadily improving play from last year. The oft repeated stat that we were in most of the games we played last year is true. We are getting closer to being a decent team. The fans stayed. Also there Vito, Phillips and NTDaily were all liveblogging/livetweeting the game. I call that progress. Now all we need is a TV Deal/Better webfeed/more instant replay cameras.

Conclusion:

It is impossible for the die-hard fan to look at any game without wondering what it means for Dodge’s future. A loss is bad. A win is good. That is pretty much set in stone now. The Tune injury means that Dodge’s faults are highlighted even more. His failure to build a complete team and inability to recruit and keep a solid stable of quarterbacks leaves him relying on a young, inexperienced guy to get him his requisite seven wins.

Categories
Football

On College Football Previews

There is one thing I have grown to dislike. I don’t know when exactly I began to dislike it. I can’t say with any certainty that there was anything in particular that caused my dislike.

It probably just happened that what I liked about it was less than what I didn’t. I probably just trudged though it one more time. I probably didn’t even know I didn’t like it and instead just did it out of habit. You know, because I used to like it.

I am talking about College Football previews.

I suppose they are like formulaic movies. There is probably a movie that you consider ‘this type of movie’ that you compare everything to. Maybe you measure all superhero movies against Batman. Maybe you measure all heist movies against Heat. Maybe you measure all romantic comedies against When Harry Met Sally. Maybe you measure all fighting movies against American Ninja. (me)

It happens. Sportily, it happens when people compare all good teams to The Good Team When I Was 13-17 Years Old. Basketbawful and Bill Simmons’ team is the Bird Celtics. My team is the Bulls. And the Cowboys. And the Braves/Yankees.

My Amaré is Kemp. My underachieving big man is Ewing. Not Dwight Howard.

My dynasty team is the Cowboys, and the evil empire was the ‘Niners. Not the Pats, and well, the Pats.

My poorly made point is that the same thing has happened to me in football. Like most of America, I came around to college football in the late ’90s. I started as a ‘Horns fan. I rode the Ricky Williams wave all the way until Vince Young won them the National Championship in 2006. So to me, my standard for running quarterback is VY/Pat White. My standard for running back is Ricky Williams/Reggie Bush. Receiver? Believe it or not: Peter Warrick.

Weird. I know.

Any way, I have read lots of season previews. Specifically college previews. In the pre-internet era there were limited options. I loved this time of year because the college football, pro football and college and pro basketball SI previews were coming. Awesome shit.

When I finally got access to the internet, around the time Texas was becoming a renewed power, I was an ESPN regular. That was back when Bill Simmons was interchangeable with Dan Shanoff, Ralph Wiley, Jason Whitlock, Jeff Caple etc. Shit, I even remember when I started to notice that I liked a couple of those dudes more than others (Simmons, Wiley, Whitlock). I was there.

I remember when I first saw the Quad’s countdown of teams. I hopped on yahoo’s Doc Saturday.

Then I didn’t.

I first noticed it last year. I wasn’t reading Cowboy previews. I wasn’t reading college previews. I wasn’t up on all the transactions. I turned into my dad.

Let me explain. Before the Broncos-Falcons Super Bowl, I was excited, ready to watch 5 hours of hype before the game. (That seems short now, considering the TV-coverage is really the whole two weeks prior now). My dad? Not so much. He explained that he knew everything that they were going to say, and that he knew every storyline even though he didn’t know the specifics. He said, “I used to be like you. Going over the stats, and knowing what’s what. I just don’t care anymore.”

I was baffled. I couldn’t understand how he could just abandon being a fan. Now I can.

Those Super Bowl storylines are all the same. It’s actually comforting instead of sad. I like knowing that some things will always be the same. There will always be a veteran player who is finally fulfilling a dream. A young guy who overcame adversity. An old pro looking to finally get that ring. An old coach finally proving himself. A young coach who is changing the game. And so on.

I get it.
 
So maybe it is burnout, maybe it is that I have seen it all before. I know that this year there will be coaches on the hotseat, players trying to show last year was not a fluke, players trying to show last year was a fluke, teams on the rise, teams on the fall, senior-laden squads that are poised for a run, underclassmen-laden squads poised to get praised for their potential. Hyped stars that everyone thinks will finally step up because they showed promise at the end of last year (ex: Terrell Pryor, just like VY, just like Troy Smith and so on)

Same thing. Every year.

So I guess when I say I don’t like it, I mean I don’t like reading them. I don’t want them to stop. Or improve any– how can they? Without them, the young fan won’t get to be the wise-old fan. I can’t say those previews I read were any better. Well, I can’t say with any authority, anyway.

With that said, I will be doing a season preview of sorts. Not based on any reality whatsoever. No, instead it will be based off NCAA 11. Because why not.

Quick preview of the preview:  I benched Tune for Teagarden because I needed someone that could escape pressure. The backup wasn’t better at passing, but he is faster and well, I needed someone to take pressure off of Dunbar.

Categories
Basketball

March Madness is Coming

Have you checked your calendar, friend? Kind of hard to believe it is already February 23rd huh? I know it . You know what it means, right?

Yep.

Basketball.

That’s right. If you’re like most of the country, you don’t give a crap about December games, or big match-ups going on in early January. No, no. It wasn’t time yet.

Now?

Not quite…

… but its close.

Don’t feel bad. The players know it. They know they have to wait their turn. They know to put on a great show once their number comes up, too. They don’t disappoint. Haven’t for as long as I can remember.

And you, friend? You have a special role, yes you do.

You have to believe, yes you do. What? What to believe in? Oh, dear! Don’t you know? Yes. You have the most special of circumstances. You are in a most fortunate position, friend. Fortunate, indeed, yes you are!

What? You need me to explain it to you? Ha! You know me too well, friend. I would love to:

You know them big-name schools? You know their fans? Well, you are in a better place then them. Yes you are. Look at Texas. Overflowing with money, talent, fans, support and …. expectations. Yep.

What? Oh, I’m sure you had some hopes and whatnot, but we’ll forget about that now. Keep it between us two, k? Yep. See, the thing is that no one expects a whole lot from our MG. Nope. That’s what makes it fun! Everything they get is Gravy. On. Top.

All you have to do is believe. The more you believe, the more you hope, the more you scream and stomp and yell, well, the sweeter it will be if they win.

It is risky, sure. You may get hurt. Ah, but its okay. That is all part of the fun. Trust me. I’m your friend.

Links:

BBall has a better chance of winning a NC

Sunbelt BBall Tourney in Hot Springs

Uh This. MG Hoops

Categories
Football

Eerily Accurate Predictions

I went back and took a look at the Dynasty I started on NCAA 10 with the Mean Green. I finished 4-7 (3-5).

I wish I would have put up the season stats now that I look back on it. I know I threw something like 29 picks with Rodge. I had no offensive line protection. (Its a ncaa 10 problem). I had to abandon the running game early in games to be competitive. I suppose the biggest similarity was the offensive prowess. Instead of KiDodge being the record breaker, its Dunbar ( who in my Dynasty, had a breakout season his senior year–he was on the bench the first year).

Sheck it out. Its actually kind of entertaining. (If I say so myself)

Categories
Football

Hey, New Stadium on the way

Denton RC

Finally. I totally agree with Vito’s piece. We have been suckyville. A lot of people have complained, and a lot of people decided to bail instead of fixing it. We are on the way to fixing it.

For the people who ask why Denton sucks as a college town and wonder why we are always second rate, this is your answer. We have had third rate facilities and fourth rate performances. You can’t get people exciting about suckiness.

I wish I could see the stadium as a student rather than an alumnus. Eh. Doesn’t really matter I suppose. I will be there opening day if it kills me.

Can’t wait.

Categories
Football Recaps

NT 40 FAU 44

The cries for the backup quarterback have begun!

… and I think they are unfounded. But, lets rate them anyway!

Riley Dodge:

Good: Last night KiDodge went 4/7 for 117 yards. Most of those (69) coming of a bubble screen to Jamaal Jackson. No interceptions and he avoided pressure and turned it into some yardage.

Bad: He missed wide open receivers. I mean he didn’t see them. I know its easier for me, sitting on the fifty to see guys running open, but still. There was a play action pass (at 1:05:00 on espn360) that he threw to the outside guy running a double move. Seemingly just an overthrow (who says he don’t have an arm? Oh wait, the broadcast dudes said that) but what you cannot tell from the replays is that Carey was running free over the middle. The PA drew the linebackers up and the safety was playing deep coverage. All he had to do was drop it in there for at least a 20 yard gain.

There was one more where he was scrambling right and saw Outlaw on the sidelines. He tried to lead him up the field but missed him because of miscommunication. I put that on him. As a receiver, you’re standing there and you don’t know where the QB is going to throw it. You can try moving up field but the pass could be where you used to be. If he wants to lead him up the field he should have put it on his upfield shoulder. It makes all the difference. He can catch it and and run that way in one motion.

Tune:

Good: He went 13/17 129 yards and a score.

Bad: More missed receivers. I get the feeling that Tune, for all his cool-under-pressure-praise (he is a junior-he should be cool under pressure) he leans on his first option and doesn’t come off it until its too late or just dumps it off after it isn’t open.

Look at that last drive for an example. Big moment. On third and seven he forces it to Outlaw who is blanketed by the defender. He does a mechanically unsound falling back throw. There was no pressure. No need to hurry the throw. If he would have come off that read and looked to the guy running across the middle, he would have probably had a big gain.

Eh.

Although there are lots of doubts about the coaching staff. Whatever your feelings on those guys you have to allow the fact that they know what they want their quarterback to do and have decided, based off of lots of practice reps, that Riley does those things better.

From what I’ve seen, Riley can throw those long passes. He isn’t seeing the field as well as even Tune is because he is a freshman. He lacks experience. Rarely in high school do you have to go throw all your reads. The biggest knock on him is that he is not living up to our lofty expectations. Looking at his performance I think we can say that he is doing a pretty damn good job for a redshirt freshman.

Don’t compare him to Colt McCoy who had a national championship team around him. Don’t compare him to Gio Vizza either, because this is a different schedule and different team than three years ago.

So yeah.

Categories
Sunbelt Stuff

Stop Gap Post

Is it me or does Middle have the worst uniforms? Why do they look purple in this picture? I always have hated that KSU-metallic-grayish helmet color and that helmet style doesn’t even match their Northwestern-jockin’ unis. That logo looks like it was made for a USFL team.

Meh.

Categories
Football Recaps

NT v Alabama: 53-7

Well, that was embarassing, huh?
It was very apparent that we had no business being on the field with those guys. It is foolish to think we had a chance at an upset huh? I don’t think anyone can make a decent argument that there was anything that we could do better that would have made us competitive. The horrible truth is that the guys on ‘Bama are bigger, faster, and stronger than we are. It was evident in the way they shoved both lineman around and brushed off would-be tacklers while sprinting away from the rest.
They seriously didn’t look like they broke a sweat. How horrible.
Quotes from other people:
“We look like kids, they look like men.”
“How sad”
“We suck”
“They don’t look like they even have to try”
I say next time we want to schedule a money game we schedule a Big Ten team. The little guys at least win against those dudes. (Central Mich, N Ill, App St, N Iowa had a chance, N Dakota St, )
So, now that our required shellacking is over-with, we can look to conference play. Mid Tennesee is looking decent with that win over Maryland. We get KiDodge back.
The best news is that we can actually compete physically with the opponent.
In Other News:
There was no recap of Ohio because MGN has been busy doing school related things. Also no MGN v Competition because of the same reason. I did play some dude NT v Bama and got beat 38-7 though. Eh.
This week:
MTSU preview.
Why there is NOT going to be a QB controversy ( you doob)
MGN v the Competition: Blue Raiders
Categories
Football

MGN Takes on the Competition: Ohio and Wins!

Here is the game:

Categories
Football

MGN Takes on the Competition: Ohio

Hey everyone! Remember me? Well tonight friday night at 6pm I will be taking on Budweiser_5 from the bobcatattack board!

Links: Stickam.com
UPDATE:
Figured alot of people are watching opening night right now.