Ok, with a few hours to reflect, here's some thoughts on the disappointing result from Huntington. I think this was a winnable game and it is disappointing to come out without a win.
In the post-game interview, Coach Clawson certainly sounded testy. Of course, if someone asked me three times about Albert McClellan I might have been a little short too. Anyway, it was nothing by Gregg Brandon standards, but he was clearly frustrated, which is OK.
As far as game flow goes, BG hit a 50 yard pass in the second quarter for the only first half score. Coach Clawson said in the post game that he felt it was more Marshall shooting themselves in the foot as opposed to us stopping them. They did miss a field goal on their first drive, killed two drives when Slate and Walker dropped passes and threw an interception.
Either way, BG had a 7-0 lead at the half, but it didn't feel especially good. We were getting the ball to start the third, and did drive into Marshall territory before we stalled out and then when we punted from the 38, we only netted 16 yards.
Nothing much good happened from there. Marshall drove down the field on a 12 play, 5:00+ drive to tie the game. There were nine rushes on the drive and three passes, and the rushes were good for 64 yards. Perhaps the signature moment of the drive was when Marshall got called for a 15 yard blocking penalty but still converted the first down and finished the drive.
BG got the ball back, and as a fan, I'm just waiting to see us put another decent drive together. Unfortunately, we went three and out. The Her got the ball back and this time we held them to 23 yards but they were able to punt us back to our 12.
Sputtering and with bad field position, BG began to hum a little on offense and you can start to think maybe this was going to happen. BG engineered a 14 play, 71 yard drive, again 5:00+.
Here a series of unfortunate events unfolded. Quickly.
- On 3-4 from the Marshall 20, BG got 3 yards, and then went to kick a FG for the lead. We missed
- Marshall broke an 80 yard TD run on the next play.
- BG fumbled on the first play from scrimmage off the kickoff, leading to a Marshall FG.
And that was that.
BG did not give up. The Falcons started at the Marshall 38 after a penalty but failed to convert a 3rd and 2 from the Marshall 13 yard line and had to settle for a FG.
Then, on our last drive, BG got to the Marshall 15 before the Herd tightened up with an 11 yard sack and the whole thing ended with a failed hook and ladder.
(A tangential factor in that drive came when BG kicked off after the FG. We eschewed (yeah baby) the onside kick, and kicked deep but Darius Marshall returned the ball to the Marshall 46, and even though BG got them off the field, the 20 yards in field position Marshall gained his team was a big factor in the final drive.)
So that was how the game flow rolled out. More tomorrow looking at what might have impacted our offensive and defensive performances.