Thursday, November 20, 2014

Sadness Accrues: Falcons Lose to UT again

Look, the sun did come up.

So there's that.

A couple of quick notes.

Coach Babers said in his presser that the game would come down to whether BG could run the ball and whether BG could stop the run.  The answer to both of those questions was NO, and therefore the answer to the game was that UT won.

Obviously, where the offense is concerned the focus of fans is on the QB.  It isn't the philosophy of this blog to rip players.  Knapke can play better and needs to improve his accuracy (and I think he would tell you that).  But, there were other issues too, including the weather, drops and Lewis just a little out of bounds on what would have been a dramatic and potentially game changing well as a running game that was without its top 2 backs.

Ultimately, BG lost this game on the line of scrimmage, going both ways.  BG rarely won the battles to get space for Givens.  In fact, the only time BG was able to get running going was Ronnie Moore in the wildcat--in other words, by using a formation that left passing completely off the table.  And on defense, UT was able to get huge numbers behind Kareem Hunt (mostly) and implement a devastating zone read look with Macon at QB when they needed it.  UT won the game up front.

Relating again to the QB, Coach Babers said the team was in a "funk" and that they needed a "spark" which is why they put Callaway in.  And it worked, he got BG right down the field and scored a critical TD.  After that, it didn't go so well, as UT threw big pressure at the true freshman and BG failed to protect him and that was enough to keep the Falcons from getting the tying score.  Callaway had made a huge throw on the run to Burbrink, and it seems in retrospect that they might have protected him a little by getting him out on the move, but I'm sure they had their reasons.

Coach also said there is no quarterback controversy.  Knapke will start against Ball State.  He said that in so many words.  Of course, life isn't that simple.  If coaches got to decide when there was a QB controversy, there would never be one.  Many Falcon fans have been frustrated with Knapke, and even the little taste of success that Callaway had will jump into their heads every time Knapke misses a throw.

The defense gave up a ton of yards but survived on getting turnovers.  One INT was a bad throw by Woodside, but another one was on pressure where his arm was hit while throwing and BG forced Macon to fumble under pressure as well.  In total, BG picked up 4 turnovers and was hamstrung only by the offense's inability to capitalize on short fields.

The final thing that was frustrating in crunch time came on the 4th and long play where BG was down 7.  The Falcons sent their FG team out--which made no sense at all, since a FG would still leave BG a touchdown short and we had struggled all day to even get that close.  The Falcons had to use a timeout to get the offense out there.  If they had those timeouts in the last possession, they could have saved another :45, and that might have allowed them to use playcalls that would put Callaway under less pressure.

And then there's this...

It was a great football game last night.  Drama, big plays, punches and counter punches, certainly worthy of the rivalry.  Love our guy being ready to lace it up again.

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