Monday, December 07, 2015

Sweet Victory: MAC Title Game Offense

So here is the thing.  The BG offense as performed during 2015 is designed to be tough to beat because you can't commit to stopping any one thing.  Teams that tried to play base defenses found themselves giving up 600-700 yards per game.  So, teams did what teams do...try to take one thing away and see what happens.

In other words, do you want #11 to beat you or #8?  See, that's a tough call.

NIU made a clear choice...they were going to stop #11 and take their chances with #8.

They did hold Johnson down.  Yes, he had a good completion percentage with 25 of 37 overall, but the 25 passes netted only 235 yards, which is about 9.5 yards per completion.  About 20% of those came on the big Lewis pass, leaving 190 yards on the other 24 completions.  Johnson was also sacked twice and threw 2 picks.

As someone said after the game, BG kept facing "light boxes" so they did what you do when you are in that run.

Accounting for sacks, BG tried 39 pass plays and 51 runs.  Even with the clock killing aspects in the 4th Q, that's a lot different than we might have expected.

You take what they give you.

So, you want #8 to beat you?  Well, he can do that.  Travis Greene capped off his career (bowl notwithstanding) at BG with a simply commanding performance that made him the game MVP.  Greene was just an absolute beast out there for BG.  He carried the ball 29 times for 183 yards and 2 TDs.  That's 6.3 yards per carry.  How'd you like to cap your career with the most yards you rushed for in a game?  Nice.

He was simply unstoppable when he got to the second level.  It was among the best rushing performances in a critical game  that I can remember from a BG player.  He created miss after miss, broke tackle after tackle and pushed pile after pile.  I hope Falcon fans appreciate the incredible performer he was for our team.

Maybe his performance is best captured in the video here, where he got into the secondary and just abused Brandon Mayes in the secondary on his way to a 25-yard TD run.  (Note the Chris Kingston high-five after the score!).

Oh, and if that wasn't enough, you also had Fred Coppet 16 times for 85 yards and a TD, for a 5.3-yard average.  Even including sacks, as a team BG averaged 5 yards per carry.

Finally, you have to give credit to BG's offensive line.  NIU teams are historically very tough up front, but BG's line was consistently opening holes and getting Greene and Coppet onto the second level.  The line has been a strength for BG all year, and they delivered a virtuoso performance in the title game.

Said it before...just incredibly proud of our guys.  Many of these guys are two-time MAC Champions and all of them are Falcons forever and champions forever.

Defense to come.

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