Friday, November 06, 2015

Sweet Victory #7: The Defense

For the first couple drives, it did not look like the BG defense was going to play like they had the last couple games...and, in fact, maybe like we were going to get the defense that we feared we were going to have early in the year.  But, as I noted in the recap, the defense made the stops in the middle of the game and eventually created a pick six.  OU had a garbage time the time when the game was being decided, BG held OU to 17 points and scored 7.

Now, inside that, OU certainly did move the ball.  They ran 97 plays--which is usually BG's move--and ended up with 34 first downs, 299 yards rushing and 543 overall yards.  Those numbers are partially mitigated by the large number of plays, but even with that the Bobcats had 5.3 yards per rush, 6 yards per passing attempt, 11.6 yards per pass completion and 5.6 yards per play overall.

BG struggled on 3rd down, as you would expect with a team that ran that many plays.  OU was 9 of 19 on 3rd and 1 of 3 on 4th.  They continued to struggle in the red zone, with 2 TDs, 1 FG and1 pick six in four trips.

A key factor in the game was that Derrius Vick was injured and left the game very early in the 3rd quarter.  Vick was presenting serious problems for BG.  He was running effectively on option looks as well as from the pocket, and he was 11 of 15 passing, though only for 82 yards.  He was replaced by JD Sprague, who we saw last year, and while Sprague was effective running the ball he was a lot more inaccurate in the air, going 10 of 24 with the pick six.

Running QBs always worry me. Fortunately, in BG's next two games they will play mostly dropback style guys.  Anyway, in the end OU had a lot of yards, poked some holes in the BG defense, but couldn't get enough points to make it matter.

Trent Greene and James Sanford were both in on 11 tackles.  Greene also had a sack and a breakup.  Clint Stephens and Austin Valdez both had 9 tackles and Eilar Hardy had 8.  Royster had one sack and one additional TFL, Terrance Bush had a sack and Zach Colvin had a tackle for loss.  Dernard Turner had the pick six and Brandon Harris had a late interception.

As far as I am concerned, the defense continues to play above expectations and more than well enough for the team to win.  Their toughest tests are coming in the next two weeks.

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