Sunday, October 26, 2008

Observations - LSU

Well, THAT was fun...really, just an extremely fun game to watch. Big plays on both sides, both on offense and defense.

I said all week to anybody who asked that I thought our offense was on the verge of a breakout game, and I think this one certainly qualifies. Stafford really did look like a top 5 NFL draft pick, with mostly great decisions and some unbelievable throws. The throw he made to AJ on the touchdown, under pressure, was PERFECT, the throw to Demiko in the redzone was a laser, and so on and so on. He also threw ZERO interceptions, made the right decisions on audibles over and over, and just overall looked like a big-time quarterback.

Of course, he got a lot of help. First of all, whatever we are paying Stacey Searles is not enough. I've lost count of how many combinations we have started on the offensive line, we're on our 4th left tackle...and that OL just went into LSU and outplayed one of the best DL's in the country. Stafford was only sacked once, was not even pressured very often, and the Dawgs rushed for 194 yards. This from a line with three freshmen and two sophomores in the starting lineup. Unbelievable.

What's left to be said about Knowshon? Another jaw-dropping performance. Probably what impresses me the most is his amazing sense of balance. He is constantly bouncing off of defenders, keeping his feet somehow, and picking up extra yardage...about 60 yards of it on his touchdown run, where he bounced off a guy at the line of scrimmage, broke a tackle, and then outran Beckwith (despite Uncle Verne's claims that he "doesn't have great speed" - HA!). Loved the "call me" reference to the LSU student section...for those who don't know, somebody leaked Knowshon's cell phone, and the LSU students started prank calling him until he had his cell phone turned off in the middle of the week. They pulled the same stunt with Tebow last year, and he made the same gesture...those cajuns are slow learners.

Defense was kind of a mixed bag...gave up a lot of yards and points, but also made lots of big plays, including Gamble's pair of TD's. There was some poor tackling, even a couple of misses by Rennie, which you NEVER see. A lack of blitzing that would be disturbing if I hadn't been watching a Willie Martinez coached defense for the past several years. Overall, probably a C+ effort, and one that will have to be improved on next week.

Some other random thoughts...
- I would pat myself on the back for getting a couple of my predictions right (pick 6 for a touchdown, at least one big TD pass off of an LSU blitz), but I was nothing compared to Gary Danielson. Don't know if you noticed, but he called three of the touchdown plays before they happened: the screen pass LSU scored on, and both the fade and the QB draws that we scored on. Pretty impressive stuff...that is what makes a good analyst.

- Poor Shaun Chapas still hasn't scored a touchdown. Last week, he catches a pass, takes it all the way down to the 1, and then we hand it to Southerland for the cherry-pick touchdown. Then, this week, we go with three FB at the goal line...and hand it to Munzenmaier. Chapas continues to play well, and hopefully he'll be rewarded soon with a TD.

- How about the cajones of Blair Walsh? Freshman kicker, on the road in one of the loudest and most hostile environments in the country, and he nails a big 50 yard FG right before the half. Last week's struggles obviously didn't affect his confidence, which is a great sign.

- The message board negativity I've seen on the Dawgvent and Dawgrun is a little frustrating. This was a great win, against the defending national champs on the road in the SEC. Why do people want to find things to complain about in the aftermath of a win like that? I think that the message boards and sports talk radio have created an atmosphere where people think you only sound intelligent if you are being negative. Yeah, the defense could have played better, but the track record of this coaching staff speaks for itself, in my opinion.

It's great to be a Georgia Bulldawg...bring on the Gators!!!

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