- Aug 21, 2001
There isn't a lot to be said that hasn't already been said. But here are my observations:
- If you had told me that Clifford would get hurt and not play in the second half, I'd have thought PSU would lose in ten out of ten bets. I am willing to say not a single person on this board would have thought PSU would win on the road against a #3 team in the nation. So enough with the gloom and doom.
- We also all knew the biggest weakness on the team was at QB. SC has exceeded all expectations (except for that weak-ass shit INT to start the game). Anyone who thought TR was prepared to lead this team on the road against a top 5 defense in the nation was smoking crack. TR is just a different kind of QB than SC. You can't game plan for QB a and then play QB b when his skill set is 180 degrees different and expect performance.
- In the meantime, WL's team beat LSU and is 5-0. He was 14 of 17 for 3 TDs and zero INTs. He also had 75 yards rushing with a 6.8 YPC average. This isn't to state he is better than SC, I don't think he is. But he was a very good back up and we'd have won this game had he stayed. He made the right move....especially if SC decides to stay one more year.
- Football is a game of momentum. SC getting injured shook up our team, especially the OL. It invigorated a crazy Iowa crowd that was largely neutralized up until that point. It is pretty clear, if SC doesn't get hurt, we win going away. I think I am a fairly realistic observer and don't drink the PSU coolaid. But PSU was dominating the game to that point, and the second half would have been the same IMHO.
- A team is only as strong as its weakest link my football coach always used to say. Why? the other team will find your weakest link and game plan to exploit it. Iowa is well-coached. When they saw our starting QB, they changed their plan. They stacked the LOS and dared PSU to prove they could throw. That and the field position allowed Iowa to shut down the entire short game. Good luck throwing deep from your own endzone against a six-man blitz on the road with a lead and a second-team QB.
- I don't have a problem with the fans booing. This happens all the time...all the time. Fans will be fans. The coach is a different story. Bush-league and I suspect that flash ferentz will have a word with him. I was surprised CJF called him out.
- I've got several Iowa friends who are apologizing for their win. They know they stole one and were upset that the coach acted like that. Hey, a win is a win. Depth is part of the game. PSU got caught flat-footed without a suitable second-team QB. Perhaps it is lack of talent or lack of preparation but TR was clearly not prepared to play in that environment.
- Having said all of that, PSU has everything in front of them. If we win out, a very tough assignment, we play for the B1G championship. I know that it is now a razor's edge but it is always that way for PSU: We have to beat both UM and tOSU to make it to the championship game. So nothing has changed.
- Finally, this is the most difficult schedule I can recall in several decades. We play Iowa (#2), tOSU (#6), UM (#8) and Spary (#10). We have already played Wisconsin and Auburn when both were ranked in the top 25 at the time.