Monday, October 29, 2007

Last Chance Week

Happy Halloween week, Cougar Nation! Hope you all had a great time watching the Cougs take it to the hapless first place UCLA Bruins.

I'm telling you, why the hell we can't beat those guys in hoops is just beyond me, cuz we sure as hell own them in Football!

Anywho, onward we now march into the "Last Chance" bowl between the Cougs and the from Gold to Brown Bears of CAL. Man, if we thought our season was bad, how about them? One play from #1 and then they lose 3 straight and now sit at 6th in the conference (and potentially 9th after this weekend)?! Amazing.

As far as we're concerned, well, to be honest, we only have ONE team left on the schedule that will pose significant problems for us defensively and that, my friends, is the University of Washington. The rest of the teams that we play pretty much have pocket passers. And, if you look at two out of the last three weeks, you will see that we have stiffened up tremendously on the defensive side of the ball. Moreover, CAL, Stanford, and Oregon State look much more like UCLA and ASU than they do like Oregon--at least from the perspective of Quarterback tendencies.

In short, win this weekend, and I think that there is a really good chance to go into the Apple Cup 6-5. Moreover, if you look at the conference standings and our current tie ins, Brinkhater sees NO WAY that we are not in a bowl even if we go 6-6...

That all said, does Brinkhater think we can win this weekend? I'm really not sure.

One thing that Brinkhater is VERY sure about is the continued worry about this offense's ability to score points. I mean, you hold the ball for 38 minutes, you have an RB with 200+ yards, and you score only 20 points for the first 59 minutes????????

That, dear Crimson Nation, is our achillees heal...Doba has developed the defense sufficiently for us to both compete with and beat the also rans left on our schedule. But once again, can we fricking score?

Time for you to weigh in....

Have a great week..

22 comments:

B.T.M.M. said...

I think what we may have on our hands is one of those teams that defies all accepted methods of classification.

First the offense is great and the defense is a sieve, now it's the other way around. One week Brink has to throw 65 times, another week we roll up huge yards on the ground. I have no idea which team to expect from one week to the next.

That said, we now have some momentum, and Cal decidedly DOES NOT have any momentum except for the kind of momentum that pulls khaki-wearing explorers into quicksand.

Who can say what will happen? I'll be there in Berkeley screaming my lungs out, hoping to see Brink set the all-time TD pass record and an old fashioned Cougar on Bear beatdown, like the halcyon days of 01-02.

Anonymous said...

It should have been 34 points. We have first-and-goal from the 1, and slammed it straight ahead 3 times for a negative-2 yards. Then Romeen came in and had the 18-yarder blocked. But scoring points against BCS competition is an issue this year and that issue won't go away.

I can't help but think more and more that this win was fools gold and we're going to revert right back to "normal" this week. But you raise a great point, the non-spread option offense teams haven't given us too much trouble so far, other than USC.

The feel-good part right now is that they played hard, and the defense especially looks a lot better. Those corners did a good job on making plays on the ball. I wonder when the last time was we didn't give up a passing TD in a Pac-10 game? Had to be back to at Oregon State last year. We might have a nice little defense next year to help the major pains we're going to experience on offense next year.

Brinkhater said...

I agree, it should have been 34..unfortunately, it wasn't--and THAT felt a lot like last year when we had ALL of those red zone opps and came up empty..All in all, we've been much better in the red zone this year with the exception of the last two game...but we MUST get better. IF you told me right now that this team would average 31 points a game the rest of the way, I would EAT MY HAT if we didn't finish 7-5. Put us at 28ppg, and I'll eat my hat if we finish worse than 5-7. But less than that, we could still easily lose out...All we have to do is score...Score, score, score...

Sedihawk said...

Seven bowl games starting in 2008, NOT in 2007:

http://www.tucsoncitizen.com/blogs/index.php?blog=9&title=pac_10_adds_a_seventh_bowl_to_its_postse&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1

So, unless we win out and get to 7-5, we're not going to make it. Oregon, ASU, USC, Cal, UCLA and Oregon State will go bowling. AZ, WSU, UW and Stanford will stay home. Just like last year. Thanks again, Tom Hansen, for your fantastic bowl and TV contracts.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget Bumpus-to-Dillon not connecting in the first half. Dillon seemed to stop running when there was some contact between him and the UCLA db. Get him the ball and it's a sure score.

Maybe the last couple of years has me not so optimistic but WSU has UCLAs number. I don't know how much to take away from this game especially when UCLA lost their most potent offensive skill guys early in the game.

Regardless, great win and shows they are still fighting and haven't mailed in the season.

Sedihawk said...

Good point on Gibson. We could see that play developing right in front of us, and I don't know what the replay showed but as soon as Bumpus caught the ball and hesitated I looked at Gibson trying to break free. I don't know what the replay showed, but it looked like Gibson was held for a second. Plus, Bumpus had to get rid of the ball as he just got crushed right after he released it.

Still, good playcalling all the way around, if you throw out the first-and-goal from the 1! But how can we possibly complain after 500+ yards of total offense, including a rebirth of a running game not seen since Jerome Harrison?? We literally outgained them 2-to-1 in yards, and owned an 18-minute time of possession advantage. You should beat someone by 20 points in a statistically dominating game like that!

Anonymous said...

Hey, off the subject but do you guys know why Jason David never says he is from WSU when introductions have been done either in Indy or New Orleans? He just says his high school......did WSU do something to him or is he ashamed??....has anyone seen this and do u know why he is so unwilling to admit he went to wsu??

Anonymous said...

Should have been 41pts.......easy one yd run by Brink at the one if Doba would have called the bootleg pass to the weak side with Brink having option to throw or run......or just a simple run off tackle - we did not have to go at ucla's strength with runs up the middle......put jed in as a FB and let him lead block off tackle for Tardy ....TD.....I question the play calling on that series.....and Bump should have had the Double WR pass - he just overthrew it - looked like he was overly excited or something.......damn, do they miss such an easy pass in practice?.......just a pitch and catch (pardon the vernacular)......question though, did any of you at the game do a double take watching # 12 for UCLA playing both QB and MLB??........I was like, wtf??....until I realized it was a different guy with same #........my bad ;)
Anyway, after watching game, I still do not think Brink is making the right decisions/throws that a veteran senior should be making - he forces too many passes into the flat into very very dangerous situations (I saw at least 3 plays last week that could have been pick 6's for ucla if the dbs would have reacted a little better) and the dude throws into double and triple coverage........this is the all time passing leader at WSU??? It kinda makes me depressed.....I have never seen Brink single handedly win any WSU games (you'd think he'd have at least 1 by now) nor in crunch time, really seen him step up and win a game.....I feel sorry for the Bledsoes and Gessers and Leafs who did win games sometimes solely on their arms and did step up when the going got tough......no matter what they say, I can never admit Brink is in their league......he would be lucky to even get a job as a backup in arena football and then again, he still is no Aaron Garcia......I think we would crack 30pts/game if Rodgers was given the chance and what the heck, he needs the experience before next year....not sure what the coaching is thinking??.......we all see how much Brink struggles......his passes for the most part are not even close unless he throws 5yd dinks in the flat......anyway, I think Brink is the one holding this team back.....and if there is not a change, we will have to hope that 17-20pts a game is good enough to win (i.e. All the pressure is on the poor defense).

Billyblaze

Anonymous said...

billyblaze...come on dude you can't be serious. rogers is not a cure-all. how can you say brink is holding us back when he leads the conference in total offense? we just need better play calling in the redzone. we ran a bootleg throw to a TE with three TE set goalline offense on 3rd and 3. UCLA knew we werent going to run it, i knew we werent going to run it. brink nearly got sacked and then we RUN it on 4th and 3 and get stuffed. just plain dumb.

Anonymous said...

I guess I am not watching the same games as you guys....our offense seems to peak around 21pts/game....that just does not get it done in the pac-10.....if Brink really does lead the conference in total offense, well something is definitely odd that the scoring is so disproportionate....I would like to blame the play calling (and it is partly to blame) but over the last 3yrs, we have watched Brink time and time again not get it done in the redzone...for some reason, he chokes...now it would help if we mixed up the play calling a bit and not be so predictable (run, run, pass) but I just don't see Brink making those senior type plays....maybe you guys are seeing Alex truly looking like a seasoned experienced senior with great leadership skills....but I am not....Rodgers is the future right??....I guess if we lose another game and are effectively knocked out of bowl contention, should not Gary get the nod?? when does Rodgers get a shot this year??

Billyblaze

Anonymous said...

ooops, I mean Rogers...my bad ;)

and yeah, what is Jason David's problem with acknowledging WSU as his college?

Anonymous said...

well since Drew Bledsoe will not go back to the NFL, perhaps he might be interested in coaching college football?? :)

I wonder how Drew would do as a coach?...

Anonymous said...

btw, don't get me wrong....I really want Brink to do well and I root for him every saturday to finally have that big day he can say defined his senior year - it just seems like his development ended after his sophmore year - he has not improved much since then in my opinion....I see lots of forced passes into double/triple teams and lots of dangerous passes into the flats....and I just don't get why sometimes he just will not tuck it and run....use those legs - I mean that is why he got the nod over Swogger, right?...more mobile....if he would just use the mobility more, it would create more things and open receivers up I would think....anyway, I am hoping this is the weekend he finally breaks out and has that big 300yd 4td (no INTs) passing day...I want to see Brink and Bumpus go out winners, not "oh if they could have delivered on their potentials"....go Cougs, shake those CAL Bears outta those trees ;)

Billyblaze

Sedihawk said...

Billy, thanks for dropping by and commenting. I welcome all comers and I love getting different viewpoints. But can we just be done with analyzing Brink? It's been there, done that, in every possible way. It's the same viewpoint. Ok, he's just not good enough and he'll never be what you want. Thanks. But it's 100% obvious that they aren't going to do a thing about it. Brink is the QB and that is the end of it. You want Rogers, you'll get all you can handle next year.

Oh, and Brink didn't get the job over Swogger based on mobility. In fact Brink isn't a fast guy and never really has been known for having great feet. He was just a smarter player than Swogger, who practiced better and kept his composure. But if you remember, Swogger basically lost that job when he threw a fit during the Colorado game in 2004. Sure he started a few games after that until he got injured, but it's safe to say now that he said and did some things that day that sealed his fate with those coaches. Whether that's fair or not, who knows. But the way he acted that day was his undoing.

Anonymous said...

so the one day was Swoggers' death sentence, heh?...throwing bad passes, interceptions, dinks that don't even get to the receiver, fumbling from the center, and most of all , having a LOSING record your entire career doesn't disqualify you but getting mad because your receivers absolutely just dropped balls is the worst of the worst.....

anyway, our qb is what he is....we should have done differantly but we didn't.....it will be over soon...AB is a servicable qb its just that he is not a winning qb.....meaningless records and all....

gee, I hope I didn't scare away all of our many, many recruits with my opinion....

Brinkhater said...

Personally, Brinkhater LOVES to re-hash the woulda, coulda, shoulda with Swoggs. We would have been better off. And you can take that to the bank.

But Hawk is right, that debate was for years past. And boy was I there, doing that....And I still am when I'm alone in the house and the room is dark..

Its also true that Rogers is not an answer for anything now: the guy has gotten NO PT this year and is an interception machine waiting to happen. and if you need any proof, check out that USC 4th quarter (YIKES!!!)

So, what we have is an opportunity for Alex Brink to do something that he has not done so far this year: SCORE FRICKING POINTS.

It won't happen, but that's something we should all root for.

Honestly, it really doesn't matter whether or not 6-6 gets us in a bowl or not this year. What DOES matter is that we are able to hit the recruiting trail after the season with a team that finished WELL out of the cellar. And telling new recruits that you are building a new program following two 6-6 seasons is MUCH better than following 5-6, 4-7, 6-6, and 4-8...

So, root for Brink. Anyone with a brain already knows that his legacy is horribly underwhelming.
So relax Brinkhater Nation, everyone knows that we've been right all along...

That said, this blog-father is already having a horrible time figuring out what I am going to write about for the coming years without Alex around to bash...

You see Alex, I need you....
I really need you!

Sedihawk said...

No, the one day wasn't Swogger's total reason for what happened. It was plenty of things. But that day was a big one in that it set a very bad precedent with the staff at the beginning of his starting experience. He blew it under pressure that day and they never forgot that. There's more to it with your team leader than just size or arm strength, and while Brink certainly isn't Jim Harbaugh in leadership, it's clear that the coaches either lost respect for Swogger or flat-out felt they couldn't trust him when the heat was on. That day did more damage than we'll ever know.

Don't you remember when all that went down? How Doba said after the game that Swogger lost it and needed to take a seat? I mean Doba's pretty PC when it comes to his players, so for him to volunteer that information to the media shows that it was a big problem. And if we know anything about Doba, we know how he shies away from conflict, and/or shies away from a QB controversy. Swogger was a team captain.
That was the last thing he wanted to do in pulling Swogger.

Meanwhile, and this is funny, but I really love the revisionist history on Swogger. Everyone acts like he was the next Bledsoe or Leaf, but come on. Everyone rips Brink for not "getting it done against good teams" or whatever else. What did Swogger ever do as a starter? Let's see - He beat a low-level New Mexico team, beat a bad Idaho team and beat a 3-win Arizona team. That's it. Swogger showed flashes of being pretty good, and his arm and size were intriguing, but there's obviously so much more that goes into it.

ENOUGH of this. It's an argument from 2005. You are dug in on your hatred for Brink, and you will always shovel the blame on him for all the team's failures. You ignore the overwhelming shortcomings of this program, the horrible failures in recruiting and the mediocre head coaching and take the easy way out with "Brink Sucks!" It's tired, it's dead, now please move on.

Brinkhater said...

Last word: NOT ONE PERSON on this blog has laid the blame of everything on Brink. NOT ONE.

I also don't think that anyone thinks Swoggs would have been the next Bledsoe or Leaf, although all the reports down here was that they thought he was a BIG TIME QB that should have played in the Pac-10.

But let's not forget that Swoggs beat ASU and UCLA his freshman year and woulda coulda shoulda'd against UW. And in the New Mexico and Arizona games, he engineered game winning drives when they were needed. At last count, those two games double the amount of time that Brink has accomplished a similar task (Isn't Baylor the only one?!. Obviously, Swoggs didn't lead a comeback against Colorado because it was Brink who was in the game fumbling at the one at the end..

Now, so that all readers know (AND as I've said 1 million times before), following that Colorado game, I e-mailed the Go 2 Guy and told him that the whole future of the program was riding in the balance of how that QB issue played out. I told him straight up, that if the coaching staff went with Brink that this program would go down the tubes. Of course, it was three weeks later that Brink took over the reigns, but I think I was prophetic..

Now, would Swogger have broken all of the records that Brink has? I don't think so. Would Swogger have put up the numbers that Brink did in 2005? I don't think so.

But I think Swoggs was AT LEAST good enough to reel in more than 4 wins with that cupcake schedule and with Jerome Harrison, those two TEs and receivers.

I also think that Swoggs would have been able to win AT LEAST 6 games last year.

Of course, there's nothing we can do about it now, except for continue to root for Brink to do well (as I always have) and for us to escape the cellar so that, on paper, we make a change without the cupboard being completely empty.

So, lets win 3 of our next 4, shall we?!!!!!

longball said...

If the win over UCLA doesn't help the Cougs turn things round this year, then this surely will...

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/multimedia/photo_gallery/0711/campus.cheer.washst/content.1.html

You are all welcome!

Anonymous said...

what I have never gotten,never understood is why its' OKAY to criticize the whole defense, the receivers ( at several times last year, Jason Hill was blamed for "dropping" passes), the running backs( even Jerome Harrison wasn't enough), the offensive line, special teams and especially Loren Langley and all this is done repeatedly yet its not okay to criticize one player or one coach without being told or implied that somehow you're just a hater......

I think we can win on Saturday....I think Brink if he plays smart and if the coaches actually play to WIN we have a chance.....

frankly, this has gotten tiresome this year....I fully realize that people want to protect their egos by defending their opinions, but somebody has been wrong here all along.....and I suspect its not Brinkhater......

E said...

At last count, those two games double the amount of time that Brink has accomplished a similar task (Isn't Baylor the only one?!.

As much as I agree with brinkhater on all topics Brink, this is incorrect. As I'm sure you all recall, Brink did have one other game winning drive ... Trandon Harvey baby!

http://mfile.akamai.com/8108/wmv/cstvcbs.download.akamai.com/8108/open/wast/07-08/video/genrel/08aug/applecup2005.asx

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