Saturday, November 10, 2007

A Win is a Win is a Win

I'll take it, and so will you. So it was ugly at times, so what? A conference win is a conference win. Brink Haters can continue to rail on the inability to get the ball into the endzone, and continue to rip on Brink's lack of arm-strength or continually rolling out for no apparent reason...but the kid did just go 32-for-47 for 449 and a TD.

Oh yeah, just one of six Pac-10 QB's EVER to go over 10,000 career yards (that, in and of itself, is AMAZING to me). And sadly, Jason Gesser has been passed yet again, this time in TD passes as Brink now has 71. Overall they rolled up over 500 yards of offense and 33 points, including a pick-6 by Abdullah, but the offense continues to sputter when it comes to scoring TD's. Just think, if Romeen doesn't nail those field goals (and earlier in the year, he wouldn't have!) and if Abdullah doesn't run that pick back, this one could have been one scary game.

Some other things to like today:

  • Chris Ivory was strong with 15 carries, 104 yards. We're now 8-3 since the beginning of 2006 in which we've gone over 100 net yards. Alex Brink MUST have a running game to be successful! It was close though, as we only had a net of 112, but hey, it counts. Anyway, I really like what we've seen of Ivory....just hang on the damn ball kid! Two fumbles, that's something he better work on for next week as Oregon State's D will rip the hell out of that ball.
  • The receivers were great. Gibson and Collins both over 100 yards, and Bump was nearly there. Nice to see Bump become the #1 all-time WR too. Kind of an under-appreciated guy if you ask me, probably because he never gets in the end-zone and doesn't have the flashy tools. But when he's been healthy, he's never been afraid to go over the middle and take a wallop. We'll miss his toughness next year.
  • The defense was pretty good, but I admit we looked a little flat early on. But once we settled in we looked good. Nice to see Giles grab an INT that hit him between the 3 and the 2, and the pick-6 was wonderful. Overall our DB's played well, and they were physical again. Xavier Hicks with ANOTHER whopper, this time drilling Evan Moore and knocking him out of the game! Yet Doba continues to start Jackson at safety!?!? DUMB.
  • I guess we officially have a kicker now? What, exactly, has gotten into Romeen? Do they need to start checking his milk for HGH? 4-for-4 tonight, and I believe they said on the broadcast that he's now hit 8 of his last 10 or something like that? Impressive. We would have been in a much tighter game tonight if he wasn't hitting FG's, so let's hope he keeps it going these last two games.
  • Boy the FSN crew was bad. Actually I liked listening to Todd Husak, the former Cardinal QB. He was pretty good and broke things down fairly well. But Brian Davis, yeesh. And the camera crew, wow, that's not the B-team, that's the A/V department from Pullman High School out there!
  • Looks like "Pirate Girl" has updated the wardrobe. Now she's a construction worker. Whatever will she be next week? Say what you want, but she's not afraid to show a little skin in 45-degree weather. Pirate Girl, we salute you.

So, I guess we could complain about the 0-for-3 on 4th downs, the 3 turnovers, how empty the yards feel when compared to the struggles to score points, etc. But at this stage of the season? It doesn't matter how. It's too late in the year to wring your hands over issues that have plagued the team all year long. Things are as they are and nothing will change. I'm not going to bitch about a 16-point win at home over a team we haven't beaten in Pullman since 1997! So hoist a cold one and enjoy a victory. Here we are, now 4-6, and the bowl-bid heartbeat goes on another week.

One more thing - VERY glad to see Jake Locker walk back onto the field at the end of the game. When they first showed the hit it didn't look that bad, but then the end-zone replay in slo-mo, when you see the helmet-to-helmet shot, it was an "oh my God!" moment. Who knows how bad the injury is in regards to him playing again this year, and he was wearing a neck brace so it's not just a little bruise, but he may be done for the season. Should be interesting to see how UW handles him the rest of the year. But I'm very, very glad that he's ok! He may be a Husky, but he's a special, special talent and everything you hear is that he's a class act in every sense of the word, so you hate to see someone like that get hurt.


Nuss said...

You know, I couldn't find the list of other guys who threw for 10,000 yards, but I'm guessing most of them weren't four-year starters, and I'm pretty sure most of them went to bowl games.

I'm just sayin' ...

michelle said...

you know, as much as I hate the dawgs, a football player is still a human...and this one was just a freshie. I hate to see that type of injury and it was very inspiring to see him down there at the end of the game. he's a fighter, glad he's ok.

longball said...

Some thoughts...

I was just looking over Abdolmohomahodihamodadi's stats here -

..and i have to admit, we have a kicker. He is now 16 for 21, with 2 of those misses coming from beyond 50 yards. His breakdowns in each category are very impressive.

Ivory had some serious flashes of WOW tonight. He definately needs to focus on hanging onto the ball! Some of his runs tonight reminded me of another cougar back who put a hurt on the Cardinals... remember Green running over around and THROUGH the trees down on the Farm back in the day? (before he mysteriously disappeared from the face of the earth!) Thats what Ivory looked like to me tonight. Speed, balance, power, moves and more speed.

This was one of those nights where I really think Brink was AWESOME, but the play calling was not. All you Brink haters can commense your freak out... now. But no ammount of bitching will change the fact that he was on fire tonight. The play calling and fumbles in the red zone and the lack of a consistent running game were the reasons for the low scoring output. period.

Collins, Bump and Gibson were lights f-cking out awesome tonight. Jed Collins really is one for the ages. LEGEND.

That was a crappy Stanford team that we allowed to hang around, mostly due to some untimely fumbles in ours, and their red zone (Squeeze the bean Dillon!!!) We wont get nearly as many chances next week against a good OSU team so we better clean that stuff up.

Still alive! Lets pound those Beavers!

longball said...

I 2nd that emotion on Locker. Good to see him on his feet cheering his teammates on and hopefully he is A-ok.

Sedihawk said...

4 AM Longball??? Either you had 1) a GREAT night after a WSU win, or 2) a really, really early Sunday. Here's hoping it was #1 instead of #2.

Great points on Romeen. 16-for-21 with 2 of those misses at + 50 yards is fabulous, especially when he started out at such a minus. I was hoping for 50% out of him this year, but he does make us a lot better. Just think, last year at this time a FG attempt wasn't even in the playbook unless we were in chip-shot range. And for what it's worth, he's now nailed 7 in a row! Whatever he's doing, keep it up.

NUSS - You are right, the Pac-10 10K club is full of seniors. Although I can't find the full list, Matt Leinart and Andrew Walter are a couple that I did find. And, I was wrong, it's not six Pac-10 qb's that have topped 10K, it's actually eight. But only six have thrown for 10K and also had 70 or more TD passes.

I'm interested to see the line for this week. I imagine the Beavers will be the fav, but I don't think it'll be by much. Whoever watched Moevao, boy, he's not good. I guess it's all going to come down to how we handle their running game, and, more importantly, if we can somehow run the ball on them.

But I think we can all predict this - we're going to FIGHT LIKE HELL next week! No matter what any of us have spouted off about in regards to Doba, the biggest thing is that they haven't laid down and they are in there scrapping. At this point of the season, we're still alive.

Sedihawk said...

Here's the 10K club:

Carson Palmer - 11,818
Derek Anderson - 11,249
Steve Stenstrom - 10,911
Cade McNown - 10,708
Matt Leinart - 10,693
Andrew Walter - 10,492
Cody Pickett - 10,220

Close but no cigar:
Jonathan Smith - 9680
Erik Wilhelm - 9393
John Elway - 9349

I couldn't find a list of number of starts. But still, some pretty good names.

Brinkhater said...

Last night was case in point about why Alex has all of those records and why he doesn't lead us to victory very often.

As Sedihawk and I have noted recently, when Brink's career is over, we are going to look back and say "how the hell did that kid break all of those records with his limited tools?" He's a Big Sky player in the Top 7 in every Pac-10 category. Incredible.

And, as we've said 1 million times before on this Blog: we're as good as anyone in the country between the 20s and probably one of the worst ever in the red zone given how good we are between the 20s. The bottom line is arm strength: when the field shrinks, Alex doesn't have the arm strength or consistent accuracy to thread the needle when we need it most. Add to that an inconsistent at best running game, a horrible kicking game (until now), and that's why we don't score.

But, when the field is spread, Alex can be the record setting cerebral quarterback that he is...Yesterday, the cross your body down field lobs to a sliding Bumpus or a jumping Gipson are text book: they're ugly yet spectacular while the yardage just adds up with a chuh-ching, chuh-ching.

Bottom line, we'll see how it all comes together next week against a very good Beavs D: the EXACT type of D that tends to eat Alex alive. Hopefully, Ivory will play as well as last night and minimize the turnovers, and HOPEFULLY, the coaching staff will let Romeen take kicks inside 43 yards. Next week, we'll need those 6 to 9 points...

Its now the reverse of last year: Maybe we can close this bad boy out..

And the change in this D is nothing short of miraculous...

longball said...

Ha, damn i am keeping some wierd hours these days. thankfully it was #1 for sure. I actually had no idea i had posted that so late until you mentioned it. no wonder i slept in about 6 hours past church this morning!

I agree that next week, being senior night, i fully believe we'll give the kind of effort we have come to expect at home. Maybe Abdullas TD broke the seal on defensive TDs for us, cause one or two of those could be HUGE for us against the Beavs.

Anonymous said...

Maybe Brink's success is tied to our HC's bone headedness. I understand the philosophy to put a bad team like Stanford away, but c'mon, when you have complete control, get the pts! 4 and 1, I will let him off the hook although I don't agree going for it when we needed the pts. But the continued going for it on 4th down is down right stupidity. Similar to all those fake punts, not going for it against CAL last week on 4th, etc. My new nickname for Doba is Bill "Bizarro World" Doba. He does everything opposite of which a normal HC would do.
By the way Longball, I left like 10 messages on your phone last Monday as I was stuck at the Hopvine pub for a few hours.

E said...

Brinkhater makes some good points about our ineffectiveness in the red zone, but I think a big portion of the blame has to be placed on the playcalling. Going back to the Price era we've had numerous spells where we are a spread offense for 80+ yards, but when we get near the goal line, try to be 1960's USC team and run the power I off tackle three times in a row. We have success when we keep the field spread out with multiple wideouts and play to Brink's strengths. I think that even the running game benefits from spreading the field.

Sedihawk said...

Good point E, and of course, Brinkhater. It's like we are one kind of animal between the 20's, one that is wide-open and difficult to defend, but when things get tight, we try to be something we aren't. Maybe they just keep spreading out and try to get the mismatch, but I don't know. But you are right, the short-yardage deal was always an issue with the one-back, and it does go back to Price.

IF we change coaches this year, and with this late surge it sure seems like that could go either way, I'd love to see a spread offense. I look at how effective Illinois was on Saturday, with a young athletic QB able to convert on 3rd down time and again when they not only had the 4th quarter lead, but OSU KNEW they were going to run and still couldn't stop it! I look at Oregon's spread and think how tremendous that is, in how you turn a defense from being aggressive and attacking to back on it's heels trying to figure out if 1) the back has the ball, 2) the QB still has the ball, and 3) if the QB has the ball, will he run it or will he throw it?? It's like suddenly you give linebackers three different things to watch on every snap, and like EJ Savannah said after Oregon undressed UW, half the time they had no idea who had the ball!

Chip Kelly, Oregon OC, your prospective head coach profile is coming! :)