In a first here at davefromcarterfinley.com, we have somebody other than me dropping some knowledge on you. This week my newly married friend Graham Gibson stops by to give you his review of the Wolfpack’s performance against South Alabama. Take it away G…
South Alabama was pretty weak, and we beat them using a pretty bland game plan, so it’s tough to really draw any conclusions. I thought it was a mistake for them to rotate QB’s, and that showed in their turnovers and the sacks we got. Their offense was a lot different than the one we faced last season (they have a new OC), and I actually think the one they had last year was a better offense for their personnel. But, of the things that should matter, our offense moved the ball and put up points, and our defense shut them out for 3.5 quarters.
We still had an issue with allowing pressure on the QB, but I think more than the OL are to blame for that. First off, Glennon has this bad tendency to stare down his primary receiver, and then he waits too long to check down or get rid of the ball. He needs to go through his progressions a lot more quickly, and get rid of the ball if nothing is available. Second, other than Bryan Underwood, our receivers seem to have trouble getting separation from their defender down the field. A part of why Glennon is holding onto the ball so long is because nobody can get open. Third, our offensive tackles are simply atrocious. The middle 3 on the line are playing well and can set a nice pocket for Glennon to stand in, but our tackles get burned just about every play. To counter-balance all these things, I think this is why you saw us implement a quick, short passing offense on the first couple of drives. I liked the plan for Glennon to throw a lot of short passes and then take a couple of shots downfield, but I felt like we kinda got away from that later on in the game–probably because we didn’t need to put up any more points and were just trying to run the clock out. I also really liked the reverse to Tobais Palmer, and hope we see more of that throughout the year. I was joking with DFCF in the game at that point about how the coaches decided to open up the playbook for mighty South Alabama; I guess [hope] they were just practicing the play for the future.
Played great for the 2nd week in a row, but then again UConn and South Alabama aren’t exactly offensive juggernauts. But, if you’re playing a bad offense, you shouldn’t give up points. And, we haven’t given up many points the past two weeks, which I’m really happy with. We also have a +6 turnover ratio in the past two games, so the defense is starting to make some plays for us. I know USA scored in the 4th quarter, but I chalk that up to our team just going through the motions at that point; the game was in hand and they really weren’t trying that hard. We may have had some subs in at that point, also, can’t remember exactly. I will say, though, that I thought the Hakim Jones interception was a hell of a play, especially for a freshman. We also had 7 sacks in the game, which is the most sacks we’ve had in a single game since the game against UNC-CH in the 2010 season. Overall, you can’t really be disappointed with anything that the defense did.
Two new true freshman played in the game: Manny Stocker (QB) and Quincy McKinney (OL). That makes 4 true freshman that have played this year, along with Charlie Hegedus (WR) and M.J. Salahuddin (LB). Hopefully we can get Stocker in the game a little earlier against the Citadel, and allow him to actually throw a pass.