Let me start off by saying this. There are two types of officials influencing the outcome of a game. One type when the Refs are clearly biased against another team or have ties in with a team and want to see them succeed (think Randy Christal and John Bible for Texas). They are rare, but do happen and it is about as bad as you can get. Then there is type 2 terrible officiating, and that is when the referees are completely incompetent and bumble the game away for another team or make egregious mistakes. What happened last night was the result of officials that were the worst I have ever seen, and I mean that. These refs rewrote the book on how to screw a team due to incompetence. That being said….
- We had multiple chances to put Delta State away and we didn’t do it, so letting the refs even be a factor as bad as they were, is no excuse. Letting a team like that hang around is not a good idea and the players knew that, but they were hanging their heads knowing that they let this one get away from them. At one point, I didn’t see how Delta was going to win, and overall, I felt we were the better team, and if we make the playoffs, we might see them down the road, and my gosh do I hope they play it in Commerce. (Pure hypothetical here)
- Our offense played very well last night. 44 point will get you a win 9 out of every 10 times. Harrison Stewart had a career high in yards and threw 3 beautiful touchdown passes. He is among the national leaders in passing and I expect him to continue to perform at a high level.
- Our defense played well for 3 quarters, and then fell apart. It may have been them being out there for so long, or getting demoralized by the lack of holding calls or whatever. Really, both sides did not bring the big plays when we needed them to and that is the reason Delta stayed in it as long as they did.
- Richard Cooper was fantastic last night and he really gives out offense a great second dimension. He was great at picking up blitzes and he had a fantastic night running the ball.
- Our special teams were fantastic. Great returns while returning the ball, including one that would have been the game winning drive, and our coverage was fantastic and did not allow any good returns and there were some major hits.
- Now the negatives. Dropped passes, two golden red zone opportunities that we had to settle for field goals and DSU had two huge 4th down conversions, but the long for the long and short of this game is when you mix not putting a team away when you have multiple chances and have bumbling officials making phantom calls, that is a mix for disaster.
- Going forward: Put this one away and get ready to head down to Kingsville to go for 4 straight against the Hoggies and keep General Chennault’s cup in Commerce and start conference play 1-0.