Greetings, Lion fans. .There’s plenty to unpack from a very happy Homecoming win yesterday, so let’s get right to it….
OVERALL- Just a gorgeous day for football. Brian and I have often said that afternoon games in Commerce are magical, and yesterday was no different. Game time temperature in the low 70’s, lots of sun, and a packed tailgate. A large, raucous crowd, and the Lions came out ready to roll.
CLEAR!-We’ve said to buckle up, that the season was nowhere near done yet. Numbers 1, 4, 6,7, and 10 in the D2football.com top 25 poll went down last night. There is still a very doable path for the Lions to get into the playoffs. Certainly, they will have to win out, and need some help. There is still a lot of football left to play, and the Lions are certainly in the thick of the hunt.
COMPLETE DOMINATION-The most complete game played by the Lions to date. The Blue Gang held the Mustangs to 157 total yards, had 10 quarterback sacks, numerous pressures, and picked off a pass. Offensively, they were well balanced with 237 yards passing and 287 yards rushing. The offensive line established themselves early, Miklo Smalls was only sacked once, and Billy Riebock’s playbook was wide open and effective. Dominique Ramsey made an appearance, and the ball was spread around. Smalls left after a half, but remains healthy and ready for next week.
SPEAKING OF…- Hello, Dominique Ramsey. It took a while, but the redshirt senior from Converse Judson showed all of us why he’s the most exciting returner in Division 2. Ramsey took one punt 62 yards for a touchdown late in the first quarter, and had another punt return for a touchdown called back by penalty.
TOTAL CLASS-On the first play of the game, Western New Mexico defensive lineman Jordan McBride was severely injured on the first play of the game. The Hawk grew eerily silent as McBride was attended to. While both training staffs attended to McBride, what was evident was the concern and respect shown the entire Lion football team. Miklo Smalls knelt in prayer, J.T. Smith, Antonio Lealiiee, and others gathered in a small circle to pray. The Lion captain stood close by the scene, and offered support to their opponents.
That, ladies and gentlemen, is more than just good coaching or teaching, although it speaks volumes. What we all saw yesterday shows grace, character, and class that comes from being good people. This group of young men are good people. We can be proud of them.