For one, I clearly remember being more than content to listen to John Ferguson call the Tiger games on the radio while I was growing up. These days, even though Jim Hawthorne is doing an amazing job, radio just aint enough. It's killin' me that not only could I not watch the game on TV, but I don't have it recorded on DVR this morning. So I can't go back and do some analysis. I guess I'll have to do that the old fashioned way.
I am also spoiled with this football team. I hate to even admit it, but we've been so dominant this season that the first close win (i.e. less than 20 points), where the defense gives up more than 250 yards of offense, might cause me to have to fight disappointment. Last night, I was conscious of getting antsy as the second and third string defense bent - but did NOT break - and allowed MTSU to get a first down or three. Oh, the horror!
First, and foremost, Coach Miles and the staff deserve a lot of credit for keeping the team focused and ready for what theoretically could have been a dangerous MTSU offense. I didn't sense any flatness through the radio. And, although I don't quite understand the logic behind keeping the quarterback decision (not to mention the Doucet injury) quiet until kickoff, I liked how little difference it made who was starting. There were differences, but not many. And to me, that's a coaching thang - so again, credit to The Hat and The Wizard.
Before we get too giddy, let's remember that this was MTSU. Louisville hung what - 700 yards of offense on them? So let's not go travelling on the other side of context.
That said, RP played a fine game. Brett Martel - AP writer - has the best quote so far to summarize his play.
Ryan Perrilloux looked nothing like a backup quarterback in his first career start for LSU. Perrilloux threw for 298 yards and three touchdowns to lead No. 2 LSU to a 44-0 victory over Middle Tennessee on Saturday night.Short of the one interception and a couple of times when he didn't comport himself under pressure with as much maturity as Flynn does, Perrilloux is a stud. Hatch sounded OK, but without video, I had a hard time developing a feel for his performance.
Eight ball carriers combined for 198 yards rushing. Ten receivers hauled in a combined 307 yards passing. Our quarterbacks (second and third string, mind you) were 21-28, with 3 TDs and 1 interception.
The tightends got into the gameplan with both Dickson and Zinger logging catches for decent gains.
If there's anything to worry about - because we wouldn't be fans if we didn't worry - the offensive line seems to be struggling a little. Both quarterbacks seemed harried more than they should and I didn't count, but we had a few o-line penalties at inopportune times again. MTSU logged two sacks.
But enough worry. The offense - led by our second best QB (who's probably good enough to be almost anyone else's first best) - put 500 yards and 44 points on these guys in three quarters.
Um. WOW. Keeping a firm eye on the borders of the aforementioned context, let's see. Less than 100 yards offense. Less than 10 yards rushing.
About the only question I have - and probably mostly because I couldn't watch - involves the pass rush. It SOUNDED like MTSU had too much time to throw too often. But, heck - six sacks. Maybe I was hearing things, I don't know.
Well, the kickoff team got a workout. Looks like we might have a new kicker (Crutchfield, I think?) - he put one in the endzone, which you won't see much of this year with the new rules. Fisher had one punt for 41 yards. Coach Peveto kicked his old team's arse.
Barring defensive injuries, if the offense shows up for the rest of the season and plays like even it's worst outing so far (MSU), then the Tigers will crush everyone but Florida and Arkansas. Both the Gators and the Hawgs are dangerous on offense. I don't think we'll be shutting them down completely. So the offense will have to keep our defense off the field and put the ball in end zone.
For next week, South Carolina is no push over, but they aren't all that great either. They had (I believe) 5 turnovers yesterday against South Carolina State. The discussions over the next 6 days should be fun as the fan base and media analyze the Cocks chances of pulling off an upset in Death Valley.
It's sunny and low 80s in Pensacola. I'm taking the kids to the beach!