The straight scoop
from Colonel Mustard
Nov. 15, 2002
We are now at the season's defining moments. Have we really improved or are we just very inconsistent? We will see an offense that looks more like ours every year. Our defense sees this in practice every day. Their defense has good run stats, but they do every year and every year we are able to run on them. I was in Kansas City this week and everyone says they are just as excited and respectful as ever. But I have a feeling they think they are going to smash us. It strikes me that they could easily be overconfident.
On offense I think we have to run right at them. Their stats are good, but so were Texas' and A&M's. We can run the ball on anybody and have over the years always been able to run at these guys. As I said, I wish we would have thrown a little more last week. We can't forget our tight ends. At times this year they have been invisible. But they are almost always open and are easy throws and reads for Lord. We have become a QB-centric offense. I don't feel that Horne got enough carries in the Texas game. His speed makes our offense run better. Also, Davis out of a single back and the field spread is a nice change of pace. That formation gets him in the open field and lets him take advantage of his skills. I also like Lord under center and not in the shotgun. We seem to get out of our rhythm when we go to the gun and get too many negative plays. If we can't run and have to pass, this will be a turnover-filled disaster. Lord has to have one or fewer turnovers and stick to our running game and not get cute. I believe we can run on these guys.
The defense worries me. KSU can pass and has a fine running game. We will see if we can stop a power-option running game. We stopped Texas' run, but they are a passing team that runs for a change of pace. Our run defense appears to be improved, and if we can stop the run, I don't think ol' Ell can beat us with the passing game. He has over the years been as erratic as lord is, but he seems to be improved. He can be turnover-prone, and if he has a poor game we will win. Much like against Texas, we need to have our QB have fewer turnovers than theirs.
The coaching balance tips their way. Bill has a fine staff and at this point is probably a better game coach than Frank. Tom used to outcoach these guys by a mile. But now I think they have the advantage. Our staff doesn't adjust very well as the Texas game showed again. But they stuck to their strategy at A&M and it worked. This part of the game worries me and we have to get back to winning the coaching matchups. But we will fix that in the off-season.
The bottom line is that I believe we will move the ball and score. Even when they beat us we scored. We just couldn't stop them. The last two times down there we got bad breaks. Both of those games were winnable, particularly in '00 when the better team lost. It will come down to can we stop them. If our run defense is as good as it has been lately and we win the turnover battle, we win. Special point to reader Chris B.: Your note was right on the mark and echoed many of these thoughts. Under the circumstances this would be Frank's greatest win if we can pull it off
Keep the faith. GBR.