Double-T Nation News:
I've had one other thought on Saturday's win over EWU, which was there's a really good chance that we should not have expected overnight results with the defense. I was right along with you guys on what I was expecting, and the one thing that gave me this optimism was the performance of the defense in the spring game. That's what convinced me that this year was immediately going to be different and I think those expectation were, perhaps, unrealistic. Rather than over-react after one game, let's take a look at the defense after 4 games and see if they're able to integrate some of the depth, blitzing and stunting packages, etc. The Air-Raid didn't happen overnight and there's no reason we should have those expectations for the defense either. Give McNeill a little space and time and I think we'll be fine.
Make sure and vote on the poll to the left for the outcome of the Nevada Wolf Pack game.
Make sure and check out the two Nevada blogs:
And if you're not afraid of Nevada quarterback Colin Kaepernick, you should be.
Texas Tech Football:
An interesting story from the LAJ's Don Williams on how EWU had defensive packages that quarterback Graham Harrell had never seen (I assume it's by D. Williams, although there's no online credit for most of the LAJ articles). Here's Harrell and Williams:
"Nothing that they did had we seen," Harrell said Monday. "They didn’t show any of that. Of course, the (EWU) coaches were new, so we watched some of the Central Washington film, which is where the defensive coordinator was from. Even at Central, they didn’t show what they did to us the other day. They did everything different."
It would have been one thing had the Eagles opted for commonly used, conventional tactics. But Harrell said he’d never seen some of what the Eagles tried, such as pairing cover-2 cornerbacks with three deep safeties. At times, they dropped as many as nine into coverage. Other times, they bunched three linemen inside, inched their linebackers in to protect off tackle and sent an overloaded rush up the middle.
"They were mixing things up and dialing up anything, seeing if they could confuse us to try to get a stop," Harrell said.
Harrell also mentions that EWU didn't want to give up anything deep, which is why Eric Morris and Detron Lewis had such big nights. Again, if EWU didn't want to give up anything deep then the fact that Harrell had 9.2 passing yards per attempt is pretty incredible.
An excellent read this morning.
The LAJ's Red Raiders Football Notebook mentions that the defensive line needs to improve (especially against a running team like Nevada) and safety Darcel McBath sounded frustrated by what EWU did to the Texas Tech defense:
"It was deceiving, because they were throwing 5-yard hitches and 5-yard outs and crossing routes," McBath said. "We didn’t get a lot of action deep, but when they did go deep they were pretty successful. They did a great job of game planning us."
Captain Leach has also somewhat changed his tune on penalties. Yesterday Leach thought that the penalties were okay, just as long as they were relatively similar to the yardage of the opponent, however, he's clarified his statement and "selfish" penalties are not acceptable:
"That would be like, in the end zone, laying on top of some guy, talking in his face with the referee standing over the top of you," Leach said. "Another example of that would be on a kickoff that goes in the end zone that’s blown dead, you wait for the guy to run six steps after the whistle’s blown (and then commit a late hit)."
"Some aggressive penalties, you can live with those," Leach said. "And then there’s others that are dumb and relate to bad techniques, and I think you address those."
Price and Harrell comment on the collective effort of the running backs on Saturday:
Tech rushed for 103 yards on 25 carries and scored five rushing touchdowns. Baron Batch rushed five times for 41 yards and a touchdown, Shannon Woods carried 13 times for 37 yards and a pair of touchdowns, and Aaron Crawford had three rushes for 11 yards and a TD.
"They all three played well, they all bring something different to the table, and they will be a big part of the success for the season," said quarterback Graham Harrell, who also had a rushing touchdown. "It will be a good system if we can get them some carries.