Remember a few weeks ago when we were all calling for Gibbs head after we lost of Arizona State? Well, before I go any further I’m gonna have to ask y’all to put down your picket signs and pitchforks. Our defense was not the reason why we lost to Kansas State.
Going into halftime we were down 3, which at the time, I was perfectly happy with. As well as most of y’all probably were. Down 3 at half on the road against a Big 12 opponent, I’ll take that all day. However, the 2nd half was an entirely different story. For the majority of the second half we were held to 3 points. I could stop right there and my point would be proven, but I won’t.
We faced several 4th downs, and we didn’t make a single one. For starters, 4th downs are rare for our offense, and second we are usually efficient enough to convert 1st downs when we do face them. Our level of execution was not as sharp as it has been. Even if Kansas State has the best defense in the Big 12, I expect nothing less but excellence from Mahomes. However, he didn’t get much help from our offensive line, they were getting shredded.
As for our defense, they made enough stops to allow our offense a chance to win the game. We held them to 3 field goals and 3 punts. I know a field goal isn’t really a stop, but with this Tech defense, I consider a field goal a win. If we compare our defenses performance Saturday night to what they have been like in past games, we had no excuse to lose that game.
If it wasn’t for the kick return in the first half, and the pick 6 from Mahomes early in the game, we would have won. Which again, is not our defenses fault. We weren’t able to stop them much in the first half, but our defense made the stops when it mattered in the second half. If the offense would have been able to move the ball at all in the second half, we would have had no problem winning that game.
It’s easy to look back and say that we should have gone for a field goal on the two times that we were in range, but being honest, I was rooting for us to go for it. I am a sucker for taking chances. If it wasn’t for Mahomes loosing his footing and in turn slightly loosing is composure as well, we probably would have converted that 4th and goal. Needless to say, there were several scoring chances that we missed. Even so, our defense for the most part kept us in the game, which is a good sign as we head into the meat of conference play.
With that being said, our defense (at least for this game) was not the problem. Whether their success will translate to this Saturday is the million dollar question, but if our defense can play well enough to get a few stops every game, I am confident that our offense can take advantage of those opportunities in the future.
This next weekend is going to be huge in terms of shaping the overall outcome of this season, if our defense can force a few punts, I think we will have a good chance to pull off a big win at home. I just hope that Raider Nation is able to wake up in time to pack the Jones and make the most of our home field advantage. It’s gives a whole new meaning to Suns Up Guns Up.