S or N: reMarks
The classical definition for Slobberknocker is a literal hard hit. I'm going to play off that somewhat in a more figurative manner. While in contrast, and maybe more obviously, the Naw's are things that shouldn't have happened and/or need to change.
The Rabbit defense was as advertised today. The Bison only managed two truly explosive plays today but that was all they needed to keep the rock. The first was another highlight for Ty Brooks while the second will go down as one of the biggest runs in the history of the program. I do not say that lightly, Adam Cofield's run for the clinching score was just that immediately legendary.
Being a "game manager" has become some kind of a weird insult in Football parlance but I've never jived with that. Every quarterback should be a game manager with the great ones far exceeding that baseline. Trey Lance can be a great quarterback. He showed it against some of the overmatched opponents to start the year and as he matures he will be able to do the same against the likes of SDSU and UNI. In the meantime, he has continued to show that he can avoid game wrecking mistakes & manage the game. Through eight starts he has yet to throw an interception and that alone is deserving of top marks!
The tight-ends have come back to the pack over the last few games. Today wasn't exactly a return to early-season form but Ben Ellefson reeled in the lone air-score of the afternoon and in so doing re-set the school record for touchdowns at the position.
Out of the Fog
Another one-off accomplishment that was quintessential to the victory is credited to Josh Hayes. His interception was as directly attributable to the win as any single play that was made today. And as they say, big-time players make big-time plays so this could be the next step in his coming out party as that.
Derek Tuszka also "only" made two big plays but they also could be considered the most impactful. First there was the Football steal that the officials somehow weren't able to recognize. He followed that up with his other sack which all but sealed the win anyway. Some guy's just won't be denied and it was a great way for the game to end!
Outside the Box
Neither of the play calls resulted in changes to momentum or on the scoreboard but the double-reserve pass & Williams' pass attempt were welcome play calls. In a game with as much on the line as today's had they could have stuck with the usual play calls but I like that Tyler Roehl was willing to break from the routine a couple times. I know that neither paid off and the latter ended in an interception but that shouldn't spoil the willingness to call some gadget & wrinkle plays.
On the Money
Wouldn't you know it that another SoDak high-end player came up big today. Spencer Waege turned his one sack into a turnover that resulted in the record score by Ellefson. Defense turning into offense and resulting in success, Football synergy. The South Shore native had as big a hand in the final score as anyone.
Holding the Show
The Rabbits got gameday but the Bison stole the show and got to hold the Marker. All you need to see is the players rush the rock at the first possible moment to know how much they care about it. But what wasn't shown is how the blue fans bailed so as to not see it while the few who remained looked like someone just died. The long-established amongst the fanbase will always have the Hockey school as the primary rival, but those obvious signs alone show that it's about the border these days. The Bison held it down & came out on top again, and not for the last time this school year I suspect!
It's not an all-encompassing write-up of the pros and cons from today's game but I think these are the main takeaways from today!