S or N: Trampling Panthers
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.
Following a season that included a mass exodus of highly accomplished & talented players who graduated last year, I thought that the Bison would fall back. A precipitous drop-off to like 9-3 or 10-2 was how I thought this season would go. I remain hesitant to say that they'll go 12-0 but two losses now seems like an impossibility.
The change of opinion is largely due to the breadth & depth of the young talent that is already going up so large for them. It starts with the quarterback, who on a game by game basis has shown that he has some of the same stuff that the Kansas City MVP has. SOME. It's too early to put those kinds of comparisons out but the way that Trey Lance plays does remind me of Showtime.
Add to him: Kobe Johnson, who is making the kind of noise that I thought Saybein would, Phoenix Sproles, Christian Watson, & Noah Gindorff. They all lit the Dome up today in ways that even senior players have not often done. And those are just the offensive players that went off today. There are others that didn't & plenty on defense who have been on fire. It's the nightmare scenario for everybody in the sub-division but could not be more enjoyable as a fan and blogger!
Because I do want to portray the game accurately, Trey Lance had an average game passing the ball in terms of the yardage that he finished with. He managed the game, as he has done in seemingly all six so far. Within his ten completions, he threw three touchdowns. The really special capability today was how he maneuvered for yards without throwing. He finished with the third-highest rushing total with the second-highest yards per run. It was a display of opportunism the likes of which rarely happen by players of his inexperience.
Adam Cofield was the lone upper-classmen that contributed amongst the young fire guys. Accounting for nearly 1/3 of the total rushing yards, he had his best game of the year and showed that the Hydra has several heads beyond Ty Brooks.
Sproles, Gindorff & Watson turned five catches into three touchdowns, covering 108 yards. That's only slightly worse than the touchdown to catch ratio that the tight-end collective has managed. Two games is not a trend but big G has had the ball in his hands, in the endzone in five of the six games so far. That is a trend. It's a trend that indicates that the record Ben Ellefson is likely to set before the end of the year will not last very long. So even though the current production by all three is not a trend, the way the offense continues to expand leads me to believe that one is starting, and it may only end this year in Texas.
Out of the Haze
Josh Hayes likewise may have had his best game of the season so far. He forced the lone fumble of the game, which Marquise Bridges was able to fall on. He also put himself in the right position on three different passes to break them up, which lead the team today.
Jabril had a quiet game by his own high bar of performance but still managed to impact the game on nearly every snap. He's just on a different level, I haven't come to grips with it yet nor do I think that I will. Maybe they'll get as creative with his athletically superior self as they successfully did with the next guy on the rundown.
I can dream!
Jimmie Hendricks wrangled the lone interception of the game while adding in another PBU and continuing to be a top player. Which all came after he did some work on offense, scoring the two-point conversion after the first touchdown. Versatility and excellence. That pretty much sums up his time on the Bison Football team.
It wasn't a perfect game. A botched hand-off lead to the first touchdown and Griffin Crosa missed his first field goal of the season but none of the negative bits are deserving of more than this footnote. After all, this isn't meant to be an all-encompassing write-up of the pros and cons from today's game. I think I hit on all the main takeaways from today!