Saturday, October 07, 2006

The End of the Line



To the left is the man under fire right now. He obviously is not the only one who is taking heat for Fresno State as Pat Hill, Dan Brown, and Steve Hagan have all been thrown to the wolves this time around. I can't say I blame any Bulldog fans for being dissatisfied with our team, I know I am upset beyond belief right now. To lose a game the way we did tonight to such a bad team was unthinkable in my mind. When I wrote the blog titled "The Death March" I did not include Utah State in the ugly stretch we are about to embark on, I too took this game for granted. Unfortunately the Bulldogs have so much wrong now that it will not be fixed over the next three weeks. Heading into the single toughest stretch in their history, the Bulldogs now have lost four in a row. Forget a three game losing streak, how about seven in a row? We most certainly will be thrown into the ten worst teams in the nation this season after our skid hits seven (if it does). What does this team need to do to get itself back in business?

First of all Brandstater proved tonight he is not the answer. However, Pat Hill may not agree as he never seems to. I think it is entirely possible that next weekend Brandstater will trot out there to start the game and if that is the case there will be more boos at Bulldog stadium for Brandstater then there will be for the Warriors. Brandstater has the happiest feet I have ever seen and he cannot set himself to throw the ball. On the final drive of the game the Bulldogs had 44 seconds and two timeouts remaining. Brandstater overthrew his receivers four straight times. Receivers were open every single down but it is impossible to complete passes when you only look at one receiver the entire play. Brandstater would not have broken 100 yards today had it not been for a speedy Chastin West who made something happen out of nothing. Sean Norton may not the fix but he is a solution to a problem that needs repair right now. We need to see if he is able to do more than Brandstater and we need to find out next weekend. Whether we do or not is in Hill's hands and there are very few people who agree with the way Hill has run the team. Here is hoping to a change in the way things are being done at Fresno State.

Our play calling continues to be pathetic at best and honestly it will not get any better. If we put Norton in the option run would now be in play as he is much better on the rollout than Brandstater. My point here is not that Norton is going to fix us, because one player cannot fix this team. My point is a change is needed. I am currently sitting and watching the Hawaii offense move up and down the field on Nevada as if there were only one team playing. Fresno has the personnel to run the same exact offense with Wright being a similar weight to the Hawaii running back. Norton may not have as good an arm as Brennan but who does? Norton however can run and Brennan while having decent speed is not nearly as fast as Norton. We have four receivers who can catch the ball, two of them very capable of big plays every down. We have a tight end with very good hands yet we throw the ball his way twice a game at the most. The offense needs a change and if they dont come up with it this week Hawaii will blow Fresno out of the stadium.

I understand most fans are completely pissed off right now and you have every right to be. I do not want to hear the normal Pat Hill speach about execution either after this one. I just want to hear him say he made a mistake and he will do his best to fix it as he tries to get this team back to where it needs to be: a competitive team that gives every team it's all and wins 80% of their games.

7 comments:

Anonymous said...

Oh my freaking god i can't believe we lost to Utah State. Talk about eating my words i was the guy who was just talking about how there should be no controversy, that controversy is bad for a program, that the 'dogs should be competing as a major program, that we should all be more optimistic. Truth is i had my head in the sand the whole time. There can be no optimism at this time, no defense of Hill, Brandenstater, or Hagan, and realy no realistic hope of winning a game again until november at the earliest. The biggest horror show about this is that how does Hill walk into the living room of some hot high school recruit and convince him to come to the 'dogs instead of USC or UCLA? He used to be able to say that we beat the other teams that the kid might have looking at him, but i don't know if you can say that anymore. Bulldog fan is offically in the tank, and as a proud 'dog fan, all i can say is, its going to be a long year. Man, Utah State! that is going to be the rallying cry every time we loose for a while. Everything i ever said on this site has been proven wrong and vindication is all of yours, beacuse there is no way for me to be optimistic about this program at all. Now i feel like anything would be better than Brandenstater, and maybe even hill. But man, getting rid of hill still seems like it would be a mistake, who replaces him? Would Boeh pick the right guy? could the next guy hope to do what hill has done, take us in the direction we want to go? No way you put Hill, the guy who esentally made fresno state smashmouth football, on the hot seat, right? but then, oh yeah, UTAH STATE!

So now I guess its triage. What is salvagable from this season, what can we hope to do with this year, and how to best prepare for the next? These are serious questions that we have to contemplate. I thought this year was definitely a rebuilding one from day one, but its been pointed out that next year is most certanly one. I thought that having a QB controversy this year would weaken any confidence Brandenstater might ever start to have, and might destroy any hope of salvaging the season. But there is no salvaging this season, so it is best to see what Norton can do, and if he is the guy to lead the team next year. There is no question that next year's team needs some experienced leadership at QB especially with so many players on both sides of the ball finishing their college carrers. I think for the next year, two things need to be done;

1. A change at the Offensive Coordinator. Steve Hagan is not Frank Cignetti, and cannot impliemnt the kind of thinking that is needed by this team. I think that there needs to be a search for somone who can impliment the kind of thinking that used to characterize fresno state offenses.

2. A change at QB. I have been this blog's standing opponent a change at that position; but this year is out of reach now, and the only hope of success for the 'dogs can be by giving Norton a shot.

I don't know what else to say except go dogs, get it together and finish strong.

bulldog1 said...

I agree. We need changes quick. Swapping out Hill is not the answer, yet. Let's be real, he has given us a great 10 years and we can't be too quick to judge.

That noted, he needs to start making some changes right quick. Brandstater cannot make plays. He is not a Div 1A QB. Maybe he is decent passing league QB but you need a lot more then that at this level.

And if I hear again that we are going to simplify the playbook I am going to puke. How simple can this get. We barely even put guys in motion. It can't get much more simple than DW right, DW left, DW up the middle.

This is a team that could play with anyone last year. We have three guys on offense that will play in the NFL and at least one on defense. With this kind of talent we should be winning.

UGH! I gotta go as I am going to puke.

the Maestro said...

This one was beyond belief. I listened to Pat Hill say he doesn't know what to say, and it is more than apparent that he doesn't know what to do. At 1.3 million per year--it would take me 20 years to earn that--don't you think he should?

Inquiring minds want to know.

Steve Burnes

Ral said...

AS I HAVE BEEN SAYING SINCE DAY 1, BRANDSTATER IS NOT THE MAN FOR THIS JOB. I DISAGREE WITH MOST OF YOU ON THE POINT THAT THE TEAM CANNOT WIN NOW. IF YOU PAY CLOSE ATTENTION, IT HAS BRANDSTATER'S INABILITY TO CONVERT ON 3RD DOWN THAT HAS KILLED THE DOGS FORCING THE DEFENSE TO DO MIRACLES. THE DOGS SIMPLY DO NOT BELIEVE IN THEMSLVES RIGHT NOW BUT THAT DOES NOT MEAN THEY ARE NOT TALENTED. I THINK THAT IF NORTON CAN GO IN TO THE WARRIOR'S GAME AS THE STARTER, HE WILL SET A DIFFERENT TONE AND ALL THE PIECES WILL BEGIN TO FALL INTO PLACE. HILL IS A GOOD COACH AND HE KNOWS RECRUITING. HE HAS A WINNING GROUP OF KIDS THAT WILL KILL FOR HIM. HE HAS FAILED THEM BY NOT RECOGNIZING HE MADE A MISTAKE WITH BRANDSTATER. NOW IT IS UP TO HILL TO BE THE MAN AND LEADER OF THESE YOUNG MEN AND TELL THEM IT IS A NEW START WITH NORTON.
THE DEFENSE HAS KEPT THE DOGS IN EVERY GAME.GRANT IT THEY NEED TO IMPROVE IN SOME AREAS BUT THEY CAN STILL KEEP UP WITH THESE TEAMS COMING UP.PLEASE REMEMBER WE BEAT SOME OF THEM LAST YEAR. I CAN SEE US COMING TO THE LAST QUARTER WITH THE WARRIORS AND NORTON DOING SOME SPECIAL THINGS AT THE END. IF UTAH STATE'S FRESHMAN QB DID IT TO US,WHY CAN'T NORTON? I WAS NOT WRONG ABOUT BRANDSTATER AND I AM NOT WRONG NOW.
WE MUST BELIEVE IN THEM AND THEY WILL BRING BACK BULLDOG PRIDE TO ALL OF US!!!

Anonymous said...

What games have all of you been watching this year? We are 1-4 and perhaps one of the worst teams in 1-A.

I AM SICK AND TIRED OF PEOPLE GIVING EXCUSES FOR PAT HILL! HE HAS TO GO!!!

Rebuilding year? Yeah right! What kind of recruits do you think we are going to get for the '07 year? - C to D level recruits - if we are lucky. And Pat already has Oregon next year on the schedule and now wants to play Auburn? WTF?

The only thing you can guarantee with Pat Hill is 4-5 LOSSES every year. The facts don't lie. Tell me how are you supposed to get your team in the top 25 consistantly every year with 4-5 losses on your schedule?

We DON'T have the talent to play these big games every year. Perhaps one top 25 game a year, but two, three or four BCS teams a year? - HELL NO!! We can't even beat a 0-5 team.

Our credibility is gone! Rebuild this team the next three years under ANYONE ELSE BUT PAT HILL - his philosophy dosen't work for FSU and it hasn't worked in ten seasons. What makes you think it's going to be better next year?

No more excuses! The boss ultimately is in charge and Pat has clearly lost control of this team.

FIRE PAT HILL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Anonymous said...

Has not worked in ten years? Where have you been. As everyone at the blog likes to write...WTF?

If you don't think Pat Hill is solely responsible for all our success the last 10 seasone then you need to go.

Ten years ago we were coming off a 5-6 season and had trouble beating the bottom of the WAC. If Pat Hill has never worked for FS then what about all the attention, draft picks , national tv, bowl games, academic progress. I suppose you would reinstall Sweeney. But guess what, there are no more cal stete fullertons or Pacifics on the schedule.

Wake up!

Anonymous said...

Anonymous,
your'e right, Pat Hill has to go. Go on the recruiting warpath and keep picking up talented kids from the valley and beyond. You most be kidding when you say he has to go. He built the national image we have.
He has had the_alls to schedule some tough teams and should maybe cut back a little in that department but those matches have helped put Fresno State on the map.
Lately his decision making is in question and he now needs to realize and accept he made a mistake with Branstater and prepare the team mentally for a new start with Norton.
They are still a good team that needs to focus and start anew.