Friday, October 13, 2006

Is This a Must Win Game for Fresno State?

It has obviously been one of the most trying seasons possibly ever for Fresno State. They have dropped three games due to special teams play which in turn has thrown the season into a tailspin for the Dogs. Right now it is quite possible to say the Dogs could not fall much further as most publications now have us ranked in the bottom ten teams in the nation. I cannot remember a Fresno State team that has fallen this low during the course of a season. However, I do not blame it on lack of effort from the players. I believe that they are out there playing hard and right now plays are just not being made. I choose to side with most of the fans in Fresno when I say that the coaches are the ones who should be taking the hit for this embarrassing start to our year. It has become so bad with respect to the football program this season that the Fresno Bee has recently published three articles that question where Fresno State is headed from here. With such a tough stretch beginning tomorrow with Hawaii is this game a must win for Fresno State to salvage the season?

Let's look at the remaining schedule paired with what has happened in the WAC up to this date. As we sit right now the WAC standings go as follows:

Conf.
Team W L
Boise State 2 0
Idaho 2 0
Hawaii 1 1
Fresno State 1 1
Utah State 1 1
San Jose State 0 0
NMSU 0 1
La. Tech 0 1
Nevada 0 2

Boise State looks as if they are going to run the table in the WAC and finish undefeated this season. So for the sake of argument let's just rule out the WAC title for the Dogs. However, Idaho will lose at least three to four conference games as will Utah State, La Tech, NMSU and San Jose State. That leaves Nevada (who probably will finish with three WAC losses at the most) ,Hawaii, and Fresno State. If Fresno State found a way to knock off Hawaii tomorrow they would stand at 2-1 with tiebreakers over both Hawaii and Nevada with respect to bowl placement. Since both teams would have at least two losses Fresno State would move ahead of them at the end of the season if all three finished 6-2 in the WAC. I realize this is me being very optimistic (yes it does happen) but I do feel like this is possible. If Boise were to finish the season undefeated they would be placed in a bowl better than the one reserved for the first place WAC team (possibly a BCS bowl). That would leave the second place WAC team to fill the bowl slot for Boise which in turn would mean Fresno would play in the MPC bowl (I believe that is the first place bowl for the WAC). of course this is saying that the Dogs right the ship this week and only lose to Boise State in their remaining conference games.

I feel like the team is going to fix many of their problems tomorrow as Hawaii's rivalry status is going to lead the Dogs to play their asses off out there on the field. I realize there will not be as many fans as the first three home games had, but I don't necessarily think the Dogs need a packed house to play well against Hawaii. To me this is the first of five must win games for the Dogs. They must beat Hawaii and every other WAC opponent aside Boise. I realize 6-6 is not the best of seasons but if this team were to get into a bowl game against an ACC team that could help with recruiting and such. This type of finish could also help the team with confidence going into what seems to be a very tough 2007 season. I realize we had all hoped for at least eight wins this season but that is looking unlikely right now. This Bulldog team has the players and the talent to finish this season strong. If Pat Hill makes some changes (and he sounds like he finally is going to do so) the Dogs may be able to rebound and give us one of the most memorable of seasons. The momentum we would gain from a win against Hawaii could carry over to the LSU game and maybe we can come out and surprise them in their house. LSU has not been that impressive on the field of late and could be ripe for an upset against a team that runs a very similar offense.

I know I predicted the Dogs to lose by four but I have funny feeling about tomorrow. If Norton or Brandstater can come out and set the tone this could be one of the better WAC games of the year. I hope everyone makes it out to the stadium tomorrow morning to tail gate and see the Dogs put it all on the line against Hawaii. I just feel like this is going to be one of those games fans shouldn't miss.

6 comments:

pleasewintheWAC! said...

If this is a must win game for Fresno State, then Pat Hill will play to win and not play to not lose.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, that damn Pat Hill always playing to lose...WHAT?!!!

I am sure that's what he thinks...alright guys lets go lose this one.

formerdog said...

This is the calm before the storm. With all the theories and wishful thinking that was slung around this web site this past week, it is now time to shut up and hit somebody.

I have no more to say except I will wait and see what the almighty Pat Hill decided to do against Hawaii after I'm sure was a VERY LONG week of soul searching and praying!

I guess I will shell out (again) the $21.99 for the ESPN Gameplan coverage of tomorrow's game and watch with dire straights and a wishful gasp of air that Pat has SOME fight and common sense left in his coaching and play calling.

God be with us all....it can't get any worse than it is, or can it?

pleasewintheWAC! said...

anonymous, why don't you read the quote before you go off on a rant. I didn't say he played to lose, I said he played NOT TO LOSE, which in layman's terms to help you understand, means he plays with his cards close to the vest, conservatively. Do you understand now?

formerdog said...

FIRE Pat Hill NOW...he WON'T change!

This is the MOST embarrassing home loss in FSU history!

Hey Pat Hill lovers... Q: What did PH learn from his embarrassment last week? Obviously NOTHING. He choose to stay with Brandstater (who sucks), but like I said over the past week, THE OFFENSIVE PLAY CALLING is the BIGGEST problem here (of many problems).

Here's the facts: (These stats are ONLY the 1st half , because c'mon, who really cares. at halftime - it was ALREADY a blow out! 42-17)

Brandstater stats vs. Hawaii (1st half):

1st down rush attempts: 5 of 6 (83%)
1st down pass attempts: 1 of 6 (16%)...what a joke!

2nd down rush attempts: 3 of 5 (60%)
2nd down pass attempts: 2 of 5 (40%) closer, but still too many rush attempts.

Now here's Norton's 1st half stats:

1st down rush attempts: 3 of 11 (27%)
1st down pass attempts: 8 of 11 (72%).. This is what I have been PREACHING all week long... MORE PASSING on 1st down!!!!

2nd down rush attempts: 3 of 7 (42%)
2nd down pass attempts: 4 of 7 (57%)...this is what our offensive stats SHOULD be.

CLEARLY, Norton IS better than Brandstater.

CLEARLY, Pat Hill DOESN'T and WON'T change.

CLEARLY, FSU coaches didn't change squat going into this game and the ENTIRE coaching staff is to blame.

I am not excusing the PATHETIC performance on BOTH sides of the ball, but 68 points? What a joke!

The ONLY reason we were able to get 37 points is because Hawaii was playing their ENTIRE backups... and we STILL couldn't stop them.

It was 61 - 23 at the start of the 4th quarter. This represents how much of a ASS kicking FSU received today.

If any Pat Hill lovers STILL want to make excuses for this guy...bring it on.

Get a clue and a sack and STOP defending this guy's ridiculous control of the team. He needs to FIRE some key coaches and assess the nuclear devestation that HE has allowed here at FSU.

FSU has lost ANY and ALL national respect that (he)PH brought to this program over the past ten years. It was ALL for NOTHING in national recognition now.

So what, we now have better facilities and better recruiting in the past ten years under Hill? We are STILL way behind ANY PAC-10 school in facilities and recruiting. And Hill says we DESERVE to be in the top 25 every year? - Yeah right.

Pat Hill lovers answer this statement.....

At least Sweeney knew when it was time to give the reigns to someone else. Pat Hill WILL NEVER change his stupid and unachievable goals. He didn't change squat after last week's embarassment against Utah St. and now it is even WORSE against Hawaii.

I can't wait to hear all you PH jock sniffers response to next week's NATIONAL television impolsion against LSU. Prediction:

LSU: 84 - FSU: 20

lostdog said...

I can't believe there are still fans out there supporting Pat Hill. Including the USC loss from last year what is his record - something like 1-9? The guy is a total LOSER!