What Happens Next?
When I woke up this morning I went through my normal routine and after I finished getting ready to go to work I jumped on the internet to read the latest news on the Bulldogs. I have to say that when I went to the Fresno Bee I was shocked to read a column on what needs to be done to make the program successful again. I realize this past weekend Matt James wrote an article about changing the quarterback, but this article today covers many of the same ideas that we have been discussing over the past few weeks on the Blog and BarkBoard. The article suggests that we rid ourselves of the play anytime anywhere motto. I have to say I was never a big fan of that idea in the first place because it made us sound desperate to get a game with a big time BCS school. If we did get a game with a school like USC it would be under their terms and we would have to travel to their school with no return trip involved. So to do away with the idea of playing anyone, anywhere is something I am completely ok with. However, this made me think of all of the slogans that Pat Hill has used over the years and there is one that seems to have disappeared that I was big supporter of. What ever happened to the saying "Shutup and Hit Somebody"? In the early part of the decade Fresno State may have had questionable defense but they always hit hard and did their best to intimidate the offenses of the teams we played. No one can forget the hit Kendall Edwards put on Oregon State's two players on the punt return in the second half of the game in 2001. Our team this year seems to be void of those types of players that live for that one big hit. Aside McCauley (who has done a very good job of tackling) the rest of the team looks scared when trying to bring someone down. This just doesn't seem like the Fresno State defenses I remember from the past. What do you as fans think the problem is with our loss in determination and fire on defense? Is it the scheme our defense is put in or do you think our defense is just void of these types of players this season?
The truth is everyone that reads this Blog knows that we need to make changes to have a chance the rest of the season. I know a big part of the fan base is hoping to see Norton come in on Saturday in one way or another. But when the Fresno Bee decides to publish an article on what is wrong with the Bulldogs then you know something is not right in Bulldog land. Since John Branch left we have not had anyone who dared to write an article that questioned what is going wrong with the Bulldogs. I have always had a problem with the articles and news that is published with respect to Fresno State. The reason is publications such as the FresnoBee and GoBulldogs.com never seem to capture what is truly going on with respect to the Dogs. When we lost to Colorado State the focus should have been what went wrong with our offensive line, defensive secondary, and passing game. Instead the news that was put out had to do with Clifton Smith making his first start and the positives that Pat Hill came away with from that game. To me this is laughable because when I left the stadium that night I wondered what the hell happened to our team's killer instinct and I am sure most other Bulldog fans wondered the very same thing.
So this leads me to my question of the day today. I know most of you have read that I feel 2007 is going to be a much tougher year than 2006 currently is. Right now I may have to take that back knowing that there is a chance we could start the season 1-7 this year. However, we are losing plenty this offseason and have little to replace those who are leaving. With Hawaii and Oregon on the road and Boise State at home next season how do you feel our team is going to be? At the same time is Fresno State going to take a hit for a couple of years with respect to recruiting because of this loss to Utah State? Are we slowly dropping back into the mediocrity of college football or is this just a one year drop for the Dogs? I unfortunately feel that if we cannot pick up some big wins here against Hawaii, and either LSU or Boise State then our recruiting is going to take a huge hit this offseason. I cannot see anyone wanting to play for a team that starts the season 1-7, loses to Utah State, and will be lucky to go 5-7. On the other hand if we pulled out some games and finished 7-5 somehow that may change how recruits view this team. They might want to come here to get us over that hump and make us a team that can accomplish the BCS and win the WAC one day. I am just wondering how everyone else is viewing this season towards recruiting.
Lastly what is this season going to do to Pat Hill? I have read that many fans want Hill around while many think it is time for him to move on. I would have to say right now I am leaning to him moving on unless he is capable of making changes to better the team. I just don't feel Pat Hill is open enough to make changes needed to win anymore. This can be seen on offense or defense when our team is struggling. It seems to me that the other team is always the one making the adjustments while the Dogs seemed lost most of the time. What do you as fans want to happen with Pat Hill? Is his ride as Bulldog coach over in your minds or is he going to be around for many years to come?