Monday, October 02, 2006
Where Do We Go From Here?
There are a few different directions this Bulldog football team can go from here. From our past the most common direction this team can go is down because Fresno State teams tend to completely fall apart once things begin to go wrong. The 2006 Bulldogs look as if they are headed down the same road as many Bulldog teams of years past. This team may be one of the more talented teams under Pat Hill, but they are doing absolutely nothing to show it. However, I along with many other fans are at the point that we have stopped blaming the players for what is going wrong. The players have to realize they are not getting the job done. The problem is we are at the point where the coaching is beginning to take the blame, and rightfully so.
Play calling has been a problem since day one. This team oriented itself around the running game of D-Wright without a second thought to what they would do if a defense shut down the run. Saturday we saw what happens when this team cannot run the ball: Nothing. The passing game of Fresno State is ridiculous to say the least. The quarterback position is looking worse as the season ages on. Each week it is as if Brandstater takes a step back instead of a step forward. As it was obvious to the 40,000 plus fans in the stadium Saturday night, a change at QB is needed right now. Unfortunately we have come to learn here at Fresno State that Pat Hill will stick with his starter through thick and thin. It does not matter how many interceptions he may throw each week, he is the starter and Sean Norton has absolutely no chance of getting into the game. If Norton could not get a chance to play in the fourth quarter down 18 points then when will he possibly ever play? I feel like the failure to allow another QB a shot to get in the game is a pride issue with Pat Hill. What if Sean Norton were to get a chance? What if Fresno State won by twenty with Norton in the game? How would Pat Hill possibly explain having Norton on the bench for as long as he did? Hill would not be able to say "I thought Tom was a much better QB" because he knows that is not true. If Norton were to come in and make the fans look right then our coach would look wrong. Just realize Bulldog fans we are not allowed to be correct when analyzing what is wrong, we are only fans and do not have an idea of what is truly going on down on the field.
So where is this Bulldog team headed? Can they salvage something from this disappointment of a start? Of course they can but will they? If nothing is changed the season will only continue to spiral downwards. The QB position needs to be addressed. The corner position needs to be fixed somehow. The secondary is terrible, there is just no other way to put it. Pat Hill stated that Tommy did all he could against the blitzing of the Rams, and he was not going to put the blame on him for the results that occurred. To me that means absolutely nothing. Tommy is a QB and his job is to adjust to the blitz. If he knows they are blitzing the middle why does he not audible to slant routes over the middle? Because he does not have the vision that a QB needs to survive in the college football world. He could be a great QB but he has to improve his vision, touch, and timing. Unfortunately those are all absolutely required to be a good QB in college. Right now Tommy is not good, he is average at best. Right now the only players that have been in the positive light are Marcus McCauley and Dwayne Wright. If we could somehow teach the other corner to play with the tenacity and fire that McCauley plays with we would have two great corners out there instead of just Marcus.
Where do I see this team in five weeks? I don't know if we are going to fix anything this season. I feel like our coach just doesn't have enough change in him to make this season a success. With Hill's son graduating from Clovis West this year we may also be in for a big change as the coaching job may be vacant. Hill has been a great man for Fresno State for ten years now, but change is part of the college football life. Every school needs to go through change and it is time for Fresno State to do so as well. The Dogs need to go out and search for a coach that is open to the offensive side of football. With teams like Boise, Nevada, and Hawaii in the WAC we need to be able to score points to win this conference. A pro style offense will not win the WAC, it hasn't in the last ten years so why would it anytime soon? Will any of this happen? I have no idea, but I am just interested in what is best for the football program as a whole and the one constant I see that we need is that of change. If we do not change anything as I said before the season will be lost. For most Bulldog fans that would be utterly disappointing considering the hopes we had before the season began.