Thursday, November 02, 2006

The Only Direction is Down From Here

The title of the Blog today refers to how I feel with this team and the direction they are going. I have sat back and defended this team game after game saying that they have the chance to turn this season around because I feel like they have the talent to do so. Hell I think the entire nation feels as if the Dogs have the talent to make something more of the season than they have. To the rest of the United States it is a complete puzzle as to what has happened to Fresno State this season. I don't think there is anyone who truly understands what is going on in Bulldog nation and I think that is what I am going to dedicate this blog to.

Last night was embarrassing and not just with respect to what happened in the game but what the coaching staff did during the course of the game. As everyone knows I pushed for Norton to get a chance to play and I still feel as if he is the better of the two quarterbacks. For Pat Hill to pull him at halftime of this game was easily the single worst decision of his career. Not only did he pull a QB that was fighting for his life while on the field but he went back on his word to all of us Bulldog fans that he wanted one starting QB. It took him five games to pull Brandstater even with one poor performance after another yet he does it to Norton after one game against the best defense in the nation and a very strong Boise State team. Now Pat Hill says he will play two QB's the rest of the way when we all know that means Brandstater will finish out the season. I hope that Norton has a chance to play elsewhere because Pat Hill has absolutely screwed Norton and his chances to become something more. At the same time last night on the barkboard everyone was pushing for Hagan to be fired. I understand frustration with our offense, it is as pathetic as any college offense in the nation. My boy MDG said we run maybe ten plays total on offense which is just absolutely ridiculous. I am not an offensive coordinator and I have drawn up over two hundred plays in my life that would be effective in college football. But I think the blame is being thrown at the wrong person. When Cignetti was here we all complained that our offense was too vanilla and we ran on first and second down too frequently. We changed offensive coordinators yet the problem still exists. So let's see, two different coordinators and remember Pat Hill wears the headset on offense. The problem is not our coordinator, it is Pat Hill. He is making the calls to run the ball on second and ten to lose four yards. He is the one calling for eight runs in a row when we are down 45-21. If you want to place blame please put it where it belongs and that is solely on our head coach.

With all of that being said we will not win another game this year. We do not deserve to win another game this year and I have to say I hope we don't. I am frustrated beyond belief and want the Dogs to go 1-11 so we can shi*can the coaching and start all over. Bring in a whole new coaching staff and start all over because Pat Hill is not a leader anymore. He has gone back on his word now and he is leading a bunch of men out there who don't care to play for him anymore. We will be lucky to land any recruits this off-season and I don't blame any kids for avoiding the Bulldogs. I am sorry if this is coming off as harsh and out of line but I am just fed up with everything the Dogs are doing. I mean how many damn weeks in a row are we going to try and force the run on the defense. We aren't going to win by running the damn ball 50% of the time, we just aren't. Yet somehow Pat Hill thinks against high powered offenses the way to win the game is control the clock and limit mistakes. As Lou Holtz said last night the only part of time of possession that matters is who ends up with the win. In other words if a team has the ball 20 minutes but scores forty points who cares how long their defense is on the field, they still win the game.

I feel betrayed by Hill with the way he has coached this team into the ground this season. I feel even worse for guys like Norton, West, Ciccone, Pascoe, Miller, Moore, and Crawley who will all be back next year under this horrendous coaching staff. I have not even started on the problems on defense yet and this blog is already lengthy. Dan Brown is a disgrace to college football. The schemes he runs might work at the high school level but in college football what he is doing out there is downright ridiculous. We do nothing right, and somehow at Fresno State defenders have never learned to actually defend the ball and not just the receiver. Somehow the defenders never turn around to locate the ball and that is why through eight games we have one interception. If these guys would just turn around from time to time the Dogs would have at least seven to eight interceptions. Last night Zabranski threw the ball deep on Simmons and although the ball was heavily underthrown somehow Simmons never turned around. He would have caught the ball in stride had he just turned his head. We need a defensive coach to buy these guys a clue and I just don't see it happening anytime soon. I feel terrible for McCauley because while everyone knocks him I just think he has lost interest. Go back and watch all of the games we have played and you will notice a pattern with respect to McCauley. The offenses do not throw his way in the first half and rightfully so. By the time the ball actually comes #17's way the game is in the second half and already over. He has to feel deflated that he can do nothing for his team aside sit and watch two players on the other side continually screw up pass coverage. I know many of you will go off on me for defending McCauley but before you do go back and watch the last four games we have been blown out in. Tell me what I just said is not true. You won't be able to, I promise you that much.

This team is going nowhere and the thing that pisses me off the most is the talent is there to win at least eight games. Williams has been horrible this year and cannot catch anything. He will be lucky to be drafted on the first day. Is it just me or does Kyle Young get called for holding more than any other lineman we have, and he is supposed to be the best center alive? I don't care what everyone else thinks McCauley will still go early especially after he posts his 4.3 combine time and shows how talented he is. This team just doesn't have any drive and the last four games are going to be ugly. We will not be able to defend against New Mexico State or Idaho because they both pass non-stop. Louisiana Tech and San Jose are on the road and there is no way this team wins any games on the road this season. 1-11: Did you ever think it could get this bad? I know I didn't but we need change here in Fresno and there are plenty of coaches to choose from out there. I just hope the administration sees things the same way many of us do or we have plenty of bad years to come.


Anonymous said...

I'm not sure I agree with you yet on the QB situation. I haven't seen much that would tell me one is better then the other. Until there is better pass protection and play calling, Donald Duck could be our QB and it wouldn't matter.

nsc said...

Yeah that's true. I would like to see these damn guys play with some protection. I mean how is it that Young holds every time we have a long play from scrimmage? How is our supposed anchor been called for holding more than any other guy on our offensive line? I just am frustrated and know something had to be done. I wish more people would chime in here, I can't be the only one irate right now.

Anonymous said...

It is not only that our team is losing, it is that they are playing like Losers (capital "L"). When we have "great potential" (Hill's words) that never materializes, who is to blame? Is it the players, or is it the ones charged with developing the players? I think everyone knows the answer; however, many will refuse to consider the truth.

Again, PH makes (I used to say "earns") $1,300,000 per year. That kind of money doesn't get what it used to.

In every field, there is a time to change with the times, or get left behind. That is so true in football--all the teams know what PH will bring, and prepare accordingly. The results are devastating! A change is needed, either with a new philosophy or a new coach.

Just my thoughts following another inexplicible did-not-come-ready-to-play, ugly loss.

Steve Burnes

Anonymous said...

You aren't the only irate fan out there. The dogs looked horrible last night. Like they didn't even know the basics and fundamentals.

There were some darn good tackles last night, I was happy to see them actually hit and wrap up their man. But our DBs played like it was their first time out there...

I can't believe how fast they got through the line at were on the QB (whether norton or brandstater). On the other side of the ball Zabranksky had all day.

nsc said...

We seem to have lost the basic fundamentals of blocking. Our offensive line has to defend against a four man rush. Do the math. Four men rushing, five-six blocking should never equal a sack but our QB's are on the run more often than not. I just don't see where it can get any better. Like I said we have no blocking, get no pressure on the QB and don't defend well. We don't blitz enough, and our overall schemes on both offense and defense are laughable at best.

Anonymous said...

It is difficult for me to see where this program would go with another coach. You say there are a lot of capable quality coaches out there to be had. I don't see it...James of the Fresno Bee had it right when he addressed a coaching change. Hill has made the kind of commitment to this community and football program that is hard to ignore...James also gave what I felt was a very astute analysis of this years fall...a lot of different events that slowly deteriorate the confidence...this situation has got be eating Hill alive in terms of stress. He clearly wants to win and he will again. He has recruited some excellent talent and I don't think he has lost his touch because of this losing season. To suggest that Hill be fired, along with the entire coaching staff will surve what purpose. It is not going to help this season. And tell me, what coach do you suggest we replace him with? Of course you will need one that is willing to drive to see a potetial player because the are on a limited budget. One that knows the area and can recuit locally, which is an excellent method of recruiting given the situation here. One that is willing to promote the program practically 24 hours a day. You think your going to get a successful BCS coach to come here? Maybe you have in mind a lower division coach. Give him a chance to prove his worth.

nsc said...

Look I have supported Hill just as much as the next guy here in Fresno. I have said he is capable more so than any other man in the college football ranks. But if you can sit there and say he has control of this team and that they have not given up on him I am going to have to say you are dead wrong. Something is going on internally with that team that we don't know about (ok I dont know that for sure but there has to be something wrong) and I dont think these players want to play for Hill right now. Here is why:

Monday night the Patriots played the Vikings who have a stout run defense. The Patriots who are a ball control running team came out and threw the ball constantly because they knew the Vikings pass defense was suspect. Boise State gives up an average of 240 yards passing per game, but only 70 on the ground. So we come out and do what? We run the ball because that is what Hill does. That to me is the reason these guys have lost faith. The game prep is terrible, we do not adjust at all, and these players have to see that the system is just awful right now. So you think if the Dogs went out and found a new offensive coordinator it would change anything? You think recruits want to play in this system? Think again, who would want to play in this pathetic offense? As long as Hill is our coach it won't change and that is why I say we need to do something between this season and next season coaching wise to get back on track.

Anonymous said...

Without a doubt the Bulldogs offense lacks consistency and creativness and they are very predictable. However,there are big problems on defense also.
On more than one occassion last night, Boise ran wide and made big gains. No one on defense was there to turn the play in toward the middle so that someone might be able to make a tackle. I played defensive end in high school and my number one responsiblity was to turn a play in. The defense sas out of position.
On long pass plays by Boise, our defensive backs were playing the man and not the ball. On a couple of plays, if the defensive back had been playing the ball, we maybe could have had an interception.
And then there was the fake punt on fourth and long that went for several more yards than Boise needed for the first down. I think that a well-coached team should be prepared to expect anything.
As long as out defense if giving up 30 plus points per game it will be very difficult for us to win any games given our offensive production.