Sunday, November 19, 2006

Let Another One Get Away

The Ole Miss football team played their hearts out Saturday night but came up short losing to LSU 23-20 in Baton Rouge. Neither team scored in the first quarter, but LSU opened the second with a touchdown to go up 7-0. That would be the last points the Tigers would put on the board until the 4th quarter. The Rebels dominated this game for most of the night. They went into the lockerroom at halftime with a 14-7 lead, and at led the game 20-7 for most of the second half.

With the Rebels leading 20-14, LSU QB led the Tigers on a 14 play drive and an eventual 4th down completion to take the lead and what appeared to be the end of the game. However the Rebels had a different thought. Most of us in attendance at the game had already been gathering our stuff to head for the exits. Instead, Ole Miss offensive lineman John Jerry blocked the extra point to leave the game tied and send it into overtime.

In overtime the Rebels never really had anything going on offense when on 3rd down QB Brent Schaeffer was sacked and fumbled the ball. LSU would take over possesion and after a Rebel defensive stand would kick a field goal to win the game.

Some thoughts from Baton Rouge:

- As always the Rebels had a great crowd in Tiger Stadium. The place is a great venue for football. After the game the Tiger fans I saw were not taunting Rebel fans, they were just glad to get out of there with a win

- When the Rebels came out of the lockerroom in the second half they were the most pumped up team I have ever seen. Coach O was leading them out in the tunnel for about 2 minutes jumping up and down and pumping the fans upp. The collapsable tunnel was about to fall in as the Rebels were rocking it back and forth. All Rebel fans in attendance were going nuts. The LSU fans had never seen anything like it. This is what I love about Coach O.

- Some keys to the game I felt like may have changed the outcome:

On a third down in the fourth quarter the Rebels sacked Jamarcus Russel and forced him to fumble. There were three Rebels around the ball, instead of jumping on top of the ball Brandon Jenkins tried to pick it up and return it for a touchdown. The result was the Tigers keeping possesion of the ball and punting to the Rebels deep into Rebel territory. If Ole Miss would have recovered the ball they would have had the ball in LSU territory. The end result could have been a field goal or more than likely punted to pin the Tigers deep into their own territory. I don't blame him for not trying to pick it up and score, but that was just a bad break for us.

The punting game in the second half was miserable. Having a bad punting game really puts your defense in a bind. The Tigers started their posession twice at around mid field due to poor punting. Hopefully a punter will be looked at in this recruiting period.

I do not know why the decision was made to change quarterbacks in the second half. Starter Brent Schaeffer had not had that bad of a game when they made the decision to take him out of the game and replace him with Seth Adams. Adams who has seen very little action this year did not seem to motivate the offense the way it needed to be. The crazy thing was the fact we put Schaeffer back into the game to lead the troops in overtime. Why this decision was made, we will probably never know.

The Battle for the Golden Egg is this weekend. The Rebels need to win this game to go into the offseason with a positive attitude. They have lost 4 close games this year to teams that are pretty good and ranked nationally. This team has had its ups and downs and I know Coach O has not been satisfied with our record, nor have the fans been satisfied. However if we play MSU like we played LSU last night, we will be able to add one more win to this seasons record. More on the Egg Bowl later this week.