I wouldn't advocate for readers to look at the glass half full or half empty...or other obvious halves. Instead, I am looking at it as two different Herd teams lead by a dramatically refocused staff in the second half. The second half Herd team was the one I expected to see out of the gate. The first half was the result of allowing the opposing team to set the tone of the game by having the first possession. I wish I had time to do an analysis of what happens in games when our offense gets the ball first as opposed to having to play catch up on our first possession. Anyway, I don't have time to do that, but I do have time to share Ten Things I Think I Know After Pitt:
1. Message to Harmrick: one thing I think we can all agree on is that Hamrick makes efforts to satisfy fans. He brought back Kelly Green and he brought back night games. There has been a lot of frustration expressed by fans over the Pitt loss. I hope that Mike doesn't interpret that as fans not wanting to play ACC caliber teams. We need to play teams like Pitt. I for one am very appreciative of Hamrick's efforts to get us into this series. The Herd didn't show up in the first half, but Mike did his part to get us into the stadium. Thank you.
2. Byrd Is The Word: as many of you know, Byrd is my favorite Senior this year. He had some good plays during the game on Saturday, but his biggest accomplishment was off the field. He's been named to the Campbell Trophy semi-finalist list. http://footballmatters.org/the-nff-announces-list-of-william-v-campbell-trophy-semi-finalists/ This is a big deal. Not only for Byrd himself, but for the program and the University. Thank you Mr. Byrd for your hard work on and off the field. In an age where there aren't many roll models, I think you are providing one for your teammates and younger people in the community.
3. Durant: he blew up their fake FG and it looked like he was throwing a ragdoll around on his TD saving tackle. Last week, I thought Hancock overshadowed Durant. Well this week, I noticed Mr. Fast and Furious making an impact.
4. Anderson: he could be the game changer that turns around the season. As noted below, Davis is looking like our primary RB. Anderson has the power and enough speed to get short yardage and make something happen when he breaks through to the second level. My only concern is that his showboating may get him in trouble. As much as I liked watching him high step during his mop up duty the UofL game, I have to wonder if he could give up some crucial yardage doing that in a competitive game. Similarly, I had some concern when he held the ball out on his TD run. That being said, he was a much needed breath of fresh air in the second half.
5. Time to Eat Crow (Again...): during the first half, I tweeted that Chase needed to throw the ball to someone who has played football recently....Well after 147 yards and an 83 yard TD, I guess Clark has played some football lately.
6. Davis: prior to the season, I posted a poll on who was going to get the most rushing TDs this season. I voted for Davis. I should have posted the poll who is going to be our most reliable RB. Prior to the season, I don't think I would have voted for Davis. It looks like he may be our most reliable RB at this point.
7. Curraj: for a kid that I thought would always just be a kickoff specialist, he is bringing it. With the help of Knight, that was one of the best on sides I have seen.
8. Doc: while a lot of people are very upset with Doc, I can't get mad or yell at the TV during games. You see, I named my cocker spaniel puppy after him, and if I yell at the TV like I did at Snyder, he pisses the floor (no really). Seriously, there is a lot of fodder out there for those who want to criticize Doc for player retention, schemes, being overly conservative, and the handling of both coordinators. I'm still in the camp of Doc growing as a coach. He and his coordinators obviously made significant adjustments in the second half. IMO, the second half looked like my definition of Marshall football. If I am correct that Doc is still growing as a HC, then I hope he gains some insight from the differences between the first and second halfs and starts out games trying to win them going forward.
9. Anger Management: please note that I have no high ground to preach from. I'm not saying anyone is right or wrong, but I wish posters who I respect weren't exchanging un-pleasantries during games.
10. Home Gating: while watching friends check in at Primati Bros., I was busy setting up my TVs so that I could watch multiple games. While the first half was a bust, I did get one good half of FB in. After the game, I put the 2 TVs to a more productive use. I ran the actual debate off of my DVR on one screen and SNL's spoof on the other. Just like trying to figure out which Herd team is going to show up in which half, there were moments when I couldn't tell which was the spoof and which was the debate. Well, the out of conference schedule is done. WE ARE not happy, but WE ARE...MARSHALL. Go Herd!!!
Thundering in MD