The Horned Frogs defeated Oregon State 30-21 on a hot, crazy night Saturday in Arlington. Here are my thoughts on the game.
If you only looked at the stats and did not see any of Saturday's game, you would conclude that the reason Oregon State lost was because of Ryan Katz. But despite completing only 9 of 25 passes, Ryan kept the Beavers in the game with a number of clutch throws. There were a couple of problems (mainly over throwing on deep passes) but overall I thought he did great for his first start. There is no doubt that he will win some games for us this year.
The only other player to throw a pass on Saturday was Punter Johnny Hekker. After his tight spiral to receiver Jordan Poyer, it made me wonder why we aren't faking punts more often. That could be a serious weapon come later in the season.
Jacquizz Rodgers didn't exactly put up Heisman type numbers, but I thought he did alright considering the TCU Defense was keyed in on stopping him every play. The Jacquizz of old popped up a few times during the game, spinning out of tackles and making defenders miss. There are definitely things to work on, and I am sure he will have a big game against Louisville.
James Rodgers ran the ball on a couple of Fly Sweeps, but he couldn't find any major holes. He even lined up at tailback a couple times!
James Rodgers had a good game as expected. The older brother had four catches for 75 yards and one touchdown on Saturday. Joe Halahuni and Aaron Nichols both had a couple of catches, with Joe getting 26 yards and Aaron having 24. The two Jordans each had one catch, with Bishop receiving one for 34 yards and Poyer receiving Johnny Hekker's pass for 23 yards.
Not much to talk about here. I felt that they had a pretty good game and gave Katz a lot of time. I didn't even notice the absence of Michael Phillip.
The one part of the game that really hurt us was our Defense. It's all been talked about before so I won't harp on it, but we really need to improve if we want to compete in the Pac-10. Banker has got 12 weeks to figure out how to stop the Zone Read before we play Oregon. We won't have any chance in that game if we can't stop Barner, James, and Thomas.
Not much to talk about besides Kahut's missed Field Goal. His kickoffs were great, as usual. However, Johnny Hekker's punt at the end of the first half really hurt us. You go from having the momentum and being tied at Halftime, to giving the ball to the Horned Frogs at your own 23 Yardline.
As long as he gets some air under his punts, he will be fine.
It's funny (Not ha-ha funny, ironic funny) that throughout the Summer, all we talked about on BtD was how great Andy Dalton was. But what really killed us was TCU's running game. Between Ed Wesley and Matthew Tucker, the Hroned Frogs had 208 Yards. Andy Dalton, Skye Dawson, and Luke Shivers added 70 more yards to bring the total to 278.
If the Horned Frogs can get past Utah in early November, I'd expect them to play for the National Championship.
Before the game I was worried about the stadium being empty, but from what it looked like on TV, it was the opposite. The lower and middle bowls looked full, and the crowd was very loud. It looked like a great place to play a Football Game at.
Short Pac-10 Recap
Washington-The Huskies proved that they still have steps to take before finishing in the top half of the Pac-10.
Washington State-So much for improvement. The Cougars got routed by Oklahoma State 65-17.
Oregon-The Ducks won a close game against New Mexico.
Oregon State-Katz looked pretty good in his debut, but an errant snap cost the Beavers late.
California-The Golden Bears demolished UC Davis by a score of 52-3.
Stanford-The Cardinal demolished Sac. State 52-17. Darkhorse Heisman contender Andrew Luck threw 4 TD's.
USC-The Trojans got an ugly win at Aloha Stadium in Honolulu. Their defense will need to improve.
UCLA-The Bruins lost a heartbreaker against KSU, 31-22. Next up for UCLA are the Stanford Cardinal.
Arizona-The Wildcats demolished Toledo 41-2. Nick Foles had 360 Yards and two Touchdowns.
Arizona State-The Sun Devils demolished Portland State 54-9. Next up for ASU are the NAU Lumberjacks.
Pac-10 Power Rankings
3. Oregon State
7. Arizona State
10. Washington State
Despite the disappointing finish, I thought it was important that the Beavers played this game. It doesn't get much tougher than playing TCU in a hostile environment, and I think that the experience gained there will help him down the road.
Overall, I'm glad we played in this game and I hope we keep scheduling them. It was entertaining to watch and good for the team.
Which Pac-10 QB had the better win this week?