So, yeah. Not the result we hoped for, after 10 months of misery. After my third watch of the game, after my emotions were drained, it occurred to me that we'd just seen the 1985 Villanova vs. Georgetown NCAA hoopey-ball championship game. And Ohio was Nova.
Doug Flutie Tettleton played a whale of a game. And so did all of his teammates. They dropped almost zero passes. They incurred just a handful of penalties. They turned the ball over exactly zero times. And they were just so frustratingly efficient on offense. They almost never faced 3rd and long. Tettleton completed over 75% of his passes for the entire game - just like Nova, he couldn't miss. So hat's off to Ohio. They're a very well coached, disciplined team, and they earned a hard fought win.
Loved our squad and coaching, too, though. There's a lot to build on. Let's break it all down in gory detail after the jump.
Last year Penn State was 96th in passing efficiency, and 110th in scoring offense. Yesterday, Penn State had zero 3-and-outs on offense. Let that sink in, and allow it to ease you back off the ledge a little bit.
The only thing stopping the Penn State offense yesterday was the Penn State offense. Let's itemize the drives:
- PSU gets into Ohio territory. Belton fumbles.
- PSU picks up a first down, but then Belton isn't ready for a screen pass, and McGloin does a Kent Tekulvy side-arm throw that's off target to Zordich in the flat. Punt.
- Belton misses a blitz pickup that fowls a deep ball. PSU overcomes it, and drives for a TD by Belton.
- PSU starts with a pretty back shoulder fade to TE Carter. Then McGloin overthrows a wide open Carter, underthrows a wide open BMF, and has his 3rd down pass tipped at the line. Punt.
- PSU drives again, but stalls after another overthrow, and a drop by slot receiver Lewis. Punt.
- Nice touchdown, after the blocked punt, to TE Lehman in the flat.
- In the 3rd quarter, we took a shot deep to TE Carter and had it - but he got tripped and it was 'just' a 15-yard pass interference penalty. PSU ran for 5 yards on first down, and took another shot deep on a double move on 2nd down that was well covered. On 3rd down, the pass was dropped/stripped from TE Carter, and on 4th and 5, Robinson is open deep but the ball sails just out of bounds. Turnover on downs.
- PSU tries the run, gaining 5 and 4 on the first 2 downs. A short pass gains another first down. But a 3-run on first down is followed by a (-2) yard run on 2nd down, in which Belton gets his ankle twisted. On 3rd down, with Farrell at LT, a blitzer gets free and flushes McGloin. He completes a pass short of the sticks. Punt.
- PSU is still mixing run and pass. After a WR screen to Kersey, Day gets another first down on two consecutive runs. And O-B takes another shot deep on first down, this time to Kersey with the ball just off his fingertips. So damn close. Left with 2nd and 10, Day gets mugged early on a checkdown, but no PI is called. And on 3rd and 10, McGloin's pass is tipped and nearly picked. Punt.
- Desperation drive. INT. Game over.
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