|Posted by Steven Myers on September 1, 2014 at 8:00 PM|
I'm not gonna sugar coat things like some writers out there. I'm not going to say "Well, we lost Bundrage" or "Farniok had to leave the game" or "Iowa State lost their starting safety." Nope, I'm not going to say any of those things. Why? Well a lot of teams out there have injury prone games, but still manage to come out on top. There isn't any excuses out there for Iowa State. Here is why they lost the game: North Dakota State is a better football team, and Iowa State has a lot of work left to do.
Let's start out picking on Sam Richardson. The first few drives, he looked okay and seemed pretty poised in the pocket, but as soon as some pressure started to hit him from the Bison defense and the game in and of itself, he started leaving the pocket too early, not going through all his progressions, and made poor decisions. Sam, we have very talented wide receivers. Please give them time to do their thing. Will the line break down every once in a while? Probably, but don't run outside when the pocket is still there. There were more than one occasion where Bibbs, Lazard, or Daley were open down field, but you had already made up your mind to run.
Don't think you are off the hook offensive and defensive lines. Both of you need to toughen up. You were playing against a good team, but the guys you will be playing against only get bigger and better from here. The offensive line let them get to much pressure on Sam, didn't open up a lot of holes after the second quarter, and the defensive line didn't get a lot of pressure on the Bison QB. There were some massive holes given to the Bison running backs. This can not happen. We should not see 50 plus yard runs like that.
LBs and DBs. You are young and in-experienced. Well, you got some experience now, so what are you going to do with it? I also saw a bright spot here as well though, and that was Jared Brackens. He was all over the place when he was in there recording 7 total tackles in limited playing time. I know he isn't the biggest LB out there, but I say start the kid.
RBs. I get it, you are quick, but run a bit more north and south. I know the holes are small (see above), but hey, use them on occasion. Another thing while I am at it. Remember your protection assignments and make sure you get a block on your man.
One more bright spot, yep, Colin Downing. Almost a 46yd punt avg in your first collegiate game. You made me not miss Kirby so much. The game is faster, but don't rush yourself. You will be fine back there. We are going to need you this season.
There it is, the Cyclones got bruised up 34-14, and I didn't want to sugar coat like I stated above. We better make a lot of strides between week 1 and 2. Even if we improve more than any team in the country between the first two weeks, I don't know if it will be enough to beat K-State.