And here come the pretzels...
Ninety seconds into the game, Daniel Evans attempted his first pass and it was picked off; as soon as the play was over, the boos started. The strong negative reaction so early on caught me off guard, but in hindsight I suppose it shouldn't have. Scoreless for nine quarters going back to the Wake Forest game, quarterbackless for five years going back to the Tangerine Bowl. Folks needed to release some frustration just to make room for what's still to come.
Evans's interception brought about one of those wow, we could really lose this game realizations. But William & Mary gave the ball back almost immediately, dismissing such a notion as absurd. And I was coming around--they'd made a compelling argument with that fumble, after all; I mean it's just a mediocre I-AA team we're dealing with here--until the Wolfpack offense came back out.
Comp Att Yds Yds/Att Comp% TD INT
vs. W&M 4 11 12 1.1 36.4 0 1
Season 8 23 49 2.1 34.8 0 3
What the heck happened?
The defense eventually put the offense in a situation where going nowhere would still leave us in position to score points--g'head and try to screw that up! (They didn't. Whew.)
Alan-Michael Cash tips the pass.
Nate Irving gets a hand on it, brings it in.
The rest of the night played out much like last season's opener, except there was no double-digit deficit to overcome. Harrison Beck was again asked to save the day, and again he played well in relief. But this remains Russell Wilson's show, because we want and need to run the spread option if we're going to progress offensively. Hopefully we'll be able to characterize these first two weeks as the clear low point, though it's probably foolish to think the quarterback situation will not remain fluid.
-- We're ranked 116th in total offense. Hard to imagine an offense worse than ours, but there are two, apparently. Here's the rest of the ugly picture, though it isn't all bad: 4th in sacks per game, 16th in net punting (woo!), 25th in turnover margin.
-- They've improved on the defensive side, I'm sure, but I expected more than 2.2 yards per carry against the Tribe. Gotta cut that out, the expecting of certain small successes.
-- Clemson cruised past the Citadel, but the Tigers allowed over 400 total yards. Which is not to suggest that we might win next week, just that we might manage more than 10 points.
-- AC/DC noooooooooooooo!