Scoring this game was a completely different experience than any previous game this season. Our early games were blowouts and were decided by halftime so the second halfs were monotonous and boring. UT was a frustrating game as the first half was just dreadful and the second was rather "meh." TCU, though, was a whole other beast. Yes the first three quarters had its ups and downs (with mostly downs) but knowing what was coming in the last eleven minutes of the game made it all worth while.
As a reminder, this is how I score the players:
When run blocking, did the player (1) block someone (2) create solid initial contact and push the defender back and (3) did they sustain their block? When pass blocking, did the player (1) block someone (2) create solid initial contact and maintain the pocket and (3) sustain their block? If they did all three then the player was awarded a score of "1". If they blocked effectively enough to keep the defender away from the play but not well enough to earn a full point, then they were given a half point. If they missed a block or got beat by the defender, they were given a "0" (zero).
Live ball penalties are assessed against the offending player reducing their initial score by minus one (i.e. an initial score of "1" will be reduced to "0" (zero). Dead ball penalties were assessed to the offending player on the following play.
Here are the grades:
|PASS||1||1||1||0||1||13||False Start on Broxton|
|PASS||0||1||1||1||0.5||INC||End of 1st Series (TO on Downs)|
|RUN||0||0.5||1||0.5||1||0.5||5||End of 2nd (Shock Fumble)|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||1||INC||End of 3rd (punt)|
|RUN||1||0||1||0||1||0||0||End of 4th (punt)|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||1||66||End of 5th (TD)|
|RUN||0||bad camera angle|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||0.5||INC||End of 6th (FG)|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||1||1||29||End of 7th (TD)|
|RUN||1||1||0||1||0||2||End of 8th (TO on downs)|
|PASS||0.5||1||1||1||0.5||67||End of 9th (TD)|
|RUN||1||0.5||1||0.5||0.5||5||End of 10th (punt)|
|End of 11th (FG)|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||0||0||End of 12th (INT)|
|PASS||1||1||1||0.5||1||1||INC||End of 13th (FG)|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||1||1||INC||End of 14th (Punt)|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||1||1||47||End of 15th (TD)|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||1||0||End of 16th (INT)|
|RUN||1||1||1||1||1||1||7||End of 17th (TD)|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||1||1||28||End of 18 (TD)|
|PASS||1||1||1||1||1||25||End of 19 (TD)|
Here are the results:
|Run Block Errors||2||3||3||1||1||4||3||17|
|Pass Block Errors||1||1||2||1||1||3||1||10|
|RUN BLOCK SCORE|
|PASS BLOCK SCORE|
I've always held the belief that if you want your offense to be good you'd better have a good offensive line. This game is a great example of that belief. Our first four series were scoreless as we turned over on downs, fumbled, punted and punted. In those four series we had five pass block errors, seven run block errors, two sacks and a penalty (false start on Jarrell Broxton) and graded out at 80.4% as a unit. The next three series finished with two touchdowns with a field goal in between. In those three series we had just one blocking error (missed run block by tight end Tre'Von Armstead) and zero sacks with the the blockers grading out at 96%.
Baylor's next series was a four and out/turnover on downs with three run block errors two of which were on the crucial 4th down conversion attempt. Following that was a TD drive with zero missed blocks. This is all in the first half of the game, by the way, with the rest of the third and early fourth quarters being the same.
Then the pick-6 happened and something clicked. A switched was turned for every player out there. Up until then, our blockers had committed 27 blocking errors and would have graded out at 85.8%. Not a bad day considering we did score 37 points on one of the toughest defenses in the nation. In those last 11 minutes, though, I saw our guys take their game to a new level.
Playing with much more focus and determination, they committed zero blocking errors, opened bigger holes and kept Bryce Petty clean on their way to 24 unanswered points and an improbable win. To say it was impressive would be an understatement. When it counted the most our guys were dominant. There's no other way to put it. They dominated the frogs.
A few notes and other observations:
Blake Muir, Desmine Hilliard and Broxton all rotated in with the first string throughout the game. Muir and Broxton started at LG and RG respectively with Hilliard coming in for Broxton at the start of the 5th series. The next drive had Broxton come in for Muir then have Muir come right back in the next drive. We wouldn't see Broxton again until the start of the comeback playing for Muir at LG again for the first two of the three TDs. After that Muir comes back in for the final two series.
It looks to me like they liked what they saw last week with Broxton filling in for Hilliard and wanted to see what he could do against TCU. Then they tried to see which combination of the three works best. I thought all three played well. Hilliard and Muir had terrific games with Broxton having another solid game. My only complaint is that they shouldn't give Broxton any pulling assignments. He's too stiff and slow at this point to be effective at it. My guess is you see Muir and HIlliard in the starting lineup next week with Broxton only coming in on heavy or goal-line sets.
Spencer Drango and Troy Baker were tested early and often and were mostly up to the task. Drango had his hands full with Mike Tuaua. Tuaua was able to get under Drango's pads and drive him back into Petty a few times. Drango eventually was able to corral him as the game went on and Tuaua was less and less a factor.