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Archive for October, 2022

Washington game thoughts

Here are my thoughts on the game:

  • Washington is not very good. They had a good start to the season, but they’re going to lose a lot more games before this season is over.
  • That’s a quick way of saying the fact the Bears kept it close into the 2nd half is less a positive for the Bears and more a negative for UW. As soon as the Bears took the lead in the 2nd half, it awoke the sleeping “giant” on the UW sideline and from there it was never close (even if it kinda seemed like the Bears had a shot).
  • A fascinating (and troubling) transition for the Bears is their evolution from aggressive and disrupting on defense to bend but don’t break. In the first half it kinda worked. They gave up a lot of yards but only 6 points. It completely fell apart in the 2nd half and those long drives were all touchdowns.
  • Speaking of which, UW only punted once until the mid-4th quarter when they were up 28-21. I was remarking with horror how just about every play went for 5+ yards, even the supposed failures. (Incompletes aside.) Admittedly, not many of them went for much longer, but it’s still an unmitigated disaster.
  • On the other side of the ball… things are getting worse.
  • Plummer is getting more uncomfortable
  • The offensive line is regressing after a couple weeks of getting a bit better
  • I will accept nothing less than the entire offensive staff being replaced in the off-season.

Don’t expect to see things get better this weekend against Oregon who after early season jitters seems to be firing on all cylinders. (The WSU game for them was the wake-up call they needed to get serious and put the Georgia hangover behind them.)

Heck, I think the only game to hope for a win left is Stanford. We’ve played all the weak teams in the conference (based on their current conference records) and what remains are the best ones.

Colorado game thoughts

  • No excuses for the last two losses other than that the Bears are a sub-mediocre team.
  • Although it doesn’t help that we caught Colorado at exactly the wrong time: First game with interim coach and on their turf, which has the additional complication of being at altitude (under discussed by the game commentators).
  • Don’t forget: The Bears gave up 3 easy points to go for it on 4th down deep in Colorado territory in the 1st half. That means the Bears could have easily won this without overtime.
  • Combined with the two other missed field goals… the Bears easily could have won this game.
  • But that’s the thing, how many “oh so close” games before we realize it isn’t as close as it appears?
  • 1st half play calling was not good, but neither was Plummer’s arm.
  • 2nd half play calling much improved as was Plummer’s arm, but the overall execution got worse (too many dropped balls and offensive line broke down more).
  • Speaking of dropped balls, that one in overtime was atrocious. Starling (#18) completely blew it. He thought he had an easy catch for a game tying touchdown and wasn’t ready for or expecting the hit.
  • An under appreciated factor for the Bear defense is tackling. While it hasn’t been bad, it’s not what it used to be and is a big part of the reason the Bear defense has gone from awesome to just reasonably good. The number of 2 yard plays (or even losses) that end up escaping the first tackle and end up being significant positive plays is really troubling if we expect elite defense from the Bears.
  • No way the Bears get to a bowl after that loss. It might be time to look beyond Wilcox and staff. I was optimistic before the pandemic. But it feels like the pandemic is to Wilcox what Kevin Riley getting tackled against OSU in 2007 was to Tedford. The mojo just ain’t there anymore.