Sunday Morning QB- Moral Victory edition


It’s not often you lose 37-17 and feel better about your team, but this is certainly one of those times.

1. Ribeye fajitas was the pregame meal yesterday and they were spectacular.  Adding the grilled onions and red bell pepper, plus squash made it a perfect Fall dinner. Little34 #1 has now declared this his new favorite meal just ahead of chicken-n-dumplings. Skinny as a rail and eats like offensive lineman at 3 years old.

2. Speaking of offensive linemen, how about the job our guys did last night? Minus that one red zone drive on 3rd and 4th down when those two 1st round draft picks had their ears pinned back, the OL did a very good job on protection. Good to see them respond like that in a tough environment.

3. Tyler played very well last night. He is extremely accurate up to 20 yards.  Making changes to the offensive gameplan really helped him. We ran quicker routes- hitches and slants- and also decided to use the middle of the field again in the passing game. It just makes last week’s gameplan that much more mind-boggling. I’m not sure if Mullen or Les called the plays last night- but it was different. And it was a good different. Hopefully we will stick with that.

4. Milton’s fumble is why I have constantly stated that rotating 3 RB’s is a terrible idea. I know as a coach you want to reward guys for their ability and practicing hard, but it does them a disservice with that many guys playing., From pregame warm-up to the time he played in the game, Milton went through about an hour of standing around. There is just not enough plays in the game to rotate 3 guys. We need to settle on two guys and play those two as long as the game is in doubt. And I’m not so sure those two guys shouldn’t be Griffin and Robinson.

5. Our red zone offensive problems can be solved in 2 words- Dak Prescott. We run a passive, zone stretch scheme so we can’t pound it into the end zone with Tyler in the game. We dont have a 6’4 WR that can outjump CB’s on fade routes into the end zone. Nor do we have super quick WR’s that make the cuts needed to get Russell a bigger window to fit the ball into in during red zone opportunities. Mullen needs to stop worrying about hurting feelings and get Prescott on the field more in these situations. He has done a great job all year- why not use him more?

6. The defense had a tough night, but a little perspective is needed- we held LSU to 30-something less yards than Bama did. Look at what A&M did to Bama also. I’m not happy about giving up 30 points, but when you step back and look at it, we didn’t play that badly. LSU’s offense just made plays. Miles has turned Mettenberger loose the last two games, and he is looking like the NFL talent he was advertised to be. We broke on 3-4 passes that would have normally been knocked down or picked, but couldn’t get there because of where Mett put the ball. Sometimes, teams are just better than you. LSU has the same two opponents we do to finish, expect them to light those defenses up like a pinball machine.

7. The defensive line played better, Not good mind you, but better. Autry finally broke loose and nearly created a huge turnover. Nick James played more. P.J’ too. Yet Quay still gets limited reps. I don’t understand what is going on there. His playing time is not based on game performance, because if it was, he would be on the field 50% of the time. The next two offensive lines they go against are definitely a step down from what they have played against the last three weeks. I look for this group to look better in the last two games.

8. Congrats to Devon Bell for making a big FG in a hostile environment. Looks like the kid is growing up some. I know people want to complain about kick coverage, but 9 times out of 10 if your coverage teams are struggling, its a lack of talent. You go down the field in your lane and then re-direct once you see where the ball is going to be returned. Your athletes pursue the man with the ball. It ain’t rocket surgery. Mullen has built some depth in his time at State, but we aren’t where we need to be. And you can’t play all your starters on special teams.

9. Moving forward, we should win the next two games. We are the better football team. It’s a step down in competition from what we have been through, but it won’t be easy. Nothing ever is for us. Everybody bitching needs to get some perspective. You don’t go from being a laughingstock under Crooms to being able to go on the road and beat a top 5 level football team in just 4 years. We have to continue to string along bowl trips and adding talented players to our program. We don’t “believe” yet- we “hope”. Bama believes, LSU believes, Florida believes- we aren’t at that level yet. We are at the “hope” stage. We have hope in our program and that’s not a bad thing. I’m 43, and there have been a helluva lot of seasons where I didn’t have hope. We are finally beating the teams we should beat under Mullen, and that has raised the floor of the program finally. But it’s alot harder to raise the ceiling than the floor. It takes years of having some success to raise your ceiling.

South Carolina is a good comparision for our program. Their state has some good talent, but not enough to carry a program by itself. And their football history was similar to ours. It’s taken Lou Holtz and Steve Spurrier 14 years to elevate their program. Two of college football’s best coaches in history took 14 years to elevate SC’s program. And while they did win 10 games in a season for the 1st time just last year, they have yet to play in a BCS game. And that is with two Hall of Famer’s running their program. We have only had 4 years of Dan Mullen. Perspective people, perspective. Enjoy seeing our program being built up and becoming more consistent. Enjoy going to a bowl game for the 3rd season in a row. Enjoying this doesn’t mean you are complacent, it just means you have some perspective. Our administration and coaches will continue to strive to make us better, but it takes time to raise that ceiling.

10. As a bonus, how awesome is it that the Egg Bowl will determine whether Mississippi goes to a bowl or not? Vandy was the Christmas present that comes early from your Aunt in Michigan. I can’t think of a better way to end the regular season than by just crushing their soul on the Saturday after Thanksgiving. The RebelBears are already on message boards preparing for it:

We’re going to find a way to lose to that ugly, hunchbacked, s— talking mother<redacted>, and I don’t know if I can take losing to that kind of vermin 4 years in a row.”

All I have to say is we better not lose to that cock<redacted> Dan Mullen. I am ready to spit bullets.”

In Mullen We Trust,