Pushed for time, but here's some stuff
**Running back D.J. Taylor is expected to play this week. He has returned to practice after being held out for heat issues.
**OL Zach Johnson still likely out for year (concussion). Jimmie Arnold did a good job replacing him and redshirt freshman Dalton Bennett and senior Andrew Phillips did a nice job off the bench when called upon at various positions.
**They continue to work hard on not turning the ball over and believe they can outscore anyone without the turnovers (and the yardage probably backs them up).
**Defense did fine against MSU, but gave up too many big plays, something like 200-plus yards came on 10 plays.
"It’s fundamentally our guys have to do what they’re
coached to do. That’s kind of what has got us in trouble," defensive coordinator Jeremy Rowell said. "One of them was on
me. The first touchdown of the game. We had them second-and-long and I was
calling a blitz based on one thing. Obviously, they didn’t do that. They ran a
different play and we were obviously weak on it. That was my fault. I made a
bad call. Wrong defense in the wrong situation right there. I was thinking
screen and they ran draw. They got me.
"But a lot of the other stuff is very correctable. It’s just fundamental
stuff that we’ve got to stick to what we do fundamentally and not get outside
that box and we’ll be fine. Same thing the ballgame before. They got us on a
couple of scheme deals the Lafayette
game. A couple of them was us fundamentally breaking down on what we do. Those
are the difference in the game. As I’ve looked at both of the last two games,
we’ve played 62 snaps in both games. We’ve played 52 snaps really well. There’s
10 plays within that that make the difference in the ballgame, yardage-wise,
everything-wise. I think Mississippi
State had five explosive
pass plays for 221 yards of their 244 yards. That’s where the game is won and
lost at right there, from our side of it, regardless of all this other stuff.
Any little thing can change that. We get turnovers here and there, we make a
break for ourselves here or there, obviously everything else is adjusted with
it. We’re playing hard.
"We’re playing good. There’s a fine number of plays in
there that define it. We’re not good enough to overcome ourselves a little bit
on a couple of those plays and create the really good stuff for us. We have to
keep grinding and keep playing."
Rowell on the two deep passing touchdowns, one where MSU receiver Chad Bumphis got past safety Barry Valcin in the second half and the fourth down touchdown in the fourth quarter when Bumphis got safety Brynden Trawick turned around:
"What happened to him on that one (in fourth quarter), it was a
sprintout," Rowell said. "The guy was supposed to run the corner ball. He took that away. The
guy went inside and climbed up the field. Trawick went and cut him off. The guy
turned around at the goal line and looked back. He looked back with him and the
guy takes off. In that situation, you can’t, obviously you can’t look back. You
have to play the man. Again, that’s a fundamental error of playing. That’s one
of those things. We don’t play it that way. We haven’t played it that way. You
have to do what you’re coached to do and we’ll be OK.
"Same thing happened on
the play-action post ball on Barry. Double-moved him. We stay in position and
stay in our petal (?) like we’re supposed to and we’re all over it. We had a
guy in the face of the quarterback right there. He either has to throw it away,
throw it up, something."
Rowell was pleased with the pressure on the QB: "We were able to get to him a little bit. That
was good. Obviously, hindsight being 20-20, I should have come after him a
couple more times maybe in situations where we weren’t successful. That could
have been the difference. I chose not to because I felt we were in a good
situation with what we were doing. We had opportunities to cover them and make
plays. We make those plays right there and, obviously, we win the ballgame."