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Tuesday Thoughts 11/16: BATTLE

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In which we talk aggies, explosive plays, and I lose my mind

NCAA Football: Boston College at Georgia Tech Brett Davis-USA TODAY Sports

Another day, another poor defensive performance leading us to a loss.

Game Recap in Three Sentences

Phil Jurkovec only threw the ball 20 times and in 13 completions he amassed an incredible 310 passing yards and 2 TDs while also adding 3 rushing TDs.

Jordan Yates was okay in his return to the starting role but threw a redzone interception late in the third quarter that prevented Tech from taking the lead.

Special teams was all over the place with both a kickoff return TD by Gibbs and a doinked PAT attempt.

#404 Swag Champion of the Game

For the millionth time, it’s Jahmyr Gibbs. He finished with 19 carries for 96 yards and a TD, a 98 yard kickoff return TD, and 5 catches for 29 yards (the leading receiver). Honestly at this point can we see what he looks like throwing the ball?

ATLeast We Ain’t Them of the Week

For a brief moment in time, New Mexico State was up 3-0 on Alabama. After that, Bama reeled off 7 straight touchdown drives en route to 59 unanswered points. The non-SEC Aggies gained just 9 total rushing yards on 27 attempts - a 0.3 average.

Above The Line of the Week

  • 3 TFLs, glad we finally got some more of those
  • Egg on toast for breakfast (bonus points: everything-bagel seasoning)
  • We only punted once. The offense certainly wasn’t amazing, but it at least was moving well enough that we only had a single 3-and-out.

Stat of the Week

4 BC receivers finished this game with above a 20 yards/catch average. Of the remaining 3 receivers, 2 were RBs with one catch each and the other was a WR with 19 yards/catch. We got torched up and down the field all day with big passing plays. It’s absolutely insane that Jurkovec had 310 yards on just 13 completions - that’s 24 yards per successful pass!

5 Star (7 Star, 5 Star) Developmental Program Haiku of the Week

It’s all over soon
Just have to survive two weeks
Let’s skip to the end

BATTLE

There’s a lot of guys in that locker room that are real guys man, this one hurts. I’m so proud of the way these guys BATTLED to the end, y’know we’ve played a lot of close games this year and we’re just SO CLOSE. Y’know Boston College is an ELITE team, they’ve got one of the best offenses in the whole country and they did some things today we’ve never seen before. It’s tough playing in such an ELITE conference. Y’know all these teams we play only have 4 or 5 or 7 losses for the entire SEASON; that’s incredible COMPETITION man, it’s an honor to play such ELITE COMPETITION.

Geoff are you going to be more hands on with the defense moving forward?

I’m not gonna answer that; I RESPECT the question but I’m already involved in every phase of the game right now alright? Y’know Einstein, one of the best COMPETITORS in history, said that ‘the definition of insanity is trying something new when what you’re doing isn’t working’ alright? We’re gonna keep doing what we’ve been doing because change is not ELITE and I think we’re just SO CLOSE and we just need to keep BATTLING.

Do you feel like the defense was prepared?

BC is primarily a 12-personnel team so we spent a lot of time preparing for that but then they started running 11-personnel and I just think that kind of unfair advantage has no place in our great game. Totally unfair of them to use one of the most popular packages in the country man, here at the INSTITUTE we don’t like to do what’s popular. Y’know we want to COMPETE on the field but some of these coaches want to trick us with their ‘adjustments’ and that’s just not what COMPETITION is about man. What I’m gonna do as the head of this progrum is ban film study because clearly it’s a disadvantage for us - we’re not gonna be tricked by these conniving coaches anymore man. Here at the INSTITUTE we play fair and with INTEGRITY, that’s what I’m all about man.

And look man, we had a really great stop on 3rd down and 3 early in the first quarter, why does no one want to talk about that man? We’ve got some BIG TIME players making BIG TIME plays and no one wants to ask me about how they made that ELITE QB miss a throw? Y’know a lotta y’all want to talk so much about the negatives of us being 3-7 this year and 9-23 overall but I just think that’s so unfair man. We’ve BATTLED and COMPETED admirably and that’s what counts in my book. I’d rather us BATTLE our way to 0-12 than go 6-6 and let our fans be excited about a silly bowl game; that’s just what kind of philosophy I want in this progrum here at the INSTITUTE.

One thing that stands out is the long-passing game from BC and that’s been a problem lately. Is that a total defensive thing or is that a pass rush thing or how do you put that together?

Whenever those kinds of explosives happen there are, y’know, organization issues at every level. We wire up defensive plays designed to stop the offense and for whatever reason, y’know, the execution wasn’t as clean as we needed it to be. Obviously we’ll go back and coach really hard in the same way we’ve been doing because I think more of the same should definitely do the trick man. These young MEN will respond because they are unbelievable COMPETITORS and I think this next time will definitely be the time it sinks in, that’s for sure.

There were a lot of penalties in that game - what were you seeing there? It seems like it’s been a little off the rails the last couple weeks.

Obviously we’ll look at the film and the guys will see that it hurt us. I’ll take the blame on this one: I haven’t told the players yet that penalties are bad and I think that’s what the problem is. Moving forward I’ll be more clear about that, but right now I think watching it on film this week they’ll realize that penalties hurt us and that should be plenty of work on our part man.

We talk about execution specifically all the time man, at half time, before the game, all the time. I’ve got the word EXECUTION written all over the building man. Lotta guys ask me ‘coach what exactly are we executing on?’ and I just tell ‘em ‘man you gotta EXECUTE, it’s WIN NOW’.

How did BC’s tight ends get so open?

Hey man our players are COMPETITORS too. I appreciate that y’all don’t report on injuries LIKE SOME PEOPLE, but we’ve got some players that are BATTLING all week through injury. Some of these guys were barely able to practice but they’re ELITE guys man so I just throw ‘em in the game all the same because I know they’ll COMPETE. Boston College has some ELITE receivers, probably some of the best in the country, they were just able to make ELITE plays. Obviously we’d love to have some of those plays back but our guys are BIG TIME players and they just BATTLE so much and it’s just unfortunate those plays happen. It’s not a lack of talent or preparation, our guys are BIG TIME. They’re gonna be very successful at the next level. Just ELITE players making ELITE plays on us.

There were some really big penalties that let BC keep drives alive there.

Yeah man, when you’re BATTLING against an ELITE opponent like that you can’t give them anything. We had ‘em, y’know, backed up 3rd and 13 and they just had a really nice play call. That’s just out of our control man, I can’t think of a single thing our ELITE staff can do when the opponents are doing things like nice play calls. We all know nice play calls are just luck so we just roll with it and BATTLE man. We got a lot of BIG TIME players in the locker room that are ready to keep COMPETING and BATTLING man. A lot of those penalties are COMBAT penalties man and there’s nothing we can do about ‘em. I’ve always said the rulebook is very unclear about what you can and can’t do and we’re just out there COMPETING and sometimes we COMPETE harder than the other team and we get a COMBAT penalty.

It’s frustrating to do all the right things and still come up short man. There’s really nothing else we could’ve done in this one or any of our last few close games. Our preparation is ELITE, our talent is ELITE, it’s just not going our way. Again there’s nothing else we can do man but keep beating our heads against the brick wall and hoping our ENERGY and BATTLE bring it tumbling down. If y’all can’t see the tiny chips in that wall from our PROGRESS then man, y’all just don’t want to see them.

Coach have you thought about what slogan t-shirts you might make this upcoming offseason?

Yeah man, that’s absolutely where most of my time goes as the leader of this progrum, we’re gonna have some ELITE stuff for y’all. Right now I think it’s gonna either be BATTLE FOR THE CHANCE TO COMPETE’ or ‘NOT CONTENT WITH SUCCESS’, we’re gonna have a team vote as YOUNG MEN to choose which one. But we’ll definitely print up just about 100 of ‘em, it’d be ridiculous to print more and let anybody pay us money for ‘em.

Look Ahead

Up next is Notre Dame (11/20, 2:30pm, NBC). The Irish have had a couple stumbles this season (loss to Cincinnati, 3 point victory over VT, 3 point victory over Toledo, 3 point victory over FSU) but are still a top ten team. They’re coming off of two dominant defensive performances where they outscored Navy and UVA 62-9. We will be heavy underdogs in this game and for good reasons. If we can find the magic of the UNC game again then we may have an outside shot at a close game, but if we play like we’ve been playing lately it’s going to be a long day.