Monday, January 07, 2008

Championship game: thoughts from the peanut gallery

Choice cuts from the emails today:

Coworker Ben:
... Matt Flynn strikes me as a broke-ass Todd Boeckman - only not a worthy adversary. Dorsey scares me. Not supremely confident, but we are gonna win. LSU takes too many chances and plays sloppy...

... I feel the most worried about the game resting on Todd Boeckman's arm; if he isnt able to throw the ball with efficiency, they'll put 8 men in the box and increase the odds of stopping Beanie running the ball...if Boeckman gets off to an early start, i could see us putting 40 points in the board and hurting them in the air and on the ground...glen dorsey would scare me more if he were an end, playing defensive tackle will able us to double-team him easier ... Les Miles is an airhead who will make the wrong call at the wrong time and his luck will run out...

(JACK: seems excessively optimistic to me. 40 points? For serial?)

Reader Wise:
... I feel much more comfortable with this year's game than i did last year. For some reason, I just felt like last year the defense was exposed during The Game and that it would show in Glendale. I'm worried about our defensive ends (I think Rose is out for this game too, along with Wilson), and Lil' Animal seems to come up small some times. I think mainly i've just tempered down my expectations ... I'm absolutely petrified that Heacock is going to play base nickel all damn game. We're going to have to get pressure early and often, and if that means taking chances with the secondary, then so be it ... Not too scared of it being a road game. I think Buckeye fans will pay the outrageous ticket prices just as easily as LSU fans ... If the D-line doesn't get pressure on pass plays, and hold their ground on the run, this D is sunk. Say what you want about Lil' Animal (and he's very good), but he doesn't get off blocks. Never has. If the LSU O-Line gets to the second level with consistency, it's going to be a replay of last year ... The gameplan last year was very shaky, and honestly, nobody made any adjustments for the Illinoize game either, and that worries me. Prior to really thinking about this, I was pretty confident. Right now...confidence is...waning.

Offensively, I'm not scared of any one particular player. They spread the ball around an awful lot so I'm more concerned with them being able to get lots of players involved effectively. I actually think that if they have to keep going back to one particular player that means we've taken them out of their gameplan. I hear they're planning (not all that surprisingly) to use both Flynn and Perriloux at QB, which does scare me a little. They've been pretty effective when they've worked Perriloux into their gameplan.
Defensively, I'm scared of Dorsey and the attention he'll require. I don't know that he'll tear things up himself but he'll demand some double-teams which should free up other defenders.
... Defensively, I think the key is to play disciplined (You racka disiprin!), assignment football. LSU plays "balls out" (thank you, Jerry Rice), emotional football which leads to some sloppiness on their part - I say we play disciplined, Tressel-like football and let LSU shoot themselves in the foot.

I agree with everything that Ev and Kev said for the most part ... Overall, my #1 key is whether our passing game is effective or not. Boeckman simply cannot throw INTs.

Unofficial MGoBlog cartoonist Joel A. Morgan:
As for my "relatively neutral" thoughts on the game itself? Complete and total crapshoot. All season long, I couldn’t help thinking OSU was ridiculously overrated. And, MOST weekends, I thought LSU was far and away the best team playing. But, you know what? Tonight? NONE of that matters. It could be last year all over again. It could be the Miami game all over again. Best case scenario for OSU… Hang a couple of touchdowns and a field goal on them and hold on for dear life…a totally reasonable game plan, and could quite possibly happen. If I were Kirk Herbstreit, I’d talk about the huge chip on OSU’s shoulder. But, that would be lame and would completely discount the game-planning going on for BOTH sides. OSU will no doubt come out with the better game plan. But, Les Miles will be bringing out the old Michigan game plan of "I don’t care if you know what’s coming. It’s coming…and it’s up to you to stop it." They have loads and wads of talent, so it’s up to Sweatervest to plan a way to stop it. So, I guess that’s it. My take: LSU’s talent vs. OSU’s game plan.

I'm scared that Matt Flynn doesn't really make big mistakes. I'm also scared that LSU is primarily a running team. So LSU is a team that establishes the run, then uses a veteran QB on play-action.

I'm terrified that Glenn Dorsey might be back at full strength. However, he seemed so destroyed at the end of the season, I'm not convinced he can have all the power he had at the beginning.

However, there is Les Miles. He could decide that they'll only throw the ball. You can't predict crazy.

I want to see as much of their backup QB as possible. And I want him zone blitzed every time he's in the game. He was really effective against Tennessee b\c they weren't getting to him. So, he was throwing 5 yard passes and picking them apart.

But mostly, I want Boeckman not playing scared. Yooge.

Me? It's 7:45. Only thing going on in my mind:
O. M. G.


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