Monday, September 8, 2014

Week 2 Thoughts

Some thoughts following Georgetown's 23-14 loss to Dayton this past Saturday:

1. Footnote or Bellwether? Many who have followed Division I-AA football knew that Dayton's Connor Kacsor was a productive running back who can cause damage in the stat charts. Still, few would have predicted he would put up 300 yards on a Georgetown run defense that generally keeps big yardage efforts in check. What happened?

Kacsor was held in check in the first quarter, just 14 yards. But Dayton made no secret that  they would run Kacsor until Georgetown figured out a way to stop him, which it never did. Not only did Kacsor rush for 34 of the Flyers' forty carries, he rushed nine straight  plays to end the game and 17 of Dayton's final 20 plays--and still gained yardage!

There is a visible trend in Georgetown's  average yards allowed per rush. In the winless season of 2009, opponents averaged 4.7 yards per carry. By the 2011 season, that number had declined considerably, to just 2.9 yards. Since 2011, however, it has been on the rise: 3.8 yards in 2012, 4.4 in 2013. The current average of 5.3 after two games is inflated by Kacsor's numbers, but it bears watching. If Georgetown is allowing anything like it did in 2009 (and to some degree, 2013), it's in trouble, if for no other reason that it's allowing teams a much easier path to the end zone than via the pass.

Connor Kacsor is a fine runner but he's by no means the toughest running back on the 2014 schedule. If Georgetown can't regroup from what Kacsor did, watch out for Paul Stanton at Harvard.

2.  Week 3 Turnaround? Marist represents the most competitive game left on the 2014 schedule and the Red Foxes have struggled on offense, with just seven points in two games.

Marist's pass defense  is allowing 230 yards per game, nut more importantly, a 60 percent rate of completion by opposing quarterbacks. With two ineffective games from QB Kyle Nolan, the Red Foxes would seem a timely opportunity for the Hoyas to get back into an offensive rhythm.

Saturday's game may well be decided by time of possession. The Red Foxes were held to just 9:21 in the second half, and you can't win with numbers like that.

Then again, Georgetown managed just 10:31 versus Dayton in that same period.

3. C'mon, Really? From the A-10 network, this was the scoreboard appearance on the  A-10 Network feed through much of the first half:


Overall, the Dayton announcers were fairly objective, save when the Flyers scored, where its color analyst channeled an announcer at an SEC game. Upon the first Dayton touchdown, he exclaimed "Hot diggity dog!"

I'm guessing those are three words you won't hear from Chuck Timanus this season.

4. Schedule Talk: The Dayton announcers did not that the Flyers will not return the home game to Georgetown to Georgetown until the 2020 season, in that the  Hoyas did not have an open date that worked for each team until then.

That's good, I guess, but it raises the question--who's on those future schedules?

A peak at Ivy schedules suggests Georgetown is lining up a steady rotation of Harvard, Columbia, and Princeton later this decade, with a home game against Dartmouth (2015) in the mix. Add in six PL games and that still leaves two early September games each year. As to who they might be, I'm not sure. Wagner goes off the schedule this year, Davidson might be happier with an annual clobbering of College Of Faith, and while Marist is an easy add, is there someone else out there with a Georgetown on its future schedules?

5. 50th Anniversary Dinner. If you haven't heard about it, Georgetown is hosting a  gala dinner September 19 to honor 50 years of the modern era of the sport at Georgetown, and to honor the 1964 team that brought the game back to the Hilltop. If you're in the area next weekend, register now to attend.