Saturday, November 7, 2009

Lessons Learned: ACU vs. Midwestern

  • What a rugged game by two fine teams who could both end up in the playoffs, thanks to the wild and wacky things that are going on and may yet go on tonight in the Wildcats' region. Already today, the region's No. 4 (ACU was edged by Midwestern State), No. 5 (Missouri Western fell to unranked Nebraska-Omaha) and No. 6 (Central Missouri lost to No. 1 Northwest Missouri) teams have lost, and No. 3 Tarleton has its hands full tonight with a resurgent but unranked West Texas A&M. No. 8 Texas A&M-Kingsville hosts No. 10 Angelo State later tonight. If ACU survives the playoff-makers' surgical knife Sunday afternoon, it will likely play this coming Saturday, and on the road, perhaps as close as an LSC opponent's home stadium.
  • Despite a loss to an all-around powerhouse team today, ACU's defense proved it is playoff and championship caliber. After spotting Midwestern a 15-0 lead in the first quarter, the Wildcats neutralized national passing efficiency leader Zack Eskridge in the final three quarters. After he lit up ACU on 13 of 14 passes for 215 yards in the first half, Eskridge was just 1 of 10 for 6 yards in the second half. The Wildcats also sacked him five times.
  • ACU backs ran for a solid 185 yards on the ground, but overall, the Wildcats returned to their struggling ways on offense, never able to mount the downfield passing game it showed last week in the win over A&M-Kingsville. Mitchell Gale was 18 of 32 for just 141 yards. The redshirt freshman threw only one interception, but it was a big momentum stopper. 
  • Morgan Lineberry became the first Wildcat to kick two 50-yard-plus field goals in one game, connecting on a 56-yarder in the second quarter and a 51-yarder in the fourth.
  • Reggie Brown topped the 100-yard mark in rushing (11 for 104 yards), 55 of that on a long run in the second quarter, setting up Lineberry's 56-yard field goal.
  • Follow the national scoreboard tonight at – it will be an interesting finish to a fascinating regular season. Playoff pairings will be announced Sunday afternoon at 2 p.m. CST on ESPNews.

No comments: