View from the Roadster

A fan's unique perspective

The View from the Roadster this week, in spite of having a win on the road, is a somewhat chagrined, mildly apprehensive view…

That's a good word, "chagrined."

I looked it up.

It means, "disquietude or distress of mind caused by humiliation, disappointment or failure..." (Webster's Dictionary). Yeah, that's the word, all right... chagrined.

"Apprehensive" is defined as "a growing and somewhat credible belief that La Tech, Nevada, the Donks, Idaho, AND Illinois are all going to beat Fresno State in the next five games..." (the Roadster's dictionary).

1. Struggling to beat a cupcake

The reason for the chagrin and apprehension, of course, is the continuing embarrassment most serious Fresno State fans feel when they see their beloved Bulldogs, once again, struggling to score against a weak, clearly inferior team. Thank God, it was not on national TV.

When the game started, San Jose was close to being the worst team in the nation, ranked very near the bottom in various defensive (they allow an average of 442 yards per game) and offensive statistics (they averaged nine points scoring a game!).

So what? So the Dogs scored three (3) points against that mighty team in 15 minutes – the entire first quarter. By the end of the first half, 30 minutes into the game, FS had amassed a whopping 10 points!! Woo Hoo!

When the Spartans played Boise, just last week, the score was 41-0 Broncos – AT THE HALF! Like I said, embarrassing.

Yes, it is true that the defense held the Spartans to three points, for three quarters. But then SJSU was allowed to score 15 points in the fourth! They ended up with 18 points! TWICE their average - against FS!!! That is equally embarrassing. By the way, the Spartan QB had a career night against the dogs, passing for 292 yards and two touchdowns.

2. The Bulldogs' greatest strength is now their greatest weakness

I am referring, of course, to the Offensive Line, which, at this point, is very offensive, indeed.

Ryan Colburn was sacked four (4) times... by SAN JOSE STATE! Need I say more?

He was also harried, heckled, and harassed all night. In his own words, he rarely had a chance to "set his feet" – so much for pass protection.

As to run blocking....please. Robbie Rouse had a decent night, but that was in SPITE of the O line, not because of it. Rouse carried the ball 27 times for 116 yards. That's 4.3 yards per carry. Decent, not great.

However, that also included a 28-yard gain on one carry. So, for the rest of the night, Rouse was 26 carries for 88 yards. That's 3.4 yards per carry. Given Rouse's quickness and recovered burst, does that sound like the o-line is performing, to you?

And then there were the o-line penalties...

Look, I understand that two of the best players, OG Andrew Jackson and C Joe Bernardi did not play. They were injured. Okay, that's legit. But the GAP in quality between those two players and their replacements is…well, it is awful. Sorry, just had to say that.

3. Colburn

The Bulldogs QB had a pretty rough night. He was 10-of-18 for 125 yards with zero touchdowns and zero interceptions. That's 55% for 125 yards. Not sexy. Not even date-able.

He also threw some ugly passes. Granted, his o-line was not a factor, or even a stalemate. He also pulled off some decent footwork and some rushes for first downs. But overall – not his best night.

4. Robbie Rouse re-emerging

Robbie is steadily improving. His burst, explosion, quickness to the hole – these have all been upgraded, as his health improves, and we are starting to see, once again, those amazing "wiggle" moves, or "jukes", and that amazing "shiftiness" that we saw last year. His desire is evident and he plays "pumped" every time the ball is snapped. Good to have you back, Mighty Mouse.

5. DE Chris Carter, still the stud of the ‘Dogs defense

Mr. Carter was one of the few truly bright spots in the game, Saturday night. There were others – see Isaiah Burse, Jalen Saunders, Travis Brown and the two "Thomas brothers," below. But, back to Carter.

This guy brings it, heavy duty, every week. He is now the No. 3 Sack Master in all of NCAA football. He is also No. 7 in tackles for loss – and that is NATIONALLY. Fresno State is now ranked No. 2 in the country, team-wise, in sacking the quarterback.

Note: It is somewhat disturbing to see that we are closely followed by none other than Boise State in the above-referenced statistics. The Donks have, quite frankly, the No. 1 total defense in the nation. They also have the No. 1 rush defense and the No. 2 scoring defense. They are also No. 1 in "sacks allowed"...I am SO eager to see FS play them, on the blue rug... (not!).

6. OLB Travis Brown. Mr. Bulldog

This guy is just the epitome of Bulldog Football. He is one of those people (like Joe Bernardi) who just LOVE to play college football. He is consumed by his desire to excel on the football field - and his play shows it. I'm looking forward to following this player in the years ahead.

7. The Thomas Brothers

Yeah, I know Philip and Jermaine are not related, but they play like twins. Headhunters. Physically intimidating hitters. DB's who are looking to disrupt, intercept, and otherwise destroy the opposing teams' wide receivers. These guys have been a force on the Bulldog D all year. Awesome players!

See you after the bye week, Bulldog Nation!

-- Rooster

Redroadster is highly regarded attorney in the Central Valley, a loyal Bulldog fan, and a regular poster/contributor on BarkBoard.com. Check in time to time for his take on games and other Bulldog athletic events in his View from the Roadster.

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