Game review, 2013: Furman

I’m sure there is going to be plenty said and written over the next few days after this game. I don’t think many people thought the Bulldogs would be in a position of just playing out the string before the month of September was even over, but that’s basically how things stand.

The goals of a possible league title and/or playoff berth are essentially unreachable. A winning season (always appreciated by Bulldog fans) is probably not realistic either, particularly given the standard of play over the first month of the campaign.

I’ll write more about this game and some of the short-term and long-term issues with the football program later in the week. I first want to learn more about a couple of items, one of which is not directly related to the on-field miseries.

That would be Unigate. According to Jeff Hartsell:

The Bulldogs wore throwback jerseys with a big block “C” on the front during pre-game warmups, but had to change to their standard uniforms for the game. Citadel officials said the SoCon had approved the throwback uniforms, but word apparently did reach the game officials. They ruled that the numbers on the front of the throwback jerseys were too small.

If Southern Conference officials refused to let The Citadel wear uniforms approved by the Southern Conference office, that would probably be the most Southern Conference thing of all time. I would expect a telephone call from John Rosa to John Iamarino first thing Monday morning (if not sooner), with the commissioner doing a lot of apologizing.

If, however, the uniforms were not cleared by the league prior to Saturday’s game, that would probably not reflect well on certain officials at the military college.

I will say that I have my doubts that there was really a problem with the uniforms, given that I don’t think they were stylistically unique — adidas has made similar jerseys for Wisconsin, Nebraska, and Central Michigan. My initial instinct (which could be very wrong) is that the game officials were a bit too officious.

We’ll find out, hopefully sooner rather than later. It’s not completely unimportant. After all, the school website has been running an auction for “game-worn” throwback jerseys. Right now, they actually don’t have any throwback jerseys that have been worn during a game.

(I do wonder how jerseys with retired numbers on them can be game-worn, but that’s another issue.)

I’ll go ahead and write about one thing I noticed during the game. The first-down plays for The Citadel’s offense in the first half were as follows:

– Pass
– Robinson rush
– Pass
– Dupree rush
– Sack on would-be pass attempt
– Dupree rush
– Martin rush
– Dupree rush
– Stenson rush
– Robinson rush

That’s right. During the first half, on first down The Citadel ran more pass plays (or attempted pass plays) than handoffs to the running back who rushed for 227 yards against Old Dominion last week.

There was talk after the game about Furman putting nine players in the box. It seems to me, though, that the gameplan was already in place to throw the ball on first down.

Also, the Paladins may have stacked the line, but Robinson’s 1st-down carry in the first quarter was one of three consecutive carries for him, which wound up netting the Bulldogs a first down. Nine guys or not, he moved the chains.

That sequence was followed by another first-down pass attempt that fell incomplete and put The Citadel “behind schedule” again.

Incidentally, Robinson’s other rush on that first-down list came with 18 seconds to play in the first half. The Citadel then called timeout (a very curious maneuver), ran another play, then went to the locker room.

As usual, I took pictures. As usual, the best of them are only mediocre.

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