Sunday, October 02, 2005

Football Weekend

I spent this weekend watching football both live and on TV.

Friday evening I watched Rutgers jump out to a big lead against Big East opponent Pittsburgh and then hold on for a 37-29 win. The defense became a little porous to the air attack in the second half and allowed the Panthers to get back into the game. The Scarlet Knights did NOT allow anything on the ground, however. The Pitt Panthers gained minus 11 yards on the ground. The defense has been playing well but they have been on the field for too many plays.
Rutgers is now 3-1 overall and 1-0 in the Big East. Their only loss occurred in their opener against Big 10 Illinois in overtime. In that game RU had a huge lead at the break but gave it all back in the second half. Ryan Hart is now number one on the Rutgers’ passing yardage list and only a couple of TDs away from number one on that list. (Ray Lucas holds the record with 52 TDs.) RU’s next plays in West Virginia.

Like many NJ residents, Terry and I went to a high school football game Saturday afternoon. We went to see the Morristown Colonials against the West Morris Wolfpack. (We also wanted to see the marching band since we had watched it for seven years as both kids play tuba in the Marching Colonials.) The football game started slowly with a 7-7 score at halftime. The marching band performed extremely well on the field and in the stands.
The Colonials fell behind 10-7 in the third quarter but from then on, they really began to roll. The defense made several interceptions setting up or scoring touchdowns and the running backs/offensive linemen finally got untracked. On one play, the right defensive end reached up to bat a pass out of the air, bounced it off one of his own teammates, caught the rebound and ran it in for a TD. The final score was 42-10.

The Giants’ Eli Manning pulled off an imitation of his older brother. He threw for four TDs against the St. Louis Rams and led the Giants to a 44-24 win. The Giants are now 3-1.

The Jets suffered some horrible luck last week. Both Chad Pennington and Jay Fiedler (quarterbacks #1 & #2) went down with shoulder injuries. They went out and signed Vinny Testaverde to start—next week. But this week, they hand the ball to Brooks Bollinger, a three year pro who was a number one pick out of Wisconsin. He may have led Wisconsin to the Rose Bowl, but he has thrown only 9 passes in the pros. Since the Jets’ running game has been weak these first three games, Mr. Bollinger was in for a rough afternoon.

Luckily, the Jets were going against the Baltimore Ravens. While their injuries haven’t been highlighted the way the Jets’ have been, they too are banged up. And they have been unable to score much in their first three games. At halftime it was 6-0 in favor of the Ravens. The Jets managed only a field goal on a first and goal from the one. The Ravens followed with a third quarter TD and that was the way it ended; 13-3 Ravens. The Jets fall to 1-3 and now occupy last place in the East.
Bollinger looked better in the second half but got little help from the receivers who dropped several balls that were right in their hands. Things aren’t looking good.

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