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EKU: The Morning after with Omega

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Grab a breakfast beer and rehash the ol' ballgame with your favorite clown blogger.

He is looking for the ball!
He is looking for the ball!
Rob Kinnan-USA TODAY Sports

After a questionable pass interference call, Eastern Kentucky was two yards from making it a 14-7 ballgame late in the second quarter, but the Colonels, thanks to a blistering hit from Hakim Jones and a sack from Mike Rose, just went backwards. Kudos to Colonels' coach Dean Hood for playing to win and going for it on fourth down—he surely knew his team wouldn't have many chances to put points on the board—but when the fourth and goal try failed the fight went with it. After a lackluster, penalty and turnover plagued early going, N.C. State pulled away for a 35-0 shutout in its final nonconference home tilt.

The Good:

  • The Pack's defense turned in an utterly dominant performance a week after lapses led to some chunk plays that allowed Troy to hang around. The Colonels managed a paltry 2.5 yards per play from scrimmage en route to a grand total of 112 yards of offense.
  • B.J. Hill led the charge defensively with three tackles for a loss, a sack, and a pass defended. In all, the D-line, a week after making little penetration against Troy, account for five tfls and two sacks.
  • Jaylen Samuels is unfair. The future Heisman winner, first pick in the NFL draft, and President of the Universe had 112 yards on just 14 touches combined in the run and pass game. He also strolled into the end zone on another sweep before rescuing a kitten from a burning building.
  • Jumichael Ramos's resurgence continued with a seven catch, 95-yard evening. In all, State's wide receivers had 12 grabs for 157 yards after not being very involved offensively in week one.
  • Matt Dayes eclipsed the century mark for a second straight week, toting the mail 24 times for 116 yards and three scores.
  • We still haven't seen Jacoby Brissett find much success passing the ball downfield, but it's hard to argue with 17-for-22 for 216 yards, a TD, and no interceptions. He's completed 84% of his passes through two games despite a couple of drops.
  • Benson Browne nabbed another touchdown grab and Maurice Morgan had a nice sliding catch for a 15-yard gain. It's always nice to see fifth-year seniors shine.
  • The Pack held the ball for over 40 minutes for the second straight game. I miss the up-tempo play calling a bit, but it is hard for an opposing offense to find a rhythm when they spend two thirds of the game spectating.
  • Juston Burris is pretty good. Notice how nobody is throwing to his side?

The Bad:

  • Though they ironed it out at halftime, the early penalties on the Pack played a huge role in allowing the Colonels to hang around. After being flagged just once in the opener, State saw the yellow laundry seven times Saturday.
  • Dakwa Nichols looked to have earned more playing time with his opening week performance, at least with Shadrach Thornton out, but put the ball on the turf in his lone carry and immediately retired to the basement of Dave Doeren's doghouse. It's less of a concern with Thornton coming back next week, but, without Nichols, Dayes arguably is shouldering a bit too much of the offensive burden. Dayes is a versatile back but probably not built to be a workhorse over 12 (er, 15) games.
  • Pharoah McKever was supposedly good to go, but he didn't. No Jack Tocho either. No Garrett Bradbury. And Alex Barr went down with a lower leg injury. Dave Doeren said he had eight guys he trusted on the O-line at the beginning of the year; two of them are dinged.
  • While Tocho had his struggles in the opener, his size was missed on the corner, where 5-11 Niles Clark and 5-11 Mike Stevens struggled a bit against 6-4 receiver Jeff Glover, who accounted for over half of the Colonels' offense with four catches for 60 yards.
  • You can see that Nyheim Hines is going to be scary in the open field one of these days, but he was targeted with four catchable balls and dropped two of them.
  • A block was not at all how you wanted to see the field-goaling career of Kyle Bambard begin.
  • Two more sacks.

The Ugly:

  • Burn the first quarter film. Burn it. Put the ashes in a dumpster. Send the dumpster into space and then blow it up. If the team gets in its own way like that on the road against opponents who will consider hosting a power five team as their super bowl (I'm looking at you Old Dominion and South Alabama), it will be a recipe for season-crushing disaster. You cannot let inferior opponents hang around and get confidence, especially on the road.