For the past three years I’ve written most all of the post games for our games. I’ve written the same broad story line...start hot, get your hopes up, only to end the season disappointed.
Tonight is no different. I’m not disappointed. I’m not surprised. To be completely honest I don’t really feel negative at all right now. Kevin Sumlin is an 8 win coach, so losing this game just seemed inevitable.
I know we were close here. Josh Reynolds put in a Herculean effort to the tune of 12 catches for 154 yards and 2 TDs including a posterizing moment on a sh*t talking defensive back. The defense had it issues, but put us in position to win the game on a couple of occasions. This game wasn’t lost by talent, it was lost by coaching. There was an obvious and predictable winner in the matchup between Snyder and Sumlin.
Three questionable calls in this game by our coaching staff:
1) Kicking that dang 50+ yard field goal on 4th and 5
2) Accepting the penalty making it 2nd and 12 instead of 3rd and 7
3) The speed option play (which may have been an audible) on third down
Talent can only overcome so much. It cant overcome poor preparation and questionable in game decisions.
And make no mistake, we are infinitely more talented than Kansas State...but just as talent cant overcome mediocre coaching, exceptional coaching can make “ok” talent into world beaters. Kudos to Jesse Ertz, Bill Snyder, and the Kansas State Wildcats on a solid win tonight.
I’m reminded of Stringer Bell from the television show “The Wire” talking about 40 degree days. It’s got some harsh language, but he basically says that 40 degree days aren’t cold enough or warm enough to do anything. Warmer and folks are happy. Colder and folks start complaining. But 40 degrees is that mediocre sweet spot that is completely unsatisfying yet not unsatisfying enough to complain about.
Kevin Sumlin is a 40 degree coach.
Now we go into the offseason, sweat out signing day where we will sign a group of talented players who will come in with enthusiasm and zeal to do better than this year. We’ll head into spring ball and hear about how transfer players are showing out and how the QB battle is heated. We’ll move into the fall hearing about a new found energy and enthusiasm and attitude and what not. We’ll talk a lot about intangibles when in reality our program has the intangibles in spades, but struggles with the tangible stuff.
And I’ll eat it all up with you guys. I wish I could quit but I wont. I’ll sweat out every hat ceremony and read every spring report. I’ll have that same enthusiasm before the start of the next season as I did this year.
It’s what we do.
Thanks for reading these post games write ups. Despite the 40 degree way of ending the season, it’s fun. Football is always better than no football.