I suppose this is as good a time as any to ask for forgiveness from the Anchor of Gold readership. I am nearly 40 with three kids and very tired most of the time, and the truth of the matter is that the absolute bed-wetting (hetting?) that I watched last Saturday has usurped the modicum of hope I have for the year. As such, my writing will likely contain large amount of snark, a lack of positivity, and maybe even alternative programming suggestions so you can avoid watching the slop. Still, I am honor bound to offer you a glimpse at the offenses we will be facing throughout the year, and so I shall, but consider yourself warned.
Last Week: L SDSU 42-23
If there’s one comparison to be drawn of the two teams, it’s that they both would rather forget their first game. CSU played a 4 game schedule last year in Steve Addazio’s debut (took over Mike Bobo in ‘20, Temple HC ‘11-’12, BC ‘13-’19). The results were not exactly spectacular, but there was some hope that Addazio would figure it out with a non-crazy COVID ruined seasoned. Early indications are that he has not, as CSU also lost to the FCS Jackrabbits. While the story of the game is largely that the defense was dominated in every phase, this team was very unlike most Addazio squads that lean on a strong running game. The lack of a run game due to situation is understandable given that the game got way out of hand in the third quarter, but that doesn’t really explain the first half run performance. CSU was only able to muster 124 yards on 40 carries (3.1 ypc). In any event, let’s look at their personnel.
Starting QB for the Rams is Todd Centeio. Centeio is a senior, a veteran, and a dual threat type QB. He was 29/42 for 304 yards and a TD against SDSU (however, as DotP would point out, he only had a QBR of 32.8 on the day, which is not great bob). In addition, for someone who actually is known as a threat to run, he only had 10 yards on 8 carries. Whether that’s Addazio’s offense or something else remains to be scene, but he can beat you with his legs and that should be planned for.
Addazio is not known for running backs by committee, and considering BC transfer David Bailey got 19 carries that seems to be playing out. The problem for Bailey is that he only amassed 46 yards on those 19 carries for a paltry 2.4 ypc. He scored a TD in short yardage, but that was about the size of it. Of note, Bailey did have 3 catches for 23 yards and a TD, so he isn’t too bad as a receiving back. Another player to look out for is Marcus McElroy, who is a senior. He 2 runs for 35 yards.
Wide Receivers/Tight Ends
If there’s a big bright spot for Colorado State in their last game, it’s gotta be TE Trey McBride. McBride had 116 yards on 13 catches. McBride was 2nd team Mountain West in 2019 and he will be a tough matchup for our defense in coverage. Moreover, the Rams have a jewel in Dante Wright, who had 6 catches for 103 yards. Wright was a freshman All-American in 2019 and is a very solid player. While the additional depth at the positions isn’t much to write home about, our second and third level players will have their work cut out for them with these two.
So to say that this unit’s debut was a disappointment is an understatement, because Addazio, who is an offensive line coach by trade, invested a lot of transfer power to boost it and it was largely unimpressive against SDSU. Vanderbilt’s defensive front didn’t do a great job containing Quay Holmes last week, so it’s possible they will be facing a worse front than the Jackrabbits, but this unit is experienced and frankly should have been better. They gave up three sacks in pass pro, which isn’t too terrible, but they’ve gotta do better than 3.1 ypc in the run game.
These are two programs that are trying to find their way and establish an identity. The only difference is that the Rams should be further along than they are, at least in the minds of the Colorado State faithful. The beauty of this game is that someone has to wash off the stain of an FCS smackdown. I’d certainly rather it be us, but since I’ve been living in football hell for so long I’m not putting money on it.