Saturday, October 15, 2011

Hawaii 10/1/11

As I sit here and reflect on our game against Redneck U, I cannot help but wonder "What If"? How can a team that has more goats and stumps get the "W"? Up until the bitter end we had these rednecks right where we wanted them. We have got to learn to be smart with the ball and we must achieve the F-Word! "Finish!" I guess it is time to leave this game alone! It still hurts though! The Red Out is upon us! The ladies with the hula skirts will be making their way over to Ruston
this week. I am not sure what the obsession is with wearing these leaves made into skirts, but it has no place in football. They even attempt a crazy dance/chant called the Haka! Sounds like a new word for spitting! The Haka has various actions that are employed in the course of a performance, including facial contortions such as showing the whites of the eyes and poking out the tongue, and a wide variety of vigorous
body actions such as slapping the hands against the body and stamping of the feet. As well as a variety of cries and grunts are used! This sounds like to me that someone has had 4 too many! All kidding aside if we can confuse this QB like we did the pussycats from Hobby Airport we have a real good chance of sending these ladies back to their island. Matt called me several times during the week. They spent a ton of time on the snaps.
It is so critical that the timing and accuracy from CL and TB is spot on. Slower delivery times and a missed spot can be devastating for putting points on the board. He said the team has practiced hard and that the special teams unit has really spent a lot of time working on timing. He said they still continued to work on specialty kicks. I personally hope they do not have to use any of them. Kick it deep please! Matt said the team is focused
and the coaches have presented  them a good game plan. With a new deep snapper in place he kicked a lot more than normal. He said his back has been a little stiff, but a few ice baths during the week would take care of that! My oldest son (Tyler) and his good friend William would be making the trip over from Austin. It will be great to hang out with them over the weekend! We made our way over from North Dallas late Friday afternoon.
My parents were making their way up from The Villages in Florida and Janet's parents were coming over from Houston along with her Uncle from North Dallas! Once we hit Shreveport we had to stop at my favorite place, Maxwell's Market. I had talked to Ross earlier in the week and had a few things ordered for our tailgate along with a special brew called LA 31. Ross was there and we got to visit for a few minutes before we made our way to Ruston.
Tyler, William and my parents already had the tents setup before we arrived. Thank You! It sure makes it easy for arrival. On the way between Shreveport and Ruston Dan "The Equipment Man" Matthiesen had sent us a message that one of our tents had blown away and Adam McGuirt had to put it back for us. The tent did have some wounds but was still standing. Many thanks to Adam and Dan for helping us out with our runaway tent! Once we arrived Ruston we made our way over to
the TAC for the pep rally. There were actually more people there than I thought there would be. The team made there way in and they looked loose but focused. MB and QP spoke to the fans in attendance. After the team left and the pep rally was over they handed out Red Out shirts as we exited. Thank you Community Trust Bank! When we got back to tailgate spot #52 Meggie & Papaw (Janet's parents) and Tyler and William were already enjoying adult beverages!
Now it is my turn! Even thought I prefer red wine in the evening time I like just about any kind of IPA. William had brought me an early Christmas Present and presented me with about 18 different bottles of some of the finest IPA's in the states. I can tell you I was stoked! Many thanks William for your kindness. I can tell you they will be opened with great care and swirled in a glass before each sip!
Pontchatoula's would be our dining choice this wonderful Friday night. As normal it was a great meal with great family and friends! Our evening ended with my dad opening a nice bottle of red wine at the hotel and then it was lights out. We arrived at our tailgate spot at 8:00AM and unloaded all of the totes and set the tables and grills up. Breakfast tacos would be our morning meal along with several Bloody Mary's.
I brought my old school diner flat top with me again. Sausage, hash browns, eggs, cheese and the world famous Julio's salsa would make the perfect breakfast taco. Mr. Harper joined our crew for breakfast as well this morning! Many thanks to Papaw for manning the flat top. After the food was gone and clean up was complete it was time to kick back and enjoy this amazing weather. Mr. Smoothie King (Bradly Walker) stopped by to say hello.
He was also selling the La Tech Power Bands. They were very sharp/cool looking and several of us bought one. Mr Hamm stopped by for a visit as well this wonderful morning.  As the morning wore on it was time to get a chopping. On our lunch menu was Chopped Beef Sammie's, Sausage, Pineapple, Green Pepper and Red Onion Shish-Ka-Bob's along with Meggie's Cole Slaw, Maxwell's Market Buffalo Turds and
Barbara's Potato Salad! Meggie, Carol (my mom), Tyler and William made an assembly line and put these babies on their poles. Many thanks for all of their help! I think today is going to be a food fest! Our tailgate neighbors are serving up gourmet food this week. Bradley and his team are serving up coffee spice rubbed pork tenderloins. Maxwell's Market (Ross) was serving pork loins and smoked sausage. Mr. Cockrell was making
his world famous chicken, sausage and shrimp jambalaya. I got to meet Adam (JAB) for the very first time. They were serving SPAM Sliders with swiss cheese and a homemade mustard sauce on a Hawaiian roll. The best thing about all of these great people is that everyone wants to share their food. It is always cool when we do a food swap and the surprise of the day came when Mr. McGehee (Dusty) let me sample some of his fresh
kill form this morning. With bow season opening this morning the hunt was on. It was amazing! My wife and Uncle David (Happy Birthday) made there way over to watch the Hall of Fame induction ceremony. Congratulations to all of those who were inducted and a very special congratulations to Matt Stover. What a great Bulldog, an inspiration to MN #33 and what a great NFL career he had. We are very proud of you! The chopped beef is hot, the turds
are ready and the shish-ka-bob's are grilled to perfection! Let the food games begin! This was amazing! It really hit the spot. As always we had amazing people stop by to visit. Mr. Harper, Mr. Barclay, Mr. Hamm (Became a member of the 32 club today), Mr. & Mrs. Matthiesen, Mr. Rust, Mr. & Mrs. Garland and Dan "The Equipment Man" styling and profiling in his red pants! When Mr. & Mrs. Garland stopped by they had a blue La Tech cowbell.
They showed it to me and it had a Tech logo on one side and on the other it had #33. They said it is for you! I could not believe it! This was so cool! I cannot thank you enough! I am going to put it in my camera bag and sneak this baby in! The team has arrived and we made our way down to see Matt. I did get a head nod so that was all I needed. Today was Uncle David's birthday so we sang a little song and devoured some of Meggie's brownies.
Happy Birthday David! After downing a few more adult beverages it was time to head into the stadium.There they were, red jerseys and all! Let this Red Out game begin. With my cowbell in hand I was ready to make some noise and get this thing started. The kickoff is away and it is down to the 3 yard line with nice hang time. Hawaii takes the opening possession and after 5 plays Tech holds and the punt is away. Tech runs 13 plays with a 2 yard pass to QP for a Tech score.
The PAT is blocked! What? Why? How? We very rarely have a PAT blocked! Seriously, what just happened? I took a look at the picture I just took and it looks like we had an opening on the left side. I am not happy about this as we need all of the points we can against these hula skirts. Hawaii comes back and scores on a 27 yard pass and the PAT is missed by Hawaii left. This is crazy!
After a few trade outs of the ball Hawaii scores at the end of the 1st quarter and leads 13 - 6. We start the 2nd quarter with the ball and punt to Hawaii. TF, your play calling is looking mighty fine! Hawaii takes the ball and rattles off 4 plays and punts the ball. Then all hell breaks loose. For some reason the refs need to look at something with the replay official and this goes on and on. 22 minutes later we are going to get the ball where Hawaii punted from. They got 5 downs and that
is a referee no no for letting that happen. Then the Hawaii coach said he called time out before one of those plays and it should not have counted as a down. Then the refs agreed with the Hawaii coach and now we have the ball where we had it 20 plus minutes ago. What the heck is going on here? Are these refs and the replay official for real? Tech sputters the rest of the 2nd quarter and Hawaii scores to make the halftime score 20 - 6 Hawaii. I would of never imagined that we would be behind at half. While Matt was warming up during the half
Matt Stover came over and spoke with Matt before the 3rd quarter started. That was really cool! The 3rd quarter is about to begin and Matt is going to kickoff again! What is going on? We kicked off to start the game and this cannot be so. The refs let him kick and I am not sure why. This surly cannot be right! Hawaii punts and Tech scores on 3 quick plays and the PAT is good. Ok guys let's do this. Hawaii scores on their next possession and the score is now Hawaii 27 - 13. We take the kickoff and fumble. Hawaii recovers and runs it in for a TD. We throw and interception and Hawaii runs it in for a score. No this cannot be happening! What are we doing?
Tech runs 3 quick plays and scores and the PAT is good. Matt sets up for an on-sides kick and it had great height, but we did not come down with it and it goes out of bounds. Hawaii scores on a 30 yard FG and the 3rd quarter comes to an end with Hawaii leading 44 -20. Where is my adult beverage when I need one? Tech would score in the 4th quarter and the 2 point attempt was no good. The game ends with a final score of 44 - 26 Hawaii. This is going to be a tough one to swallow. I thought for sure that this was going to be our night. We looked lost at times and we looked brilliant at times. We made our way up to the field house to visit with Matt for a few minutes. When he came he just shook his head. He said he thought they really had a great chance to get a win tonight. I know he hates to visit with family when they lose, but he said hello to everyone and then got dressed. He came over to the tailgate spot for a little bit and visited with those who were still there.
It is hard to come up with what to say to him in these situations. I am better off just leaving him alone until the next day. This way he can digest everything, watch film and get ready for the next opponent. I am so numb right now. I am just not going to say anything else about the game, the dumb ass officials or the coaching staff about this game. I would probably not have any finger tips left when I got done typing. It is now off to the hotel for a nice bottle of wine or two. Matt, William, Tyler and Janet's parents met us at the tailgate spot to help load everything up and take it back to Matt's house. I asked Matt why he had to kickoff at the beginning of the game and again at the start of the 3rd quarter and he said it happen with the coin toss and the ref did not inform our captains that you cannot just pick a goal to defend. I am sure an official reason will be released. I also asked him about his conversation with Matt Stover and he told him he was kicking the ball great and to call him in the next couple of days. He wanted to discuss some things to do during warm-ups. That sounds pretty cool to me. We put everything in to the storage shed, said our good byes and headed back to North Dallas. I am going to be traveling to Richmond this week so I will get plenty of time to run these plays and piss poor officiating around in my head. Idaho is our next opponent! After I get these bad Hawaii thoughts out of my mind I need to get my mind right for the Vandals. Who in their right mind would ever want to play in the Kibble & Bits Dome.
The place looks like a bomb shelter over a basketball stadium. I know Matt has a bad taste in his mouth from this place from their game in 2009. I bet he has a little revenge on his mind. I am not going to this game, but my brother and his family will be making there way over to the game from Portland. I know they will have a great time and my nephew will as well. All I can say is let's kick some Vandal butt! It is such a blast to follow Matt Nelson through his eyes and the Bulldog team! I might not say the right things, but I write from the bottom of my heart and what my feelings are during the week and during the game. I don't intend to hurt anyone's feelings, but I am very passionate about La Tech Football. My opinions about the coaches and their decisions are only mine and no one else's. Don't forget to listen to J Ford with Bleed Tech Blue on ESPN 97.7 FM every Tuesday night at 6:00PM. May your Football Season be filled with many Football Victories, Sunny Smiles, Sandy Dreams and Travel Your Way! Until our paths cross again, have a blessed week! College Football Dad!