Friday, September 28, 2012

Illinois - 9/22/12

Where do I begin? We just took down the entire town of Houston in the last 2 weeks. Can you believe it? I am still on cloud 9 and I hope the cloud # 9 never comes down. The offense was clicking, the special teams unit was on fire and the defense made great improvements. How can the college football world not be excited for a team like La Tech? This is what dreams and hard work are made of. Matt always tells me his goal is to go one for one and only concentrate on that one kick, but I am having a real hard time taking one game at a time. I keep looking at all of this teams possibilities. Come on College Football Dad, reel yourself in. You know the rules! Get back in your corner with your box of wine and get yourself ready for Illinois. This is one of those games that I really hate as I am not a very good TV viewer when La Tech is on.
I would much rather watch the game in person and Matt kick through my camera lens. I don't know that much about Illinois. They do play in the Big Ten and they are in a town where the bubbles always flow. Oops, that should be Champaign not Champagne! The Illinois agriculture students decided to finally start practicing safe sex. They are putting warning signs on all animals that bite and kick. Now that is funny! They have the Grange Rock that honors Red Grange that all of the players touch as they make their way to the field and their fight song is called Oskee Wow Wow! What does that even mean? I spoke to Matt a few times this week. He was pretty excited about how the week had gone. The practices were intense and everyone was focused on Illinois. They watched a lot of film as Illinois has some speed coming in from the wings. He said he had kicked the ball well with team and he felt good. CT wants him to continue to pin the ball in the left corner. It can be risky and there is always a possibility of it going out of bounds if it is not placed perfectly. They worked on some different on-sides kicks in case the situation presented it's self. I know you have to be prepared with a variety of kicks, but let's just kick it.
Matt called Friday morning and said the team would be departing around 1:30 and he would send us a text when they landed. They watched some of the ULM/Baylor game after their meetings. My Saturday would consist of getting things ready for our at home tailgate and watching a little football up until game time. Janet's aunt & uncle (David & Barbara) along with my oldest son Tyler and his friend Max would be watching the game. Tyler & Max had tickets to go see their Bucs play Jerry's Boys and drove up from Austin. On the menu would be Italian Beef on pretzel slider rolls, sweet/spicy jalapeno cream cheese dip, hummus & Papa Murphy's pizza. Adult beverages would consist of beer, red wine and margarita's. Here we go, let's get this party started! Matt kicks off and we pin Illinois at their 17 yard line.
Illinois runs 4 plays and fumbles as QG recovers the fumble at the Tech 24 yard line. Tech runs 3 plays as RA comes into punt. Illinois runs 3 plays and they have to punt. Tech takes over at our 27 yard line and after 2 plays CC is sacked and fumbles the ball. Illinois takes over at our 18 yard line and runs 2 plays and scores a TD. Oh no! This is not supposed to happen. Tech takes over and after 8 plays CC hits DJB for 27 yards and a touchdown. Matt connects on the PAT and we are tied at 7 - 7. Matt kicks off and our attempt to pin the ball left results in an out of bounds kick at the 1 yard line. Why do we do this? Try to hit the hash and not in between the hash and the corner. I just don't understand the logic in this. Illinois runs 2 plays as SR intercepts the pass and we take over at Illinois 45 yard line.
Tech runs 3 plays as TK scampers in from 9 yards out. Matt connects on the PAT and just like that we go 14 - 7. Matt kickoff to the end zone and Illinois brings it out as we stop the on the 22 yard line. Illinois runs 8 plays as RP forces a fumble and VD recovers at the Illinois 23 yard line. Tech runs 4 plays as TK runs it in from 5 yards out and we have another TD. Tech is now up 21 - 7. This is what I am talking about! Matt kicks off and it is another touch back. Illinois runs one play as the first quarter comes to an end with the score 21 - 0. Illinois runs 4 plays as they connect on a 26 yard FG. Tech takes over and runs 3 plays as RA comes into punt. Illinois runs 13 plays and scores from 1 yard out. Tech is still up 21 - 17. Tech takes the kickoff and runs 3 plays and RA comes into punt. Illinois runs 4 plays as the half comes to an end with Tech up 21 - 17.
Wow. This is a whole lot closer than I thought it would be. We need to come out blazing at the start of the 3rd quarter. Tech takes the kickoff and on the 2nd play CC hits QP on a 78 yard bomb and just like that we score. Matt connects on the PAT and it is 28 -17. Now that is a fast start. Matt kicks off and we have another touch back. Illinois runs 3 plays and has to punt. Tech takes over at our 27 yard line. We run 9 plays and CC connects with QP for a 21 yard touchdown pass. Matt connects with the PAT and Tech is up 35 - 17. Just awesome! Matt kicks off and we stop Illinois at the 18 yard line. Illinois runs 9 plays and we stop them on 4th down and take over the ball at our 49 yard line.
Tech runs 3 plays and RA comes into punt and Tech recovers the Illinois fumble in the end zone and we score again. Matt connects on the PAT and Tech is now up 42 - 17. Holy cow! Where did all of this come from. These guys are exciting to watch. Matt kicks off and we stop Illinois at their 29 yard line. Illinois runs 2 plays as they fumble and AM recovers the fumble at the Illinois 25 yard line. Woo Hoo! Tech runs 6 plays and Matt Nelson comes in and connects on a 32 yard FG. Oh Happy Dance! Way to go @mnels33! The first FG of the season is right down the middle. I am going to have to confess. When I am watching the game on the computer or the TV I can not watch Matt kick. I have to go in the other room and wait for a "It's good!" or a "Woo Hoo" from my wife. If I don't here anything then it is almost time for a drawer change.
It is easy for me at a game I am at as I watch Matt through the lens of my camera and either by his reaction or the crowd I know if it is good our not. Sorry for the confession in the middle of the game, but I could not hold back any longer. Matt kicks off for another touch back. Illinois runs 3 plays and punts. Tech takes the ball our 33 and we run 1 play as the 3rd quarter comes to an end with Tech up 45 - 17. Tech starts the 4th quarter with 4 plays as TK fumbles the ball as Illinois recovers at our 41 yard line. Oh no! it looks like TK hurt his knee pretty bad. Oh don't let it be!Illinois runs 1 play and they fumble and Tech has the ball. Tech runs 5 plays as CC connects with MW for a 38 yard touchdown pass. Matt connects on the PAT and Tech is up 52 - 17. Really?
Are you kidding me? Matt kicks off and we have our famous squib kick which is another one I do not understand. Come on coach. Let's put the nail in to coffin. We do not need to give them a short field at this time. Please! Illinois runs 10 plays and scores on a 1 yard run. That makes the score 52 - 24. Tech takes the kickoff and runs 3 plays and RA comes into punt. Illinois runs 7 plays as their 4th down attempt is stopped and Tech takes over. We run 1 play and it is game over. Tech Wins! Tech Wins! Happy Dance and another glass of red win. This is so awesome! Where is this team going to take me next? Wow! Just Wow! Sorry for the excitement, but this is crazy good! Matt called after the game. He was very excited with the win and very excited with a FG opportunity.
He told me he was glad I was not at this game watching his warm ups. He said the wind was crazy and he was attempting kicks from everywhere and the wind was killing the kicks. He was glad the wind died down at game time. He said he was going to talk to CT as they need to move the line he is kicking on when they want a pin left. He said it is very risky and it showed tonight. I asked him about TK and he said it did not look good and he was on crutches. I sure hated to hear that! He said most of the team was out on the field eating their after game meal before they headed to the plane. He said the campus at Illinois was awesome! We said our goodbyes and I tried to digest this amazing start by this team. I think we have something very special going on here and I am glad I am on their coat tails. Matt does not like me to talk about these things, but Matt Nelson just set the all time La Tech records for the most PAT's made and the most PAT's attempted. Congrats and I think that is awesome!
I will leave Illinois here and turn my focus on Virginia. I don't know much about Virginia. They are in the ACC and they call their jumbo tron Hoo Vision. What? Is this because the play Horton hear's a Hoo at half time? Is has to be true! They go by the Cavaliers, but the students refer to them as the Wahoo's or the Hoo's. That is crazy! The Virginia Hoo's! Ha Ha! I feel really good about this team and this game. If we continue to move the ball with our offense, or defense steps up and we avoid the turnover we will leave Charlottesville with a victory. I will end my Illinois journey here. A special thanks to Mr. Tom Morris for allowing me to use his awesome picture in my blog. What a blast it was and we are so blessed to have the honor to watch Matt and this team. I appreciate all of those who are following my journey. I can't wait to share my thoughts with everyone as the season goes on.
It is such a blast to follow Matt Nelson through his eyes and this Bulldog team. I write from the bottom of my heart and what my feelings are at that time and sometimes I get a little carried away. I am very passionate about La Tech football! I am just a College Football Fan and I Love College Football. Until our paths cross again have a blessed week! College Football Dad!