Here are some of my observations/opinions after watching the tape of Army’s 41-40 loss to Northern Illinois
Army had trouble getting to Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch (no sacks). And, Lynch’s quick release was a big part of Army’s lack of pressure. At least 15 of Lynch’s passes were throw in less three seconds or less after he received the snap.
Army caught a break when Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch’s fumble at the goal line was upheld by the replay official. It looked like Lynch could have been ruled down at the half-yard line. The call made on the field was going to be upheld because there was 100 percent conclusive evidence the ball crossed the plain or Lynch was down.
Army sophomore fullback Larry Dixon picked additional yards after first contact on 14 of his 28 carries. Dixon played 89 of Army’s 90 official snaps. The only snap Dixon missed came on a play after a penalty called where Dixon lost his helmet. A new rule states all players, who lose their helmet, must come out for a play.
Army had success on inside counter runs, picking up 80 yards on nine carries.
Army starting offensive line – left tackle Ben Jebb, left guard Frank Allen, center Ryan Powis, right guard Steve Shumaker and right tackle Momo Kime – played every down for the second straight week.
Freshman rover Alex Meier (rover) started the second half and played all 35 snaps.
Northern Illinois’ defense played a little chippy. Army running back Raymond Maples took more than a few hits, which were borderline near the sideline.
Counted four quarterback pressures by Army senior linebacker Nate Combs.
Senior running back Jared Hassin replaced the injured Terry Baggett on Army’s second offensive series. Hassin played seven snaps in the series. But, Hassin didn’t have a carry in a game for the first time in his Army career (26 games).
Army called 11 run plays with receiver Patrick Laird as a tight end on an unbalanced (3 offensive line on one side) line, gaining a total of 64 yards with one touchdown.
Army sophomore middle linebacker Geoff Bacon took responsibility for Northern Illinois quarterback Jordan Lynch’s 88-yard touchdown run late in the first quarter. Bacon bit on a fake to the fullback. Lynch kept and ran up the left side. “That’s me not having my eyes in the right spot,” Bacon said. “That’s just me personally trying to do too much instead of just doing my job. That’s something that coaches talk to me a lot about, just do my job and play football through my assignments.”
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