Archive for October, 2014

Football Terminology Has Changed Drastically In Twenty Years



In the past few weeks, I have noticed those who announce football games on television have a few words that they now have to use every game.  Some of it is annoying, some of it is trendy, and most of it is unnecessary.  Ten years ago, Will, Mike, and Sam were the beginning of a good joke about three friends who went into a bar or something.  Even the names of linebackers have changed.

1.  Probably the one dumb thing a television announcer says at all levels is, “The defense has been on the field a really long time, they are obviously wearing down.”   Last time I checked, the tired defense was playing against an offense who has been on the field just as long.  Do offensive players have superhuman powers that protect them from fatigue?  I do not see coaches at any of these levels rotating linemen on either side of the ball, so they must be tired too?

2.  “Adversity”.  Any game you seem to be watching, whether it be an injured player, a bad run of plays, an injury, or anything that is going on in the team that is losing the game’s world – adversity is the buzzword that gets thrown around the most.  There is a time and a place for this word to be used.  If a quarterback has a parent unfortunately pass away and they are inspired to play the following week, they are trying to overcome the adversity in their life to contribute to the team effort.  However, adversity is used in much less serious circumstances and almost used as a crutch for any broadcaster to describe why a team is losing a game sometimes.

3.  “The Edge”.  I think Jon Gruden talked about the edge 40 or so times on Monday Night’s Washington vs Dallas game.  For years, it was understood that when a team ran a sweep, (not a jet sweep) that they were trying to get to the outside.  The outside was easy to understand as the area between the last up player on the line and the sideline.  Now that area is referred to as the edge, and it drives me nuts that it is said almost every play of every game by whomever is commentating.

These are just a few examples of how buzz terminology is transforming what we hear when we watch these games.  Remember the experiment when the games were broadcast without announcers?  I am all for  a second helping of that.

YSU Hangs On, Road Win Huge For Playoff Push


Youngstown State University has not fared well against Austin Sumner and Zach Zenner.  Those two student athletes have spearheaded the South Dakota State football program past the Penguins for awhile.  Seems like Zenner has been there for about ten years.  Saturday, the Penguins successfully got that monkey off of their backs with a 30-27 triumph over the Jackrabbits in a matchup of nationally ranked teams representing the Missouri Valley Football Conference, aka the SEC of the FCS.

“I talked with Zach Zenner after the game and told him I admire his approach.  We often read about what is wrong and the bad things that happen, but this is an example of what a college student athlete should be and I would encourage the media to write about him”, said YSU Head Coach Eric Wolford.

Sumner did not play.  However, his backup, Zach Lujan gave the Penguins fits as he threw for 329 yards.  I guess if your name is Zach, you are sent to South Dakota State – automatically.  Lujan was under heavy pressure seemingly every down that the Jackrabbits attempted a pass.

Hunter Wells (below) played well for the Penguins (6-2, 3-1) and seems to have a lock on the starting quarterback job for YSU.  Wells played in a wide open offense in high school at Navarre that has poised him to be a throwing quarterback at the next level.  Wells threw for 256 yards and a pair of touchdowns, but more importantly, did a good job controlling the tempo of the offense, especially in the second half.


With the win over the Jackrabbits, the Penguins garnered two MVFC awards.  Joey Cejudo was named the Special Teams Player of The Week.  Cejudo nearly had a perfect game in the win over South Dakota State. He averaged 49.4 yards on five punts, made a 32-yard field goal, was 3-of-4 on PAT kicks and had two touchbacks on six kickoffs. He had his best game as YSU’s punter just five days after he suffered a sprained right knee that almost forced him to miss the game. His last boot, a career-long 59-yard kick pinned SDSU at its own two-yard line and all but ended any comeback hopes for the Jackrabbits. He had punts of 44 (twice), 48, 52 and 59 in the game.

Derek Rivers was named the Defensive Player of The Week.   Rivers earned the first Defensive Player-of-the-Week honor of his career.   Rivers had a career-high eight total tackles, a career-best six solo stops and had three sacks as the Penguins defeated South Dakota State 30-27 in Brookings. Rivers had a sack in the first quarter on a third-and-5, in the second quarter on a first-and-10 and the third quarter on a third-and-9. The YSU defense had six sacks in the game, and seemed to be in the backfield causing havoc the entire game.

YSU welcomes South Dakota to Stambaugh Stadium for a 2 pm conference tilt.

Coach Wolford talked about the win.  “We don’t ever practice on grass, but we went to a muddy high school field to prepare for the game on grass.  I was frustrated early, we were getting a lot of pressure on the quarterback and he was escaping. Once we tightened down our lanes, we were able to take the scrambling out of the game.”


YSU Starts MVFC Play With A 14-7 Road Victory


Youngstown State University (4-1, 1-0) started their conference schedule on the right foot with a 14-7 win at #23 Missouri State.  The Penguins played brilliant defense in the win and the offense did just enough to secure the win.  Newly promoted Defensive Coordinator, Jamie Bryant, seemed to successfully put together a good game plan in showing blitz packages and coverages not shown in the previous four contests.

Junior Safety Tre’ Moore picked off two Kierra Harris passes including the proverbial nail in the coffin at the 2:21 mark of the fourth quarter to seal the win.  Harris saw pressure all day long from a vigorous YSU rush courtesy of Terrell Williams (above) and company.  Dubem Nwadiogbu, Desmond Williams, and Jaylin Kelly all recorded sacks for the Penguins defense.

Sloppy plays and problems on special teams allowed the Bears to hang around.  YSU missed a field goal and had a punt blocked in the fourth quarter which led to Missouri State’s only points.  Once YSU’s offense got the ball back, they successfully killed the clock to secure the win.


Offensively, Dante Nania found Andrew Williams for an eight yard touchdown completion just over a minute after the game started.  The touchdown was set up by a 56-yard pitch and catch from Nania to Williams to the Missouri State nine yard line.

YSU would take a 14-0 lead into the locker room at the half courtesy of Jody Webb (above) busting an 81-yard touchdown run on a counter play behind Penguin center Stephen Page.  Webb would finish the game with 126 yards on 10 carries.  Martin Ruiz added 82 yards on 24 carries for the dynamic backfield duo.

Nania would finish the contest completing ten passes in 16 attempts for 160 yards while adding 20 yards on the ground.  Williams contributed 83 yards on five catches.

It should be noted that this win was YSU’s third to open conference play.  Following the first two conference opener road victories, the Penguins advanced to postseason play both times.  Good omen?

The Penguins will open their home conference schedule Saturday against Western Illinois with kickoff set for 7 pm at Stambaugh Stadium.  Show some support and head to the Ice Castle to root for the Guins!