VIEW FROM SECTION F
BATTLE OF THE BULGE...A few experts believe that the offensive and defensive lines will be the strength of this 2013 Red Wolf football team. Some even say that Arkansas State has the best lines in the Sun Belt this fall. Tonight against a FCS team that finished 10-2 last season, the two units proved they could dominate at the line of scrimmage. The Red Wolf offensive line owned the UAPB defense in the trenches and opened holes for four 100 yard rushers in the 62-11 victory for Arkansas State. The ASU offensive line of Bryce Giddens, Steven Haunga, Alan Wright, Aaron Williams and Colton Jackson consistently recreated the line of scrimmage against an outmanned defensive line. On the defensive side of the ball, the d-line was able to push the Golden Lion o-line into the backfield and stuff their run game all night and put relenting pressure on quarterback Ben Anderson all evening. In the first half nose guard Ryan Carrethers, defensive tackles Amos Draper and Dexter Blackmon and ends Chris Stone, Eddie Porter and Chris Odom attacked the UAPB offense and limited what head coach Monte Coleman's team could do.
KNIGHTEN DAY...It was clear that sophomore Fredi Knighten was going to play some quarterback for head coach Bryan Harsin and the Red Wolves this season. The question was more about how much and in what situation would the "Fast Fredi" (Credit goes to an A-StateNation reader for that name) package be used. Knighten entered the game on a 3rd and 5 in the first drive and took a zone read keeper into the endzone from 21 yards out. When he returned to the game with 10:08 left in the second quarter it was 1st and 10 on the A-State 20 yard line. First play was a 79 yard sprint to the UAPB one yard line. One play and another keeper later, Knighten was in the endzone. Fredi's speed and athleticism is a nightmare for defenses and A-StateNation expects his time at quarterback will continue against the Auburn Tigers next week.
WOLF PUPS...15 freshmen (4) and redshirt freshmen (11) saw action in the 62-11 victory over the UAPB Golden Lions. Defensive linemen - Chris Odom and Darius Rosser; Linebacker - Quanterio Heath; Wolf - DeKeathan Williams; Safety - Money Hunter and Geoffrey Anderson; Cornerback - Jamaris Hart; Punter - Paul Jones; Offensive Line - Jemar Clark, Devin Mondie, and Colton Jackson; Running Backs - Kendrick Daniels and Marquis Walker; Tight End - Warren Leaphart; and Wide Receiver - Booker Mayes. Odom, Hart and Jackson all saw playing time early on offense and defense. Heath, Williams, and Clark start on special teams as well as playing time with second units. Paul Jones punted ASU's one and only punt. Everyone else got on the field as the score got out of hand.
VIEW FROM SECTION E
BATTLE OF THE BULGE PART II...The offensive line owned this game. A-State averaged 8.9 yards per rush. Even if you take out Gordon's 91 yard run and Knighten's 79 yard run, the average was 6.2 yards per carry. Even more impressive considering A-State's final 24 plays were rushes including two kneel downs.
SPECIAL TEAMS...How bad were special teams last year? Bad enough that a game that featured a muffed punt return, a kickoff out-of-bounds, a running into the kicker foul, and a missed extra point was an improvement. It was an improvement because A-State had 5 kickoffs for touchbacks. None of the returned kicks made it to the 25. ASU blocked a PAT (and then bizarrely gave up a two point conversion), got a hand on one punt, and the sole punt of the night while it wasn't stunning at 39 yards, the hang-time was great and the punt had to be fair caught.
SOME RESPECT FOR...A-State's sharpness. Doesn't matter who your opponent is, a team that isn't ready doesn't end up with only 15 yards in penalties, no timeouts called because of confusion, very few glaringly obvious early season mistakes. Ryan Carrethers one-on-one, two-on-one, three-on-one, with helmet, without helmet he was a force during his entire time on the field. Video rebound forty-eight hours after a disaster with the board it was up and running with no black line. Terry Mohajir how many AD's can do A push-up much less take the spot of an ROTC student for the post-score push-ups? UAPB it is rare for a team to be on that side of such a lop-sided game without a lot of post-play shoving or frustration personal fouls.
IF YOU ARE READY TO MOVE...Bet the house on the advice of some website called NCAAF Free Picks. The site told those inclined to wager to take UAPB to cover. Guess you get what you pay for.
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