Monday Morning Quarterback: San Diego State

Machine-like. <BR><BR> How else would you describe the Colorado State offense right now? After watching the Rams take apart San Diego State, it's hard to imagine that there's a defense outside of the state of Oklahoma that could even slow them down.

This is not just a powerful ground game, or a sophisticated passing attack, or anything gimmicky. This is that rarest of birds - a diversified, well-balanced and polished offensive unit that can attack and tear up a defense several different ways.

That's not something that can be taken for granted. You can count on your fingers the number of teams in college football that have 'balanced' offensive attacks. Because of limited practice time, most schools offensive coaches will pick something they want to emphasis: A power running game, a spread passing attack, or the ever entertaining "controlled" passing game (please, someone wake me when THAT'S over), and work on it as much as possible in an effort to become as proficient as they like. Most teams don't even really try to be 'balanced.'

It's not like Sonny Lubick's offense strains to produce balance. It seems to come naturally, even easily. One play, a well run option that produces a 15 yard gain on a Van Pelt QB keeper. The next play, a well run deep corner route, with TE Joel Dressen picking up another 20. Finally, a blast up the gut with Cecil Sapp gaining another first down. How many teams can do this?

Sure, some of it is personnel. The fact that Van Pelt is a gifted runner makes the option go. It didn't look so good when Justin Holland tried run it, and you can bet that that page will be left out of the playbook when Holland takes over full time. But do you know how rare it is to see a team run the option so well, then strike so smoothly through the air, to a corp of talented receivers? Trust me, at this moment, the CSU offense is the envy of many a school - like the one in Lincoln, Nebraska.

The Rams are rolling toward an unbeaten MWC season, a bid to the Liberty Bowl, and a realistic shot at finishing very near the top ten in the final polls. At this point, the offense is the story, and honestly, the Ram D does need some improvement. They have played pretty well, and have nothing to be ashamed of. It's just that in comparison to the offense...

We'll find out much more this week against a tough New Mexico defense. The Lobos have shut down several decent teams, although Air Force did score some points against them. My bet is that our good neighbors to the south will end up with the same fate as the last five Ram opponents. Chewed up by the machine...


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