Dawgtracker was established to follow what we felt were three key categories where Washington needed to improve over last year. Today, the turnover category loomed large, in addition to the Dawgs having three field goals blocked.

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  • Rushing yards:

    Total yds Yds/game Yds/carry
    2002 968 74.5 2.1
    2003 ytd 785 131 3.22

    - It's too bad Pickett suffered perhaps the worst quarter in his career during the first stanza, for Alexis was finding huge creases while gaining 81 yards in the first fifteen minutes. After that, it was little-or-nothing, for Nevada's two quick scores kept the Huskies in come-from-behind mode the rest of the way.

    - While Washington would only gain 29 yards on the ground in the final three periods, it should be noted that the Wolf Pack got seven of their nine sacks for minus-45 yards during that time. That sort of line protection can tend to skew a team's rushing stats.

    - Alexis carried the ball a career-tying 30 times. He also had 30 attempts back in 2002 during the season-opener in Ann Arbor.
    Third-Down Conversions Given Up:

    2002: Opponents converted 40% of their third-down attempts.
    2003: Opponents have converted 36.9% of their third-down attempts.

    On third and long (6 or more yards), the number of big plays given up are:

    10-19 yds 20-29 yds 30-39 yds 40-49 yds 50+ yds
    2002 19 13 1 2 0
    2003 ytd 11 7 0 0 0

    Third down conversions came to play twice in the game, and both were huge. Nevada's first conversion of the day came on a third-and-six from the Wolf Pack 38. Two plays later they were in the end zone, taking a lead they would never relinquish. The second came when Washington had cut the lead to 28-17 late in the third, and Nevada had a 3rd and 19 on their own 11. Bam, 25-yard pass play to Mann, and the Husky heart – what was left of it, that is – was gone for good.
    Turnover Margin:

    2002 total: +1
    2003 to date: -7 (-4 today)

    - The first two picks were clearly Cody's fault. He threw directly into soft zone on Kennard's interception, and overthrew Alexis by five yards on a screen that was pretty well set up – the only Wolf Pack player in the area was Handy, and he ended up in the Husky end zone.

    - Washington did have a second interception, but seemingly like every other Husky happening on a damp, dreary Saturday, Newell's third-quarter pick was nullified by a defensive holding penalty.

    - In the middle of the third quarter, Pickett was judged to have moved his arm forward while being smacked by J.J. Nilan on a pass attempt from his own 15. Nick Newton would have recovered the loose ball at the Husky one, but it was clearly a fumble. It ended up not mattering, as Cody would lose a fumble later in the drive.

    - This was not case of a better team overlooking a lesser opponent – for Nevada looked the better team. They played like the better team. Washington seemed to wait around for something bad to happen, while Nevada simply made plays. In the end, the Wolf Pack was clearly the better team.

    And that could be the worst news of all for Husky fans everywhere.

    - Jorge Cordova had an All-American day, with 16 tackles, five sacks, and a blocked FG return. Linebackers Daryl Towns and Logan Carter combined for 20 stops, and Derek Kennard Jr. had a pair of sacks and the momentum-swinging first-quarter interception.

    - In an eerie echo of the UCLA game a week ago, Kennard's pick came after an opening 70-yard Husky drive. Then the defense, who had three-and-outed Nevada's first drive, allowed a 90-yard drive immediately after to complete a 14-point swing. Good teams just do NOT allow that. If there was a turning point, that's where it came.

    - Reggie Williams had no catches in first half, though he did carry once for four inauspicious yards. What's more, Washington only threw it his way once (ending up in a Wolf Pack pass-interference penalty), and Cody didn't even look at him for the entire second quarter. Said Gilbertson after, "We had things in there for Reggie. But if you can't protect, and can't find him ..."

    - Considering the Huskies held the ball for 19 minutes, ran 27 more plays than Nevada, and held a 19-5 first-down edge in the first 30 minutes, it was about the most uninspiring 231 first-half yards you could ask for.

    - Even Captain Husky takes a fall: After Knudsen's field goal in the third made it 21-10, the good Captain led his troops in the Husky spell-out, as is his wont – and tumbled forward off his co-hort's shoulders and into the next row right when he started to flail at the Nevada cheering section. The Captain was unhurt.

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