We played our 2nd game of the year yesterday against Paolo. We had to play on the soccer practice field, the lines were fine but the surface was rough and uneven. But it's not like 7th grade JV is a precision offense or anything. In fact, in the 2nd half, Paolo kept running their QB behind the fullback over and over and we couldn't stop it. Real tricky!
We played a lot tougher than last week. We even stopped them on downs after they returned an interception to about the 20. I was so pumped at half-time, I was convinced we'd come out the 2nd half and take over the game. Unfortunately, Paola took over the game instead of us.
Coach Bartlett and I talked before the game about passing in the 2nd quarter when we had the strong wind behind us. I called a tailback pass that should've been a good fake play, but the QB forgot what play it was. On 3rd down, I called the pass that got intercepted. One coaching mistake there was we should've kept running the ball when we had the momentum. We've played two games and neither opponent has passed yet.
In the 3rd quarter, after Paola marched down the field to get the game's first TD, we then returned the kick past midfield and with one run by our powerback, we had the ball at the 20. I was so fired up after that run, the kids may have wondered if I'd freaked out! We then ran the exact same play, but our QB somehow forgot what he was supposed to do and we lost big yards. We went backwards again and ended up turning it over on downs.
My biggest mistake happened during that series, after the big run our starting center came off because he'd hurt his hand. I put in the backup but didn't think about what position the center played on defense. When we turned the ball over on downs, we went three plays on defense before realizing we were short a player, since I hadn't told our d-coordinator. Even with one less guy, we had them in 3rd and long before they realized we were missing a d-lineman and picked up big yards running right at that empty spot. If we'd gotten the ball back right there, we might have been able to score.
But after the 3rd down conversion, Paolo took all but 25 seconds of the 4th quarter to march down and score another TD. Our guys quit on the touchdown run, which means they'll be running a lot this week.
I couldn't get to sleep last night, thinking of how we could move some guys around and how I could rearrange our play-calling. I found myself wishing we taped the games so I could watch the film, but quickly realized how ludicrous that would be. Man, I love this game!