Oct 21 / Rob

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly From JMU 38 – W&M 10

The Dukes won. Again. This time it was against an overmatched William & Mary team on its homecoming. Stop us if you’ve heard this before, but JMU started slow, fell behind early, and the took its opponent behind the woodshed. Despite needing to come from behind, the outcome was never really in doubt. By the middle of the second quarter, it was clear JMU was going to win convincingly. And that’s exactly what happened. The Dukes defense dominated and JMU left the lesser ‘burg with a blowout 38-10 victory. Here’s the good, the bad, and the ugly from the win.

The Good

Dukes Defense – Whoah. Save for a 73 yard scamper in the first quarter, William & Mary’s offense was no match for JMU. If it was a fight, it would have been stopped. JMU held the Tribe to only 2 more rushing yards for the rest of the game, and a meager 194 yards overall. Even with a Go-go offense designed to overcome a talent deficit, the Tribe couldn’t get it done. JMU was just better all over the field and the Dukes consistently won battles all game. It was a masterful display.

Ron’Dell Carter – The senior had one of the more dominant individual defensive performances we’ve seen in a while. He was an absolute menace, with 6 tackles for loss and 10 tackles overall. There was nothing the Tribe could do to slow him down, let alone stop him.

Defensive Backs – We understand the William & Mary doesn’t have the most dynamic passing offense, but the Dukes secondary played much better yesterday. And they came up with 3 picks, including one by Wayne Davis where he jumped the route so cleanly that he managed to snag the ball about 5 yards in front of the intended receiver.

Nooch – Here’s where we are with Nooch. He completed 64% of his passes for 2 touchdowns and a season high 250 yards and fans online were wondering why he looked “off.” On day where JMU struggled to make much happen in the running game, Nooch calmly rallied the squad and helped the offense go a perfect 5 for 5 (with 4 TDs) in the red zone.

The Bad

Run Game – JMU never really got much going on the ground. The running backs were not bad, but it was far from their best showing. It might be a tad harsh to list them here, but that’s what happens when they set the bar high for themselves. And for some reason we committed to this good, bad, and ugly format years ago and we can’t just put everything in the good section.

The Ugly

.07 yards per carry – That’s what W&M averaged if you take away the one long run in the first quarter. That’s right. For the remaining 28 carries, the Tribe gained a total of two yards. And yes, this is just another cheap way to add another “good” for the Dukes.

3 Comments

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  1. Rob K / Oct 21 2019

    I enjoy these wins more than the 4th Quarter come-from-behind variety. Other things I enjoyed about Saturday:

    1. Dylan Stapleton in space as a receiver is a great weapon. Also, he was covering up the ball on his receptions.

    2. Special teams were dominant. Amos had several great returns. And while our punt average numbers will be lower because W&M was catching and returning punts at like their 7 (rather than let it bounce or calling a fair catch), I’m OK with that because that will eventually result in a big play for us.

    3. It’s weird that we ran the ball better against WVA than W&M, but I think W&M was selling out against the run in a way that WVA was not.

    4. Interesting that Nooch basically did not run the ball. I think we wanted to play it conservatively after the game was sealed up and not expose him to hits.

  2. Randy'78 / Oct 21 2019

    The run game was shut down because W&M’s front 4 on defense played a more physical game than our offensive line. Our talented backs don’t need much of a hole to make something happen but they had very little to work with on Saturday, To control the tempo against Towson, we will need an effective run game. I’m confident we will fix this and get back to 200+ rushing.

  3. CJ / Oct 21 2019

    I’m not a Flosports subscriber so I had to listen to this one on Madizone (via the pro-Tribe local radio broadcast), but it was another good win for the Dukes nevertheless.

    As the remainder of the season plays out and we continue to gun for that CAA title, it’s worthy of note how the CAA really is like the SEC of FCS football. All of the CAA teams are talented and have the capability of beating each other on any given Saturday. Not to overlook Towson next week, but New Hampshire beat us last year and even at 4-3 this year will surely play us tough again. The CAA is a meat grinder, which makes that first round playoff bye all the more valuable to start the postseason.

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