Sep 5 / Rob

Dukes Roll Over Morehead State

The view from Todd's seats.

JMU opened up the 2010 football season with a 48-7 blowout of Morehead State yesterday. Clear blue skies and temps in the 70’s, makes for a outstanding day in the ‘burg. Throw a big Dukes’ victory on top of it and you’ve got a near perfect Saturday. I made the trip down with my 2 year old future Duke, and met Todd, commenter Uncle Ron and his wife. We also caught up with some other friends on campus. We had no real plan and while the pregame tailgating was fun, it was clear we were still shaking the rust off and not in mid-season form. The same could probably be said for the Dukes.

The game was never close, as JMU took advantage of several Morehead State turnovers and never looked back. Kerby Long had an awesome day, highlighted by a terrific catch and run to put the Dukes in scoring position on the opening drive. Long racked up 2 TDs and 175 yards in his first game since the tragic loss of his father last February. Dudzik made some good decisions, had a spectacular TD pass to Long, but had some iffy throws and a pick. The Dukes offense coughed it up 3 times. Not good. Mickey definitely had them throwing more though, and it’s pretty obvious that this team has a number of weapons with big play ability.

Defensively, the Dukes look dominant. It’s tough to read too much into the performance given the quality of the competition, but I loved the intensity and the fact that guys were just swarming to the ball. I know it was just Morehead State, but I’m optimistic that the D is gonna be really tough this year.

However, the victory might be overshadowed by the injury Justin Thorpe suffered near the end of the first half. Last year’s, CAA Offensive Rookie of the year lost the QB battle to Drew Dudzik in the offseason and appeared to be slated to learn from the sidelines this year. Coach Matthews apparently decided Thorpe was too talented to leave on the sideline and he brought in to play QB and WR sporadically in the first half. Thorpe is unquestionable a threat with the ball in his hands, but it’s a high risk, high reward strategy to say the least. Personally, unless you’re willing to pull the redshirt off one of the freshman QB if necessary, I question the value of the strategy. The Dukes now face VA Tech with Dudzik and no real back-up. That’s not good, considering the 2 primary goals of Saturday’s game seem to be to cash the $450,000 check and leave Blacksburg with no injuries. Now the Dukes are looking at having Drew play the entire game, or bringing in another offensive player such as Kevan Seaton or Quintin Hunter to take mop-up duty.


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  1. Uncle Ron / Sep 6 2010

    For those who are so inclined, I am chipping in with some thoughts on the season opening performance by the state’s finest marching band – the Marching Royal Dukes!

    They were in mid-season form musically, but seemed to be holding back on song selection. Maybe they don’t want to tip their hand too much until we get into conference play. The JMU Fight Song came out early and often, but they only broke out two other songs.

    Herbie Hancock’s jazz-fusion funk masterpiece “Chameleon” was a standout, and they went back to the well repeatedly. I counted 8 performances of “Chameleon” in the first half alone. The only other tune they dusted off was Peter Gabriel’s horn-tastic 80’s hit “Sledgehammer.” But that was only busted out a paltry two times in the first half.

    I am a big proponent of all three tunes, and am hoping they have some other tricks up their sleeves as the season progresses. Pretty sure “Seven Nation Army” will play a prominent role this season, and Todd is still hoping for his super sleeper pick – Gogol Bordello’s “Start Wearing Purple.”

    Also, on the non-marching-band front, I would like to point out that SS Vidal Nelson seemed to command respect in those defensive huddles. Pretty fun to listen in on the coaching and side conversations.

  2. Uncle Ron / Sep 7 2010

    Also, I would be remiss to not point out the student section’s loud chanting of “We want Morehead!”

    Nice to see the Political Correctness gestapo has not stomped out some good natured double entendres.

  3. The Gimp / Sep 26 2010

    Rob, great meeting you and the future Duke at the tailgate. You are welcome back anytime!

    -Your Godwin Field Host

    PS: If Uncle Ron is who I think he is, he has not yet earned that moniker.

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