Thus far, Ferrum has shown me several things. Going into today, I had a really good feeling about the running game, an okay feeling about the passing game, but serious concerns about the defense, particularly against the pass.
Today, it seemed that the running game was solid, The passing game was showing promise when used, and as for the defense.....it was like the light bulb came on. And as the game went on, all aspects of Ferrum's game got better.
Mann oh Mann
Freshman running back Brian Mann again proved difficult to stop as Ferrum, in what I expected to be a pass heavy attack, continued to utilize Brian Mann as he ran for 180 yards and 2 touchdowns. Thus far, Mann has carried the ball for 494 yards in three games with five touchdowns. He again proved a key in the special team attack as he had a 61 yard kickoff return to give Ferrum excellent field position. Mann has been the USA South rookie of the week for the first two games, and I would look for that streak to continue.
Adjusting Like a Chiropractor
As today's game went on, it became apparent that the Ferrum coaching staff saw some things, and made some changes that made life easier all the way around for Ferrum. The ability to utilize Harvey Taylor as the primary when the road got rougher for Mann, was not a surprise. Taylor ended up with 140 rushing yards. Going into today's game, Brian Mann was the 8th leading rusher in the nation for Division III football. I doubt today's numbers hurt that standing.
While the offense continued to look sharp, it was Ferrum's defense that really took the biggest strides. To work from a deficit in the first quarter, to a halftime lead, and to a second half shut out showed me that this unit is really developing. The light bulb came on today, and Ferrum's defense was awesome.
In the end, Ferrum went 2-1 against the ODAC. With an open week approaching, look for Ferrum to work on prepping for Greensboro. Things are not perfect as there are still special teams woes, and too many penalties, but this too will get better. Ferrum is on the right track, and poised to keep the momentum going.