Monday, September 5, 2011
3-point stance: Perspectives on Week 1
By Ivan Maisel
1. We’ve had the first course. Waiter, bring a dish of perspective. What does it mean that UCLA gained 554 yards of total offense when they haven’t averaged more than 337 yards in Rick Neuheisel’s three seasons? Is Houston’s defense that bad? The Bruins may have found a quarterback in the 38-34 loss. Richard Brehaut, in relief of the injured Kevin Prince, went 17-for-26 for 264 yards and two scores. That’s only the fifth time in Neuheisel’s tenure that the Bruins scored 34 points. They are but 3-2 in those games.
2. My favorite winner from the weekend: Northwestern, without starting quarterback Dan Persa, won at Boston College, 24-17. Sophomore Kain Colter showed he can do more than run the Wildcat, which is about all he could handle last season when coach Pat Fitzgerald took away his redshirt after Persa’s Achilles injury. Colter ran and passed for 268 yards and took the pressure off of Persa. He can come back when he’s physically ready.
3. Can anyone recall a true freshman quarterback who debuted in a big-boy stadium and showed the cool of Utah State’s Chuckie Keeton? How about Minnesota’s Max Shortell, who came into the fourth quarter at the Los Angeles Memorial Stadium and completed 7-of-13 for 98 yards and a touchdown. The Gophers, who spotted USC a 19-3 lead, had a chance to win the game in the last two minutes before falling, 19-17. Here’s hoping Keeton and Shortell build on their starts and wow us for four seasons.