At the beginning of the season, we started doing tweetcaps of USF football games. But they quickly stopped being fun because let’s face it, Twitter is a worthless cesspool. Plus you all watched the game. You don’t need a timeline of the game you just watched. So we’re trying something else.
Introducing EMOJICAP. We pick some emojis (with some help from our readers) and apply them to parts of the game. Hope you like it.
Not just one 100, but three. The Bulls had three 100-yard rushers for the first time in school history. Quinton Flowers had 176 yards on 13 carries. Marlon Mack ran for 125 on 11 carries. And D’Ernest Johnson reached 107 yards on 19 carries. For the night, USF averaged a shade over nine yards per carry and easily broke the school record with 412 rushing yards.
USF’s offense was so unstoppable in the first half that it looked like they were playing inside a video game. In seven possessions, the Bulls racked up 464 yards and six touchdowns. Only a fumble just short of the goal line by Mitchell Wilcox as he stretched for the end zone prevented a perfect 7-for-7 half. We’ll have to do some more investigating, but we think it was the second-longest streak of possessions ending in touchdowns in USF history. (The Bulls once scored touchdowns on eight straight possessions against NAIA Cumberland in 1998.)
Speaking of video games...
“He isn't like most people. He is like a video game, seriously,” said Willie Taggart of Flowers. It’s not the first time Taggart has used video game language to describe the plays his best offensive players make, and it probably won’t be the last.
This is for the Navy players trying to tackle Flowers as he bear crawled for a first down, or when they tried to chase him down on his 63-yard touchdown run. The Midshipmen couldn’t hang with him at all.
This applies to Marlon Mack for his 85-yard touchdown run, only one yard shy of Rafael Williams’s school-record run. But it also applies to Marquez Valdes-Scantling, who hurried alongside Mack and body-checked the last Navy defender with a chance to catch him. USF’s wide receivers have been enthusiastic blockers all season, whether it’s at the line of scrimmage or 40 yards down the field.
USF’s third-down efficiency was amazing. They were 12-for-16 on third-down conversions, including 12 straight to begin the game. (They kicked a field goal after the 13th attempt, and Jonathan Hernandez pinned Navy at the 1-yard line after the 14th.) The Bulls finished only one shy of the school record for most third-down conversions in a game. They had 13 against TCU in 2004, but that game had two overtime periods.
For all the offensive fireworks in the first half, the most important play might have been Nigel Harris bursting in unblocked and taking down Navy quarterback Will Worth on a 4th and 1 on the Middies’ first possession. The turnover on downs was quickly turned into USF’s second touchdown and gave the Bulls a two-score lead, which they kept until the last play of the game. This also applies to the three and out the defense forced on Navy’s third possession, which led to...
Flowers’ 41-yard touchdown pass to Elkanah Dillon to put USF up 28-0. All three Navy linebackers froze on Flowers’ fake to Mack, letting Dillon in behind them. Q’s throw was right on target and Dillon cruised to the end zone. It was hawt.
This is what happens when you have to listen to Mack Brown two weeks in a row.
There was some carnage in the sports books at the end of the game. Navy scored on the final play to make the score 52-45, and as soon as they kicked the extra point they would pull out a miraculous cov -- wait, they’re not kicking the extra point?
Let’s check the NCAA rule book. Rule 8, Section 3, Article 2:
Opportunity to Score
ARTICLE 2. A try is an opportunity for either team to score one or two points while the game clock is stopped after a touchdown. It is a special interval in the game which, for purposes of penalty enforcement only, includes both a down and the “ready’’ period that precedes it.
a. The ball shall be put in play by the team that scored a six-point touchdown. If a touchdown is scored during a down in which time in the fourth period expires, the try shall not be attempted unless the point(s) would affect the outcome of the game.
So the game went into the books as a 52-45 final, and everyone who had Navy getting less than seven points was put on tilt.
Only a slightly frustrated face for the Bulls’ fourth quarter defensive performance, and not the RAGEFACE many of you would have wanted us to use. USF took most of their starters out of the game on both sides of the ball in the last 7 minutes, but Navy kept their first string out there until the bitter end. Of course 1’s are going to get over on 2’s. The Bulls’ defense did enough when the game mattered to make the end of the game not matter.
(Also Navy’s tall receivers also came down with three or four pretty ridiculous jump balls. If the Middies wanted to throw the ball more, they could really give teams problems on the perimeter.)
No, the RAGEFACE goes to you, Mr. or Mrs. But The End Of That Game Wasn’t Good Enough. What has USF ever won in its football history? That’s right, not a damn thing. “But that means we’re passionate!” No, it means you’re being a spoiled, entitled brat. You just watched a strong win over a ranked team that you know was not nearly as close as the score indicated. This team is 7-2, and they’re a barrel of fun, and you’re trying to ruin all of it with your constant whining.
USF finally gets a week off to rest up for the last four (or five?) games of the season. Another big game awaits in Memphis in two weeks.
Also, the whiners might want to soak in the tub and take a nap, too. I’d suggest something else, but there aren’t any emojis for that.