— GOING FOR TWO? Several folks have asked if Steve Kragtorpe got any questions about not going for two after U of L’s last score. The Cards were down 23-13, and a two-point conversion would’ve made it a one-score deficit. Of course, failing on the two-point try (and U of L’s red zone efficiency being what it was) would’ve meant two scores would only tie the game, not win it. I didn’t see this as a huge deal one way or the other. And in fact, it was a moot point. But here’s what Kragthorpe said about that last score, and you can see his thinking, agree with it or not:
“We got down to 23-14 with eight minutes left in the game, then shoot, again we’ve got to get off the field and see if we can make another score, onside kick and make one more we win the game.”
— ABANDONING THE RUN. Kragthorpe said more than once that he turned away from the running game in the second half when the deficit grew to 20 points. He noted that several times when the team was trying to run the ball — with a run and a pass play called — the defense packed the box and Justin Burke did what he was supposed to do and switched to the pass play. His quote:
“When we got down 20-0, we kind of had to abandon the run. We thought we had some good runs in the game and I thought early in the game we ran the ball pretty effectively, I don’t know what the stats were. But you get down 20-0, and you know the possessions are going to get a little bit more slim in terms of how many shots you’re going to get at it and you have to get three scores to get back on top.”
— “COACH IS TALKING.” Strange scene after the game. Sophomore kicker Chris Philpott wandered over to talk to somebody in the stands, when coaches trotting across the field after coming down from the booth spotted him. One of them yelled over, “Philpott come on.” He broke it off and started walking toward the locker room where the rest of the team was, and wasn’t in too much of a hurry even when the coach shouted, “Come on, jog it off! Coach is talking!”
This shouldn’t I think, be seen as open rebellion by Philpott. He is, by all accounts, just a young kid who walks to a different drummer, as most kickers do. He has an NFL leg and I’d hope the coaches will show enough patience with him to help him grow as a player and mature as a person. He and punter Cory Goettsche made a huge difference in this game. Without them, things might have been worse.
— HEATH’S HEALTH. Safety Brandon Heath left the field wearing a stabilizing boot on his left foot.
— SUNDAY COLUMN. You won’t find today’s column on the web this morning. It’s available in the hard-copy print edition only. You can also find it in the subscription E-edition of The C-J, information on which may be found by clicking here.