Now that we've had a night to sleep it off and, if you're a glutton for punishment like me, maybe even watched the game again, have your feelings about the game changed at all?
I guess the thing that totally escaped me immediately after the loss was that we were able to come in after the half, down 11 points and play pretty well to go up 10 by midway through the 4th. That's pretty decent for a team averaging 1 YPC on the ground. Gardner looked genuinely good, with some nice throws deep and good decision making, especially on when to scramble. Nice to see him bounce back after a bad start, unlike the implosion at UConn. We also ran a lot more read option than I remember too, to good effect.
On the other hand, watching it again, it's almost more infuriating we took our foot off the gas. In the moment, I was too petrified to appreciate that we were actually having some success on offense throwing it around. Even the ground game started to loosen up a little as PSU adjusted. Why go back in the predictable pattern that got you destroyed in the first quarter? I can sorta understand not throwing it, but to abandon the veer and other read option plays that worked to go back to I-forming it into a 9 man box is just stupid.
Once we were in OT, I'm no longer too upset about the play calling. You stopped the guys and a FG from the 25 wins it. Given Gibbon's record recently, it's hard to predict we'd miss twice. In OT2 and 4 where we were on offense first, I thought play calling was ok given our deficiencies and not totally trusting Gardner.
Our O-line was attrocious all night. Bryant and Kalis were both getting put on skates. Terrible, high technique just asking to have Penn State's guys to put them on their heals. I wouldn't be surprised to hear Bryant was playing hurt, because that was not the same guy we saw last week. Bryant actually got benched for Burzinyski, who was probably worse so I'm guessing it wasn't just performance related. A somewhat brighter note. Magnuson played a whole half at tackle and Gardner didn't get killed. I went to bed wanting Funk to get fired right away, and I can't say a night's sleep to calm down has really changed my mind. It may not be all on him, but we need a total re-boot at this point.
TL:DR: After calming down and a night's sleep, I realized we played better than I remembered the second half, right up until we pissed it away by going back to I-form. O Line is still a huge problem, bad night for Kalis and Bryant. Fire Funk.