So normally on Tuesday mornings I will break down the defensive performance from the previous weekend’s game. Life circumstances got in the way yesterday but nonetheless I still bring you the breakdown from the Toledo game. Overall, a very nice performance from the defense for the Cats. Some areas of improvement certainly but a more than good enough performance to earn the Cats a win. So here is the analysis based on the down and distance situations:
Run: 18 rushes for 87 yards, 1 TD (1 fumble recovery)
Pass: 4-9, 33 yards
Breakdown: So the 87 yards on the ground looks like a decent chunk but the reality is the Rockets ran 27 plays on 1st down and only gained 120 yards total, for a little over 4 yards per play. In college football, that’s a good number. The Cats also force a turnover, the first play of the 2nd half. The pass defense was very solid in this situation.
Run: 10 rushes for 64 yards, 1 TD
Pass: 3-8, 43 yards, 1 INT, 3 sacks
Breakdown: The run defense was less than stellar here and allowed Toledo back in front of the chains often. The pass defense though was really great, forcing a turnover and producing 3 of the 4 sacks for the Cats sacks on the day. So while some area for improvement, you had to like the pass rush.
3rd Down and Long (6 yards or more)
Run: 5 rushes for 37 yards, 1 TD (converted 2 of 5)
Pass: 3-6, 51 yards (converted 3 of 6)
Breakdown: As mentioned on Monday, you don’t want to give up any higher than 33% in this situation. Toledo converted 5 of 11. While this improved greatly in the 2nd half, Toledo was able to convert three long 3rd downs in the 1st half, two of which led to touchdown drives. Hopefully the Cats tightened up in this area on Saturday and for the remainder of the season.
3rd Down and Short (5 yards or fewer)
Run: 2 rushes for 18 yards (converted 1 of 2)
Pass: 1-2, 39 yards, 1 sack (converted 1 of 3)
Breakdown: While only facing this five times all games, UK did a nice job here. Only one long pass play given up but stops in 3 of 5 chances is quite good. Anything under 50% will be acceptable.