As per normal for the World Wide Leader in Hype , whichever team comes from Georgia is deemed not the favorite and any early heroics are unexpected. The unexpectedness continued for 21 unanswered points and ended with a completely unexpected 35-7 drubbing of previously undefeated Winston-Salem.
Valdosta State brought something unusual to the game called a championship defense. Most of college football doesn't know what this is, but it caused unceasing trouble to the favorites by taking their ball away at inopportune times. By the end of the game, Two fumbles and four interceptions had been created by the "Black Swarm".
Some interesting points of the game included a Winston-Salem reluctance to punt. Six times they went on fourth down to convert only two. Several of those attempts came outside of the VSU 40.This thing called defense obviously had them rattled.
VSU lacked a big booming kicker, so they opted for high kicks that landed between the 10 and 20 yard line and gave special teams time to flood the zone. Late in the game a Winston-Salem kicking receiver decided to chance it and was mauled by two ruffians who took away his candy - leading to the final score.
VSU now has three Division II NC wins out of four tries and Coach David Dean owns two of them. I hope the entire coaching staff find shiny new contracts in their stockings this year, especially that guy who created the thing called defense.
Sadly, VSU plays in a town where a home stand by the three high schools on a Friday night will pull over 15% of the entire population: while their home game on a Saturday averages around 1500 fans. ESPN told them they would need to have over 4000 in the stands for the quarter-final home game or the WWLinHype would take a pass on televising the semi-final on ESPNU. This resulted in a mad scramble akin to a pack-the-pew-Sunday at the Baptist Church. It was a near thing.
Thanks Blazers, for saving this alumni from having to watch his two favorite teams lose a bid for the National Championship in one season. I don't know if I could have survived that level of pain.