We've all watched and analyzed Labor Day's debacle ad nauseum.
However the more I watch, the more additional small glimmers of hope arise. Call me a cock-eyed optimist.
Today I scrutinized the play of Brad Kaaya, and chopped up three plays that left me extremely impressed.
The first two times I watched the game, I knew he had a handful of good plays. But after today's examination I was especially impressed with his foot work (the single most important trait in great QB's according to the late/great Bill Walsh), his ability to make throws with men in his face, and lastly his pinpoint accuracy.
Let's break down the best of Kaaya from Week 1, keeping those 3 traits in mind.
Kaaya gives a token play fake, and Duke Johnson slips out in the flat, leaving a Louisville defender unblocked. Despite the pressure, the freshman QB delivers a strike off his back foot to Clive Walford between 3 defenders. The ball travels 34 yards in the air in under 3 seconds, and hits #46 right in the numbers. Imagine if he had his feet set!
Following a much nicer play fake,Kaaya's protection again is not ideal, but he gathers himself nicely and delivers another strike 27 yards down to Phillip Dorsett. Once again his arm strength and accuracy are on full display. And again he hits his man right on the numbers. #Accuracy
Kaaya rolls out to his left, sets his feet, surveys things, and resets. He then delivers a perfectly placed touch pass to Duke Johnson 38 yards down the field. Unfortunately the play is called back for an ineligible man down field. But Kaaya's foot work and touch are near perfect on this play.
Admittedly, I have taken the best of what Kaaya displayed on Monday to illustrate a point. He had some not so great moments as well. But we also all know that for the majority of the game the conservative play calling left him little opportunity to find a rhythm, and the protection was horrendous as well.
But the three throws above demonstrate why Kaaya is UM's starting QB in the first place. If the 'Canes can correct some things, he can still have a great season, and the team can still win the Coastal.
With the talent around him and BK's exceptional skill set, special things may still lie ahead. FAMU tomorrow night should be the perfect opportunity to get things started in the right direction.