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brianl
10-20-2008, 08:31 AM
Before everybody goes crazy on me, to be at .500 this far into October for our football program is quite an accomplishment. Our guys are doing great and it's fun to be competitive again.

But with the exception of the GA Tech loss, we've lost a couple that we should have won. I wasn't at the Miami game Sat. so I didn't get an opportunity to see how the stats really compared to the game.

I guess the question is, do we as fans have a legitimate claim to be a little frustrated? Or, considering the recent years of Duke football, should we be content at 3 wins?

Wander
10-20-2008, 08:38 AM
Not mutually exclusive.

PDDuke85
10-20-2008, 08:46 AM
I'm looking for improvement, looking for the team to be competitive again. Projecting # of wins for this year is great posting board fun, but not realistic in gaging the state of the program.

This team, loaded with upperclassmen, have demonstrated a committment to the new coaching staff and their ways of conditioning. That said, I take a realistic view of the fact so many of our players elected Duke over the schools formerly known as Division 1 AA. The true assessment of Coach Cutcliffe and the program will be forthcoming in the next 3 years.

What I want to see in terms of program progression is the fruition of promised facility upgrades. I firmly believe Coach Cutcliffe is here to rebuild the foundation of the football program. I'm also convinced he'll not wait very long to go elsewhere if he doesn't see ribbon cuttings and ceremonial shovels turning earth.

Diddy
10-20-2008, 09:19 AM
If you look at our schedule realistically, we've only lost one game we should have one. Northwestern.

We can say that we were up on Miami into the third quarter, but I don't think that is reality. Miami is far, far more talented than we are. They made adjustments at the half and Duke couldn't.

With Duke, the staff has to have a game plan going in, and the team has to execute. We lack the talent necessary to make game altering adjustments in game.

The sad reality is that Miami's superior size, speed, and athleticism simply caught up with Duke and it was more than we could overcome. The fact that we were in the game into the third really is a moral victory that Cut can sell to recruits.

SupaDave
10-20-2008, 10:11 AM
If you look at our schedule realistically, we've only lost one game we should have one. Northwestern.

Or you could look at last year's record and realize just how far we've come.

Realistically speaking - at the beginning of this season we were still picked to be the league's doormat.

I'm happy with the fact that we even SCORED on Miami...

Consider this - the improvement has been so great that they are ALREADY trying to find new jobs for our head coach. That's a statement in itself...

BlueintheFace
10-20-2008, 10:44 AM
The culture has changed for the better, recruiting is looking great, we won a couple of games, and you can't ask for a lot more than that this season. Everything else is gravy!

wolfpackdevil
10-20-2008, 11:15 AM
Or you could look at last year's record and realize just how far we've come.

Realistically speaking - at the beginning of this season we were still picked to be the league's doormat.

I'm happy with the fact that we even SCORED on Miami...

Consider this - the improvement has been so great that they are ALREADY trying to find new jobs for our head coach. That's a statement in itself...

I am a fan that thinks this year has been one of the best to date. But this is a team that should be 5-1!

Northwestern in now a top 25 team and is pretty amazing, but we blew that game. We had many chances to win, and made tons of bonehead mistakes.

On saturday we had a 3 point lead midway through the 3rd quarter. Miami was pinned inside their own five. If Mike Tauilili did not DROP the interception that would have been a touchdown, we would have had a 10 point lead and tons of momentum. Instead the all-american dropped the pick, and Miami and the punt that pinned us inside our own 10.

We went 3-and-out and gave Miami great field possesion. They would score a touchdown and take a 4 point lead about a minutes later. So in my mind, that was a game we blew. And senior Mike Tauilili might have DROPPED our bowl chances.

So 5-1 is not unbelievable, it is what our record SHOULD be.

Now we have had a great turn around season, but in those 2 losses, we did the same thing we did last year. Not being able to FINISH.

Duke can beat Vandy, Wake, NCSU, Clemson and UNC. I think that they will have a chance to win in all of them. The question is, will they be able to finish like they have'nt been able to do 2wice this year?

SupaDave
10-20-2008, 11:30 AM
I am a fan that thinks this year has been one of the best to date. But this is a team that should be 5-1!

Northwestern in now a top 25 team and is pretty amazing, but we blew that game. We had many chances to win, and made tons of bonehead mistakes.

On saturday we had a 3 point lead midway through the 3rd quarter. Miami was pinned inside their own five. If Mike Tauilili did not DROP the interception that would have been a touchdown, we would have had a 10 point lead and tons of momentum. Instead the all-american dropped the pick, and Miami and the punt that pinned us inside our own 10.

We went 3-and-out and gave Miami great field possesion. They would score a touchdown and take a 4 point lead about a minutes later. So in my mind, that was a game we blew. And senior Mike Tauilili might have DROPPED our bowl chances.

So 5-1 is not unbelievable, it is what our record SHOULD be.

Now we have had a great turn around season, but in those 2 losses, we did the same thing we did last year. Not being able to FINISH.

Duke can beat Vandy, Wake, NCSU, Clemson and UNC. I think that they will have a chance to win in all of them. The question is, will they be able to finish like they have'nt been able to do 2wice this year?

This is actually precisely my point - GOOD teams don't make these mistakes.

We are in transition and you have to think about these things in a football sense. Rarely do teams go 0for or 1for and come back 5-1. There has to be a learning curve. You've got to learn to play in certain situations.

This team is getting there but doesn't know how to bend a team to its will just yet. Primarily b/c many of them are still happy they are not getting drug through the mud. Once they get over that feeling (and get a little more talent) - you'll see a team that can close out games.

Highlander
10-20-2008, 11:47 AM
On saturday we had a 3 point lead midway through the 3rd quarter. Miami was pinned inside their own five. If Mike Tauilili did not DROP the interception that would have been a touchdown, we would have had a 10 point lead and tons of momentum. Instead the all-american dropped the pick, and Miami and the punt that pinned us inside our own 10.

We went 3-and-out and gave Miami great field possesion. They would score a touchdown and take a 4 point lead about a minutes later. So in my mind, that was a game we blew. And senior Mike Tauilili might have DROPPED our bowl chances.
...


To be fair to Mike Tauilili, if it is the play I remember the ball was a couple of inches off his gloves as he dove for it. So he definitely had a shot at it, but it would have been an amazing catch for him to come down with it, and wasn't a drop IMO. I may be getting my games confused though, as I watched a few this weekend.

We were outscored 35-14 in the second half, and one of those touchdowns came in the last minue of the game when the outcome was already decided. This was not a game that we lost on one missed INT, IMO.

ChrisP
10-20-2008, 11:58 AM
I am a fan that thinks this year has been one of the best to date. But this is a team that should be 5-1!

Northwestern in now a top 25 team and is pretty amazing, but we blew that game. We had many chances to win, and made tons of bonehead mistakes.

On saturday we had a 3 point lead midway through the 3rd quarter. Miami was pinned inside their own five. If Mike Tauilili did not DROP the interception that would have been a touchdown, we would have had a 10 point lead and tons of momentum. Instead the all-american dropped the pick, and Miami and the punt that pinned us inside our own 10.

We went 3-and-out and gave Miami great field possesion. They would score a touchdown and take a 4 point lead about a minutes later. So in my mind, that was a game we blew. And senior Mike Tauilili might have DROPPED our bowl chances.

So 5-1 is not unbelievable, it is what our record SHOULD be.

Now we have had a great turn around season, but in those 2 losses, we did the same thing we did last year. Not being able to FINISH.

Duke can beat Vandy, Wake, NCSU, Clemson and UNC. I think that they will have a chance to win in all of them. The question is, will they be able to finish like they have'nt been able to do 2wice this year?

I was at the game and while Tauilili did get a hand on the ball on the play you (and others) spoke of, it was NOT like it hit him the in numbers and he dropped it. I can't believe you actually wrote that sentence about Tauilili "dropping" our bowl chances. Nice! The guy has been a stud for the team all year long and your comment is way out of line. The reason we lost Saturday has NOTHING to do with Mike Tauilili. We got beat by a better team. Simple as that. Granted the wheels kinda came off there in the second half, but Duke football is just not in the same class as Miami at present. And...in case you hadn't noticed, Northwestern is 6-1 in the BIG TEN! So to say we "should" be 5-1 is just ridiculous IMHO. I'm proud of the team and I want them to win every game they play, but let's get real.

ArnieMc
10-20-2008, 12:57 PM
His name is Tauiliili.

Diddy
10-20-2008, 01:37 PM
I agree with everyone that we have a chance in our remaining games. But that is because the talent levels are not so dissimiliar. Although, I think Clemson's D-Line and Vandy's overall talent will be too much to handle. They are beatable if things break Duke's way. But we have a real chance with everybody else, straight up.

I still don't think we had a real shot against Miami. I know they haven't been blowing people away so far, but they have a lot of talent. Next year they will have basically the same team as this year (plus several stud recruits) and they should be picked at or near the top of the ACC. I said last week that I was afraid UM would lay it to Duke, and I was proud that Duke made a game of it.

We can talk about lost chances and what not, but the sad reality is that there are some talent/size/athleticism disparities that cannot be overcome with strategy, preparation, and execution. Duke is a team that can play its best and still lose to a team as talented as Miami even if Miami hands in a B or C effort. That is college football in a BCS conference.

The good part is that Cut is getting at or near Duke's best possible effort on the field each week. Recruits will notice. In a few years, maybe, Miami's B or C effort will not beat Duke. All we can do cheer for Duke and hope for the best.

Devil in the Blue Dress
10-20-2008, 01:39 PM
Or you could look at last year's record and realize just how far we've come.

Realistically speaking - at the beginning of this season we were still picked to be the league's doormat.

I'm happy with the fact that we even SCORED on Miami...

Consider this - the improvement has been so great that they are ALREADY trying to find new jobs for our head coach. That's a statement in itself...

Amen, brother!
Look at last year and other recent years when ESPN and other sports news types were mentioning Duke in the context of another loss added to the nation's longest loosing streak, then fast forward to this season. Any mention of Duke has been in the context of great improvement and even being favored to win some games.

Culture change tends to be a slow process. The inability to maintain the attitude of a winner is still with us..... the team and the fans. To become winners we've got to believe we can win. We can't give up now or give in to trashing the players instead of supporting them. The confidence generated by winning is a fragile commodity.

GO DUKE! Beat Vanderbilt!

killerleft
10-20-2008, 03:53 PM
SupaDave, Tauiliili didn't drop that ball. He dove and got his hands on it. He could have caught it, but few players would have come up with it.

I know I am not going to be satisfied with just the three wins and "gravy". If the team feels that way then we probably won't win another game and our "improvement" will leave me with a bad taste in my mouth.

CameronBornAndBred
10-20-2008, 04:56 PM
I sure as hell did at both GT and the Miami game. For different reasons. But it is only worthy to get frustrated at a team that should be doing better than they currently are. And this team SHOULD be doing better than they currently are, not in my opinion, but in demonstrated fact. The first 1/2 vs Miami was great, we actually ran the ball beautifully...so you can't say we can't run. At GT, the defense was insane until they just got wore out, so you can't so those guys can't perform. Plus, we've seen this team put complete halves together into a whole game, and seen them play as a complete team. For whatever reason, it hasn't happened the last two outings, on all counts. And for that, I'm frustrated. But not discouraged.

dukestheheat
10-20-2008, 05:21 PM
Before everybody goes crazy on me, to be at .500 this far into October for our football program is quite an accomplishment. Our guys are doing great and it's fun to be competitive again.

But with the exception of the GA Tech loss, we've lost a couple that we should have won. I wasn't at the Miami game Sat. so I didn't get an opportunity to see how the stats really compared to the game.

I guess the question is, do we as fans have a legitimate claim to be a little frustrated? Or, considering the recent years of Duke football, should we be content at 3 wins?

I don't think we should be frustrated at all for at least four reasons: 1) we have already won three times more games this year than we won all last year, 2) before this year's blowout of Virginia (which just beat the hated Holes!), there were seniors on the football team that had never won an ACC football game, 3) the team is playing much more competitive football this year versus most of the last many years (outside of the Georgia Tech game), and lastly, Coach Cut is working with a team of athletes recruited by Roof!

Give Cut four years to bring in and coach a full rotation of players, frosh through senior, and Duke is going to turn some heads.

dukestheheat.

wolfpackdevil
10-20-2008, 05:32 PM
I was at the game and while Tauilili did get a hand on the ball on the play you (and others) spoke of, it was NOT like it hit him the in numbers and he dropped it. I can't believe you actually wrote that sentence about Tauilili "dropping" our bowl chances. Nice! The guy has been a stud for the team all year long and your comment is way out of line. The reason we lost Saturday has NOTHING to do with Mike Tauilili. We got beat by a better team. Simple as that. Granted the wheels kinda came off there in the second half, but Duke football is just not in the same class as Miami at present. And...in case you hadn't noticed, Northwestern is 6-1 in the BIG TEN! So to say we "should" be 5-1 is just ridiculous IMHO. I'm proud of the team and I want them to win every game they play, but let's get real.

Even if it was'nt a drop it is a ball he could've came down with. And great players make those plays.

And also I know that NU is a great team and that they are 6-1. But that does'nt matter know. They had NU, and could'nt pull it out. It doesn't matter how good a team is, if you have them beat, or have a really good chance of winning, you have to get the W. Duke will not go to a bowl game in the near future if they can't get those wins. Im sorry, coming as a true Duke football fan, but these are the things that Duke did last year. Duke was in almost every game last year, but could not FINISH. Go look at the Miami box score from last year in the Orange Bowl, they had a chance to win and did not finish. Duke did finish agains Navy, Virginia and James Madison, playing great in the second half. But if they want to improove they have to make the plays that can win the game. And I know that Duke's recievers can catch the football better than they did Saturday Night. I thought Thaddeus Lewis was going to knock over a bench when he came off the field after a failed 4th down attempt. Thadd played great, and if the recievers can't catch, well your not going to complete passes. I have to admit, I thought that Duke should have won that game saturday. After coming out and taking a 10 point lead to start the second half hopes were high. But it felt like it usually felt the past 7 years when Miami came back and went on a 35-0 run for most of the second half.

I am proud to have Cut as a coach, and to watch this team improove, and see Tauilili as the leading tackler in the ACC. But, this is a team that could and should have more wins than they do. No matter how good the team they are playing, you have to pull out the wins you can.

ncexnyc
10-20-2008, 05:39 PM
I can't believe the negative comments I'm seeing here.

This team has come a long, long way. Going from the laughing stock of the ACC, to becoming a team which is competitive week in and week out and one which is just a play or two away from being even better than it currently is.

As has been already pointed out, winning takes time. It just doesn't happen overnight. Our squad is well coached and well conditioned, but while that can erase some of the differences between our competition and ourselves, it isn't a replacement for pure talent.

Coach Cut and has staff will be challenged to get some quality talent into the program, but if what we have seen on the field is any indication of the Coach's ability, then I believe he will be able to land some talented kids as well.

CameronBornAndBred
10-20-2008, 05:52 PM
I can't believe the negative comments I'm seeing here.

I don't think you should take them as anything more than valid criticism. They are not a knock down on the team.

Devil in the Blue Dress
10-20-2008, 06:02 PM
Even if it was'nt a drop it is a ball he could've came down with. And great players make those plays.

And also I know that NU is a great team and that they are 6-1. But that does'nt matter know. They had NU, and could'nt pull it out. It doesn't matter how good a team is, if you have them beat, or have a really good chance of winning, you have to get the W. Duke will not go to a bowl game in the near future if they can't get those wins. Im sorry, coming as a true Duke football fan, but these are the things that Duke did last year. Duke was in almost every game last year, but could not FINISH. Go look at the Miami box score from last year in the Orange Bowl, they had a chance to win and did not finish. Duke did finish agains Navy, Virginia and James Madison, playing great in the second half. But if they want to improove they have to make the plays that can win the game. And I know that Duke's recievers can catch the football better than they did Saturday Night. I thought Thaddeus Lewis was going to knock over a bench when he came off the field after a failed 4th down attempt. Thadd played great, and if the recievers can't catch, well your not going to complete passes. I have to admit, I thought that Duke should have won that game saturday. After coming out and taking a 10 point lead to start the second half hopes were high. But it felt like it usually felt the past 7 years when Miami came back and went on a 35-0 run for most of the second half.

I am proud to have Cut as a coach, and to watch this team improove, and see Tauilili as the leading tackler in the ACC. But, this is a team that could and should have more wins than they do. No matter how good the team they are playing, you have to pull out the wins you can.

I understand the frustration you're describing. Changing behavior is difficult. Anyone who's tried to change his golf swing is acquainted with how difficult the process can be. Just as the team members react with old behaviors when they least want to, fans react with their old behaviors and frustrations when it looks as if the old problems coming back or maybe never left. We've got to keep our eyes on the prize and not get sidetracked by the frustration which is inevitable this year..... and probably a while into the future. And since these are youngsters playing, we can expect some more frustrations even when we begin winning far more than we lose.

Homecoming 2009 will be the 50th. anniversary of my first Homecoming game at Duke. I can remember when the football team was nationally ranked and went to major bowls. I can also remember when Carolina, empowered following the death of their coach Jim Tatum, beat a Duke team 50 - 0. We had our sole winner of the Outland Trophy on that team and we still lost. But this is my program and I'm sticking to it!

GO DUKE!

wolfpackdevil
10-20-2008, 06:03 PM
I can't believe the negative comments I'm seeing here.

This team has come a long, long way. Going from the laughing stock of the ACC, to becoming a team which is competitive week in and week out and one which is just a play or two away from being even better than it currently is.

As has been already pointed out, winning takes time. It just doesn't happen overnight. Our squad is well coached and well conditioned, but while that can erase some of the differences between our competition and ourselves, it isn't a replacement for pure talent.

Coach Cut and has staff will be challenged to get some quality talent into the program, but if what we have seen on the field is any indication of the Coach's ability, then I believe he will be able to land some talented kids as well.

Yes, none of these comments are negative. This is just what has happened and what the team needs to do to fix it. It's just criticism. And I think people on this board know what that is, since they shut the site down after the West Virginia loss.

wolfpackdevil
10-20-2008, 06:05 PM
I understand the frustration you're describing. Changing behavior is difficult. Anyone who's tried to change his golf swing is acquainted with how difficult the process can be. Just as the team members react with old behaviors when they least want to, fans react with their old behaviors and frustrations when it looks as if the old problems coming back or maybe never left. We've got to keep our eyes on the prize and not get sidetracked by the frustration which is inevitable this year..... and probably a while into the future. And since these are youngsters playing, we can expect some more frustrations even when we begin winning far more than we lose.

Homecoming 2009 will be the 50th. anniversary of my first Homecoming game at Duke. I can remember when the football team was nationally ranked and went to major bowls. I can also remember when Carolina, empowered following the death of their coach Jim Tatum, beat a Duke team 50 - 0. We had our sole winner of the Outland Trophy on that team and we still lost. But this is my program and I'm sticking to it!

GO DUKE!

Yea you are exactly right.

Devil in the Blue Dress
10-20-2008, 06:14 PM
Yea you are exactly right.
There is an art to offering constructive criticism. It's important to make it clear that the criticism is about the behavior, not the person.

RelativeWays
10-20-2008, 06:38 PM
THE HURRICANES WERE WHO WE THOUGHT THEY WERE.........and while we didn't exactly let 'em off the hook, we could have won that game, by 10 points or more. There were a few key moments that had they gone Dukes way could have lead to a big Duke lead. What if we went for it on 4th and one and got it, gone into half-time with a 17-7 or 21-7 lead What if Tuailiili catches that interception and we score of it. Miami would be looking at a possible (and plausible) 35-7 or 35-14 deficit in the 3rd. Not insurmountable but really hard to get the momentum to come back and win.

I almost fell into old habits and I was ready to shrug my shoulders and write the team off for the rest of the season. Its an improved version of the same old Duke. Thats not a fair or accurate view nor is it one this team deserves. However, I'm going to choose to be frustrated. Frustrated because we could and maybe should have beaten Miami. If we just hope this team wins one of its next 1-2 games, what message does that send. Alright guys, give it your best shot but its ok if you lose because you sucked last year. Screw that. I know this team can win and I believe that with realistic expectations. So any Duke football players reading this board, listen up. You blew it against Miami and us Duke fans will not settle for almost, or turning the corner or any other pleasantry you want to throw up there. I expect you to go to Nashville, I expect you to take the field with a fire in your gut and dammit I expect you guys TO WIN! GO WIN!

kinghoops
10-20-2008, 06:54 PM
THE HURRICANES WERE WHO WE THOUGHT THEY WERE.........and while we didn't exactly let 'em off the hook, we could have won that game, by 10 points or more. There were a few key moments that had they gone Dukes way could have lead to a big Duke lead. What if we went for it on 4th and one and got it, gone into half-time with a 17-7 or 21-7 lead What if Tuailiili catches that interception and we score of it. Miami would be looking at a possible (and plausible) 35-7 or 35-14 deficit in the 3rd. Not insurmountable but really hard to get the momentum to come back and win.

I almost fell into old habits and I was ready to shrug my shoulders and write the team off for the rest of the season. Its an improved version of the same old Duke. Thats not a fair or accurate view nor is it one this team deserves. However, I'm going to choose to be frustrated. Frustrated because we could and maybe should have beaten Miami. If we just hope this team wins one of its next 1-2 games, what message does that send. Alright guys, give it your best shot but its ok if you lose because you sucked last year. Screw that. I know this team can win and I believe that with realistic expectations. So any Duke football players reading this board, listen up. You blew it against Miami and us Duke fans will not settle for almost, or turning the corner or any other pleasantry you want to throw up there. I expect you to go to Nashville, I expect you to take the field with a fire in your gut and dammit I expect you guys TO WIN! GO WIN!

very valid point imo!!! in basketball, are we satisfied with we almost, we should have? the answer is no. and why shouldnt fans expect to win every time out? as far as miami having much better talent, that is an excuse. duke simply didnt execute in the second half, period!

i think winning two or three games the remainder of the season isnt out of the question, but as fans,we should expect that we would win every one! usually in this sport, you pretty much get what you expect!!

Devil in the Blue Dress
10-20-2008, 07:18 PM
THE HURRICANES WERE WHO WE THOUGHT THEY WERE.........and while we didn't exactly let 'em off the hook, we could have won that game, by 10 points or more. There were a few key moments that had they gone Dukes way could have lead to a big Duke lead. What if we went for it on 4th and one and got it, gone into half-time with a 17-7 or 21-7 lead What if Tuailiili catches that interception and we score of it. Miami would be looking at a possible (and plausible) 35-7 or 35-14 deficit in the 3rd. Not insurmountable but really hard to get the momentum to come back and win.

I almost fell into old habits and I was ready to shrug my shoulders and write the team off for the rest of the season. Its an improved version of the same old Duke. Thats not a fair or accurate view nor is it one this team deserves. However, I'm going to choose to be frustrated. Frustrated because we could and maybe should have beaten Miami. If we just hope this team wins one of its next 1-2 games, what message does that send. Alright guys, give it your best shot but its ok if you lose because you sucked last year. Screw that. I know this team can win and I believe that with realistic expectations. So any Duke football players reading this board, listen up. You blew it against Miami and us Duke fans will not settle for almost, or turning the corner or any other pleasantry you want to throw up there. I expect you to go to Nashville, I expect you to take the field with a fire in your gut and dammit I expect you guys TO WIN! GO WIN!

WE ARE DUKE! We aren't going away!