A gigantic game for both the Wildcats (2-2) and Raiders (3-2) will kickoff this Saturday night (6pm) at the beautiful setting of Raider Stadium in Ashland. Linfield is coming off a bounce back pasting of Puget Sound 37-0 and Southern Oregon just wrapped up a 3 game roadie with a very impressive 14-13 victory over NAIA Independent rival Azusa Pacific. Both Linfield and SOU are fighting for their playoff lives and this game has greater implications than just this season. SOU is slowing bouncing back as a program and there’s nothing more the SOU staff would like to do than go into recruits home and hold up a victory over Linfield as a reason why the Raiders are up and coming.
Some D3 followers might say “Wildcat11 a win or loss vs a non-DIII doesn’t matter in regards to playoffs” but let’s be real. An overall record of 7-2 looks much more qualified than a 6-3 record. Linfield fans from 2001 know what I’m talking about.
I can’t stress this enough…SOU is probably the 2nd most talented team we’ve face this season behind WOU. This is a very winnable game for Linfield but our ‘Cats must bring their “A” game to get it done. If we show up with our “Willamette” game then our ‘Cats are in for a long night. No "Know your Foe" this week because I'm slammed with other work and all you need to know is that a Raider is also known as Pirate scum.
Wildcat11’s key to victory:
Time of Possession:
SOU has a very strong passing game but they also have a physical offensive front that can run the ball. We need to find that balance in our offense that will allow the ‘Cats to obtain scoring chances while we eat up on the clock. The longer we can keep the Raider offense off the field the more effective our defense will be.
Defensive 3rd and long:
As a defense we have to deny SOU in 3rd and long situations. It’s back breaking when you play great the first two downs and then give up a chain’s route 1st down. This is an area our defense must keep improving on and will be key this Saturday.
I’ve been hammering this every week and I’ll keep on hammering it. We hang onto the ball and we’re going to win this game.
When I mean little things I’m talking about the little things that add up over the course of a game. That is missing a PAT in the 1st quarter or a converted 1st down gets called back because of a penalty. The more we clean these issues up the tougher it will be for SOU to overcome us.
Big challenge in a hostile environment. This will really tell if our team has bounced back from Willamette. SOU has to be feeling great about this week. They were able to fend off Willamette in Salem and they know that Linfield wasn’t able to. If we play quality Linfield football then we’re coming home with a win and I like our chances in doing that. ‘Cats by 7.