Duke is now 4-1-1 so far this season and will hit the road for two very important ACC games at Clemson this Friday and at rival North Carolina the following Friday September 25th.
Coach Pat Fitzgerald doesn’t want his Wildcats caught up in their first appearance in the national rankings since early in the 2013 season. They are pursuing the same academically inclined athletes in a limited talent pool.
“Anytime the quarterback is running between the tackles there, there’s concern”, Cutcliffe said.
“This is why people come play at Duke, because you play in the best conference in the country”, Church said.
“We missed two chances. It will help us bring in here the best talent we can find”. But after a 19-10 victory over the Blue Devils on Saturday afternoon, don’t expect anyone to look past the ‘Cats again this season. It could be the start of a special year for the Wildcats. Despite all that, with the way the defense is playing, as long as Fedora gets the ball to Hood and Switzer, the Heels should still walk out with what now may be a quality win against a Power 5 school. Johnell Barnes was open on a post route in the first half, Cutcliffe said, and T.J. Rahming was open on a similar route in the fourth quarter.
Meanwhile, Duke suffered from the opposite side of that conundrum.
Ross Martin kicked a 38-yard field goal for the Blue Devils, while Jack Mitchell had field goals of 37 and 44 yards for the Wildcats. Fortunately for all parties involved, it’s just the third game, so there is plenty of time to learn from mistakes and improve.
Northwestern, substituting liberally to combat the heat in the second half, ran the ball better than Duke and was able to control the clock with its two-score lead.
STRENGTH VS. STRENGTH: The Wildcats haven’t allowed any touchdowns so far.
Two plays later Sirk tried another swing pass but it was picked off by Northwestern’s 6-6 defensive end Dean Lowry. It was humid out there, but we adjusted well to the heart.
“It’s all we. It’s never singular”.
Sirk said following the game that he knew Lowry was there and just didn’t get the ball high enough.
Lowery said the Wildcats were different than Stanford but not necessarily easier to defeat.
As the level of competition rose significantly this week, quarterback Thomas Sirk and the offense’s play did not keep pace.
NOTES: Northwestern leads the series 9-8.
“All the stuff about speed, I think we’re a pretty fast football team”, Fitzgerald said. “They are a team that is really tempoed”. However, they still haven’t played anyone. A win here by the Yellow Jackets would make them legitimate threats to not only win the ACC crown but potentially represent the ACC in the college playoffs this year.
Duke failed to cross midfield on its next two possessions, but forced a punt with about six minutes remaining.
Thirteen of Sirk’s 24 completions Saturday went to either Shaquille Powell or Shaun Wilson. 24-of-39 for 150 yards (3.85 yards per attempt), no touchdowns and one interception.
The jarring impact of LSU running back Leonard Fournette’s shoulder with crumpling Auburn defensive back Blake Countess blew the top off of sold-out Tiger Stadium – and more than likely resonated with Heisman Trophy… And it starts with one nagging question: Did the Blue Devils not play like themselves Saturday or is this the way the Blue Devils now play? Sirk completed 24 of 39 passes for only 152 yards. Ryan Smith called for a fair catch at midfield but the ball bounced off his pads.
The play was reviewed however, and overturned as it was ruled as an incomplete pass attempt.