The Fordham football team opened their season at home with a nail-biting 26-23 loss to CCSU on Saturday night. at Rose Hill. Despite the loss there was plenty of progress made from an abysmal 2018 season.
“We were the worst rushing team in country last year and got sacked 50 times, but I think you can see we have a different mindset than last year, ” coach Joe Conlin said.
Conlin clearly understands the only direction his team can go is up. Fielding a young squad led by sophomore quarterback Tim DeMoratt, Fordham makes up for lack of experience with grit and energy. But their youth stood out Saturday night as four fumbles and a pick six ultimately decided the game. Lack of experience played a role in coaching as well, as a pair of mistakes by the Fordham coach proved costly.
“We should not have gone for that two-point conversion” said Conlin referring to a missed opportunity for an extra point in the first quarter. “And I wish I hadn’t iced him twice because he missed the first” said the coach of icing the kicker despite special teams having already blocked one earlier.
Eliminate any of those mistakes and Fordham would have sealed an important home win before three road games in a row. But the willingness of this team to adapt and adjust may be the key going forward.
After a slow start and going into the half down 15-6, the defense did not allow a single point and the young quarterback tossed for two more impressive touchdowns. Add that halfback Zach Davis rushed for over 100 yards in under twenty touches and you can see the makings of a winning football club.
“I was pleasantly surprised by the boy’s resilience, they held up pretty well,” Conlin said.
Resilience will be key when heading to face a tough Ball State team next Saturday, but not before a few tweaks, especially when it comes to stopping the run as CCSU rushed for 254 yards. “We wanted to stop the run, but that’s something we need to address in practice especially when it comes to the perimeter” said Conlin.
There is no question that there is plenty of work to be done but this looks like a team prepared to do it. The energy and support from the sidelines was infectious and the crowd took notice. The experience will eventually begin to pile up, the only question is will it happen fast enough to put together their first winning season since 2016?
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