'Dogs learn lessons from Oregon loss

September 10, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
It was a tale of two halves at Eugene last Saturday: Terrible at first, but promising at the end. The Bulldogs say they learned quickly what kind of a football team they have this season.

"We moved the ball well between the 20's but we've got to finish better," said head coach Tim DeRuyter. "We didn't get 7's. And when you're trading 3's for 7's you can't beat a team like Oregon. You've got to match them 7's for 7's."

"It's like two different sides of a coin," said senior linebacker Shawn Plummer. "You want to go back and play that first half again but you can't, you know?"

The biggest strides were made on defense, where Fresno State gave up only seven second half points, after surrendering 35 in a wild opening frame.

"The biggest change was that I think our guys played with confidence the second half," said Coach DeRuyter. "I think they realized they're a talented team, they're very fast, but they're football players too."

"Our feet got wet now and we don't have that wide-eyed look in the first half anymore," said Plummer. "I don't see it happening again the rest of the season."

And now the Bulldogs face a matchup with Colorado, another Pac-12 team, but fresh off an embarrassing loss at home to FCS school Sacramento State. Fresno State is favored by 14.5 points, but Coach DeRuyter doesn't know why.

"I don't know what they're talking about," said DeRuyter. "We're playing a team that has a ton more highly recruited players, higher ranked guys. I don't know if we have a scholarship guy on our team that was offered a scholarship by Colorado."

Meaning Coach DeRuyter expects his men to come in with a chip on their shoulders, ready for a battle. Kickoff is set for 5:00 pm Saturday at Bulldog Stadium.