Shelby Star article on the game

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Shelby Star article on the game

Postby BestOfBreed on Fri Nov 18, 2005 10:50 pm

GWU closes out football season Saturday against Wofford
Alan Ford
Sports Editor ... p?ID=19843

BOILING SPRINGS — Back in the 16-year stretch from 1972-to-1987 when Gardner-Webb and Wofford met in football every year, it might been easier to prepare to face the Terriers.

GWU will be seeing an unusual offensive scheme in Saturday’s season-ending clash at noon at Spangler Stadium from Southern Conference representative Wofford (5-5).

The Terriers use the double-wing or “wing-bone” option set, something fans are more used to seeing in the high school ranks, not I-AA football. Wofford though, like Navy and Georgia Southern, has mastered moving overland.

“If you have a team like that in your conference,” said GWU head coach Steve Patton, “then you spend some time working in the spring for that kind of offense. About all we did was watch some film over the summer.

“This is so late in the season and what makes it doubly hard to face them is that four-or-five freshman out there (on defense) who were not even here for spring practice. It’s also hard to simulate their speed and timing in practice.”

GWU (5-5) has a task to avoid a second-straight sub.-500 season.

“We have our work cut out for us,” said Patton. “We need to get something on the board and get a lead. The kind of offense they run, they can control the clock for five or six minutes. Then if your offense goes out there and is three-and-out, you can be in trouble. You have to have enough offensive success to be able to rest your defense.”

Stopping the Wofford option isn’t a simple matter. An incorrect read by a defender can leave a gaping hole for the Terriers to break a big play.

“First, you have to stop the fullback,” Patton said. “Then you need to make the quarterback pitch it. That way you can get the sideline to help you make the tackle. You have to have good pursuit but you have to be disciplined or they can hit you with the reverse back the other way.”

Last year Wofford struck early and went on to take a 49-17 win in Spartanburg. “To get an upset, it’s going to have to be an emotional kind of deal,” said Patton. “This used to be a big rivalry but now, I guess it’s like L-R (Lenoir-Rhyne), the kids we have don’t know much about it. Wofford’s only 35 minutes away but they’re not in our conference so it’s just not the same.”

This will be the final home game for 15 Bulldog seniors.

Reminder: all youngsters in grades 1-through-8 that wear a football jersey to Saturday’s game will be admitted free of charge. Any adult/parent/coach that brings youngsters in their jerseys can get in for $5.

19843 - 11/18/2005 - SP
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