The Defensive Coordinator: Review of September 13th
  By Matt Priesmeyer Writer
Broomfield, CO is proud to now have our very own defensive analyst for each week's hindsights. Matt Priesmeyer is a savvy young man who, at just 14, is deeply entrenched in our favorite sport. His breakdowns and understanding of the game are worthy and true, so we feel strongly about this future journalist and his writing. As the site's editor, I know I wasn't even close to this level of football analysis at that age. So follow the rise and writings of our fledging expert.


The week of September 13th, 2003 brought many upsets. A lot of those upsets were fueled by stellar defenses. Here is a choice of my Top 5 team and individual defensive efforts.


UNLV: John Robinson's Runnin Rebels gave up 46 points the week before against Kansas (of all teams) in their big loss to the Jayhawks. If they gave up 46 to Kansas, how many would they give up to Barry Alvarez's Wisconsin Badgers? Five points. No, that isn't a typo, Wisconsin scored only five points. The Badgers' star running back and Heisman hopeful, Anthony Davis went down in the first quarter to a sprained ankle and the Wisconsin offense would never recover. Jim Sorgi, the Badgers quarterback had no touchdown passes and two interceptions. Lee Evans and Jonathan Orr, the two star wide receivers for the Badgers, only had three receptions combined.

Michigan: The Wolverines and defensive coordinator Jim Hermann just absolutely shut down the Fighting Irish for the first time since 1902. Michigan didn't get to face Julius Jones last year in their loss to Notre Dame, now they wish they had. Julius Jones only had 42 yards on 11 carries. Carlyle Holiday - the quarterback could never get started as he went a dismal 5-of-14 for 55 yards, no touchdowns and an INT. The Michigan defense even shut down Notre Dame's future - quarterback Brady Quinn went just 3-of-10 for 36 yards, no touchdown and one interception by the end of the blowout game.

Purdue: Just one week after giving up 27 points to Bowling Green at home in their upset loss, the Boilermakers faced the Wake Forest Demon Deacons, who had scored 38 points on North Carolina State the week before. Wake Forest could only muster ten points Saturday. The powerful, Wake Forest running attack only could put up 56 yards on the ground against the Boilermaker defense. On the biggest play of the game, with 1:05 left and Purdue up 16-10, it was 4th-and-1 for Wake Forest on Purdue's 17. The Demon Deacons tried a run, but the Purdue blitz stopped it for a loss of one and won it for the Boilermakers.

Georgia: After reading South Carolina's quarterback Dondrial Pinkins' quotes in the paper about Georgia and their defense and how he doesn't think they are that good, the Bulldogs were ready to rumble, especially the defense. The Bulldog defense allowed just seven points to a South Carolina team that put up 31 against Virginia the week prior. Gamecock running back Daccus Turman only had 46 yards rushing on 12 carries. Pinkins had 15 rushes for 36 yards. He probably thinks this defense is just that good after Saturday - he only completed 12 passes out of 30 attempted. He also threw two interceptions.

Miami (FL): You can pretty much expect to see the Hurricanes get written into this weekly article with their defense. Who was the next victim to get tossed around in the Hurricane? The struggling East Carolina Pirates. Junior quarterback Desmond Robinson got great experience facing a defense like this, but he still went 14-of-21 for 117 pass yards, no touchdown passes and two interceptions. East Carolina, with new coach John Thompson, had some good chances to get more points and make the 38-3 game look respectable, but they turned the ball over five times. Miami goes to Boston College next week to face the Eagles, a place where they almost got upset two years ago.


Jamaal Brimmer, Defensive Back, UNLV: The man who lead UNLV to the shocking upset of Wisconsin had the game of his life. Jim Sorgi probably hates Brimmer now, as he was both sacked and intercepted by him twice. Brimmer also had a 55-yard fumble return for the first tone-setting points of the game. Next up for Jamaal Brimmer and The Runnin' Rebels is the explosive offense of Hawaii lead by Timmy Chang.

Stuart Schweigert, Free Safety, Purdue: Schweigert was the guy who stopped Wake Forest on the 4th-and-1 play that clinched Purdue's upset victory. Stuart saved Purdue again and they didn't even know it at the time - he intercepted a Cory Randolph pass and returned it 37 yards. On the return there was a holding call that brought the touchdown back, but Purdue still had the ball. That was the first play from scrimmage.

Riccardo Stewart, Arizona State: Stewart probably saved Arizona State from losing at home to Utah State. Stewart had an 18-yard interception return that sparked the Sun Devils. At the time, no one thought it would have saved the Sun Devils from losing, as the interception occurred in the 2nd quarter. The play made it 19-7 and Arizona State hung on from there to beat Utah State 26-16.

Jason Leach, Safety, Southern Cal: Leach returned an interception 25 yards for a touchdown that started the USC 61-32 rout of Hawaii. The interception was one of two thrown by Hawaii's star quarterback, Timmy Chang. Though the USC defense struggled, the offense was on a roll, scoring twice as many points as the Rainbows. Leach shined through, though.

Almondo Curry and Tony Franklin, Virginia: Both of these guys had interceptions returned for touchdowns against Western Michigan. Virginia won the game 59-16. Curry was the first guy to return one - just 12 seconds into the 2nd half, he took one back 23 yards. Tony Franklin then returned one in the ending parts of the 4th quarter for 45 yards to the house.