So there’s just one thing left to do this season, and that’s to enjoy the Belgian Bowl. Hold on, there are actually two things – first preview it, and then enjoy it.
Belgian Bowl Preview
This is going to be a tricky one, no doubt about it. The Bulls are riding high after clubbing the Fighting Turtles in a semi final two weeks ago, while the Tigers are doing just the same after dealing with the Black Angels. These are the two best teams in the country and they’re playing their best football at the right time.
The Tigers brought heavy pressure from their defensive line against the Angels. Because the Black Angels struggled so much to block the Tigers’ hogs, it allowed the linebackers and defensive backs extra time to look and make plays. So everything will start with the Bulls offensive line. Fortunately, they can rely on a very strong group up front, and they’ll need to play a great game collectively to keep their quarterbacks Njufom and Torrini clean and allow them the time to find their speedy receivers (especially Roudebush and Leroy), and once the ball gets in their hands, anything can happen – the Angels big play against the Tigers was a medium distance pass but a very long run after it, just the way the Bulls like it.
The Tigers were able to stop most everything that the Angels came at them with on the ground, but RB Acheson provides a different style of back. If he’s able to make those consistent 3-5 yard gains like he normally does, then the Bulls will be in good shape, and they’ll be able to pick and choose when they take their shots downfield.
But if they get in lots of bad situations where they have to throw, the Tigers will come at them and at least try to disrupt the timing of quarterback and receiver, because that is their strength.
On the other side of the ball, the Tigers have a good quarterback, who can make his reads and find the open man with a rather accurate pass, so the Bulls defensive line will want to have a good game as well. If they can’t get pressure on the quarterback, then life will be very difficult for their defensive backs, even though they have some great ones back there.
The Tigers have the ability to run inside and outside, as well as pass and throw in the odd bit of trickeration as well, so the Bulls defenders will need to be at total concentration the whole time. What I like about the Bulls coaches is that they’re constantly talking to their players, making sure they’re in the best position to make plays.
So this is hard. If I had to pick the best unit of the Tigers then I’d say that it’s their defensive line. And if I had to pick the best of the Bulls then I’d go with their offensive line. Often in situations like this, they will both cancel each other out, and the game could be won elsewhere. Watch the match-up of the Tigers receivers against the Bulls defensive backs – they got too much space against the Black Angels and made them pay for it.
I’m looking for someone to make a play, a big interception or a kick return. Something electrifying, something that gets the crowd going. Because maybe that’s going to be the difference. I expect a hard fought game, and it should be an entertaining one too.
If only I had a crystal ball.. nah, I wouldn’t look even if I did, because that would take all the fun away. Bulls by 4.
So the gates open at midday, which is a couple of hours before the game. I’ll be floating around somewhere, so if you see me around, come up for a chat – the Belgian Bowl is a party and I’ll be in a celebratory mood (speaking of that, someone take a photo of me and Klaas as we honour our season-long bet with a cool, foamy beverage). Until Sunday