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HUTTON: It was ‘Bomber football’ at its best on Friday night

HuttMichael 2004  Post-Tribune sportswriter Michael Hutton

Hutton, Michael 2004 Post-Tribune sportswriter Michael Hutton

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Updated: December 17, 2013 6:17AM



RENSSELAER — The country music was blaring at Rensselaer’s stadium in the parking lot.

The kids had the confetti cannons popping out colored streamers for every good Bomber play — and there were plenty of them.

The press box was filled with professional fans — Bomber folks who worked the clock and spotted plays and screamed “Oooh” every time there was a big Bomber hit or a big Bomber play or a big Bomber something.

It was a good night to be a Bomber. A very good night. The score — 24-0 — was not nearly that close. This was a slow suffocation for Bremen. They were ground down, slowly, with purpose.

For the uniformed, the Bombers have a reputation as a one-dimensional smash-mouth defensive team only.

They do have that, and Trevor Hill, and a gang of other serviceable runners.

Hill was a one-man rushing crew in the second quarter, rolling up 105 yards on 11 carries. Renssealer got all they needed in the second quarter, scoring twice.

Then the Bombers did what the Bombers do. They sucked the life out of the clock with their lockdown defense.

It’s heckuva formula.

Hand the ball off to Hill and then put the game in the hands of your special D.

How does the defense get it done?

They held the Lions to 253 mostly useless yards.

They forced 10 tackles for loss.

They sacked the quarterback five times.

They finished with two interceptions.

They had two fumble recoveries — one that was run back by Adam Langley 11 yards for a touchdown.

Bremen only threatened to score twice — once when they got to the 11 on the first possession and again to the Bombers 30.

It was a completely comfortable win. The kind of a victory a coach draws up during the week and dreams about at night. It rarely ever works out the way it’s planned.

But it did this time for the Bombers, who have made a habit of shutting teams out. This was their fourth goose egg of the year.

Rensselaer coach Chris Meeks, wearing a grey sweatshirt and wet from a Gatorade bath, called it his “phone booth offense.”

It was Hill, who finished with 116 yards, mostly left.

And it was Ryan Arihood, also running mostly left. He finished with 72 yards.

“We thought it would be effective,” Meeks said of the grind-it-out approach.

It was so effective that he didn’t bother throwing the ball. They tried three passes — the first was a slant over the middle that was open but it slid through the receiver’s hands. I can’t remember the other two throws.

That was the extent of Rensselaer’s creativity on offense.

They don’t like fancy. They are into ordinary, boring football.

Former Ohio State coach Woody Hayes would be proud. It was power football with a few unique spread formations in the backfield.

The knockdown drive — 64-yards, nine minutes and 11 plays in the second quarter, ending in a touchdown by Beau Boswell — was, in the words of Meeks, “Bomber football.”

A pass was never threatened.

The PA announcer ended the evening with “And now, the Bombers line up in victory formation.”

And the crowd went wild again. Music piped up again. Kids spilled into the field. Confetti was strewn all over the bleachers.

It was good to be a Bomber ... very good.



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