This was about as good a day as you can have as a punter.
Dane Roy utilized the coffin corner to perfection during this game to continually flip the field. Thanks to Roy, Cincinnati had to drive the length of the field (90+ yards) on 3 of 4 UH punts (all 3 came in the first quarter). Starting inside the 10 changes how the opponent will attack. In the three ensuing drives, Cincy went 5 plays and punted, 3 plays and threw an INT, and then a 3-and-out. It’s easy to say that Roy kept us in this game.
Dane angled his punts away from the returner toward the right corner pylon. That leaves little room for the returner if he does field the ball and forces him to make a decision. After Dane perfected this on his first punt, Cincinnati put 2 returners back there on either hash mark to try and counter Dane keeping the ball away from them.
It still didn’t work as Dane continued to perfectly place the ball near the right touchline and the Cincy returners couldn’t make the right decision to save their life. It’s a testament to Dane’s craft that Cincinnati knew exactly what was coming, adjusted for it, but still couldn’t prevent it.
Kickoff Return Team Lacks Hustle
What I saw from the kickoff team was just a lackadaisical effort with no hustle. The first kickoff of the 2nd half was returned for 42 yards and there was no hustle from the left side of the coverage team. And if you are trying to squeeze the returner to that side (because it’s your strong side), then a lack of hustle is inexcusable.
There is almost nobody in the returner’s path until the 40-yard line. Finally, Kyle Ramsey correctly steps into his lane and forces the returner out of bounds. I can see exactly why Dana is pissed off as this just boils down to effort and that’s something you can’t teach.