FCS Letdown Effect

September 30, 2014



Sports Editor
As fireworks filled the night sky, I had time to quickly reflect on Louisiana Tech’s loss to Northwestern State Saturday. It was not pretty.
Have you ever competed against a younger sibling or friend who was not as big as you or as fast as you or was younger than you?
We all have, and we all take something off of our game when doing so.
Maybe we do not play quite as aggressively as we typically would or we will purposely make the game closer than it should be in order to allow our presumed lesser opponent to feel good about themselves.
Sometimes it is something we do subconsciously without realizing it.
Sometimes it is laziness. Sometimes it is apathy.
Sometimes it is what is called the “Football Championship Subdivision letdown effect.”
Louisiana Tech will travel to Auburn, Alabama on Saturday to take on the Tigers. Auburn is No. 5 in the country in this week’s polls.
One week removed from playing against a Southland Conference opponent like the Demons, Tech has to travel to one of the best teams in the country.
Did Tech suffer from the aforementioned FCS letdown effect?
Had they decided NSU was their inferior younger brother whom they would play down to?
The problem with playing down to an opponent you are capable of beating is that, when they win, it’s like their Super Bowl and when they lose, no one cares because they were supposed to lose, which is exactly what happened last Saturday night.
Tech was supposed to win, and had they pulled it off, no one would have paid attention.
NSU was supposed to lose, but when they pulled out the victory it was like Armageddon.
Are those pigs flying? Did hell just freeze over?
Whether it was the letdown effect of playing an FCS school or the five turnovers, which NSU was able to turn into 23 points – including three turnovers in the fourth quarter.
Tech fans should not melt down or curl into the fetal position in a corner. Come back to Joe Aillet Stadium and support the Bulldogs.
Saturday’s crowd was the third largest in Joe Aillet Stadium history and the largest crowd since 1999.
Do not burn your jerseys and throw out your Tech gear just yet.
The Bulldogs are 2-2 and right where many said they needed to be at this point of the season to go to a bowl game.
Jared King is a senior journalism major from Jena who serves as sports editor for The Tech Talk. Email comments to jki008@latech.edu.


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