And Just Like That, A LEADER Has Emerged

0 Views 10 Comments

I have to be honest for a second. I wasn't at the game because it was daughters second birthday. Worst yet….I turned the game off in frustration after Charlotte got a safety with 4 minutes left down by 12. I didn't even know the Niners won until my friends who were at the game showed up at my house…and I even had to look it up to see if they were messing with me.

However…I had time to watch the game from that point and highlights on what happened after. After going back and watching, there is one glaring thing that stood out: Matt Johnson.

We had the chance to see the Niners win big and then lose big…but suddenly the young 49ers were in a spot they've never been in. They were in a dog fight with a nationally ranked team (FCS #24). Charlotte played 17 freshmen on Saturday when Gardner-Webb played only one. Let that sit in for a second. Those were men vs. boys. Charlotte was outmatched the entire game and found themselves trailing several times by double scores.

A big reason they kept coming back, besides a little luck, was the stellar play and evolving of Matt Johnson. At times, he acted like a surgeon finding open receivers and sharing the love hitting six different targets. The play that stood out to me was when the Niners were down 24-17 and under a minute left until halftime. The Niners were in their own territory facing a 3rd and long when Johnson had three defensive linemen in the backfield, squeezed through a gap, sidestepped another defender, found some running room, crossed the first down mark and then I saw the 6'3 230lb quarterback from Newton, NC launch himself into the air against 3 other defenders.

I thought “man, do we have a football player!” It kept the drive alive…and then extended as he  threw two completions toward the sidelines to stop the clock and then hit Austin Duke in the middle of the endzone for a smooth 26 yard touchdown pass tying the game at halftime.

During the comeback, being down 21 with less than a quarter left in the game, Johnson threw three touchdown passes. He threaded the needle in the back of the endzone to  C.J. Crawford. He lobbed it 20 yards over the middle to allow Austin Duke to make a play on another. And then aired it out to Trent Bostick for a 48 yard score. Three very different throws that showed his ability to make big plays. When it was said and done, he threw for 342 yards and 5 touchdowns!

Johnson knows how to play football. He doesn't make many mistakes, but when he does it's understandable as people sometimes forget that he's just a freshmen. He even might make the mistake of not sliding, as when he runs he seems to enjoy running over people. Until he shows a sign of injury, I kind of admire a QB delivering a little pain to tacklers.

This kid has all the tangibles of being great. He's tough. He can throw. He can run. He understands the game. He can play football and as of now, we have witnessed his leadership ability. I know he benefits from great offensive line blocking and a dependable running game, but I think Johnson is special. He makes his surroundings better. Over the years, he will only learn more and get better…and that's the greatest part, because I'm not sure his best has surfaced yet!

Matt Johnson
Photo Cred

Leave A Comment

Post Comment
Too bad the niners still suck.
Hey watch it man!
I'm watching it, man. Watching this blog set up false hopes to any one associated with the Niners believing they have a real competitive football team. Football is a team sport, Dawg. One man can't possibly carry a team - no matter how good he is.
Did you actually read it? It doesn't mention anything about the Niners being overly competitive (actually says they were out matched) or mention anything about this kid carrying the team. Just about his evolving as a team leader and a solid player. I think you're a little premature on the competitive talk....I'm a realist and patient on that part. It's the first season....they have a long way to go.
I did read the whole post and while it was well written, it was littered with false hope innuendo. I don't have the time to highlight all of them. I just have enough time to provide rebuttal at this point. Look, I get it. You and probably your roommate or work buddy are loyal alliums. My point here is to raise awareness to the fact that there is a long road ahead of the miners before any greatness is to come out of uncc. Could I have used better tact? Sure. Maybe next time.
I don't disagree with you. I fully understand....and it will get harder when they actually start playing FBS programs. Opponents will get bigger, faster and strong. But they are doing a lot of good things for the first 5 games. It could always be a lot worse.
Also, I'll do a sales pitch....yes we are Niner alums with a lot of UGA ties...this is the site for Niners, but if you click on the "Niners" dropdown in the top menu you will see other teams (no, we aren't finished with them all). You should check them out and see if we have your team available. More to come....
Huh. Yeah. I checked. Couldn't find USC. I live here (NC) now after leaving the beaches in LA and have come to like watching the local schools play. A few Niners at my work so I'm pretty invested in any news on them. Heck. I sit right in front of one!So is your work or side project? Pretty cool.
It's a side project....we are scraping by trying to create this "social network" for sports teams. It's a lot of work for 3 people. We do have plans for of my buddies at work is an Alum, so apparently you are not alone! We'd put it up faster if we could get people to join....I'm not saying that as a hint! Plus we have a lot more features coming...need to get those completed. ;)
Right on! Tell that SC alum I hope we get Jack Del Rio!

About The Author

Charlotte, north carolina

More Blogs Frate49er

We Recommend These Tags:

Share This Blog With Team Share:

Start A Discussion

What's On Your Mind?:

Write A Blog

Create Your Blog Title:
Write Your Blog:
Start tags in the body with a "#" (example: #thistag). Separate tags by a comma in the above box, multiple word tags are allowed.

Change Your Avatar

You're New Around Here!

You've just entered another team site. It's cool, we encourage users to interact with other teams...just keep it clean!

So, What Brings You Here?
I'm A Fan Of This Team
Create another FAName so you don't freak your friends out wearing different colors!
I'm Here To Troll
Yeah, yeah, yeah. We all get you like to crash the party. This option will keep your FAName the same as your original membership.
I'm Just Visiting
Well, that doesn't look shady...but we like to spy on our rivals too! Just click "I'm Just Visiting" and you can look around without commenting or interaction.

Contact Fanternity

Full Name*
Email Address*
Contact Purpose*
Send Message