Football: FAU seniors depart in embarrassing fashion

Ryan Cortes

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FAU’s season had been decided prior to kickoff Saturday afternoon versus Troy, but it should have been safe to assume that FAU would at least come out with a desire to send off the departing seniors on FAU’s roster with something positive.

Unfortunately, that didn’t end up being the case, as FAU fell to Troy 44-7 in a season finale that was equal parts embarrassing and disappointing.

Before the game, FAU (4-8, 3-5) followed the college football ritual of allowing all of the team’s seniors to run out onto the field draped in smiles.

Those were the only smiles the Owls had all afternoon.

One of the departing seniors, linebacker Michael Lockley, contributed 12 tackles, though it was an empty dozen, spent ending long plays that Troy (7-5, 6-2) methodically completed on the over-matched FAU defense.

Troy came into the game with just a 6-5 record — better than FAU, obviously, but 37 points better?

“I’m definitely surprised,” Lockley admitted after the defeat. “It’s a total disappointment by the team and the new guys will have to take that as a challenge going into the spring to not go out like that again.”

The game felt at times as if the play calls were designed specifically to encourage thoughts of the Bad News Bears.

In the beginning of the fourth quarter, the Owls faced a fourth-and-10 deep into Trojans territory, but down 30-0, the decision to go for it was a no-brainer. On that play, Van Camp dropped back and was sacked.

Later in the quarter, this time down by the eventual deciding score of 44-7, the Owls faced a fourth-and-inches, again deep in Trojans territory. Head coach Howard Schnellenberger called for a quarterback sneak, which resulted in Van Camp attempting to dive forward, only to fumble the ball.

“It’s an embarrassment, really,” Van Camp said, “for FAU to lose to a team like that at home.”

The drive log serves as an obituary for the football season. FAU’s first 11 drives of the game ended in either punts, turnover on downs, or fumbles.

Thankfully for the Owls, the season is over, and going forward, FAU has its new 30,000-seat stadium to look forward to at the very least.

“History has to keep going forward,” said Lockley. “Old people like me have to go away and the new guys have to step up.”