Houston Chronicle

August 22, 1974

By Tony Pederson

Stars 43, Texans 10

Garrett: 'My Fault'

New York - Before the Houston Texans had much of a chance to unveil whatever their game plan happened to be, New York Stars running back Bob Gladieux, a five-year veteran from Notre Dame, had chalked up four touchdowns.

That was just as the third period was beginning but by then, said Texan Coach Jim Garrett, it wasn't a matter of game plans.

"I'm completely to blame for putting this terrible show together," he said. "It was just an overall bad effort. Who knows why these things happen? It was a completely inept effort on our part."

Motivation, he said, is the intangible the Texans are lacking. And therein he accepts the blame for their 43-10 loss to the Stars.

But he also said he would be making "serious decisions" within the next week concerning players and positions.

"What can you say when you don't come to play?" he said. "It was a noncompetitive game - that's the best word to use. If you hustle and make the errors you can say, "Damn, they're at least going after them. But if you don't come to play, you don't have a chance."

The Texans never had a chance because the Stars took a fumble on the first Houston series and then drove 37 yards in eight plays with Gladieux diving over from the one.

Afterwards, there was little offensively; no pass protection, no blocking for runners, two interceptions and no noticeable hard running by Texan backs.

Charlie Durkee kicked a 43-yard field goal just before the end of the first half and Mike Richardson scored on a one yard run after the Texans drove 49 yards in eight plays in the fourth quarter.

For the Stars, wide receiver Kreg Kapitan hauled in a 26-yard pass from quarterback Tom Sherman, a three-year veteran from Penn State, for a touchdown late in the third period. In the final minutes of the game, quarterback Gary Danielson sneaked in from one yard to cap a 63-yard drive.

"You just don't expect games like this," said defensive tackle Al Dotson. "We play six good games defensively, and then we come up flat for the seventh one."

"They're (the Stars) not a team that can hurt us physically. All they did tonight was out-position us. And this is the first game we've had trouble with the third-down plays. That was the difference in this game, the third-down plays."

The Texans had wanted to use more outside running, with Warren McVea suited up and thought to be recovering from a rib injury sustained last week against Southern California.

"But they (the Stars) set the tone of the game, and whenever you let the other team do that, you can't get any rhythm for yourself," McVea said. "We're not as bad a team as we looked tonight."

"We thought we could run around the ends on them, but as it ended up, I only ran two or three times around the end. We're a play-action team and what's the point of going for play-action when you're 10 or 20 points behind? Who the hell's going to take a fake when they know you're going to pass."

McVea said he was ineffective on running the sweeps because he still could not take a full stride because of sore ribs.

"If I can ever get situated where I can get well, I don't have any doubt, but what I can run in this league," McVea said. "I saw some openings out there tonight, but I just couldn't stretch quick enough to get through them."

The Stars, after losing their first two games of the season, have won five consecutive games and they now firmly established themselves as one of the powers in the WFL. New York is in second place in the Eastern Division behind the Florida Blazers, now 6-1.

The Texans slipped another notch in the Western Division and have a 2-4-1 record.

"All programs go through these changes," Garrett said about evaluations and changes he expects to make before the Texans play the Stars again next Wednesday in the Astrodome. "But we've got to make the changes before we get to the point where we can't win the Western Division.

"I think we have some people who just don't want to play. And what's so bad about not wanting to play? Denis Menke retired, didn't he? And Mickey Mantle retired. There's nothing wrong with not wanting to play, but we've got to get people who do want to play."

He wouldn't speculate on positions where there could be changes, but he said he thought quarterback Mike Taliaferro played well for the Texans despite throwing the two interceptions.

"Taliaferro is a good quarterback and that's not our problem," Garrett said. "I left him in because he played a good game, but he had no protection and receivers dropped passes."

Downing Stadium, where the Stars play their home games was almost as bad as the rumors said it was. The lighting was poor and the facilities are hardly adequate for professional football.

"But don't evade the problem," Garrett shot back when a reporter mentioned the field. "It had grass on it, did it not? We could have played on the Triboro Bridge (under which the stadium is situated) and there wouldn't have been any difference in this game."