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Post from BN .....

Discussion in 'Buckeye Football' started by buckeyefan20, Oct 5, 2004.

  1. buckeyefan20

    buckeyefan20 Newbie

    First of all, the thoughts that are about to be spilled out here are not being written because we lost. They've been in and out of my mind for 2 years now, but I have never posted because 1) we HAVE won the great majority of our games and 2) because of the staunch "defend Tressel" mentality that exists on this board - the idea that "we're winning so nothing is wrong." Now that we have lost to a team we should have beaten, maybe these people will wake up and realize that even when you are winning like we were earlier in the season, it is still okay and, actually very important, to realize that everything is NOT okay with the team and the coaching, that things STILL need to be fixed even when the team is 3-0, that there ARE areas that we need to work/improve on, etc. It astonishes me when people criticize Tressel's coaching tactics on this board after a W, they get abused by other posters for their 'pessimism' and get called out as 'tressel haters' or asked, satirically, "if they could do better" - well, for the most part, it is NOT pessimism, not a question of being a Tressel hater or whether you or anybody else could do better, but simple objective critical analysis (read: UNBIASED OPINION of what is going on with the Buckeyes as opposed to having scarlet and gray or sweater jacket glasses on) of what Tressel does not do well that these Tressel defenders take to be heresy....maybe after a loss, these people will realize that there ARE things that need to be different in order for our team to be as good as they can be...

    DISCLAIMERS:
    1) I do NOT hate coach Tressel, he is an excellent coach in several ways - especially the way in which he tries to bring a degree of integrity to this program, he is an excellent recruiter (except on NLOID), and his teams simply win at an incredible rate - but I do loathe the way in which he goes about certain things on the field

    2) and NO, I DO NOT THINK I COULD DO A BETTER JOB THAN COACH TRESSEL


    PROBLEMS/CRITICISMS/COMPLAINTS with team and coaching:

    1) Clock management - is simply horrible - we could be down by 3 touchdowns with 5 minutes left in a game and still not get off a play before there are 5-6 seconds left on the play clock. Do we have anything that even slightly resembles a hurry-up offense? Do we EVER work on hurry-up, 2 minute-drills, etc in practice? The most amazing thing to me is that even after a kickoff and a subsequent TV time-out (or just a timeout by either team), we STILL do not ever get a play called before there are 10 seconds left on the play clock. Our players are constantly late getting out of the huddle, which results in Zwick having no time to read a defense before a passing play (if he can read a defense). Clock management has also been bad in the past in another, similar situation, although I don't recall this situation occuring this year, yet: in the past, we have had the ball in a tight game at about our 20 or 30 yard line with a minute or two before the half, and Tressel will simply run out the clock. Last year, this scenario occurred many times, with a SENIOR quarterback who rarely made mistakes, a SENIOR wide receiver (a very dependable one at that, in MJ) and a few SENIORS on the offensive line
    and yet Tressel always chose to run out the clock. Therefore, when this situation occurs again this year (without a SENIOR qb and a couple of SENIOR wrs, etc), I fully expect Tressel to run out the clock again. What is the problem with this, you might ask? Many people on this board have said that Tressel uses what he has (in terms of the talents of his players) optimally; however, that statement about Tressel is absolutely incorrect. In this situation, especially last year, wouldn't the best use of his players be to drive 30-40 yards and give Nugent a shot at a field goal? We have one of the best, if not The best, place kickers in the country - and yet, Tressel has so many times in a tight game before halftime (even with TOs remaining) refused to give the offense the chance to drive down the field to get 3 more points. When you have a place kicker like Nugent, not trying to get 3 points before halftime when you don't even have to get anywhere near the end zone for him to have a legitimate shot is simply the equivalent of not maximizing the talents of the players on your team.


    2) Is it a good thing or a bad thing to have a kicker as great as Nugent? Sure, when you get in the red zone, you have 3 points, but isn't the goal to get 7? How many times have we heard Tressel tell the offense, "we're in the red zone, we have 3 points, just don't mess that up - if you can get 7, get 7?" That is absolutely the wrong mentality to have - Clinton Portis, this week, said that when you're deep in your opponents territory, scoring touchdowns is a "mentality." When the mentality we have in the red zone is to "not mess up the 3 points we already have," how can we possibly expect our offense to be as successful as they should be and start putting up 7's?

    3) Our pass plays are poorly designed. For example, several times in the past couple weeks on 3rd and medium or short, we have run a pass play with 5 wrs (or 4 wides and a TE), in which EVERY single receiver runs 2 yards pass the first down marker and turns around...now, while having 1-2 receivers run a curl in this situation for a relatively easy/safe 3rd down conversion is probably a good idea, why in the world would we have all freaking 5 of them do the same thing? I understand the concept of flooding a zone, but I wonder if the coaches understand the concept of congestion? In a situation like this, when Bam, Ginn, and Holmes are running the same pattern with just 5 yards separating them (in terms of field width), just 1 or 2 defensive guys can cover ALL 3 of our wide receivers. I just do not understand the idea of having every one of our wide receivers running the same route, OPEN UP THE FIELD ON 3RD DOWN, don't make the defense cover less territory than they have to!!!!! Another problem I have with our passing plays is what happens when we pass on 1st down (rare as it is) - usually in this situation, we do play action, which is nice (and obviously passes the unpredictability test in Tressel's vanilla offense), BUT we only send out 2 wide receivers (and possibly a tight end - but usually our TEs stay in to block on these plays)...okay, so we were unpredictable in terms of throwing on first down, but then we negate this unpredictability by only sending out 2 wide receivers - i'm sorry, but against a defensive backfield consisting of 4 guys, sending out 2 wide receivers is just not going to get it done.

    4) Play calling is horrendous. Like many posters have alluded to on this board, our play calling is as predictable as it could possibly be. It is like our coaches actually TRY to get our offense in 3rd and long. Let's see, if we pass on 1st down, we are more than likely, from past tendencies, going to run (for 2 yards or less of course) on 2nd down to get us in 3rd and 8 or even worse; there must be a law against throwing the ball on all 3 downs. Many times we run on first and second down - the problem with this being that our running game is terrible (will be getting to this in a minute). I do not have the time, the energy, and frankly, do not want to spend the effort in looking this up - but I would guess that we are very predictable offensively depending on what the score is. What do I mean? Well, when we are ahead in a game, even by only 3 points or so, we almost ALWAYS run the ball on first down. When we are behind however, we often times pass on first down...hmmmm, does this mean that Tressel believes more in our ability to pass the ball than run if we pass to try to make up points when we are behind? Also, I wish someone would do some overtime analysis - Tressel was undefeated, I think, in overtime games at OSU going into the Northwestern game (Illinois, Miami, NC St being the ones I remember most vividly) - what was Tressel's offensive formula for success in these games in the overtime period - TO PASS THE BALL!!!! I can remember only 4 designed running plays in overtime in all of these games (there are probably more, these are off top of my head) - the Krenzel sneak against Miami, Clarett run against Miami, M. Hall's run against Illinois, and Pittman run against NW. No matter what, the ratio of run-pass in overtime is dramatically different from run-pass in regulation. So, if we typically win overtime games and SCORE points by PASSING the ball, what in the world is Tressel doing earlier in the game? If Tressel counts on us winning in overtime through the PASSING game, wouldn't it have been brilliant to pass earlier in the game so we don't have to go to overtime to begin with?? I just don't understand the philosophy here; Tressel is so quick to throw away the running game when we are in OT or behind an opponent, but he never opens up when we are ahead - maybe this is why we can never put an opponent away.

    5) Our running game is terrible. I've said it before and I'll say it again, Lydell Ross has never been and never will be a Big Ten running back - he is a slasher, period, and it takes next to nothing to get him on the ground. If we want Lydell to be succesful, we need to use him differently...instead of running up the middle with him every other play - he is NOT a run-up-the-middle running back. Our offensive line is mediocre and has been for the past 4-5 years. Thank goodness for the incredible 0-line recruits we have coming in, from last year and in next year's class. Maurice Clarett was able to run in this predictable offense because he was Maurice Clarett, he was simply just that good - often times he made his own yardage. Lydell Ross, the following year, running behind the EXACT (yes, Mangold and Sims played extensively in our NC year) same O-line not only exposed his own inabilities, but the mediocrity of the O-line as well. Our O-line is a decent pass-blocking unit, however they are nothing better than average run blockers and when you add in the fact that they are usually under-manned, opposing teams bring more guys into the box than they can handle, you have the formula for an anemic run attack. Unlike several people on this board, I believe that Bollman is not at fault here - he simply does not have the horses on the O-line and the play calling sets the running game up for failure. Lydell is playing for one reason, because he is a SENIOR - Tressel wants seniors to have their best years, and he is sticking with Lydell for this reason. Pittman clearly has more big play potential and, in my opinion, is a better power back. Branden Joe is the best power back we have, he needs to play much, much more. The sad thing is, maybe the only people who can succeed in an offense this predictable (going against D's with 8-9 man fronts on every first and second down) are people who are just incredibly good - like Clarett - and players like MC just do not come around very often.


    6) Our defense.......... like many of the posters here, I keep wondering when, if ever, we are going to blitz a QB? Our d-line is over-rated, if that is possible, they are young, green, and can not get pressure on a qb by themselves. Against a team that employs the spread, like NW, we need to move our CB's up to slow down the WRs off the line and take away those WR screens, and send pressure at the same time. I find it hard to believe that NWs athletes at WR were better than our athletes at Corner (and even safety - especially Whitner), so why do we not let our guys, who are more often than not more talented than the people they are up against go 1-1 against receivers and send the house to help out our D-line instead of sitting back in that soft zone. Our corners go up against some of the best receivers in the country every day in practice in Holmes, etc...so why not let them play man in games - sure, they may get beat every once in a while, but I like our chances. This is not completely Snyder's fault, it is a recurring problem within our defensive system; last year Dantonio repeatedly used one of the most idiotic defenses I have ever seen on 3rd and longs when he dropped Will Smith back into pass coverage...I understand that Will was a great athlete, but when you take your best past rusher off the qb and drop him 2 yards deep into coverage when the other team needs to complete a pass of 8 yards or more for a first down, are you really doing anything or simply hurting your own team (essentially playing 10 on 11)...let's see, dropping Will would work if 1) the other team used a screen pass or 2) the qb scrambled and Will was shadowing him, but neither of these scenarios were very likely... I really do not like seeing our DBs, who are excellent athletes (underwood, "best cover corner tress has ever seen"; youboty, "future A-A"; fox when he gets back, 30 year starter; whitner, great athlete) sitting back in a zone when they could be playing man...

    DEFENSIVE ASSESSMENTS:
    D-LINE: Just too young...I think the guys in the middle are doing a decent job, especially on run support. Fraser has not done anything at the end position.
    LINEBACKERS: Awesome in run support. Carpenter has been impressive. Hawk is Hawk. I thought Schlegel looked slow the first couple games, but he would be a somewhat fast DE - I don't know about his size, but some other teams use undersized, but fast DE's, maybe he could be utilized on 3rd downs in this respect. As announcers so keenly mentioned a hundred times against NW, our linebackers are not great in pass coverage.
    DBs - I love these guys, I wish the coaches would let them play (ie, get out of the soft zone)...I used to have such high hopes for Nate Salley, seeing that he is a great hitter and I thought he would end up better in pass coverage than Doss, but a problem has developed with his tackling...the problem isn't the contact (he creates plenty of that), and can be corrected by 2 words: WRAP UP!!!

    7) Zwick's (lack of) pocket presence... he runs into pressure when there is none there...people talk of pocket presence being an instinct, hopefully he can develop in this area

    8) Tressel-Coop comparison....yeah, i know, there is no comparison between these two..... Coop - blew almost everybody out, lost almost every close game...Tressel - blows almost nobody out, wins almost every close game... Why can't we have the best of both worlds? I believe that it IS healthy to have a close game every once in a while, but there is no reason for a close game every week, especially against teams we should beat badly...The problem is that this team has adopted Tressel's mentality completely; they believe that it is fine to get 3 when in the red zone; that winning close is okay because they ARE winning; that the formula that Tressel uses will always work - the problem is that this is just not the case...when you win almost every game by less than a TD, you are setting yourself up for failure...it takes only 1 play for a game like this to swing the other way, even freak/lucky plays can change games that are this close (if you don't believe this, just think about shawn spring's slip)....

    9) The argument from Tressel's supporters, that he uses the talent he has optimally, is simply untrue. This team is a much better passing team than it is a running team because a)our offense is known for running all the time = predictability; b) we have no gamebreakers at RB, while on the other hand c)we have at least 2 gamebreakers at receiver in bam and santonio...and maybe ginn eventually. If Tressel used his talent to the max, he would pass more (he does not have to ABANDON the run) and ditch the predictable element that this offense is known for.

    10). I firmly believe that Tressel, by choosing the plays he does, keeps this team and this offense from being as good as it can be. The fact that you are going against 11 defensive players on scholarship at other major universities should be enough in itself to contend with, but our players have to overcome another, maybe bigger obstacle, the play calling of our coaches. When you have to overcome the predictability, in addition to the people on the other side of the ball, you are set up for failure. I just wish for once, 1 TIME, that Tressel would let this offense be as good as it could be, that he would stop holding it back. I'm sick of seeing our team have to overcome our own ineptness in play calling and unpredictability IN ADDITION TO opposing defenses. I'll never forget Stu schwiegert (sp?) a couple years ago for Purdue calling out the predictability of our offense before the game - he ran his mouth and purdue subsequently shut us down that day, we won only because we completed a 37 yrd pass on 4th and 1......


    Finally, I think this team bounces back against Wisconsin, probably on a game-winning field goal by Nuge or something... However, it will be another close game, just like most games against Wisconsin are....Why are they all so close??? Because we run the ball, Wisconsin knows it + Wisconsin runs the ball, we know it = not much offense, the clock continuously runs, the game is fast and before you know it, we've hit the 4th quarter in a 10-10 game (if there is THAT much offense)....I just hope Tressel opens up the offense so we can finally beat a team by more than a touchdown without having to experience late game heart attack symptoms....
     
  2. Elephant

    Elephant Sophmore

    How am I suppose to read this when i have ADD?[​IMG]
     
  3. craigblitz

    craigblitz Juice, Full of Juice!!

    Hahahaha... I read the whole dang thing and I most say that was one of the better post I have read in a long time!!! Go Bucks
     
  4. BuckeyeNation27

    BuckeyeNation27 Goal Goal USA! Staff Member

    not to be a dick bf20....but if i wanted to read and respond to a BN thread, i would go over to BN.

    of course....i would have to get unbanned first.
     
  5. osugrad21

    osugrad21 Capo Regime Staff Member

    It was a quality post...a few points to debate, but a good post
     

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