Friday Email Bag
|Friday, October 27, 2017, 9:59 AM- -|
Friday Email Bag
Each Friday I publish your comments and answer your questions. To submit a comment or questions, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Over the past several years, our offense focused on tempo, time between plays, and number of plays per game (we're now 33rd, Syracuse is 1st). I've noticed over the past season or two that our offense no longer plays as quickly. This season, the slow down can be attributed to an inexperienced offense but the slower pace of play was evident last year as well. Is this an intentional change in offensive philosophy or an unintended consequence of other factors?
Yes, this was an intentional change. Tony Elliott excels in adjustments and a few extra second has resulted in better play calling. Therefore Clemson is winning by calling better plays instead of relying on the pace only. Many times when a team goes really fast, the play called is the wrong one, but you are relying on the pace being a factor, especially late in games. This offense wants to be more efficient in the first three quarters too. It has worked. Elliott and Scott have lost three games since taking over, and two of them came with the offense scoring 40 and 42 points. The other came with an injured quarterback. Hope this makes sense.
I am not an expert in X and Os and schemes. How complicated can it be? We hear about these young players, but they don’t play as much early, and I know there has to be a reason for that. Help!
I am no X and O genius either, but the game is very complicated regarding schemes.
There are so many pre-snap, and post-snap reads. There are so many adjustments players have to make. In very basic terms, for every scheme, there are positives and negatives. The best coaches are the ones who can recognize and adjust.
Let me give you a simple example. Clemson faces a lot of cover two schemes with the safeties playing very deep to avoid the big play. As a result, an offense can hit those schemes with post/corner routes, deep fade routes, throws down the middle of the field and a very good running game. However, defenses are trying to disguise the coverage and confuse an inexperienced quarterback. They can make a cover two look like a cover zero, cover one, cover three, quarters and any combination of those with a hybrid type of look.
The best defensive coordinators keep a quarterback guessing by showing one look but changing at the snap. Zone blitzes can be very confusing as well. Therefore, younger and more inexperienced players just are not used to seeing complicated schemes, and it takes them time to adjust, and the speed of the game is faster because the players are faster than high school.
Quarterbacks are in charge of calling out the protections and the checks and then he has to make the proper reads to get his offense in the best shape to execute. It can break a young players confidence if he is thrown to the wolves too soon.
The above examples were mostly just coverages and what the quarterback has to deal with. Every position has reads and checks and keys. Wideouts have to read the coverages and adjust with man beaters or zone beaters. He has to be on the same page getting the same read as the quarterback.
Up front, the offensive line gets different fronts. Odd fronts require a different scheme than even fronts. Defensive lines can shift and stem right before the snap to cause more confusion. They can slant and create even more.
Also, the line, tight end, and backs have to aware of their slide protections and blitz responsibilities depending on the fronts and where the extra defenders may be coming from.
In summary, it is a complicated game, especially for the younger players who are less experienced at making these adjustments.
This was simple, general and brief but hope this gives a little insight to why its harder on younger players.
For the life of me, please explain the thinking behind playing Bryant and then Cooper and not going with Johnson. What the heck are they thinking? I will hang up and listen.
Trust me on a few things. First, they are going to play the player they think gives them the best chance to win. They may be wrong, but they are not purposely trying to tick you off by playing the wrong guy.
Second, they are always evaluating and planning for every scenario. The medical team and the football staff meet constantly.
Go back and watch the game. Bryant was not 100%, but he was effective passing the football from the pocket. He hit his first eight passes and was 10-11 at one point. Then he tweaked his ankle. Hindsight tells us he should have been taken out then, but he should have played until that point.
As far as Cooper is concerned, we have so little exposure to both backups, and it is difficult for you and me to say who should play. We have no formal training in coaching quarterbacks and Brandon Streeter has over 5,000 days as a quarterback coach.
I had a former college coach call me this week and explain a few things. He said his experience tells him that as fans we have seen Johnson look good in a very small sample size. He has thrown 12 passes. The coach said that as the third team guy he goes into a game with a very small set of formations and plays because he doesn’t have experience and there is not a lot of time to prepare him. The second team guy who is a red-shirt in Cooper has more exposure to a bigger part of the playbook and is less limited in what they can run. He gets more practice each week and has shown he can run more of the offense.
The coach made a point that just because we saw Johnson look good in the small percentage of the playbook he can use against Wake Forest, it doesn’t mean he can handle an entire half at Syracuse.
He said as fans we need to yield to the professionals who are with these guys every day and know what each can handle.
He went on to say that at some point Johnson might pass Cooper because he has a higher ceiling, but that doesn’t mean he is ready now and we shouldn’t look back at it and say he should have played more than Cooper in September or October of 2017.
This analysis from a guy who coached a long time made a lot of sense to me and hope it clears up some of the misconceptions about this staff.
My friend David Hood said it beset when quoting someone close to the program, “Trust the guys with the big shiny rings.” I would say they have earned that trust over my banker, my insurance guy or my mechanic when it comes to football. I know little about finance, insurance or cars, so I yield to professional expertise in the fields they have been trained in. I will leave football to the proven professionals who have shown their expertise in their field.
On Mike and Mike this past Monday Booger McFarland said that the SEC and the Big 10 were clearly the best conferences in college football this year. Will you please explain to me how the SEC is one of the best conferences in the country? Thanks!-David
There is a very simple explanation. Booger works for the SEC Network and ESPN. They have invested a lot in the network and bias follows the money.
The Brad Hughes All-State Insurance Agency
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