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  • Cal Poly

    Some observations about upcoming game against Cal Poly.

    1. This rankles me now, though I used to say it for years as a coach: Do your 1/11th. Nothing substitutes good scheme against veer/option teams. Absolutely nothing. I have learned over the years against option teams if your scheme is ill suited to handle option, it always will be. If you have players getting exposed against option frequently, it isn't the player it is the scheme. I for one prefer scheme redundancy, and certain base schemes don't offer a lot of help in the alleys. I'll be interested to see whether the staff chooses a true 40 look versus the 3-4 concept they have used frequently in the first four weeks. The 3-3-5 and the 4-2-5 can offer that redundancy in the alleys without deviating much from the base scheme.

    2. I have wrote so much about stopping option over the years, and specifically Cal Poly, that I don't know that I need to anymore. You can visit the blog, either here or the old one to take a gander. I do believe this, you can't ask your defensive players to do anymore than they normally do. Option assignments are difficult because they are never clean, never clear, or conclusive. Sometimes superior personnel can over come those weaknesses, but I think DC's get too cute and miss the forest for the trees when they face option. They amp up the angst, stress, and practices are always 1000 percent more likely to have coaches explode because you'll look shitty against option. I think it comes down to trusting players to execute plays you normally would call. Unless you see it every week in practice, I just don't see a need to create a ton of special schemes. I personally have had more success staying true to what you normally run and giving players visuals of what they likely will see.

    3. Cal Poly is going to get yards. Lots of small plays for a lot of yards and between the 20's. Field Goals over TD's. As good as Protheroe is, you can't just commit to taking one part of it away. They have too many ways to get him his touches and in ways that can hurt you. Predictability is the enemy of defenses when you face option teams. Getting them in third and longer obviously helps, but it super hard to create a gameplan that guarantees that.

    4. I think very commonly OC's get into a different mode when facing option teams. You have fewer touches and it increases the anxiety as well. Sometimes coaches want to grind on offense, to help the defense. Too often OC's go bigger or have a disjointed game plan. That has happened way too often in recent years when we have faced CP. The first half two years ago against CP was as good as I have seen, but the second half of the last three games (two stitt and one Delaney) were pretty putrid as they have chased points. I think you have to stay true to what you do best and not chase future points and take what you get. CP has mastered that well and that is why they are a devil of an opponent to play.

    --
    This isn't the CP team that we have seen in years past. Protheroe is great but I am not entirely sure the defense is up to snuff. They always seem to play well against us and Walsh will have them prepared. We haven't played well there in recent years (last two or three visits), but I think that might change here with the coaching staff and the fact that CP just isn't the same.

  • #2
    They are not a good football team. If we can't beat them by 10+ points, I will be concerned about future games.

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    • #3
      Go back and watch the 2010 Orange Bowl-Iowa vs Georgia Tech. Game was not nearly as close as the score as Iowa threw a pick 6. Iowa's D just dominated the vaunted triple option due to the D-line and to some extent the corners playing a monster game.

      Hawks D coordinator @ the time was Norm Parker (RIP) who was a master with game planning, and seeing as it was a bowl game had plenty of time to perfect the plan.

      Have to make them beat you through the air (should be the gameplan for damn near every team we play) and I'm hoping the D-line really steps up this week.

      Very important for the interior to maintain gap responsibility and not overpersue as that will create huge lanes on cutbacks with pulling guards and tackles. Force CP to run horizontally and crash hard and fast w/the safeties.

      If our corners can play sound man defense, and the front 4 create some pressure in the run game, I think we can win this going away as our linebackers have been playing pretty damn well.

      I would expect more of a 4-3 base most of the game. Sneed needs to remain patient and make the plays that are there for the taking, absolutely CANNOT turn the ball over as CP thrives on T.O.P. and our D needs as much time on the sidelines as possible, still easily achievable with the short passing game as we aren't going to run between the tackles effectively until we get better line play and a better stable of RB's.

      Go Griz. RTD

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Grizfan-24 View Post
        Some observations about upcoming game against Cal Poly.

        1. This rankles me now, though I used to say it for years as a coach: Do your 1/11th. Nothing substitutes good scheme against veer/option teams. Absolutely nothing. I have learned over the years against option teams if your scheme is ill suited to handle option, it always will be. If you have players getting exposed against option frequently, it isn't the player it is the scheme. I for one prefer scheme redundancy, and certain base schemes don't offer a lot of help in the alleys. I'll be interested to see whether the staff chooses a true 40 look versus the 3-4 concept they have used frequently in the first four weeks. The 3-3-5 and the 4-2-5 can offer that redundancy in the alleys without deviating much from the base scheme.

        2. I have wrote so much about stopping option over the years, and specifically Cal Poly, that I don't know that I need to anymore. You can visit the blog, either here or the old one to take a gander. I do believe this, you can't ask your defensive players to do anymore than they normally do. Option assignments are difficult because they are never clean, never clear, or conclusive. Sometimes superior personnel can over come those weaknesses, but I think DC's get too cute and miss the forest for the trees when they face option. They amp up the angst, stress, and practices are always 1000 percent more likely to have coaches explode because you'll look shitty against option. I think it comes down to trusting players to execute plays you normally would call. Unless you see it every week in practice, I just don't see a need to create a ton of special schemes. I personally have had more success staying true to what you normally run and giving players visuals of what they likely will see.

        3. Cal Poly is going to get yards. Lots of small plays for a lot of yards and between the 20's. Field Goals over TD's. As good as Protheroe is, you can't just commit to taking one part of it away. They have too many ways to get him his touches and in ways that can hurt you. Predictability is the enemy of defenses when you face option teams. Getting them in third and longer obviously helps, but it super hard to create a gameplan that guarantees that.

        4. I think very commonly OC's get into a different mode when facing option teams. You have fewer touches and it increases the anxiety as well. Sometimes coaches want to grind on offense, to help the defense. Too often OC's go bigger or have a disjointed game plan. That has happened way too often in recent years when we have faced CP. The first half two years ago against CP was as good as I have seen, but the second half of the last three games (two stitt and one Delaney) were pretty putrid as they have chased points. I think you have to stay true to what you do best and not chase future points and take what you get. CP has mastered that well and that is why they are a devil of an opponent to play.

        --
        This isn't the CP team that we have seen in years past. Protheroe is great but I am not entirely sure the defense is up to snuff. They always seem to play well against us and Walsh will have them prepared. We haven't played well there in recent years (last two or three visits), but I think that might change here with the coaching staff and the fact that CP just isn't the same.
        I agree that scheme is everything against the triple-option, and that assignments mean little if the overall scheme is not solid. As an example, while Craig Paulsen was a pretty successful D-coordinator, he never did figure out how to put a scheme in place to stop the triple option. i was present at a home game against Southern Utah, before they were even a Big Sky Conference team, and when they ran a novelty version of the wishbone (similar to what Georgia Southern ran under Irk Russell). We were defeated that day, and SUU scored over 40 points. We were futile in trying to stop them, and the frustration level among fans watching the game was evident as our defense continued doing the same things all game, with no results. Their QB alone rushed for over 200 yards, and they amassed nearly 500 rushing yards.

        I remember a Missoulian article the next morning after our loss in which the SUU QB laughed about how easy it was to execute their offense against us, saying basically that, "if we ran an option play to the right, we always had more players to block for us than Montana had defenders. They never adjusted to doing anything different the entire game, so they could never stop us".

        I trust that the vast experience level of our current D-coordinator will give him the knowledge to employ a strong scheme to stop Poly. Still, having only one week to install such a scheme limits the effectiveness, which is why so many college teams do so poorly at stopping the triple-option.
        Last edited by growler; 09-29-2018, 08:15 AM.

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