Reply To: Anybody NOT done with DD?

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Couple of quick points:
– Kicking: I don’t follow recruiting as closely as some, but it is my understanding that “the kicker” is due on campus this year as an incoming recruit (or maybe a recruit coming off a redshirt). Supposedly this is why we took a grad transfer as a one year stop gap last season. Kicking has cost us some games, so if we were even average we’d have had a couple of more years. Nowhere to go but up.

– DD taking a more CEO approach: I believe that there’s no coincidence that in a couple of games or halves where headphones have been off from the head man of both squads, the Pack has looked better than the opposition. Some of the clock management and down and distance things that we’ve talked about numerous times have been baffling. I think DD does his best work Sunday-Friday and in the offseason, but doesn’t really have a good feel for the game on Saturday. I’m not in the huddle or on the microphones, so I could be wrong, but that is my take.

In a similar vein, when people have been critical of Hux I have often wondered why they’re not similarly critical of DD. Hux is clearly running DD’s defense. My hope is that with Roof and Hux DD can trust enough to let go some on defense, which I think will ultimately end up better. Archer and Tenuta did better together than either did apart, and I think we may see Hux and Roof do the same.

– Redshirting: Forgot to mention it, but I love it. For a lesser program like ours, this is the only way. We started that year 1, so I would agree with Grey that we sacrificed today for tomorrow, which I have liked. It is one of the things that I point to in defense of DD.

– “Our” 4-2-5: I’m not an expert or a DC. My take is that you shift to 4-2-5 based on down and distance when you need an extra cover guy, and in an obvious passing down. Put an extra corner out there and press a bit more on the coverage, or drop one of the lb back, bring 5 and go full zone.

I think as an every down defense you end up a bit weak against the run unless you end up running 3 safeties. Run 3 safeties every down and you’re effectively running a 4-3 because the weakside LB is often light and more mobile but is lined up closer to the line. Is a 4-2-5 with 3 safeties all that different than a 4-3 where the Will is lined up off the line? Maybe not so much, particularly given that in college that weakside lb was often a bigger safety in high school. If so, get the weakside LB/safety up closer to help with run support because I’m all about stopping the run.

My problem is with “our” 4-2-5. We don’t press the edges taking away the pass, but we go light on the run because we back a man off the line. Often I see a safety in pursuit of a WR in an obvious passing down, so I don’t know how much down/distance subbing we’re doing (I will be the first to admit I haven’t charted it). A lot of our blitzes from the secondary are painfully obvious and slow developing. If we’re playing this way, we’d better have darn good LB and I would argue that LB is where we’ve been weakest the last few seasons.

I’d be fine if we were 4-3 on most downs, rolling into a 4-2-5 on obvious passing downs. I think that’s a good look for college ball. Despite the “spread” conversations, I still think the game on defense is to make the opposition be one dimensional. I’d much rather shut down the run and force the pass, particularly in college. Make that QB beat you. There are probably only 10-20 good ones at the entire level. In ACC play, which ones actually scared you this past year with their arm? Not many, including Louisville’s and FSU’s.