Reading Beautween the Lines and QB Situation

Bobodeluxe
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Blueblood;842860317 said:



ahahahahahahahahahahhhhhhh.......god, it feels good to be back!


Mike Williams should sue the producers of Groundhog Day for copyright infringement.
BearGoggles
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MoragaBear;842860148 said:

To be clear, I think Wilcox and the staff aren't as worried about the QB and team as you think they are.


I thinks that because they are going to run the ball A LOT and not ask the qb (whoever it is) to do very much - simple short passes.
OdontoBear66
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Considering we had one of the worst defenses in America last year, and yes, we improved under the current players and coaching, but that defense has made our current offense look bad, does not bode well for our QB and OL outlook, despite what the mods suggest. Yes, defenses tend to be ahead of offenses at this time of year, but Our Defense ahead of our offense???
moonpod
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OdontoBear66;842860514 said:

Considering we had one of the worst defenses in America last year, and yes, we improved under the current players and coaching, but that defense has made our current offense look bad, does not bode well for our QB and OL outlook, despite what the mods suggest. Yes, defenses tend to be ahead of offenses at this time of year, but Our Defense ahead of our offense???


OR our defensive coaching and scheming really was that bad last year.
wifeisafurd
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moonpod;842860519 said:

OR our defensive coaching and scheming really was that bad last year.


Probably some of both. The defensive side coaching really now has a huge resume, with Wilcox and DeRuyter having been top flight coordinators, the dline coach is a legend, etc. Conversely, the offense line has a lot of turnover and needs time to jell, four QBs taking snaps, a new offense being installed, and the like will take time to develop. My bet is the defense improves a lot and the offense losses scoring production due to line-up changes and more sustained, time consuming drives. Not sure where that gets Cal from a win/loss perspective.
6956bear
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OdontoBear66;842860514 said:

Considering we had one of the worst defenses in America last year, and yes, we improved under the current players and coaching, but that defense has made our current offense look bad, does not bode well for our QB and OL outlook, despite what the mods suggest. Yes, defenses tend to be ahead of offenses at this time of year, but Our Defense ahead of our offense???


Yes defenses tend to be ahead of the offenses after 2 weeks of camp. But IMO the lack of sustained reps by any of the Qbs is a major part of the problem. Offense develops a rhythm over time and that comes from repeated reps working as a unit. So much shuffling of players along the OL and at WR that very little rhythm gets established. The OL may be a weak link based on what I saw yesterday. Compounding the problem is that a new offense is being installed and some players like D Robertson and Stovall sat out the Spring for various reasons. Malik McMorris did not play yesterday either. They are being cautious with some bodies being dinged. The defense had a full compliment of players to play. It showed.

I am not in disagreement with the staff in shuffling the players so far. They need to find out who can play and strengths of the players. But now after a Spring and 2 weeks of Fall camp it is likely time to get more work for the units that will be playing. The QB competition may still be ongoing but IMO anyway it should not be a 4 man battle. Pick your 2 best get them the reps they need and find out which one is the starter. Hopefully by next Saturday they can have a full compliment of OL and WRs along with McMorris and the offense will be better. But after Saturday they will need to prepare for the season in earnest. Pick a QB (IMO they could pick now) and get going.

But the defense is playing better. The tackling was noticeably better. The depth at DB was very impressive. All 10 ( I count the nickel backs as they will play so much) among the 2 deep were pretty good. Trey Turner and Ashtyn Davis were running with the 3's and they are solid players. The DBs may not have any surefire top notch NFL type guys but nice athleticism all around. And much better use of players like Downs (blitzing and attacking) and Saffle (standing up where he can use his athleticism) and varying the fronts and pass rush schemes. Not Alabama by any stretch but better.
moonpod
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wifeisafurd;842860535 said:

My bet is the defense improves a lot and the offense losses scoring production due to line-up changes and more sustained, time consuming drives. Not sure where that gets Cal from a win/loss perspective.


If the defense ends up around 70 and the O drops to about 40 historically that easily gets us bowling. That being said 70 would be a giant leap for the D (although still below the middle) and 40 is a pretty good drop for the O
OdontoBear66
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6956bear;842860556 said:

Yes defenses tend to be ahead of the offenses after 2 weeks of camp. But IMO the lack of sustained reps by any of the Qbs is a major part of the problem. Offense develops a rhythm over time and that comes from repeated reps working as a unit. So much shuffling of players along the OL and at WR that very little rhythm gets established. The OL may be a weak link based on what I saw yesterday. Compounding the problem is that a new offense is being installed and some players like D Robertson and Stovall sat out the Spring for various reasons. Malik McMorris did not play yesterday either. They are being cautious with some bodies being dinged. The defense had a full compliment of players to play. It showed.

I am not in disagreement with the staff in shuffling the players so far. They need to find out who can play and strengths of the players. But now after a Spring and 2 weeks of Fall camp it is likely time to get more work for the units that will be playing. The QB competition may still be ongoing but IMO anyway it should not be a 4 man battle. Pick your 2 best get them the reps they need and find out which one is the starter. Hopefully by next Saturday they can have a full compliment of OL and WRs along with McMorris and the offense will be better. But after Saturday they will need to prepare for the season in earnest. Pick a QB (IMO they could pick now) and get going.

But the defense is playing better. The tackling was noticeably better. The depth at DB was very impressive. All 10 ( I count the nickel backs as they will play so much) among the 2 deep were pretty good. Trey Turner and Ashtyn Davis were running with the 3's and they are solid players. The DBs may not have any surefire top notch NFL type guys but nice athleticism all around. And much better use of players like Downs (blitzing and attacking) and Saffle (standing up where he can use his athleticism) and varying the fronts and pass rush schemes. Not Alabama by any stretch but better.


Great stuff 6956. Keep it coming. Good to have another informed set of eyes there. Thanks.
dajo9
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moonpod;842860559 said:

If the defense ends up around 70 and the O drops to about 40 historically that easily gets us bowling. That being said 70 would be a giant leap for the D (although still below the middle) and 40 is a pretty good drop for the O


I get the impression the O is set to drop more than that.
tequila4kapp
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The OL and QB areas are problems. That is a bad sign for this year. BUT...big picture, the offense is going to be more than fine. Our OC has a track record. That doesn't just go away. We will eventually be fine on that side of the ball. The defensive improvement is great to hear about. Put the two together and we'll eventually see some solid, balanced football. Again, maybe that doesn't happen this season. But I believe it is coming.
XXXBEAR
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So happy to see the resurgence of the defense! Wouldn't surprise me to see Wilcox and staff naming the QB starter this week (and I think it's Bowers).
moonpod
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dajo9;842860572 said:

I get the impression the O is set to drop more than that.


Well that's the question right? Even a drop to the 50's (assuming D to 70 or so) historically gets us bowling.
It gets sketchier at #s below that
OdontoBear66
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tequila4kapp;842860578 said:

The OL and QB areas are problems. That is a bad sign for this year. BUT...big picture, the offense is going to be more than fine. Our OC has a track record. That doesn't just go away. We will eventually be fine on that side of the ball. The defensive improvement is great to hear about. Put the two together and we'll eventually see some solid, balanced football. Again, maybe that doesn't happen this season. But I believe it is coming.


Add to that the thrust of the recruiting for 2018 (OL, DL, LB) plus Garber and McIlwain probably ready to gun it out.
OldBlue1999
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I thought 3 looked pretty good yesterday right up until he put the ball on the ground for the scoop and score. Can't have that, but if he can eliminate those types of catastrophic errors from his game he could be solid. 11 also did some nice things. 14 had a pretty bad day imo with just way too many picks. 7 didn't really stand out to me one way or another although he did throw one nice ball on a roll out that wasn't caught.

One thing I think might be getting a little overshadowed by the obvious significant improvement from the d is that the o did move the ball and get some scores in the earlier part of the scrimmage. Also calmly nailed a long fg for a score. It's not like they were totally shut down. The d just did a way better job swarming and tackling than we're used to seeing and got pretty dominant as the scrimmage wore on so that was the fresh impression when it ended. Biggest play-related concerns for me were turnovers (picks) and ol procedural penalties (but I wasn't tracking who committed them).
89Bear
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XXXBEAR;842860580 said:

So happy to see the resurgence of the defense! Wouldn't surprise me to see Wilcox and staff naming the QB starter this week (and I think it's Bowers).


That's what I'm thinking. In the little I have watched, I have been impressed with his arm strength.
ducky23
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I think Matt Anderson is going to be of Doug brien like importance this year.

Under dykes, the kicker is not of huge significance since the offense is generally efficient enough to score tds and the defense is bad enough where fgs don't matter as much.

This year will most likely be very different and every fg will be of greater importance. So it'll be nice to have one of the better kickers in the country. Cause I can see us stalling out on the 30 a lot this year.
OaktownBear
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moonpod;842860559 said:

If the defense ends up around 70 and the O drops to about 40 historically that easily gets us bowling. That being said 70 would be a giant leap for the D (although still below the middle) and 40 is a pretty good drop for the O


Not as big a difference as you think. Pace of play alone will reduce the number of points scored on both sides of the ball by 10%-15%. If I remember correctly we were close to 40 in offensive efficiency last year and in the nineties in defense efficiency.
moonpod
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OaktownBear;842860649 said:

Not as big a difference as you think. Pace of play alone will reduce the number of points scored on both sides of the ball by 10%-15%. If I remember correctly we were close to 40 in offensive efficiency last year and in the nineties in defense efficiency.


it'll be interesting because sure pace of play had to factor but ultimately in total O we were 10 last year and total D we were 125 and we JUST missed bowling.
oskirules
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ducky23;842860623 said:

I think Matt Anderson is going to be of Doug brien like importance this year.

Under dykes, the kicker is not of huge significance since the offense is generally efficient enough to score tds and the defense is bad enough where fgs don't matter as much.

This year will most likely be very different and every fg will be of greater importance. So it'll be nice to have one of the better kickers in the country. Cause I can see us stalling out on the 30 a lot this year.


Matty Ice Anderson for Heisman.
TheSouseFamily
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oskirules;842860757 said:

Matty Ice Anderson for Heisman.


It's a shame Anderson won't ever be able to kick with the top longsnapper in the nation. What a lethal combination those two would be. I bet we'd never miss an extra point and convert a large percentage of field goal attempts.
CAL6371
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I'll say there are problems at qb - Chase Forrest was 9 for 16 with THREE INTS on Saturday. Totally unacceptable.
OaktownBear
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moonpod;842860722 said:

it'll be interesting because sure pace of play had to factor but ultimately in total O we were 10 last year and total D we were 125 and we JUST missed bowling.


Pace of play AND efficiency were BIG factors. If you are going to compare last year's offense to this years using total yards per game, you are not going to get a good comparison in my opinion.

1. Sonny's offenses were always better at piling up yards than points. Cal ranked 9th last year in yards per game, but 20th in points per game. The year before, Cal ranked 9th in yards per game and 26th in points per game.

2. Pace of play massively bolstered last year's total offense stats. We ran 10.5 more plays per game than the year before and gained 5 fewer yards. We ranked 9th in yards per game, but 44th in yards per play. We ranked 20th in points per game and 42nd in points per play. Per play stats matter because if you run hurry up to get the same total stats, you are giving the other team more opportunities to work with. The year before, Cal was 7th in the country in yards per play and 30th in points per play. The total numbers were similar, but the offensive efficiency was much better the year before.

3. If Cal had run the same number of plays on offense that Eastern Washington did last year, and had the same offensive efficiency, Cal would have ranked 34th in yards per game and 38th in points per game. To me, that is baseline. That is with a veteran QB and offensive line as opposed to an inexperienced QB and an inexperienced OL that lacks depth.

Bottom line is that if we run our offense at a similar pace to EWU, our offense will have to improve dramatically to reach the same total offense stats. Given our losses on that side of the ball, I don't see it happening. I'd guess we rank in the 60's (a half a yard reduction in yards per play would put us in the mid sixties) On the flip side, our defense should benefit some in total yards per game by running fewer plays.
going4roses
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Wilcox and Baldwin said they will have the ability to go fast if needed. The opponent/game plan/situation will determine our offense pace but will the defense be improved enough limit other teams offenses snaps/play count?
moonpod
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Oaktown some of that is by design on the offensive side. sure could the efficiency be better absolutely but fundamentally Dykes and many of the spread offenses aren't designed to be "effecient" but more they wear down defenses. does it hurt your own defense? absolutely because there's a sort of "acceptance" that you might end up with a 10 second 3 and out. ultimately it ended up being by either measure a top tier O last year. sure much better at yards than points, but still it was a top tier O.

as for EWU pace of play, it seems to vary tremendously depending on whom they play and who they have playing for them. you don't drop 45 on WSU, 42 on Oregon and 52 on UW in consecutive years playing slow. also would hazard it's dangerous to extrapolate to much EITHER way with EWU efficiency and pace with what we will do this year regardless of our QB and OL situations relative to last year for EWU (i think they had a returning true soph starter at QB--the guy that replaced Adams). Baldwin tends to tailor what he actually does with his O to his players strengths and they have stated that they haven't started the "customizing" yet. I think they said that will start this week or maybe next (think they said 2 weeks before UNC, but might be off)

I do agree that most likely we will have a slower pace of play than we had under Sonny, but I wouldn't be surprised to see our pace of play vary and I wouldn't be surprised if at least initially the offense didn't at least superficially look very similar to what we ran last year (it's the way the roster is structured)
CalBear04
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They did pick a top 2 and we had two transfers out. Then 2 new guys come in and it's open competition again.

That is what tells me that they are hoping for much more than Forrest/Bowers can provide.
OaktownBear
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Quote:

Oaktown some of that is by design on the offensive side. sure could the efficiency be better absolutely but fundamentally Dykes and many of the spread offenses aren't designed to be "effecient" but more they wear down defenses. does it hurt your own defense? absolutely because there's a sort of "acceptance" that you might end up with a 10 second 3 and out. ultimately it ended up being by either measure a top tier O last year. sure much better at yards than points, but still it was a top tier O.


Have to agree to disagree on this one. Our offense last year was average at best. It is one thing to say that you aren't looking to be efficient in the first quarter, but if the point is to wear the defense down, you should make up for lesser efficiency in the first quarter with improved efficiency as the game wears on and your overall efficiency number should still be good. The 2015 offense was flat out better both by eyeball test and by efficiency. I think the efficiency stats bear out what was obvious on the field. That is two spread offenses under the same head coach with the same total offense stats and significantly different efficiency.

If you use a strategy in basketball that you will always shoot in the first ten seconds of the shot clock, and you score 100 points a game shooting 8th in conference in field goal percentage, and you give up 120 points a game, I don't think it is accurate to say you have a top offense.

The 2016 Cal offense beats the 2004 Cal offense in the major total offense per game categories. The 2004 offense blows the doors off of them in the efficiency categories. I don't think there is any question which offense was superior.

Quote:

as for EWU pace of play, it seems to vary tremendously depending on whom they play and who they have playing for them. you don't drop 45 on WSU, 42 on Oregon and 52 on UW in consecutive years playing slow. also would hazard it's dangerous to extrapolate to much EITHER way with EWU efficiency and pace with what we will do this year regardless of our QB and OL situations relative to last year for EWU (i think they had a returning true soph starter at QB--the guy that replaced Adams). Baldwin tends to tailor what he actually does with his O to his players strengths and they have stated that they haven't started the "customizing" yet. I think they said that will start this week or maybe next (think they said 2 weeks before UNC, but might be off)


First of all, I'm not saying they play slow. More like average to slightly above average. (a little slower than Cal in 2015). Cal played exceptionally fast last year.

I'm not saying they play at the same pace every game. That being said, they averaged out 75.9 plays per game last year. (and if you are going to compare total per game stats, average is what matters) 74.5 the year before. 77.1 the year before that. That is pretty consistent, so I think that is probably about what we'll see. Also, they scored 45 on WSU in 66 plays, so playing pretty slow for them. Oregon was in 86 plays and UW 82, so fast and somewhat fast for them on average. In 2015 they scored 55 points against #11 Montana State in a 55-50 shootout on 57 plays. So, no, it doesn't necessarily take playing fast to drop those kind of points. (again look at Cal's 2004 offense who never ran fast and put up big points several times.)
Cal89
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Plays per game average under SD:

2016 = 86+
2015 = 76
2014 = 81+
2013 = 87+

The O under TF was damn fast to start (2013), and contrary to everything about his System, it got progressively slower at Cal; because it was clearly not working as designed/hoped...

Under SD in conference games, the ones that most matter, we were like 4th to 5th best in scoring points. Not all that good, especially all things considered. With 82+ plays per game in the SD era the offense was quite inefficient. As a reference last year, the Cougs did almost 79 plays a game, quite a bit slower than us, yet scored nearly a TD better a conference game...

I still believe that we had the worst FBS defense ever over a four year span. Maybe something one can tolerate or justify for a best in nation offense, but were were nothing near that.

Here's to a potent, efficient offense in 2017!
moonpod
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OaktownBear;842860945 said:

Have to agree to disagree on this one.


:beer:
kad02002
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What I'm interested to see is how they approach the games in which they are overmatched this season. Traditionally, the common coaching response is to slow the game down and run the ball - shrinking the game can keep things close and favors an underdog. This gets a little tricky when running a spread offense, but everyone believes that Baldwin can adjust. However, it seems as though his Eastern Washington teams went all in on their spread/throwing scheme when playing Pac 12 opponents (though, given the success of their QBs/WRs from those teams, perhaps they weren't overmatched as overmatched as one might think) and just allowed the games to be shootouts.

So, do Wilcox/Baldwin hide the defense, if they feel necessary, by bringing more players into the formation, draining the clock, and otherwise attempting to control the ball? Or do they decide that this minimizes a great strength, which is Stovall and Robertson in the passing game? Personally, I'd opt to shrink the games while the defense and team in general gains depth and experience - and their personnel (head smashing fullback, thunder/lightning RB duo, great speed at WR) really does fit well with a run/play action style of play.

I guess thats a long way of saying what we've all been thinking: it will be interesting to see how Baldwin - who is ostensibly not married to any particular system - plays it this year.
LACalFan
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FrankBear21;842860282 said:

You're going to like it.


NYCGOBEARS;842860291 said:

I just rewatched the whole series recently. Love that show.


Is this the kind of series that takes a few episodes before it starts clicking? I'm 2 in, and so far feeling kind of meh about it.
NYCGOBEARS
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LACalFan;842862153 said:

Is this the kind of series that takes a few episodes before it starts clicking? I'm 2 in, and so far feeling kind of meh about it.

Yeah, it really grabs you about midway through season one.
LACalFan
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NYCGOBEARS;842862157 said:

Yeah, it really grabs you about midway through season one.


Cool. Ill give it a few more episodes.
HoopDreams
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so i guess its bowers?
Blueblood
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HoopDreams;842863079 said:

so i guess its bowers?


...or...or....or it could mean it's Forrest!
BearlyClad
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moonpod;842860913 said:

O.....

as for EWU pace of play, it seems to vary tremendously depending on whom they play and who they have playing for them. .... Baldwin tends to tailor what he actually does with his O to his players strengths and they have stated that they haven't started the "customizing" yet. I think they said that will start this week or maybe next (think they said 2 weeks before UNC, but might be off)

I do agree that most likely we will have a slower pace of play than we had under Sonny, but I wouldn't be surprised to see our pace of play vary and I wouldn't be surprised if at least initially the offense didn't at least superficially look very similar to what we ran last year (it's the way the roster is structured)


I watched Baldwin's games a number of times with EWU. His team came out in the second half with a totally different look, changed scheme, etc. Surprised me because it was very noticeable. I concluded he was adjusting extremely well to whatever happened in the first half. It does not surprise that he would also try to use the players he has in whatever place he thinks can work on the attack, to win.
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