A Moment to Redefine

It occurred to me that Weis has a great moment to show he understands there’s a learning curve in the college game. A shot of humility, as in: “I’ve learned a great lesson this year” would set the stage for a nice build the rest of this year and into next year. This week is the first one in which I think Charlie articulated a problem with his ‘schematic’ approach:

“Sometimes when you try to do every game, you try to find the X’s and O’s schematics to best exploit a team’s weaknesses. Sometimes you really don’t have an identity. The identity that I have always dealt with, at least on the offensive side of the ball, is multiple formations and multiple personnel groups to run the same plays. That’s my stereotype; that’s my label. And I think that’s what we really haven’t gotten to. We’re trying to get back to the basics and the core because you can always grow from the core. But I think right now we do not have a very established solid core. I think that’s what this week has been about; I think we are going about establishing that core.”

“Let’s just say that too many X’s and O’s are on the right track. We maybe are trying to do too many different things to scheme week by week that doesn’t give you a chance to have an identity.”

The first step is admitting there’s a problem, the second is taking action to fix it. Pete Carroll has emphasized running the ball and they’re driving kids 5 yards off the line of scrimmage, which of course, gives them an incredible margin for error in their passing game.

As Across says, if we’re missing 40% of our passing plays and getting sacked another 10%, there is no way to win. If you miss a slant, you get zero yards and break the rhythm of an offense. If you run the ball and fail you at least are moving forward, but running does something else, it opens up the passing game and takes the charge out of the pass rush. So a missed pass play breaks the rhythm of the offense and does nothing to open up the run game, but a failed run keeps you moving forward and sets up the pass. It also wears down the pass rush, the linebackers and the d-backs. Additionally, it creates a tough forward leaning offensive line, which is where we want to get to.

Let’s face it, we couldn’t stop the pass rush last year either.

Andy Reid once said he’d never run the ball if he didn’t have to. I fear the same is true with Reid’s good buddy Weis.

As I was discussing with Vannie, this isn’t rocket science here.

Other issues we talked about:

  • Charlie just needs to get Kamara, Tate, Hord and Parris out on the field. You can actually see these guys when they’re open and they’re big enough to block. Grimes and West do get open, but they also get stuffed at the line and Clausen has missed them. We need to invest is some receivers who will improve the probability of completing passes and runs… it’s not just about who’s getting open. A big receiver on a slant is a bigger target. More room for error. My oh my are we missing Benn this year. He was a two win recruit.
  • As I wrote before, we need to get an effective fullback in there.
  • Aldridge is a bell-cow type back and so is Hughes. We need to make a decision and get these guys in and let them get in a rhythm.

Footbaw can be a very simple game.


2 Responses to “A Moment to Redefine”

  1. Cliff Says:

    I think every ND-related blog (including mine) should just write “no mas” until we finally win a game this year. On the bright side, Duke pummeled Navy today, so we’ll probably lose to Duke instead of losing to both.

  2. Anonymous Says:

    Let me try this again…

    Yup, the O-line is bad. No argument there. Too many penalties, and still too many “look out” blocks in the passing game…but those are simple numbers indicative of performance. The thing I find disturbing is the number of individuals who have somehow become Schematic and personnel geniuses…

    Football can look easy with execution…but so can brain surgery or “rocket science”. If it were as simple as you guys made it out to be, you’d be playing/coaching, not writing about it.

    I hate to see these guys get burried like this, but I also think that CW knows player personnel, and scheme better than anyone.

    If he gets fired it will be over wins and losses…pretty sure he gets that, and is motivated to win. That motivation likely overcomes anything other than putting guys on the field who are ready, and calling plays that put those guys in the best position to execute.

    Do ya think he’s stupid enough to have not considered what you folks offer up…I think he is burdened with all the information/considerations, where you writer types know about half…best analogy I can offer is a political new-comer (you) and an incumbant (Charlie). You have all the answers, the issues are simple, the is job straight forward, after all, its not rocket science. But sit in the man’s chair, know what he knows, and feel the weight on you…then deliver thr results you seem to think are so easliy attained. Until then, I think you all should take a step back from scheme and personnel discussions starting with “Charlie needs to… “

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