ronaprhys's picture


MEMBER SINCE   July 14, 2017

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Comment 15 Aug 2019

IMO, all of these predictions rest on what we'll see in the first 3-4 games.  If they come out of the gate and have strong offensive and defensive showings, then I think it's game on and I'll feel really good about winning the B10 and the going to the CFP championship.  If the D is lackluster (again), then I think we're in big trouble.  If the offense isn't quite clicking, more of the same.  

I expect the offense to click, but it's hard to see our passing game surpassing last years.  If we can get 80% of that passing game, but bolster that with a strong rushing attack, we're in a great position.  

Comment 30 Jul 2019

As I look at it, we'll know a lot more by the end of the 3rd week.  At that point, we'll have Florida Atlantic, Cincinnati, and Indiana under our belts.  If the defense is still giving up big plays, it'll be obvious with those guys, just like it was last year.  Additionally, the offense should be able to put up quality numbers.

If we have a loss in that set, we know this year is likely to be a Very Long Year.  If blow them all out, hope for an undefeated season should be in full effect.  If we struggle or have close games, then the rest of the year will have enough risk I'll need to start drinking more heavily to get through it.  

Comment 22 Jul 2019

The problem they had last year was they had a "great" defense against inferior talent coupled with a "solid" offense against inferior talent.  Whenever either unit ran into quality opposition, it was sorely exposed.  

That great defense is now missing many players and sure, it could come back (to be fair, we've done so after kids graduating/getting drafted) - but they also lost much of their coaching staff.  That should lead to a regression on that front.  Maybe it won't - but only time on the field will tell.

The offense should get better, just due to experience.  Installing a new scheme could play well into their hands and we'll probably see them look pretty good at the beginning of the year.  Just like the defense, though, they'll have to demonstrate it against quality opposition before we should believe it.  

As long as our defense gets better this year and our offense can play well, I still think we win.  

Comment 19 Jul 2019

One would think that, with an almost entirely new coaching staff (keeping the one coach who had the brightest spot on the D) that favorites would no longer be considered.  It's entirely blank.  The best players should win out, but that remains to be seen.  It may be that we just happen to have some sub-par players out there and hopefully new coaches can cover for that.

What I really hope we see is a new coaching staff that takes the same players and puts them in a better position to win their individual battles - and that they do.  Would love to see a stifling defense.

However, the realist in me simply hopes that we improve to a good defense that doesn't give up huge big plays.  If we can limit those and just play well in the other facets, that'll help support what the offense should be doing - which is scoring points by the metric ton.  

Comment 18 Jul 2019

The deal is that I don't want him gone.  I want him to continue to stick around and lose to us.  Over and over and over.  

One for the sheer joy of beating them, two for my personal joy as I live near that town, and three to hear all of the excuses thrown about year after year.

Comment 02 Jul 2019

Since only one position group gets a 75%, I'm saying the rankings are a bit too high.  Rank them how they did last year and the unknown players only get a ranking based on their HS performance and rankings (5 star recruit gets a 7/10, 4 star 6/10, etc).  Then compare against this article at the end of the year.  

Comment 01 Jul 2019

Seems lots of folks here struggle with worst case vs what's likely.  The author here just came with what they consider to be worst case (losing to scum would definitely be part of any worst case scenario).

I think the worst case scenario involves injuries.  Given how Fields should play, it's hard to see the offense not humming.  The D is another story, but one has to assume that it's going to be better.  With both of those in mind, I would expect our offense to be very good - not Haskins good, but different - high point totals in most games, never seeming to be out of it, and generally controlling their time on the turf.  

If the defense can just improve, moving halfway up from where they finished to the leaders, we'll be so, so much better off.  Not giving up constant huge gains, allowing mediocre players to look like Heisman candidates, etc.  Many fewer PI penalties extending stalled drives.  Even with a new coach, I don't expect them to go from bad to stifling in one year.  No different than I don't expect the offense to be as stupid lights-out as they were last year.

To me, this is more likely.  Our offense regresses a bit, but not much.  Still one of the best in the country.  Our defense moves up into the top 3rd.  Special teams just hums along, doing well.  If we get this, our season should allow for us to be undefeated - one loss at worst (as long as it isn't to scum) and win the B10.  

But then there's the worst case.  Fields gets injured and is out for the season in the first game.  Now we're on to our second QB.  Sure, we win this game, but dramatically paring back our play-book so the QB can function is the result.  This leaves us up a creek for the Fighting Fickells.  On top of that, the defense doesn't improve right away - it takes a bit.  This gets us our first loss against Cincy.  We then have some easier games to help get things installed, but it puts us in a position to drop a game in B10 play (not scum) and that costs us our B10 Championship.  

Comment 28 Jun 2019

There are similar statistical comparisons out there - Football Outsiders does a really nice job with the pro stuff.  The problem here is that college teams don't play enough teams in common to get good reads on relative performance, so we're stuck with metrics like this.  Would love to see some DVOA stats within the conferences where we may have enough data points to actually compare common teams.

Comment 27 Jun 2019

As one living up here in Mordor, I'm not sure if season-long pain or one particular game pain is better.  While it's a given that we must beat them, whether or not they're 0-11 when they meet us or 11-0 both have their bonuses for us.  If they've not won a game the entire year, I get to be extra happy every week (because of course we've won those weeks, too - unless it's a mid-tier team from the West).  

Plus, from what I see from most of the fans here, they've grown accepting of themselves being a mediocre football team and not beating us.  They used to the pain.  They've been beaten down so many times they don't have hope anymore.  Sure - coaching staff has changed, but the typical fan up here doesn't seem to be talking smack.  They just assume they'll figure out a way to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory.

Comment 18 Jun 2019

As nice as it is to have guys that take the top off, you really only need one of those on the field at a time.  The others take different routes and it opens up and exposes the secondary.  The key here is for them to actually catch the ball and move the sticks.  As they do that reliably, it pulls defenders out of the box, which opens up the running attack.  Alternatively, you can use the run to set up the pass - but either way, those receivers need to be exactly where the QB expects them to be and then they need to catch the ball.  Speed helps with that, but it's not the end-all be-all.  Run a crisp route that puts the defender at a disadvantage, then block them out to make the catch - past that, YAC, baby.

Comment 17 Jun 2019

I don't see it as the Iowa or Purdue game, maybe because we've had this happen two years in a row and there's plenty of folks still on the team that should be warning against it.  Secondly, at least with Purdue last year, we all saw the warning signs from the linebackers and secondary.  We knew they weren't good and that they were being abused.  No changes were made because the offense was simply lights out.  Secondly, this should be an up and coming program, so we I'm assuming they'll be on fire by this point.  It's very likely we'll both be undefeated to start with, so there's at least that to help drive points home.