My CWS Frame is in..wanted to share
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I guess the most appropriate way to begin this inaugural post-game synopsis of the 2017 season is with this...Same song, third verse. Where the offense is concerned especially. I saw nothing much to make me feel like we are going to move up the offensive rankings this season. Sure it was a higher-ranked Michigan and we don't normally start with an opponent this strong or on the road, and there were all those suspensions. As the late Dennis Hopper's character in the cult classic Blue Velvet might say..."F**k that s**t!" I've about had enough excuses at this point. It was pretty clear who the best-prepared team was, if not the strongest and most disciplined. The year is still very young, however, and there is the possibility (couldn't bring myself to type "likelihood") that we will improve greatly. We'll get better, but the question in a lot of minds has to be "how much" and "will it be enough?" Time will tell.
Anyhow, here's some thoughts with this disclaimer: it's going to be brutally honest on my part, but after this showing to start year three of Mac's tenure, I think that's only fair. Here goes...
*I was led to believe that the offensive line was greatly improved and even described as a "strength of the team." Holy crap! If this is true, we're doomed! Seriously, they looked to be overpowered by the Michigan front and should be graded "F" on both run blocking and pass pro. Certainly, some of the play calls on some particular down and distances didn't help, but they were simply awful in a game of this magnitude, even if it's early. Just showing up won't get it done. You've got to compete. Not 100% certain about the position coach, but he's starting out with a deficit. A lot to work on and correct. Not the start we expected from this previously much maligned group.
*Franks won't make Freshman All-America, but I can't say he was terrible considering the play in front of him. Made a nice long throw (actually had a little time) and a couple of nice scrambles. Threw the ball away to prevent a loss. Some mistakes, like the fumble on a third and four scramble. Tried to bounce it, when staying vertical would most likely gotten the first down, and fumbled trying to stretch for the sticks. Rookie trying to do too much. Tough position given that it was obvious we weren't going to muster much of a running threat. Zaire, in my view, wasn't much better. Led us to a couple of first downs and completed two or three nice passes. The question I'm left with is was it worth the risk of killing your young, first time starting QB's confidence by yanking him while the game was still in reach for a guy who arguably did no more? I'm not a Zaire hater, but I don't know that the move was fair to either, nor did it give us a better chance to win.
*Defense was pretty good in spots. I have greater confidence in the ground they can gain moving forward. They are ok now, but there are some glaring issues that can be seen. First, we might have missed more tackles than we made. Second, our DEs immediately fall inside when the QB opens away, making us susceptible to the counter and cut-backs. Third, we are under-sized across the front. Speed is not an advantage if you can't get off of blocks. Fourth, LBs seemed to get cut off or false key and step up on runs and get lost in the wad. They've got to be free to pursue laterally. Fifth, DBs probably need to play more man under and either ditch or be coached-up better on other coverages like the quarters that resulted in a long TD over the top. They can also be better in run support. In fact, I'd say they'll have to be. Shannon, I believe, is going to have to figure both some run and pass blitzes to help his unit out, especially when we get into the conference schedule. We got very little pressure on the QB rushing four and put the secondary/LBs in a bind. On the few occasions we looped the DE inside, we had some success in getting a little pressure. I also think he needs to stress being fundamentally sound and disciplined, especially where tackling and assignments are concerned. This is on the coaches and what they are expecting and demanding from the players. We won't be as good with this group without greater attention to this detail, in my opinion. Pick six's were a bright spot and our best offense, however.
*Special Teams were ok. Punter was our game MVP. Lot of missed tackles by coverage and the fumble can't be tolerated. Eddy, you can't miss like you did and when you did.
Based on what we've been told, along with what we've seen previously, I'm inclined to call Mr. Hand, the teacher from Fast Times at Ridgemont High to talk to the coaching staff. His only question should be "What's wrong with you people? Are you all on dope?! I don't think what they are seeing at practice is objectively translating to what they are expecting in performance against a good team, especially where the offense is concerned.
No, I'm not ready to cancel Christmas, but we've got a ways to go. All I can say is get it done. I'm getting impatient !
I've been too busy with the relocation to come out and play for the last several days, but the new house is up and running and I'm an actual, by-God Floridian again! We're sleeping in the new abode for the first time tonight and I couldn't be more psyched. Scraping TN off my shoes, after almost a quarter century, is a joy no one who hasn't lived among those half-wit, in-bread, sheet wearing, sister marrying, peckerwood *******s will ever fully appreciate. The young gentleman who installed my TV/internet package this am wasn't wearing a bilious orange cap or T-shirt - or puke orange checker board overalls. I liked him immediately. I liked him even more when I mentioned the Gators and he responded with a heart-felt Go Gators!
Back in the Holy Land! Free at last, free at last!
Great win...but WHEW! We looked poised to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory only to snatch victory from jaws of...overtime? Seriously, I was fearful that as gassed as the D was, overtime would have been tough to pull off. But that's irrelevant for now. Mac thankfully was able to keep the home streak against the Vols alive. But it might be as appropriate to give Butch some credit, too. He had a few head-scratchers where decisions were concerned ( more on that later). Very glad, again, for the victory and some improvements, but still much, much to work on. Let's talk specifics, shall we...
*I'll start with the OL. Some better and the stat line (which I've not looked at) might make them look a little improved, as well. But there are still some negatives to critique. One thing that jumps out is that any running play that calls for a G Scheme, a log, or a cut-off involving lateral movement by the OL usually results in an unblocked man or two blowing the play up or stretching it to the sidelines for little to no gain. Our guys are S-L-O-W! They just can't get there. Run blocking may have been a hair better, but if you take away Malik Davis' long run and a couple of decent carries by Perrine and Thompson, we still didn't get a great push. The backs, Thompson in particular, got some good YAC to probably help inflate the rushing totals. Pass pro was ok I guess, though Ivey had a couple of noticeable struggles. Tough to see a guy so heralded out of HS struggle as he has. Don't know if it's because he came from a run heavy Single Wing offense, poor collegiate coaching, or just slow to develop, but I hope he can become more consistent soon.
*Take away Townsend and Eddy and Special teams aren't real special. We don't block or cover very well at all. Somebody *ahem* must not stress the hustle, pride, and want to that is required for these units to be a force and team strength. Or if they stress it, they don't reinforce it consistently. I'm afraid we'll get hurt buy these units at some point. Eddy saves the Kick Cover bunch, so really don't know how well they complete their tasks.
*Defense started out very well. The DL stood their ground some better and they were able to null the rush a bit in the first half. Secondary had some shakey moments early on, but as a whole, the entire group looked good, bent but didn't break, and looked poised to dominate the entirety of the game. I will say CJ Henderson scares me most out of the young DBs, despite his pick six. He is terrible in run support and that must be corrected. Once again, the ghost of offensive futility and a string of short rests in the second half caught up with the D. We started missing a ton of tackles (again) and we screwed up some coverages. LBs, who were adequate with a few pretty good plays in the first half, were exposed in the second with cut offs, bad angles, and slow pursuit. The back-ups tried, but really aren't SEC-caliber players. Still, Reese has a promising look and Joseph will be solid as he accumulates reps. Still this group showed improvement.
*Franks was certainly better. Showed some poise, threw some good balls, and managed the offense. His TD pass on the final play required him to scramble, find the receiver, set his feet, and execute a 65 yard throw. He did all pretty well! Very pleased to see the strides he made physically and mentally. Leadership is coming on. I think he'll be a keeper based on what he showed us today.
*Kadarius Toney...keep finding ways to get him the ball. As was noted in the Spring game, the kid is electric. If he'd have hung on to the pass in the end zone, he'd have had a really spectacular night. The best is in front of him. Would hope we'll also see him return kicks at some point.
*Play calls remain enigmatic for the most part. When we play not to lose, it seems to backfire quite a bit. Our best offense, or the best flow, seems to always be early. Scripts ? But at least we finally put a couple of offensive scores on the board, even if the last one screwed up the plan to go to overtime! I think Law termed this "Butterluck" in another thread!
*Duke Dawson had a great two-play sequence! I believe he played pretty well overall and seems to be developing into a good leader. Gardner, on the other hand, didn't look very consistent and made some noticeable mistakes, particularly missed tackles. You aren't there yet, kid. Need to forget the HS hype and step it up a notch. You've got the tools.
*c2 Jr. read me a Twitter exchange that started with a Vol fan saying just after Cleveland's TD grab that "There's not a God!" A Gator fan replied "Yes there is, but one of you guys pissed on him!" Classic.
*Butch...first and goal from the nine very late in the game. A TD gives you a four point lead. Your RB was gashing us. But you chose to throw it three times? But at least, as one of our players tweeted, Townsend I think, "You're still Champions of Life!" I hope you soon get a lifetime contract.
*Davis and Perine just can't fumble like they did. Thompson, on the other hand, has looked ok and has held on to the ball so far. Still not as good a group without Scarlett.
*One thing that strikes me about this team is that we really don't do many of the technique and fundamental things correctly on a consistent basis (e.g. refer to the OL critique earlier). Poor angles defensively and offensively stand out. Youth and inexperience are culprits, but it is the responsibility of the coaches to affect a change.
*Shannon still remains a little to conservative on pass D where blitzing is concerned. Third and long you can about guarantee we will rush four and get little to no pressure with a soft man on the corners or quarters coverage, which we f**k up about every time. Come on, man. Be a little creative. Of course you've got to demand more from your kids, but if you do it right, they'll play up to them.
So Gators, we live to fight another day. Played some better, but we've still got a lot of work in front of us. The O can't continue to put as many reps on the D as they do. This is probably job one, but it has been a constant under Mac and is a killer against the better teams, which I don't believe UT is one of. Big job up next against UK. Can we keep that streak alive? Depends on how well we correct the mistakes that still linger. Again, glad to have a W and offensive TDs. Let's hear what you think.
- Thread: Gatornation's Newest Addition
- Thread: 2-1
Some of you know I coach HS football. I have been to three straight title games and have gone 2-1. Second title came last night. Go me!!!
Not sure I could do this on a major level. It's not scheme or knowledge that I lack. I think I am smarter than most coaches because the ones I interact with seem kinda dumb to me. The obvious stuff they get wrong a lot. I see it a lot on Saturday too. I can't understand it.
Too often coaches focus on drills and individual stuff and don't teach the game. The smart side to football. They use big terminology without explaining it. Had one coach yell at a first year kid because he didn't slide down in the box. He didn't know what the box was.
Knowing football doesn't mean you can coach. Coaching is more teaching so players know what to do. This past week, we didn't put on pads. During practice, put the defense walking thru the opponents offense to the point they could recognize every run play based on formation, RB position, line stances, etc. Then after practice, reinforced on the white board. They were sick of it. Didn't care. We pitched a shut out in a state title game for 47 minutes and 37 seconds. The score we gave up was by the 9th graders we brought up who scrapped and clawed for 4 minutes before giving up the score.
When I asked the kids how it was going out there, the comment I got was "coach, they are running everything you said they would". In the handshake line, the opposing HC took me aside and told me he threw the whole playbook at us and couldn't move the ball. We gave up 93 yards of rushing and 62 yards of passing. About half of all that came on the last drive against the youngsters.
Coaching football for a high strung type A personality who hates to lose is too stressful which is why I couldn't do this at a college level. I just won my second state title last night and all I can think about now is next year. Didn't really enjoy the win because I didn't want my team to lose.
Kinda rambling, but our coaching staff, if they are anything like me, hate to lose and some of our fans should remember when the team loses, their jobs are on the line.
- Thread: Finally retired...sorta
When the Army blocked your site at work, I didn’t get to check in as much. However after 25 plus years in the Army, I am now retired and will be able to check in a little more regularly. Although I’m retired from the Army, I am not retired. I went to work for a great Oil Company here in South Texas as their “Safety Man”. I will promise to make a better effort to check in with y’all and I look forward to the Mullen Gators taking the field, kicking ass, and taking names! #GoGators #ItsGreatToBeAFloridaGator
Just want to wish all the father's on this board a Happy Father's Day. It's a very hard day this year for me. Being only 32 years of age and not having my father around anymore is tough on this day. This will be my 5th one without my dad but the real bummer is knowing I should be a father myself right now. My wife and i were supposed to give birth to twins in May but lost both during the 1st trimester. Then lost another a few months ago in the 1st trimester so it's a bad day for me but I wish all the dads a great day.
Cherish the moments you have with you're kids and don't take it for granted because their are people out there who would love to be in youre position tomorrow and can't be. All I've ever wanted was to be able to be a dad and raise my kids the way I was... As a Gator! I'm most likely never gonna get that chance because of my situation so just be thankful to be a dad and to have a day just for you.
A gator win tomorrow would be a nice pick me up for such a gloomy day. Go Gators!!!
So I've purposely waited a little while to post my thoughts on the Missouri game, partially so I could rewatch it on DVR, and partially because I wanted to process what I had to say. The game itself at face value was a smashing success. Seeing how Missouri has given us fits whether we've beaten them or not since they joined the East, it was nice to beat them up for once. I'll go around each position group and offer up some points of wisdom for your reading pleasure.
QB - Obviously Del Rio had a rough game. I don't know if it was rust, or if he's still not back to 100%, but he wasn't even close to his best. Underthrows and bad decisions were the story of the game for him. I will say that he did make some absolutely fantastic plays to keep drives alive, the most impressive being his early deep toss to Cleveland under pressure in the pouring rain, and the deep out to Powell in the 2nd half on 3rd and long. The one really big positive about what he did Saturday was he only took one sack despite being under pressure quite a bit. He's very crafty at avoiding the pressure and getting away from the pocket when he needs to instead of panicking and bolting immediately (Driskel and Treon style). And he knows how to throw the ball away. Now we just need him to recognize early that if the primary option on a route tree is double covered, he should maybe go somewhere else with the ball.
RB - The running back by committee didn't bother me until Herndon got in there. Not sure what the hell that was all about. Scarlett and Perine remain our best threats at RB, but Thompson had some very, very good runs himself and seemed to be reading his blocks much better than he was earlier in the season. The three of them combined for 33 carries for 272 yards, a 8.24 ypc average. We can piss and moan about RBBC all we want, but those are GREAT numbers. Some here have said we only had that many yards because we wore them out, but that's sorta the point of RBBC. You've got three fresh RBs going up against a tired defense in the 4th quarter. Look at how Cook and Henry did against us late in those games last year if you want to know how that works out.
WR - Another rough game for this position group outside of Cleveland. Callaway seems to be lost in Neverland somewhere, his head hasn't been in it all year. Two false starts, and he stopped and waited on the ball on Del Rio's pick in the 3rd quarter instead of coming back to the ball. The defender made a nice play to jump the route, but if Callaway had kept coming back, maybe that's just a PBU instead of an INT. Several times during the game, I was watching the route tree and absolutely nobody was getting open. Then when Del Rio scrambled, nobody worked to get open on his side to give him an option for an outlet. Bright side is we have a legit threat in Cleveland, and I hope they can work him into the passing game more as the season rolls on.
TE - Not much to say other than Goolsby and Lewis both remain as good security blankets in the passing game. The throwback to Goolsby was a thing of beauty (my all time favorite offensive play is the rollout throwback to the TE, makes me happier than a fat kid in a candy store).
OL - All in all, they honestly had a pretty good game outside of the penalties. Del Rio only took one sack and they paved the way for almost 300 yards rushing. Most of the times LDR was running for his life was because of the aforementioned lack of ability to get open by the WR. They let in some pressure here and there, but it was a more consistent performance than we're used to seeing from these guys. As far as the false starts are concerned, it looked to me like Dillard was a half count too late snapping the ball. I know people here and Musburger/Palmer (ugh) were blaming the speed rush of Missouri, but it really didn't seem like LDR and Dillard were on the same page with the cadence. If these guys can continue to set the edge on outside runs like they did Saturday, our run game is going to become a real strength for us.
All in all, what I saw from the offense was a "close, but no cigar" kinda day. It was another weird performance like North Texas in which we put up tons of yards, but it didn't show on the scoreboard. I'm hoping that whatever the issue was with the false starts, it gets addressed in practice the next two weeks and they iron it out. Because without those, we're scoring a hell of a lot more points. I'm also continuously baffled at the decision to run on 2nd & long after an incomplete pass on 1st down every single time. I get the strategy, and it makes sense, but you can't do it 100% of the time. I don't see why we can't use the fact that we always run on 2nd & long to our advantage and maybe run some playaction passes to the outside portions of the field. Every DC we face knows what we do on 2nd & long, so we should exploit that. I was also happy to see us take multiple shots down the field. Even if we only hit one of them, you've got to make the defense at least think you're going to throw it deep. That's something Muschamp has still never figured out.
Defensively, there's not much to say other than we completely and utterly shut down a passing offense that was in the top 10 nationally. I know they've played some weak teams and padded their stats, but many people here were wringing their hands over this passing attack all week and thinking we were about to get smoked. What I saw was a cat toying with a mouse and then finally killing it with two pick 6's. Drew Lock had 4 complete passes, one of which was a quick screen, and one of which was one of those quick toss jet sweeps where it counts as a pass because he tosses the ball forward. So Drew Lock, who everyone was so afraid of, had TWO complete passes downfield the whole game. You guys can make all the sarcastic "DBU" comments you want, but that was just about as dominant as it gets.
The rushing yards we gave up were ok in my book. The way Missouri's offense was, and I'm not sure if this was apparent on TV, is they spread you wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyyyy out. I'm talking there were times when there wasn't a WR within 20 yards of the tackle box in either direction. By design, they spread as many defenders out as they can and then try to sneak the RB up the middle. If an OL or two can get to the second level and disrupt the LBs long enough for the RB to slip by, you get a gash. Most of their running plays against the first string guys ended up in the negative or 0-3 yard range, but they hit a couple plays here and there. Then they padded their stats with like 160 yards against our scrubs, so whatever. Since they're literally the only team we'll play the rest of the year that runs an offense like that, it doesn't bother me.
What does bother me is Jarrad Davis being hurt. He couldn't put one iota of weight on his left foot coming off the field. That's bad. Really bad. He's lucky it's not broken, but I'm guessing there's going to be some type of tear in his ankle ligaments. I'll be shocked if he comes back at all this year. Nice thing is, Reese filled in admirably, and Anzalone had another solid game. But neither of them can get hurt now, because the drop off after them is drastic.
At the end of the day, winning "ugly" 40-14 is a hell of a lot better than losing "ugly" 42-13 (like the last time Missouri came to Gainesville). Looking forward at the rest of the season, @Arkansas remains our toughest test. UGA is in shambles and has been all year, still very fortunate to not be a 2-win team. USC is an absolute joke. They might score about 6 points at most on us in the Swamp. We'll see with LSU and FSU, as they're both Jekyll & Hyde teams. Being on the road against them sucks, but it is what it is at this point. Arkansas is going to be a tough one, though. They've been really balanced on offense and their defense has shown improvement. They also get a bye week while we play UGA. It's going to take our best game of the year to beat them, so hopefully our boys are healthy and up to the task.
Thanks for reading my novel, I'll be doing a book signing this afternoon at 4 if anyone's interested. Go Gators!
- Thread: Hurricane Michael
Folks, by the grace of God and sweet baby Jesus mine and my parents houses were spared. I had no housing or roof damage and no flooding and im waiting for a check on the parents but initial report is theirs is fine too. My fence is long gone, nowhere to be found, and the roof on my workshop is gone but thats it. Nothing to the house. The beach side was largely spared; we were just west of the western eyewall. Panama City townside, is a different story. The whole town is absolutely demolished. Total devastation - were talking Andrew and Katrina (minus flooding) level catastrophe. Nothing was spared. Will take at least a week for road crews to clear the roads - they are really bad.
I had a buddy who almost died - his dogs did. He barely made it through. Townside of PC got the western edge of the eyewall and had sustained CAT 5 winds. The weather services were under reporting at the end. All the local wind readings in PC to mexico beach were above 160 until they just quit working once the eye was fully on shore.
Thanking the Lord that my family got out and are safe. Praying for literally thousands of people that stayed and hundreds more that are still unnaccounted for and not responding. I have freinds and family of freinds who havent been heard from since the eyewall came ashore. Cell service is actually decent and has been throughout the storm, so many are fearing the worst for these folks. If any of you are religious types, I ask you to take a moment right now and say a prayer for these people.
THANK YOU to all of you Vets for keeping this country safe and secure...
I'll refrain from posting my ROTC picture
But I do have a special thanks to my favorite drill instructor when I was growing up...
Thanks Dad -
RIP "Big Ed" -
USAF SSgt '57 - '65 | GI Bill - UF '69 | USArmy Reserve MSgt '73 - '90.
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