Bits & Pieces: Florida vs. Vanderbilt

Discussion in 'Main Sports Forum' started by cover2, Nov 22, 2020 at 12:04 AM.

  1. cover2

    cover2 I've grown old
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    My first car was a ‘65 Mustang, classic in name only. We paid $200 for it and it had a burnt valve, a transmission that slipped, leaking water pump, a hole in the floor board, and rust along the rockers. It got me to where I needed to go, but about every other day I would have to stop on the side of the road to add oil, transmission fluid, or stop-leak in order to make my destination. It was a “get by” at best.

    For the last few seasons, every time the Gators go on defense, I can’t help but feel like I’m driving that old clunker again, looking like crap and barely getting to where I need to go and wondering when it’s finally going to leave me on the side of the road. It hasn’t yet, but it just feels like it’s only a matter of time.

    The sad part, and I’m repeating myself from past articles and recent seasons, is that we have a really dynamic and potent offense, led by a Heisman Trophy contender with a really good receiving corps, and a running game that’s getting a little better and more reliable each week. I shouldn’t have to fret so about having to out score each opponent instead of knowing we can get the stops when we have to. But that’s where we are and that looks to be the script. If we make it to face Bama in the SECCG, we may need to score a hundred as long as we’re just getting by defensively.

    Some fans will tell me that I can’t be satisfied since we won by three TDs. They’ll also remind me that Vandy always gives us their best game. Always. Yeah, maybe so, but I’m a big believer that you are what you consistently do and for a while now, stinking it up defensively is half of what we are. We missed a ton of tackles...again, and we gave up 400 yards of offense to a winless team with a freshman signal caller. At times, we couldn’t cover and we struggled to get lined up. We’re seven games in. When do we see consistent and better play from the defense?

    *Vandy did a good job with their tempo and as noted, we had trouble with our alignments and assignments for much of the afternoon. We also reverted to terrible tackling, highlighted by poor angles, grabbing or diving, and poor football positioning (too damn high). Sean Davis was guilty on numerous occasions and I point this out because he usually brings the effort, but his technique was pretty poor. He wasn’t the only one.

    *It’s one thing as a Safety to keep the action in front of you, but when the opponents catch the ball 10 yards in front of you, they have the advantage. We look like we’re in prevent / umbrella with our Safety techniques much of the time.

    *Ventrell Miller was a bright spot prior to dinging his shoulder. Effort has always been there, but technique hasn’t. That seems to be improving as his angles look much better. Hope he’s healthy next week. I’m hoping Houston is back next week also. I don’t like it when we have the skinny minnies playing ILB.

    *I like Elam and think he’ll be a good one before all is said and done, but right now he’s simply a little better than his struggling position mates. His pick was timely, but his protracted dance and subsequent penalty was ridiculous.

    *We did seem to get a grip at times on their running game, holding the Commodores to 87 yards rushing. Of course, they were without their #1 back. We also found a way to get some pressure on the QB with Cox getting a sack and Bogle and Dexter combining for one. Slaton, Carter, and Campbell didn’t seem to get pushed around as much as our fronts have earlier in the season.

    *”Third and Grantham” was back as Vandy was 7/15 on third down conversions.

    *Is it just me or do we have trouble covering the post / slant? It’s not good when their TE beats us off the line with these routes.

    *Offensively it didn’t seem like we were clicking even though Trask threw for 383 with three TD passes and we rushed for 173. 586 total yards isn’t too shabby, but maybe coming on the heels of our 63 point explosion last week just makes it pale by comparison. If this was an “off” game offensively, we’re doing okay even though A&M is still in the back of my mind.

    *Tip of the cap to Jacob Copeland. Five receptions and some good routes is refreshing and long awaited. I’ve been critical, but maybe he’s turning the corner. If he’s blocking, then he made strides today.

    *Pierce had a good day with 55 yards on 11 caries with a TD. He’s our most dependable, but it’s nice to see Davis doing good things on the ground and as a receiver. Ball security has been good also.

    *Good to see Gamble step up in Pitts’ absence. Between him and Zipperer, we haven’t lost a step, but just the same, I’ll be glad to get Pitts back healthy. He’s still pretty sporty and a matchup nightmare.

    *Toney, Grimes, Shorter, et al are a pretty special group. I didn’t expect the group to be as good on the heals of the guys we lost from last year, but they have quickly made a name for themselves. Toney’s release on his TD catch was a thing of beauty. Another ankle breaker that left him wide open. Now if he’ll just cut out some of the jukes and work on gaining ground vertically.

    *The OL isn’t perfect and we’ve got a couple of guys who struggle, but they’re better than what we’ve had for what seems like forever and they’ve gotten a little better each game. It’s good to see us rush the ball effectively. You might say we ought to be able to with everybody dropping seven or eight against us, but we have struggled against these favorable alignments previously. I’m glad to take the positives with this group wherever we can get them.

    *I was thinking this afternoon that we’ve been a lot better where penalties are concerned, the holding that negated Toney’s return and Elam’s boner notwithstanding. Seems like forever we’ve always had double figures in penalties. I hope this trend continues.

    * I wouldn’t mind all the replays if more would have worked in our favor.

    All debate aside, I’m always happy with a win, but I can’t help but be critical of our defense...
    upload_2020-11-21_23-2-8.jpeg
    We might do great things things at the season’s end and we’ve certainly got one of the best offenses and QBs to do it. But my brain tells me that if we haven’t corrected the fundamental deficiencies by this juncture in the season, we likely won’t. It would be a shame not to reach the loftiest of goals, especially with our high octane offense, because our defense can’t get a stop (or stops) when we need them. But even Saban said things have changed in the game, that a great defense no longer beats a great offense most of the time. You have to have a D that can allow you the opportunity to score at least one more time than the opposition and so far Grantham and Co. aren’t close to that. I’d hate to think we’d need the stars to line up in our favor, but until we see otherwise, that might be what it takes.

    Next up...UK. You know we’ll get their best, but that’s ok as long as we give them ours. With Trask and the offense, we’ll always have a chance. That part of the season has certainly been the most pleasant and feels very similar to our O under SOS. You feel like we should score every time we get the ball. That’s a great feeling. May it continue. Go Gators!

    :chomp:
     
    #1 cover2, Nov 22, 2020 at 12:04 AM
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2020 at 12:21 AM
    • YLGator

      YLGator Rams Schmuck
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      Great as usual Cover.
       
      • Gatormac2112

        Gatormac2112 The Voice of Reason
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        You mean you didnt watch the soccer match?
         
        • cover2

          cover2 I've grown old
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          We’re not a communist country yet :)
           
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          • NVGator

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            Good stuff @cover2 as always. I just can’t explain our Defensive efforts. Our tackling is beyond poor. There’s no form or execution. We are talking novice level here. As if they’ve never been taught before. Throwing your shoulder isn’t a tackle. Being dragged 10 yards isn’t a good look.

            As for offense, I felt Mullen was all over the board. Trying different things randomly. Trask never really got into rhythm. I felt the running was agin to keep the defense off the field. Our WR had a lot of easy drops early. A usual looking past Vandy performance.
             
            • Gatorphan

              Gatorphan Clown Sniper
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              *It’s one thing as a Safety to keep the action in front of you, but when the opponents catch the ball 10 yards in front of you, they have the advantage. We look like we’re in prevent / umbrella with our Safety techniques much of the time.”

              Yessir!
               
              • rogdochar

                rogdochar Senior Member
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                Excellent write-up Cover.
                I was just thinking ... we get Pitts back and in addition, we've got sharpened "Pitts substitutes". Our offensive attack advances.
                I'm betting what is really wrong with our D = the wrong thinking is being put in their minds. Their operant thinking is full of blanks. Who is teaching them failure?
                 
                • SGG

                  SGG Call me Ernie, or Big Ern
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                  After watching Bama bludgeon the Mildcats yesterday, I’m convinced they score 70 against us. It’s scarier to play them with this defense than it was to play them with one of Butters’ offenses.

                  I don’t think I’ve seen a more pathetic defense at UF since I’ve been watching football.

                  Every one of us should send Kirby Bangz a thank you card for keeping Stetson Bennett in the game as long as he did, otherwise I’m not sure we would’ve won that game.
                   
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                  • itsgr82bag8r

                    itsgr82bag8r Political Forum Fire Starter
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                    Fk Jawja.
                     
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                    • Frozen Gator

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                      Always the best, thanks Cover. I guess it will be an unsolved mystery as to why we give such a large cushion to opposing receivers in the secondary. We will probably find Jimmy Hoffa's body before we find out. I think it definitely hurts Shawn Davis.
                       
                      • Cozumel Gator

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                        Unlike the Gator defense, it is always cover2 giving us his best effort! Thank you
                         
                        • cover2

                          cover2 I've grown old
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                          An all too familiar feeling, compounded by our struggling defense.
                           
                          #12 cover2, Nov 22, 2020 at 8:06 AM
                          Last edited: Nov 22, 2020 at 8:25 AM
                          • Homer J

                            Homer J Senior Member
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                            Why was the defense substituting every play, when the offense was going up-tempo?

                            We were out of position and lost when the play started.
                             
                            • Circle City Gator

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                              Excellent, as always.

                              As I watch the D I can't help but think, if one or two guys have bad technique, it's on them, but if half the team has bad technique, that's coaching. If one or two guys have trouble getting lined up once in a while, it's on them, but if we repeatedly have trouble getting lined up, with different people the problem every time, that's coaching.

                              The offense is good, very good, with individuals getting better and the scheme working. That means somebody is teaching the people and coaching the team.

                              On defense, the focus seems to be on coaching the team and assuming the people have the necessary skills to make it work.

                              Kids come to college with raw talent and technique that ranges from this-is-why-I-got-a-scholarship all the way to I'm-such-a-stud-I-never-needed-to-learn-anything-in-high-school. Just watching the games, there seems to be a lot more awareness of this on the offensive side than the defensive side.
                               
                              • deuce

                                deuce Mentally Challenged
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                                Love your post and agree with everything except this, "You have to have a D that can allow you the opportunity to score at least one more time than the opposition and so far Grantham and Co. aren’t close to that." I'm not defending our tissue paper defense but based on results our defense has done just this, even in the A&M game, we had a chance to score late but fumbled the ball. I think the bottom line is, we can win any game we play, even Bama, but we can lose any game also because our defense is so unreliable.

                                I think our defensive woe's are based on poor recruiting at several positions coupled with really lousy coaching. I'm all on the "Fire all the defensive coaches train"! Recruit some 240+ Linebackers, safeties who will hit someone and show everyone if you don't wrap up (tackle), you'll ride the bench. Cut out the exotic blitzes and stop trying to confuse the offense on every play. Employ the Kiss principle, Keep it simple, stupid!

                                On a related note, why is Vandy even in the SEC?
                                 
                                • Gatorbait25

                                  Gatorbait25 H.E. Pennypacker, wealthy American industrialist
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                                  It goes deeper than just talent at safety . Davis and Stew have bith regressed and it’s because Ron is a **** coach and must go immediately. Dean and Torrance could actually be an upgrade next year . Especially if Ron gets the heave ho


                                  Why Delance continues to start I have no answer for. He stinks and he has stunk all season. Yesterday he took it to another level. He got whipped by a pass rusher . Tracks avoids it and then Jean knocks Trask down for a 3rd down sack . We’ve got to replace Jean ASAP!
                                   
                                  • FlyingGator

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                                    Great stuff as always Coach. Only thing I’ll add is the O’line struggled at times with a 3 man rush and we had issues the entire first half running against it. That bothered me more than watching our undisciplined players on defense allow play after play to be successful against them. Don’t see how they protect Trask against a stronger D-line unit like we will most certainly see the next 4 games if they can’t keep 3 Vandy lineman out on a regular basis.
                                     
                                    • cover2

                                      cover2 I've grown old
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                                      I should’ve been clearer about the D as related to Saban’s comment on how the game has changed. You are correct that our D has been doing that, but my fear is that Bama’s O will be at a level higher than we’ve seen and I don’t know if we can get the stop(s) needed to win. Just basing this on what I see from us and what Bama’s O is capable of. If our O and theirs are a wash and their D is superior, then it’s advantage them. Our O will have to be at its best. Of course we’ve got to get there :)
                                       
                                      • GatorRaz

                                        GatorRaz Trask for Heisman

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                                        Great cover, Cover! I totally agree with you on our safety play. Almost like a prevent or keep it all in front and we will rally and make the tackle. However, there has not been much rallying! We play such a soft coverage it pisses me off.

                                        Our athletes should be able to play some press man w' $ help over the top.
                                         
                                        • G8trwood

                                          G8trwood Well-Known Member
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                                          Slow starting
                                          Mentally unprepared
                                          Can’t get calls in fast enough
                                          Players always out of position
                                          Soft, soft prevent D

                                          Seems like those, like recruiting, are on coaching. The boss always gets the blame for an under performing team. But we have G for a couple of years yet absent a complete meltdown, $$$$ for buyout and admitting that multi million dollar mistakes.

                                          Noticed Bama was running Tempo at times catching Ky confused and out of position. Thank goodness we are better than that.

                                          Receivers backs and OL all getting less press these days. Well except for Delance :)

                                          A bit like watching Gilligan’s Island. Same thing every week, hectic and confused but the good guys prevail except for the big issue. And well Maryanne ..
                                           

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