21.Oct.2010 Is Jacquizz Rodgers Overused?
Jacquizz Rodgers has 141 of the Beavers' 142 carries by a running back. That is 99.3%. Some might argue, “But Angry, the fly sweep is a run, so Wheaton and James Rodgers act as the 2nd back.” Okay, in that case, Quizz has “only” received 89% of total carries. Another argument might be, “Angry, Quizz is the best back in football—any coach in his right mind would give him 99% of carries!”
Really? Have you heard of a coach by the name of Nick Saban? He won a National Championship last year with a Heisman Trophy running back. Take a guess the percentage of the team’s carries Mark Ingram received.
Okay, I will tell you: 52% (271 out of 520 total carries), and he won a Heisman Trophy in the SEC.
Then there is the law of diminishing returns to consider, which states:
Diminishing returns (also called diminishing marginal returns) refers to how the marginal production of a factor of production starts to progressively decrease as the factor is increased, in contrast to the increase that would otherwise be normally expected. According to this relationship, in a production system with fixed and variable inputs (say factory size and labor), each additional unit of the variable input (i.e., man-hours) yields smaller and smaller increases in outputs, also reducing each worker's mean productivity.
Is this phenomenon taking place before our eyes? I do not know, but the numbers say that as Quizz has progressed in his career, he has become less effective. His rushing average is listed below:
While his can be attributed to tougher competition, it could also be physical wear and tear on his 5’7 frame. Riley has never used his backups, so some will indubitably argue for the former, but they are missing the larger point: using multiple backs benefits everyone. There is no need for Quizz to absorb the impact of every hit—think of all the 1 yard runs.
If Ryan McCants, Jordan Jenkins, et al are not good enough to receive a single carry per game, then you must concede Riley whiffed on his entire stable of running backs, further solidifying his reputation as a poor recruiter.
“Angry, it’s simple: Riley just trusts Quizz more than the others so he gets all the carries!!.”
Okay, tell yourself what you must, but I’m always going to put more merit in how a National Championship coach manages his roster over a 3rd place finisher in the Pac-10. And I dare you to find another head coach who uses the same back 99% of the time. That is my challenge to any dissenter.
While Quizz is a great player, there’s no reason to believe he wouldn’t be better with an occasional breather, and further, nothing brings a team together more than defined, niche roles where all are allowed to excel. That is what family is about. Right?