28.Aug.2011 Grading the Offense

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Rating: 3.7/5 (3 votes cast)

Yesterday, I got some backlash for "over grading" the defense. What can I say, I think the defense is the strength of this year's team. I understand it's counter-intuitive given all the WRs and big-arm QB. I get it, but I just don't know if said WRs and QB will have time to connect. This offense has the potential to put up 40 points a game, and I'd write that they'd do just that had I seen the QB make strides this fall. Putting up big points requires converting 3rd downs and doing the little things to give the QB extra shots at making the big play. It doesn't require chucking the ball around the yard and hoping for the big play.

My grades below are a combination of what I've seen with my own eyes, and what I've gathered from camp. To be fair, the offensive line does sound improved, and they appear mentally refreshed as well (I don't think they liked blocking for Jacquizz Rodgers).

SPLIT END
Markus Wheaton
Obum Gwacham/Geno Munoz

Analysis: Wheaton is the best player on the team, and one of the best in the conference. Munoz is a player I admire. The guy has sure hands and runs good routes, but he never gets to play. That hasn't stopped him from working. Gwacham is raw material, a block of marble slowly being chiseled into something that looks like a work of art. Wheaton is the lone A+ on the Beav's roster, but the backups bring this particular unit down a hair.

Grade: B+

SLOT

Jordan Bishop
Kevin Cummings

Analysis: Bishop is inconsistent. You'll see him make a circus catch in the clutch (e.g. UNLV), but then drop an easy catch or break off a route. Cummings flies under the radar because he's not a dynamic WR, but his strength is in his steadiness. Look for Mitch Singler as a dark horse later in the year.

Grade: B

LEFT TACKLE

Mike Remmers
Grant Enger

Analysis: I believe this is Remmers 4th year starting (correct?). He should be an exclamation point, not a question mark. Enger will be great by next year, and he might even be better than Remmers. Enger's plight reminds me of Alex Linnenkohl's. Back to Remmers: there are fans out there who actually believe he is an NFL talent. This after 3 years of mediocrity. Am I missing something?

Grade: C-

LEFT GUARD

Josh Andrews
Michael Lamb

Analysis: I'm comfortable with Andrews starting, but Lamb is a weak backup.

Grade: C

CENTER

Grant Johnson
Geoff Garner

Analysis: Believe it or not, I've warmed up to Johnson at center. It's the position on the line that masks his weaknesses best. Garner is a quintessential backup. He can play any position on the line about as well as the starter.

Grade: C+

RIGHT GUARD
Burke Ellis
Michael Lamb

Analysis: The weakest position on the line. A bad walk-on backed up by a bad walk-on. This is a disaster.

Grade: D-

RIGHT TACKLE

Colin Kelly
Michael Philipp

Analysis: Philipp has come on of late, but it looks like Kelly will start. It's hard to find any good coverage of Kelly. All the writers just mention he's overtaken Philipp because of the latter's nagging knee injury. That's not a ringing endorsement of Kelly. What I've seen of him, on film, is a thin and gangly player with poor balance. But, that was several years ago. I really don't know what we have here. My gut tells me it's below average.

Grade: C- (upside potential)

TIGHT END
Colby Prince
Connor Hamlett

Analysis: Prince is just like Brady Camp. I was very down on Hamlett when he signed, but people are saying he's been one of the best players in camp. That is shocking. On film, he looked slower than whale shit. I'll be sold if I see production in games. Until then, I consider this combination weak.

Grade: C-

H-BACK

Joe Halahuni
Tyler Perry

Analysis: Halahuni is a B+, Perry is a B-, but both are injured. I assume Hamlett will play this position until they return.

Grade: N/A (B when healthy)

QUARTERBACK

Ryan Katz
Cody Vaz/Sean Mannion

Analysis: Katz is serviceable, but I was expecting massive growth this fall. He's still missing receivers consistently. Maybe he has a Matt Moore moment and things click by game 3. Huge upside potential, but didn't show progress in camp so I'm knocking him down a peg. Vaz is savvy and could be good, but he needs game time to build confidence. He plays with (overwhelming) nerves right now. Mannion came out of HS with a long, slow delivery, but word is he's more compact now. That's good news. All of these guys are about the same talent wise. The only thing separating Katz from the backups is game experience.

Grade: B (with tremendous upside potential)

TAILBACK

Malcolm Agnew
Ryan McCants/Terron Ward/Jordan Jenkins

Analysis: Top heavy position. As I wrote in the comment area yesterday, Agnew runs like a poor man's Marshall Faulk. McCants, Ward, and Jenkins aren't an answer, though all could find roles. McCants should get a look at short yardage and goal line, at least until he fumbles once. Ward is a prototypical scat back. Jenkins could be a Kevin McShane type player who carries the ball once per game to fire up the troops.

Grade: C

FLANKER
Brandin Cooks
James Rodgers

Analysis: Finally, a position well above mediocre! What can you say about Cooks and Rodgers? Not much, other than they're two fantastic players.

Grade: A

FULLBACK

Clayton York
Tyler Anderson

Analysis: Analyzing fullbacks. Now that sounds fun. "That Clayton York, he sure throws some evil blocks." I mean, sure. I like Anderson better because he could be an offensive weapon. He has a little Larry Centers in him. 

Grade: C

Honestly before I graded out each position I was high on the offense. It surprised me a bit to realize they're not as good as I thought. I think all the dynamic WRs skew perception. This team will probably score 30+ vs Sac State, but then struggle to find points the next two games. At some point it will click ala '06, it's just a matter of when that happens.

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  • MudAndSticks MudAndSticks says:
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    Is the OL improved because it’s improved or is it improved because the DL sucks? That’s the $64 question.

    • angry angry says:
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      In fall camp, when the D is ahead of the offense it’s a good sign (and visa versa).

      I think fans are overly bearish. This could be a good thing since Riley coached clubs don’t respond well to pressure.

  • MudAndSticks MudAndSticks says:
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    If OSU had 4 healthy TEs I’d be all in favor of having a 4TE formation, with most of them being kept in to block. Maybe that would give the QB time to find a receiver or give the RB’s enough blocking so they could move the ball.

    • osbeavs says:
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      Just how do your propose to pass in a 4 TE formation? If you keep all 4 in, you would be left with only one eligible receiver. We don’t have Jerry Rice on our roster.

      • Mud&Sticks says:
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        “…We don’t have Jerry Rice on our roster…” That’s why I said “most” instead of all. 🙂 After I posted that I was thinking all those TEs couldn’t be up on the LOS because they wouldn’t be much help in blocking the opponents DTs. Would have to have at least 2 of them in the backfield and I guess with that they’d have to be in a formation that looked something like a punt formation with the QB in “shotgun” positon. Hummmm perhaps back to the drawing board. How about a RB and a FB along with a TE in the backfield? Or perhaps a RB and 2 TEs.

        • osbeavs says:
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          Well, the H-backs don’t line up on the line of scrimmage. They are “hybrid” backs. They line up like a wing back sometimes and sometimes they look a little more like a FB that is shaded. Essentially your formation would be double tight & wing with a singleback. It is a viable formation as a variation was used very commonly in early football. Particularly in the era when the fullback took the snaps from the shotgun while the QB lined up in the “quarter” position.

  • Warren says:
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    I can’t wait until 2012/2013 when we won’t have to worry about walk-ons on the OL. Just curious as to why we have so many there now? Have the coaches been neglecting recruiting it? Or have a lot of players/recruits just dissipated?

    • angry angry says:
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      It’s a combination of all those things, but the biggest reason is the 2007 class was an absolute disaster.

      John Ioane (Sp?)–grades (i think?)
      Gerald Parker–illness
      Una Smiley–gun shot wound
      Michael Cole–injury/retired
      Rory Ross–such an obvious bust even at the time

      The only other OL that year was Masaniai, who converted to DT, and the long snapper (Perry).

      In ’08 they signed a JC….Freeman McNeil’s kid, but he left the program.
      Lyons hasn’t done anything.
      And Nau…I don’t think he even made it on campus. I forget why.

      So, basically the talent evaluation has been horrible.

      Also, I think the group of walk-ons had chips on their shoulder early on and impressed the coaches right around the time there were all the aforementioned scholarship busts. The coaches have stuck with them ever since.

      Recruiting picked up in 2009, and that’s why were beginning to see some of those guys (Andrews, Philipp, Enger, etc) either starting or cracking the two deep.

      • slamadam says:
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        Im pretty sure Nau made it to campus, just not onto the field.

        • brownale9000 says:
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          Nau signed up for classes before he was eligible, which was an NCAA violation if we let him play. We told him to transfer and he did.

  • Afghanbeav Afghanbeav says:
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    What happen to Jovon(sp) Stephenson at RB? He did decent in limited time as a frosh behind Quizz?

  • them beavers them beavers says:
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    for a free site angry sure does give us a lot of info and provides a good place for different views to be express good or bad depending on what side of the argument you are on. Personal this has become one of the first sites I visit to read update on or to get a general feeling of how people feel and are thinking about this years team. So I guess in sort thanks

  • silverstream055 silverstream055 says:
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    Having seen most of the Beavers’ practices during Fall camp, I think offensive success or failure this season depends almost entirely on the o-line. Here’s why:

    – I believe that Katz is now a known quantity. Katz locks on his primary receiver as soon as the ball is snapped. If Katz gets time to stand in the pocket and get his feet set, and if the primary receiver is open, Katz will usually deliver a catchable ball. If the primary receiver is not open, Katz has trouble quickly locating an open secondary target. If Katz is under pressure at that point, he often makes bad decisions (especially if Katz is flushed from the pocket). That’s who Katz is, and it’s not realistic to expect his fundamental limitations to disappear this year (or perhaps ever).

    Luckily, Katz has a very talented group of receivers this year (also a known quantity), so the primary receiver will often be open. If the o-line can protect Katz in the pocket and give him time, Katz will complete a lot of passes this season to his primary receivers. And if the o-line does a REALLY good job, Katz will complete some passes to secondary receivers, too. But if the o-line can’t consistently protect Katz in the pocket, we are in trouble this year, for sure.

    – Malcolm Agnew is a talented tailback, but he is a true freshman, with no college football experience. More important, Agnew does not have Quizz’s ability to execute instant jump cuts that make people miss at the line of scrimmage. Agnew hits holes hard, and makes good cuts, but he needs the o-line to create the holes for him to hit, especially in early games, while he is adjusting to the increased speed of the college game. We need the o-line to create holes for Agnew (especially in early games) so that Agnew can experience success, and the running game can hit its stride asap this season. Again, the o-line holds the key to success here.

    – From what I’ve seen, I believe this year’s o-line will perform better than last year’s o-line. But that’s not sufficient. Can this year’s o-line consistently protect Katz in the pocket and open holes for Agnew? I don’t think anyone (even Riley or Cav) knows for sure yet. We should know a lot more by the end of the game against UCLA at Reser. Fingers crossed that the answer is “yes”, because I believe this season depends on it.

  • slamadam says:
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    I like the comparison to 06. I think that for everything to click though, the offensive line will have to improve, and Im not sure if thats going to happen. Phillip is going to need to be healthy and realize more of his potential. The other difference from 06 is that Yvenson Bernard was a beast that year, while there isnt an experienced back on this years team. Im excited for Agnew though, Im hoping he developes nicely and by week 5 or 6 starts to really get comfortable with pac 12 speed. Like everybody else, I feel the wide recievers are the teams biggest asset, although Im worried that its missing a possesion reciever in the mold of Brandon Powers, Damola Adiniji, or to a lesser extent Aaron Nichols, which to me is huge for third down situations.

    • angry angry says:
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      I think Mitch Singler might be that guy. Not at the start of the season, but somewhere down the line.

    • osbeavs says:
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      You forgot Shane Morales. He was one of my favorites, he was clutch his senior year.

      • slamadam says:
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        i knew i was leaving one out. morales had an awesome senior year.

    • sparkyd73 says:
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      I really think that people forget how college football goes. Bernard was a beast in 2006, but he absolutely came out of nowhere in ’05. And he was competing with nobody – I know I was scared for that year. This year our running back stable (while young) is more competitive than I can ever remember. And I think with a weaker line we are better off with a runner like Agnew that hits the line quick and hard. It may mean more stops behind the LOS but I think we will see a few more homeruns as well.

      As far as possession receivers, I again think we won’t know what we have until we get into games. I think Obum has the right tools to be one of the best ever, obviously it comes down to his hands. But nobody really saw Damola or Brandon Powers coming. I agree with Angry that it just might be a guy like Singler. Either way, I think you can’t discount the value for a possesion receiver of lining up next to a Wheaton, Rodgers, Cooks type of receiver. Matchups are important for that type of receiver.

  • them beavers them beavers says:
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    I can see SS what you are saying about the O-line being the key to this year good points all around. But, I’d go with the front 7 being the key. I point them out for the simple fact that any team that had a running QB, or even teams without these types of QB just put those plays into their systems, were able to stay on the field longer and longer as the year went on. I mean look at the TCU game alone shows the down fall of this team. If the D can get off the field maybe this would give the offence more chances to put somethings together might give Katz more chance to see the other teams D and get into more of a rhythm.

  • NCAA_viOlation NCAA_viOlation says:
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    Too often last year, the following scenario was repeated:

    1st down: Handoff to Quizz who’s met at the line of scrimmage or in the backfield. He’s either taken down for no gain or drags 2 defenders ahead for a modest 2-3 yard gain.

    2nd down: Passing play. Defense rushes Katz, who either makes a quick, inaccurate pass to well covered receiver, or Katz holds the ball too long and gets sacked, rather than dumping the ball out of bounds. Team is either facing 3rd and 7 at best, or 3rd and long, depending on Katz getting sacked or not.

    3rd down: 3rd and usually long…Quizz running plays aren’t enough to reach the 1st down, so the defense plays deep to cover the pass. Incomplete pass or another sack, team forced to punt on a 4th and long.

    4th down: Heckers punts 50 yards, but it’s returned 25 yards. Opposing offense takes over with great field position.

    This year, I’m really hoping Katz has learned to go for the short yardage passing plays. It reminds me of Anderson several years ago. When he was intent on airing it out, the completion rate was horrible. When he matured and started picking apart the D with short gain passes, we had the most success. (although when he started having success with short plays, he would start airing it out again…causing me to bang my head against wall)

    Going for the home run rarely wins the game. It’s the teams that play small ball that have the most success. Keeping the offense on the field, helps keep the opponent’s offense off the field. All we really need from Agnew is short gains as well. If he can consistently hit 3-4 yards on a given running play, it will open up the passing game. The line needs to give Katz time to make his reads and he has plenty of targets. If things fall apart, don’t take the sack!!!

    I think with the speed after reception our receivers have, we will be in good shape. We also need that goal line running back that can power through the scrum to hit the end zone. Hopefully Woods or Jenkins can be that guy (who else is there? I just don’t see that type of back on this team right now)

    • angry angry says:
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      McCants and Anderson (the FB) are goal line options. Agnew might have a nose for it, too. Until he proves he can’t do the job there’s no reason to even go with the bigger bodies. Anderson has potential running short yardage and catching passes. He could be used similarly to USC’s fullback (Havili?sp?) from a few years ago.

      • osbeavs says:
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        Havili was a freak, I loved that guy. He would block and make small runs. Then on a random pass to the flat he would break free for a 50 yd TD. Reminded me a Bill Walsh FB.

      • sparkyd73 says:
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        Has McCants changed his running style? From what I’ve seen he runs upright, which negates some of his size advantages. A guy standing up straight doesn’t automatically fall forward.

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      You are spot on about Katz learning to throw the ball away to avoid the sack. Which brings up a question. Do they actually PRACTICE having him throw the ball away? Maybe run several plays where his receivers are intentionally covered and he gets flushed, forcing him to make that decision and find a location to throw the ball?
      Maybe our resident practice correspondent silverstream can answer if he’s seen them practice this?

      • Mud&Sticks says:
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        Fwiw – Several years ago the Beavs had a game where their tackling was atrocious. As I recall shortly thereafter a player was quoted to say he hadn’t had tackling practice since high school. In other words Riley hadn’t included any tackling drills for the team. Last year there was some squaking about the team tackling poorly and it made me wonder if perhaps Riley had gone back to his old ways. Like I said, fwiw.

        • sparkyd73 says:
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          From what I’ve seen this year, that hasn’t been an issue. The contact has been there and unfortunately the injuries have come with it. Fine line for sure.

  • angry angry says:
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    Give me talent over experience any day.

    Ask yourself this: what positions are we worse off at?

    RB
    DT
    C (not a huge drop off)

    That’s it.

    We’re actually better at every other position. It’s why I’m having a hard time understanding the pessimism. I’m excited to see the guys who should have been starting last year get some game time.

    • Mud&Sticks says:
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      “…Ask yourself this: what positions are we worse off at?…”

      Until proven otherwise I’m not convinced that there’s anyone on the team who can do what JR did for the Beavs while he was healthy. Play after play, game after game. Even when they knew it was coming he often made things happen.

      Same for RB. The Quizz carried the team and was a huge factor as to how many games the Beavs won. If he hadn’t come to OSU I think Riley would have been out of a job by now.

      As far as the OL goes imo it couldn’t get much worse, especially when it comes to run blocking. Perhaps a better question there is has it improved and if so by enough to make a difference.

      Even though he played injured SP was a big factor at DT. Other teams had to pay close attention to him and this allowed other DL players to make plays. It appears there’s no force in the middle so all DL will have to work harder to make plays this year.

      I hope you’re right and we’ll have a pretty good idea if that’s so after the first 5 or 6 weeks.

  • Warren says:
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    This is how I see the season play out:

    Sept.3 Sacramento State WIN
    Sept. 10 at Wisconsin LOSS
    Sept. 17 Bye
    Sept. 24 UCLA WIN
    Oct. 1 at Arizona State WIN
    Oct. 8 Arizona WIN
    Oct. 15 BYU WIN
    Oct. 22 at Washington State WIN
    Oct. 29 at Utah WIN/LOSS
    Nov. 5 Stanford LOSS
    Nov. 12 at California WIN
    Nov. 19 Washington WIN
    Nov. 26 at Oregon LOSS

    I’m going to post a more in death analysis on what I believe will happen each game. Might be a little optimistic, but definitely possible.

    • angry angry says:
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      I tend to agree with this assessment.

      BYU and UCLA are two weird games, though. I’m drafting up my season prediction, and I have a 4 variance (i.e. +/- 2) for this reason. In other words, I see a two game upside/downside potential from the mean (which I have as 7). So, 7 wins seems most likely, with 5 wins being worst case and 9 being best. Oregon will have more than 9 wins, so Championship Game talk is silly. Though, I do see Oregon losing at least 2 games this year.

      • osbeavs says:
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        I am intrigued, what two do you have UO losing?

        • Warren says:
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          I my self have UO losing to LSU and Stanford.

          • osbeavs says:
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            I thought UO would lose to LSU but I don’t think they can do it without Jefferson and their WR Shepard. They also lost Stevan Ridley to the draft, he was a force at RB for them. He bailed them out in a lot of games.

          • Warren says:
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            Trust me, I think LSU will be better off with Jefferson and they’ve got plenty of talented offensive weapons. The big part is that I think their defense will hold UO to under 25 points.

        • angry angry says:
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          I actually think LSU will beat them opening day, even short handed. I think with the new TV contract, the SEC fears the Pac-12. Whenever there’s a possible changing of the guard you get the other guy’s best effort and then some. Also, Oregon has to travel and deal with hostility (and probably everyone calling them cheaters, etc). Plus, LSU has legit defenders. I just like LSU in that game.

          Then, I figure at least one Pac-12 team beats them. The thin air in Colorado might be an issue. Cal always plays them tough. USC still has dominating athletes. And Washington and OSU are rivalry games.

          I don’t see how they’d get through all that without losing at least two games (total).

          • mckalk mckalk says:
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            I would think Les Miles and his coaches have been studying the Auburn game from defensive side in detail. The Tigers held the Ducks in check fairly well and they did not have a top notch defense by SEC standards last year. I think they were ranked 60th overall in the country.

        • NCAA_viOlation NCAA_viOlation says:
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          People tend to forget just how fortunate Oregon was last year in their 12-0 run.
          They didn’t suffer many significant injuries/suspensions to key players.

          Kenyon Barner (backup RB) was lost for several games (vicious special teams hit vs. WSU)
          Nate Costa (backup QB) missed 2nd half of season (weak knees)
          TheMichael James (starting RB) missed 1 game (choking)
          Kiko Alonso (backup LB) missed season (drunk)

          Then look at their schedule/opponents:

          New Mexico State- Patsie

          Tennessee- Off year for team facing NCAA penalties and adapting to new coach. Played a ton of freshman at key positions. UT dominates early. Fortunately, thunder storm stops the game at a key moment for Oregon, allowing them to regroup when they clearly looked rattled)

          Portland State- Even bigger Patsie

          Arizona State- Played Oregon well for a half. ASU killed themselves with 7 turnovers and lost despite putting up nearly 500 yards of offense. If they hang onto the ball, ASU wins easy.

          Stanford- Stanford dominates 1st half but collapses in 2nd half. Key injury to Owusu in this game on violent dirty hit by UO’s Jason Lewis. Should have been automatic ejection. Up to this point, Owusu was killing Oregon and I don’t think Oregon is able to come back for the win. Home field definitely helped in this game.

          Washington State- For being a weak Pac 10 team, they hung with Oregon for the first half but didn’t have the talent to keep up. Oregon did not look dominant.

          UCLA- Key injury to UCLA starting QB. Brehaut gets his first start and looks completely lost. Oregon wins easily against inept UCLA offense. (Brehaut looked awful in this game)

          USC- Heck, OSU played USC better in 2010. USC was not a good team in 2010.

          Washington- Jake Locker out. Washington still hangs with Ducks for much of the game. Keith Price in his 1st start as QB looks awful, but the Huskies lead at half. No Huskie offense mean no win. Locker would have made huge difference.

          CAL- Kevin Riley (starting QB-out) Brock Mansion in his 3rd game with meaningful time at starting QB looks awful (are we seeing a trend here?) CAL hangs with Oregon and wins if they can just hit a f#@king field goal. Seriously?

          Arizona- Nick Fowles in 1st game back from knee injury. Has no mobility but carves up Oregon through the air for 450 yards, but Wildcats look out of sync at this point in the season due to several key injuries. Ducks running game wins out.

          Oregon State- Key injury to James Rogers. Oregon State plays respectable game but doesn’t have the horses to keep up. Defense against the run would have been helpful…..

          Auburn- No key injuries and Auburn wins close game. Neither team looked great. Auburn should have led by more but receiver drops easy touchdown pass in end zone.

          Oregon had the advantage of facing a team with a key injury to a top player on the opposing team in nearly every game. Last season could have easily seen Oregon with 3 more losses (Arizona State (stop turning it over!!) Stanford (Owusu injury was the difference late) and CAL (missed field goal late))

          With all of the other key injuries, Oregon had several blowouts that allowed them to rest players, which was very helpful in keeping their team healthy. Point being, Oregon was close to being 9-4 last year, but were very fortunate. Going 12-0 again this year would be very tough and would require similar fortune. Doubt that happens 2 years in a row.

      • Warren says:
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        I just don’t know why people are so gloom and doom. Our defense as a whole should do a 180 from last year, and we’re returning a lot of talented/experienced players in what could be a very potent offense.

        • angry angry says:
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          Yeah, I don’t get it, either. Granted, we have mostly the same o-line, but they’re all a year “better”, even if that means they’re C’s instead of D’s. Hell, that is a big improvement. I’d take an average line–the skill positions could do damage with that.

        • them beavers them beavers says:
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          it is not doom and gloom it is just I’d not like to sit there and see team after team run all over use with their darn QB, even if he had never been a running QB in the past but team would put these play in over and over and our D could or would do nothing about it. I think this is my big worry because it seems that the offence will come together give time like they did at some point last year.

          • angry angry says:
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            Doctor and Collins >>>>>>> Pankey and Roberson.

            I’m sorry, but the latter were slower than whale poop. The former are a huge upgrade.

          • them beavers them beavers says:
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            I hope you are right

          • HopefulBeav says:
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            Exactly what I was going to say. Last year QB’s were running all over us because we had the slowest OLBs that I can remember OSU ever having. Mix that with below average DE’s and you’ll make Andy Dalton look like Michael Vick (which we did…). Doctor and Collins are both very fast and are head hunters from what I’ve heard. Containing QBs is probably the area I’m least worried about on the whole defense.

          • mckalk mckalk says:
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            Yeah, last year was the first in a long time where the Beavs had LB’s who could not even get to the play. Kristic missed a lot of tackles in 2009, but he was at least in there. Can’t make a play if you can’t even get to the play.

          • sparkyd73 says:
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            I’m not sure why people are so worried about the size of our front 7. Actually, this looks much more like a traditional Beaver front 7. Speed is much of what we lacked last year and we’ve made key upgrades in team speed. We were in the backfield alot last year because of our strength up the middle, only to watch the QB squirt out of the pocket and outrun our LBs. That should never happen. I think the hitting of our LBers will also be much improved and should equate to an increase in Turn-Overs. We are going to need to create more TO’s this year because we will likely have more of them on our Offensive side with the loss of Quizz.

      • mckalk mckalk says:
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        BYU really improved defensively last year after Mendenhall fired the DC and took over himself. I should check and see if they hired a new DC this year. Also, I think Jake Heap (sp?) is going to keep getting better and better. Lastly, I have to think this is a game that BYU will be up for. They sort of have piecemeal schedule in their first year as an independent.

    • helmsley says:
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      did you mean to say “in death” analysis? Pretty scarey, that!

  • angry angry says:
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    FYI: Wisconsin plays UNLV on Thursday night, so we’ll all get to see them on National TV.

    The downside? That means they’ll be well rested with a few extra days to prepare.

    (more bad Beaver luck)

    • them beavers them beavers says:
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      in reality I don’t think that WI is going to get much from our film this year against Sac St. nor should they get much from last years filme either because with Quizz, the focuse of the team,being gone and the team if full reload mode the beavers will be I think and hope a new animal to tame. This and if WI is as good as a lot think they are they would be more focuse on what they need to do to win not what the beavers can do.

    • mckalk mckalk says:
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      What’s with the UNLV/Wisconsin connection? They play each other a lot. Not all the games have been complete blowouts either. Let’s hope UNLV can give them a game for at least three quarters.

    • ean says:
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      I don’t think Wisconsin playing on Thursday gives them any advantage at all. I mean a few extra days rest might matter mid season but not after game 1. Plus if UNLV can keep it close at all OSU will get some good film to study where as Wisconsin wont have much to study at all. Still it will be a tall task for the Beavs but the schedule factor doesn’t seem like much of anything to worry about right now.

  • rsteve503 rsteve503 says:
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    Sorry, but I chuckle at the worries over the Wisconsin game. I dont care if its 60-0. In fact, thats a good result, because it makes later opponents relax. If we beat Wisconsin, no one will overlook us. UO needs to beat LSU for their season to be really successful. OSU doesnt need to beat Wisconsin — we aint going for a NC. Just do well in conference.

    It sounds like the D is faster, and that could well negate a lot of the ills from last year. And no all americans in the form of Quizz or Paea, could make everyone play harder. Teamwork. In any case, I like the sound of the way things are going.

    • HopefulBeav says:
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      Valid points but I think the worries about Wisconsin are warranted. It’s getting really tiresome embarrassing ourselves on national TV against a ranked opponent early in the season. We’re never going to take that next step as a program if we can’t find a way to win these games while the whole country is watching.

      • helmsley says:
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        Today’s New York Times Sports section has a big article about the WI quarterback – also one about the SEC. Fairly light reading, but if you don’t have anything else to do. . . I have the print edition but I’m sure there are links if anyone’s interested.

      • rsteve503 rsteve503 says:
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        Hey, agree absolutely — but other steps have to happen before we start the season challenging top teams. Like the recruiting … not having to develop walkons and lesser players as has happened a lot in the past…..and the shifting guys around when the usual injuries happen. That seems to be happening, so great….but we are still in walkon mode and you cant challenge top programs early in the season.

        In the past, OSU scheduled over their head just to add some good income and cant blame them for that. But you cant expect to compete in those games UNTIL you have taken a step up in talent.

        What I hear says that recruiting is improving so that step up seems underway. But for now, pigs are gonna be flying before its reasonable to expect us to beat a Wisconsin in the pre-conference.

        • HopefulBeav says:
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          Good points again. I will say that if you want to be stupidly optimistic (like I try to be) for the Wisconsin game the one big thing we have going for us is the unknown factor. We have so many young and very talented players playing in that game that hopefully one or two of them have a Quizz-vs.-USC-his-freshman-year type performance and shock the whole country. Hey, I can dream right?

          • them beavers them beavers says:
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            there is always hope that is why we love the game; I’d agree with this idea of the unknown this might be what the beavers have going from them this year; other teams will not know whom to focus on so they will have to plan for the whole team not just a running back and a WR. Maybe the beavers need to get back to being a team rather that quizz and james

          • silverstream055 silverstream055 says:
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            Last year, OSU’s play-calling became ridiculously predictable. Part of that was excessive reliance on the Rodgers brothers (esp. on Quizz). Part of that was an unreliable o-line that limited OSU’s options. Part of that was plain old poor play-calling by coach Danny Langsdorf.

            This year, with the new weapons (and the departure of Quizz plus the injury to James), and assuming an improved o-line, OSU play-calling should be inherently less predictable. Let’s hope Riley demands more of Langsdorf, too…..

  • FatDog says:
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    I’ve been digesting all this. A good discussion.
    Angry: you said in an earlier post that the O-line didn’t like blocking for Quizz. Will we have a better running game without Quizz?

    • ean says:
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      I highly doubt we are better but I think the new RB’s will hit the holes faster and the blocking could possibly be better. That with a little bit of more varied play calling could yield stats similar to what Quizz had… but it still will be somewhat of a drop off.

      • oneoldbeav says:
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        The drop off is likely to come in the form of turnovers, I’m willing to bet yardage is pretty similar.

        If the Quizz factor was a detriment to team chemistry (as I believe very likely) the improved attitude could result in just what the team needs to pull out those close games.

  • Tyler says:
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    What do u think.of langsdorph?

    Always thought waaay too conservative, but thats an atribute of the wco.

  • primal optimism says:
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    One of the greatest improvements for this year will be in Danny Langsdorf himself, in a way that would never be mentioned or printed. Namely, his home life. Last year the Langsdorfs were welcomed with their first child, a son, at the end of fall camp. Last year, with the new born distraction, Langsdorf should have given the play calling back to Riley. He didn’t, and the result was very unimaginative. Now with him adjusted to family life, I expect a greatly improved play caller.

    Michael Phillip, why why why is he not playing guard. Two years ago, the buzz was about his future as a prototypical NFL guard. And after two worthless years of him at tackle, why can’t they move him from the two deep, into a starting role over the walk-on at guard. I just don’t get it. Kid will never get drafted from the OSU two deep. Play to the strength.

    I would love to know the difference in the combined 11man defense 40 time last year, versus this year. There is an incredible and natural strength in speed. I am highly optimistic towards vast improvement in this years D. We may in fact learn to like Banker again. Should the D be just as bad as last year, then it is clearly the fault of the gap cancellation. I have faith in the system myself, we’ll see.

    Finally, I just can’t wait for the season to begin. The preseason hype about who will beat who is such a disgusting study in chest pounding and fact less projecting. That stuff works great at the NFL level, but this is college. Each year is so mathematically and drastically different that it is ridiculously egotistical to think projecting results are possible. That is a major reason why I like the college level. That said, I see drastically different result in this new bastardized pac10 than the media has sold us. I will be so happy if that plays out. And even happier if the Beavs can hit the now 1 in 12 jackpot of BCS berth. But like the good old days, 1-11 is a great result if we beat the duck.

  • rsteve503 rsteve503 says:
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    Some of you speak of the wonderful luck of the Ducks. If they lose a couple games, some of those fans go on suicide watch….lol. So its gonna be tougher for them all this year. We lose a game, its no big deal. Of course we dont want to lose, but losing a few is ok … Only a losing season is a disaster for us. And even if they go undefeated, …. along comes the NCAA with a final on the ol investigation — suddenly their 12-0 zaps to 0-12! Oh, gawd!….time to stick the head in the gas oven….

  • CraigBeav says:
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    I have two spare tickets for the OSU visitors section at the Wisconsin game. Row 44 I think. Anyone want them? Face value or best offer.

    Angry: Think you can put this up on the main page for a couple of days? It’d be a shame for them to go to waste.

    • osubaby osubaby says:
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      I think it would be cool if Angry could create a ticket section in the forum. I need 1 adult and 1 child ticket for Sac st.

      • NCAA_viOlation NCAA_viOlation says:
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        There are deals to be had on craigslist. I’m sure you could find 2 adult tickets for as cheap as you could find 1 adult + 1 child. I just sold my pair of Sac State tix last week for $30.00 total since I’ll be out of town. There are others available for a similar price. This game will not sell out so expect the scalpers to take whatever they can get.

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      I may be able to sell the WI tickets at the game. What is face value?
      email me jasonthebeaver@gmail.com

    • angry angry says:
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      Sorry, I can’t make an entire topic dedicated to selling your ticket, but you could use the forum for that and post it right at the top. The forums are there for you guys…so you can post about whatever you want.

      Stubhub is good for buying and selling tickets, too.

  • silverstream055 silverstream055 says:
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    Ted Miller just came out with his pre-season PAC-12 Power Rankings. He ranks the Beavers 11th out of 12 (ahead of only Washington State). It will be satisfying to see the Beavs prove him wrong again….

    • ean says:
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      I really don’t have a problem with that. I mean the Beavs were mediocre last year and lost their 3 best players (James is lost until he can get cleared to come back). I can’t expect a national guy like Ted to spend any time researching the new guys on a middle of the road Pac-12 team so if the Beavs don’t like their ranking they got to go out and earn a better one.

  • ObjCritic says:
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    I look for Agnew to perform better than Bernard, not as good as Quizz, in their first years. Agnew’s strength will surprise, including @ goal line.

    Hamlett will pleasantly surprise and contribute.

    40+ points against Sac State….

    Special teams review coming? Coaching staff review? : )

    • angry angry says:
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      I agree. Bernard ran behind some of our better lines and he still wasn’t that great (like 4 yards per carry, and no long runs).

      Agnew can do better.

      Someone above mentioned how RBs work…how they come out of nowhere and are suddenly the guy. People are forgetting this is how it works. Someone will assume the job. Fans are worrying about it a little too much. If the line blocks just average we’ll be good.

  • sparkyd73 says:
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    Overall comment about the general pessimism by Beaver Fans this year. I think it goes hand in hand with another complaint that is prevalent on this site that the old timers are too happy with mediocrity. I don’t think that the majority of people by nature are able to look at things objectively, we all have our filters. And I think many fans are so disgusted by the homers with Orange colored glasses that they tend to be overly critical. And it is hard to turn off that negativity much like it is often hard for the homers to tone down their hope. Most of the negativity that I’ve seen all talk about last year. This team still has a number of question marks which to me is a much better place to be than last year which we had a number of answers (many of which we didn’t like – Pankey).

    If you read the national previews they are all fairly negative but they also don’t mention most of the players that have changed. None of them talk about the key newcomers like Agnew or Cooks or Crighton or Wynn. All of them talk about the tough job that the Beavers will have in replacing the front 7. Those same articles heap praises on our productive outside linebackers. Bottom line is I don’t see very much credibility in any of these previews.

    I love the discussion on this blog and the eyewitness reviews from SS have absolutely been awesome during the camp. Now it is time for the Beavers to show what they can do. I don’t expect a title run this year, but I am optimistic that last year will not be repeated. I think that there has been a step change in recruiting and a philosophy change on the defensive side of the ball to get back to speed in order to compete with Oregon. (As opposed to our defense geared up to compete with USC.) Overall, I think it not healthy to dwell only on the negative or even all of the positive. Take a step back and enjoy the season that is just a few days away.

    • angry angry says:
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      Good post.

      Sometimes it makes sense to compare to last year, but most of the time it doesn’t. The pundits always seem a day late and dollar short. I don’t blame them too much since it’s hard to stay up to date with every team. Their knowledge is cursory and relies a lot on the prior year. To be accurate they’d need a writer micro-covering every team (hey SI, I am unemployed).

  • angry angry says:
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    Mannion is #3 on the depth chart.

    • Chuck says:
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      Good turn around time on this news since you reported it 10 minutes after Angie reported it on Blitz.

      Angry, isn’t it time to just admit you read Blitz? For those of us that read both Blitz and your site, it’s obvious, and it’s hurting your credibility for you to pretend like you don’t get info from that site when you obviously do.

      You have a lot to offer, but it’s kind of a joke that you keep trying to pretend that you don’t get info from Blitz or that when you do, a friend supposedly sends it to you. Hell, be proud that you’re stealing their info and they can’t do anything about it – you’re our Robin Hood!

    • JackBeav says:
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      Wow angry, good turn around time on this news since you reported it a full day and a half after Cliff put out the official depth chart for offense. I’m still trying to figure out why I need to care enough to be a snarky little bitch about it two days after the fact, but I suppose it makes me feel good in my mind to know that I might know more if I gave other people my money in order to tell me exactly what I now know.

      Oh, and I get to troll sites that I have no stake in (not that I would have any stake in a site behind the pay wall) and try to almost make a coherent gripe about something everyone who reads it will just laugh about as if I were just another stupid who has been blitzed.

      But hey, at least I don’t come on this site and stalk people make lewd suggestions about children like some people who go by JP.

      As a side, I did make it my business to know who Jeff Perry is after that incident. I can put up with foul minds who spill filth on boards like (it seems a unanimous majority) many of the other Blitzers do, but that guy crossed one big fat line.

      Thank you Chuck for just being petulant and nothing more.

  • rsteve503 rsteve503 says:
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    Hey, no one can look at anything totally objectively. Thats a myth. Humans have emotions and preconceived notions.

    For me, I see the second coming of JC, and it will be at halftime of the Civil War game, at Reser…..and he will come down and make a world changing pronouncement — “Hey….where the hell is everyone?”

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