24.Apr.2012 Beavers Feigning Attitude
Interesting article by Cliff in which he backhandedly criticizes the program. Hey, it's a start for the mainstream media.
Some noteworthy quotes:
Poyer said. “I look back at the film when they were a great team, back in 2001. They had that swagger.”
Does anyone else feel it would be best to look at 2000 as an aberration and just let go of it? Too many fans (and now players) cling to that blip of success. It was an anomaly.
Poyer goes on to say:
“Coming into this season, I feel we can be that team,” Poyer said. “Confidence is that key. If you have that you can be a great team."
While I agree with him that confidence makes a great team, I disagree that they can be that kind of team. What breeds confidence is positive reinforcement. From where is that going to come? Since the Beavers recruit 2 and 3 star athletes, the positive reinforcement doesn't come from the National media et al during the recruiting stage. Underdogs need to find that confidence from within, and I don't see the passion in these guys to do that. I expect to see a team with low confidence this season. The bookend DEs have confidence and Wynn shows leadership, but can they inspire subpar talent to rise above their ability? That's a lot to ask.
Another Poyer quote:
“You can be nice, but on the field it’s the game of football,” Poyer said. “You need swagger and cockiness. You can be as mean as you want on the field. We don’t need to talk trash. I can hit you and not say anything.”
What Poyer fails to understand is that jawing at a guy gets in his head more than just hitting him. There is a psychological and physical component to this game. If a player hits someone hard and says, "Next time it's going to be even harder.", then the opponent becomes fearful. If they hit someone and say nothing, then the opponent might think it was a lucky hit, or the opponent might jaw and get in the defender's head. Poyer is justifying his passive nature. It's not good.
And finally, Poyer essentially slips and admits he is a soft player:
“In the trenches you have to be violent,” Poyer said. “I see where he’s coming from. You have to be violent with your hands in your technique (in the secondary). You can’t let the other guy know you are soft. If you do, it’s over.”
"Know"?? I think Poyer meant "think", but this is a classic slip. Poyer is a good college corner, but he doesn't have the killer instinct. He's "nice"…just like his coach.
It's good to see Cliff backhandedly criticize, even if he has to backtrack and blame the "naysayers"
However, Riley has now had all his recruits the last three-four years. And they are too nice, just like Riley. At least that’s what a naysayer would say. -Cliff
The bottom line is that, as always, this starts with the type of player the head coach targets. Riley has a comfort zone. You see it in the coaches he hires, and you see it in the players he recruits. He likes nice guys with high character. The reality is that those guys, many times, lack the sociopathic tendencies (e.g. aggressiveness, callousness, lack of empathy, etc) that drive people to greatness (or in Riley's case, even mediocrity).