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UT vs Oregon - What went wrong (long)

  • Let me preface this post by saying that I am only doing it for my own cathartic reasons and I am just a layman trying to try to figure out what went wrong this weekend without sticking to the simple answers of, well, they were just a whole lot faster and better than us. Much of what I share here is nothing all of you don't already know.

    Also, let me say that I am in no way trying to play arm-chair QB and second-guess our coach. I still think CBJ is tha' MAN and support him 100%. But I learned a long time ago in business that you always evaluate things to see how to get better and I know CBJ and our players will be as hard on themselves as anyone in this forum.

    First of all, you DO have to hand it to Oregon. They were extremely fast and executed perfectly. After seeing a LOT of football early in the season I think they could and would beat ANYONE at this point including Alabama or A&M. BUT let me also say that, although the O fans have been extremely classy on this site, I think they took advantage and really poured it on us this weekend when they really did not have to do so. I mean, up 45-7 they still have their 1's in and running their hurry offense. Fans from other teams here locally thought they were really pouring on in a classless fashion. I won't go that far but it is worth mentioning.

    Secondly, I really analyzed Worley's throws. Here are a few of his stats:

    1. Out of his 12 incompletions he missed the receiver with over or under throws 8 times. Many of these poorly thrown balls were to wide open receivers. He also threw it away 3X and had 1 drop by a receiver. At least 4 of those were affected by pressure and he was hit as he threw on one occasion.
    2. One of his over throws was badly missing a wide open Dallas at the 10 yd line. This was HUGE because we were down 10-7 and this would have extended the drive and got us in scoring position.
    3. One of his under throws was badly missing a wide open receiver that would have extended the opening drive in the 2nd half and resulted in a big gain.
    4. Worley did not complete a pass in the air beyond 8 yards of the line of scrimmage and only attempted 3 throws beyond 10 yards down the field (all incompletions with one drop).

    Number 4 is HUGE. I noticed the Oregon defense started playing us different in the 2nd Qtr. They brought 10 guys within 8 yards of the line of scrimmage and blitzed more often on passing downs. Perhaps due to the combination of our receiver's route running and Worley's inaccuracy they knew they didn't have to worry about the long game and were able to load up the box and it stifled our offense. I am really surprised we did not do more roll outs or screen plays to counteract what they were doing here.

    Also, I think our O-line struggled to react to what Oregon was doing on defense. They really dominated the Oregon D-line on that first scoring drive but seemed to get owned as the game went on. The pressure bothered Worley and there were no big holes for the running backs. This was very surprising to me.

    A few other thoughts:

    I love CBJ but he should have went for it with 4th and inches down 10-7. It was a bad spot by the line judge but we still could have recaptured some momentum and kept the drive going. At that point I think Worley was 5-7 and we were still getting 3-4 yards from most of our runs. The extended drive could have built confidence and kept our D off the field and MAYBE even a score.

    Down 24-7 the penalties (mostly by the O-line) really killed our drive and any chance of staying in the game. To me that drive was really the turning point of being able to keep it close.

    Believe it or not, I have a lot of respect for our defense after this game. They never quit like they did last year and THAT says a lot in itself. I think a lot of the big gains early for Oregon were directly related to the inexperience by the defense and them trying to make things happen because we were trailing. (biting on the fake to the flat and leaving a receiver wide open down the middle) But when your offense keeps giving Oregon the ball I think they felt they had to try and get a turnover and try to regain momentum. As the 2nd qtr wound down they just got tired and started missing tackles. Hopefully, they will get better as the season progresses and I think they will play a lot better against the standard offenses we will see in the SEC.

    Finally, I am really worried still about the passing game. If we cannot complete throws beyond 10 yards then the defenses in the SEC are just going to do what Oregon did and load the box, taking away our running game in the process.

    It worries me that Worley could not complete the long pass in this game but he looked decent in the short game so I trust CBJ and staff with how they are handling our QB's so far. I just think, if Worley doesn't improve, it could be a loooong season.

    Hopefully getting all that off my chest will help.Watching the game again was really not easy and even my wife asked me why I was punishing myself. But I still trust CBJ and think he will definitely get us turned around in the next few years. looking forward to getting more talent and depth these next couple of years!

    GBO!!

    This post was edited by MississipVol 7 months ago

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    Twitter: @nick11vols

  • Good assessment. I do believe we will see a new plan on Saturday. I was disappointed in passing game. I was more disappointed that we never changed the plan. They scored on 8 straight punts and i had to believe that punting was futile and we would have made one of the 8 conversions if we tried. My hope is that our real game plan was to stay vanilla as there was no hope of winning and against Florida we will open up the offense. QB has to run occasionally to keep defense honest (4th quarter). sad day for sure.... I do see much better days ahead and i think we have the right coach....

  • Volsfaithful said... (original post)

    Good assessment. I do believe we will see a new plan on Saturday. I was disappointed in passing game. I was more disappointed that we never changed the plan. They scored on 8 straight punts and i had to believe that punting was futile and we would have made one of the 8 conversions if we tried. My hope is that our real game plan was to stay vanilla as there was no hope of winning and against Florida we will open up the offense. QB has to run occasionally to keep defense honest (4th quarter). sad day for sure.... I do see much better days ahead and i think we have the right coach....

    I think that at this point, what we see is what we get. This is a vanilla offense. Hell, its a vanilla team. There is nothing wrong with that. It is just laying the foundation. The qb won't run in the option until we have a new qb. Justin takes care of the ball. Thats why he is still our starter. No doubt that he will be replaced if he has another game like that one. I do think we will see a better motivated team and they will have a more efficient game. Snap and clear. I don't think anyone in the program has said Oregon since Sunday night. I'm ready to see the look on the gaytors faces when we come out and dominate!

  • MississipVol said... (original post)

    Also, I think our O-line struggled to react to what Oregon was doing on defense. They really dominated the Oregon D-line on that first scoring drive but seemed to get owned as the game went on. The pressure bothered Worley and there were no big holes for the running backs. This was very surprising to me.

    Do you think the second paragraph has anything to do with the first paragraph? I can't understand people who criticize our offensive line when the opposition is playing 8 and 9 in the box. If we don't get a decided edge when the defense is playing 6 or 7 in the box then the criticism is justified. However, as you pointed out, Oregon was crowding the line of scrimmage and daring our receivers to get open and then have Worley make throws and neither rarely happened. You can put a lot of the offensive blame on Worley but I didn't see many receivers making plays either. It takes two to complete a pass and what do you want the QB to do when there is no one to throw to?

    This game came down to this - too much speed and too many playmakers against not enough speed and very few playmakers. Oregon identified our weaknesses defensively and repeatedly attacked those. They were consistently able to get to the edge on running plays and were gaining 5 yards even when we were playing it well. As for the defensive backfield, well, just look at Mariotta's numbers and they speak volumes about our pass defense.

    This post was edited by RunThruThe T 7 months ago

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  • What went wrong, the abridged version. We were out manned almost completely across the field, either by lack of quality or the lack of experience ( or both). It's really no more complicated than that.

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  • RunThruThe T said... (original post)

    Do you think the second paragraph has anything to do with the first paragraph? I can't understand people who criticize our offensive line when the opposition is playing 8 and 9 in the box. If we don't get a decided edge when the defense is playing 6 or 7 in the box then the criticism is justified. However, as you pointed out, Oregon was crowding the line of scrimmage and daring our receivers to get open and then have Worley make throws and neither rarely happened. You can put a lot of the offensive blame on Worley but I didn't see many receivers making plays either. It takes two to complete a pass and what do you want the QB to do when there is no one to throw to?

    This game came down to this - too much speed and too many playmakers against not enough speed and very few playmakers. Oregon identified our weaknesses defensively and repeatedly attacked those. They were consistently able to get to the edge on running plays and were gaining 5 yards even when we were playing it well. As for the defensive backfield, well, just look at Mariotta's numbers and they speak volumes about our pass defense.

    I definitely think they were related but I thought the O-line was doing a poor job even when Oregon was bringing a normal rush. Worley had not experienced a ton of pressure before this game and it showed in his pocket demeanor.

    But I thought we didn't do a lot to counteract this. Even if Worley can't make the deep throw we should have tried more roll outs to give him more time and a better view of the field or more screen plays to keep the LB's more honest. The 1 screen play we did try was pretty successful, giving us a tough first down.

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  • coonhound said... (original post)

    What went wrong, the abridged version. We were out manned almost completely across the field, either by lack of quality or the lack of experience ( or both). It's really no more complicated than that.

    I think if that is all it was then we could have kept it closer than what the score wound up being. That is why I wanted to see exactly what went wrong because I know they have much more speed but really thought we could stay within 10 points at the half and within about 3 TD's for the game.

    It came down basically to:

    1. Worley had significant accuracy problems particularly beyond 8 yards.
    2. Oregon picked up on this and started loading the box in the 2nd qtr
    3. As we started getting down the inexperienced defense lost discipline and allowed several big plays.
    3. The O-line did not live up to expectations in the 2nd qtr and beyond.

    (On number 3 remember we had them 4 and 7th in their own territory and they went for it up 24-7. It wasn't "Speed" that caused a receiver to be wide open but our defense biting on a ball fake out to the flat.)

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    Twitter: @nick11vols

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