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OL Importance

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 5:13 pm
by lawdog
On this board we have discussed from time to time the importance to our success of offensive line play. Next year (knock on wood) we should have a talented, experienced and deep OL. Watching the bowl games, the importance of OL play has been on display.

Especially in the Baylor-UNC game, Baylor's OL just flat whipped UNC's DL. Even when it became apparent what Baylor's strategy was, UNC was helpless due to the strength of the Baylor OL. The strategy was simple, and dramatically effective. Baylor gained a whopping 645 yards on the ground alone, an all-time bowl record.

Another lesson from that game was the ability of a wide array of quick backs to effectively execute the wildcat offense. Each of the five backs used for that purpose was quick, and each had his own style. Each stayed fresh and enthusiastic; each was competing with his teammate to outdo the other. Plus, they passed just often enough to keep the defense honest.

Coach Briles adjusted the Baylor offense in fundamental ways, due to injuries to some key personnel, and came up with a scheme that perfectly fit the personnel he had available, putting the D completely off balance. When asked, Briles answered that he could not say that his coaches made the available players better, but perhaps made them believe they were better. We should consider doing some of that.

Re: OL Importance

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 8:46 pm
by boulder3m
It's interesting that the NFL took quick action to eliminate the type of offense run by Baylor (and by others, for that matter). Not sure if the NFL decision was for TV purposes, or what, but it really takes great coaching to counter. By quick snapping every play Baylor just ground UNC into the dust, and it almost became comical. The offensive team has such an amazing advantage with the substitution rules, and if they can get it rolling they can crush an opponent. Why UNC didn't stack the box early is beyond me. We know how quick, fast, and talented Baylor is, and UNC found out. It may be that all Texas schools are so deep in talent that they can run that offense and tear up teams that are not able to match up.

Re: OL Importance

PostPosted: Wed Dec 30, 2015 8:55 pm
by Ruckus
The very threat of an effective passing game is a dangerous weapon to a running offense.
We haven't had one in a while BTW.

Re: OL Importance

PostPosted: Thu Dec 31, 2015 11:36 am
by boulder3m
Interestingly, Baylor threw a few times and then just about gave it up because they could gash UNC for nearly 10 yds per play!

Re: OL Importance

PostPosted: Thu Dec 31, 2015 9:04 pm
by lawdog
Clemson also proved this point tonight against Oklahoma, wearing them down with their OL, which has five new starters this year! And, their ability to pass some effectively set up the run game and OL, per Ruck's corollary.

Re: OL Importance

PostPosted: Sat Jan 02, 2016 11:07 pm
by fgs44
Most casual fans do not realize that Baylor is a great running team--Their stats, and offensive production, suggests they make big plays in their passing game at will--and sometimes they do--but they average over 300 yards per game in rushing offense--I remember when Jim Brakefield and Fisher DeBerry went to University of Texas to learn the Wishbone--Maybe we should go see Art Briles--Probably similar to our offense, but with a touch more of a spread, in splits, RB, and Wide Outs--

Re: OL Importance

PostPosted: Sun Jan 03, 2016 11:01 am
by boulder3m
44 that is a brilliant idea!!! Our personnel, and the ability to recruit, would lend itself well to the type of offense that Baylor ran against UNC. HOWEVER, our philosophy has been exactly the opposite re: tempo. If we sped up the tempo on offense we would allow the opposition to get on the field against our defense and wear us down. A variation is to have the possibility of quick snapping, but use the full play clock most of the time. Personally I like speeding up the tempo and wearing out the opposition's defense.
The idea of running a bunch of different players taking a direct snap really has appeal, because we have shown that it is hard to find upper echelon prototypical QB's who want to run our offense.
I vote to send a couple of coaches out to Baylor and do some research and learning. It is time for our guys to work on some new variations.

Re: OL Importance

PostPosted: Wed Jan 13, 2016 5:57 pm
by lawdog
Similar to Boulder's observation is the idea we have discussed with some regularity on this board in the past, about the need to have some unusual "surprise" plays/tactics up our sleeves to enhance our chance to win; for example, when we got inside the ten several times a few years ago against ND State in the semifinals and came away empty due to lack of creativity or a plan B. Having such play choices is crucial in close games. Without the onside kick surprise, based on film study, vs. Clemson, Alabama would not now be the national champions. That play totally took the momentum from and rattled Clemson, from which they never recovered. Baylor's wildcat scheme, of course, is another example. We act as though using such a tactic occasionally is somehow illegitimate, but in fact it is legal and can be the difference between winning and losing.