Thoughts on the game

It was workman like. So, I was ok with it.

A little concerned about red zone performance. We left 15 points on the field.

Didn’t like that the D had trouble with that QB rollout to the right and then hitting the WR on a comeback…but that can be fixed.

Looks to me like Thomas will be the guy at RB.

I know some are concerned with the D, but I thought they played well. 75 yards of Weber’s 260 total came in garbage time. I would be more concerned with kickoff coverage.

Anyway, I was good with the play and the outcome (I’m sure that Whit will be glad to hear that)

Hard to judge as always with this game, unlike a lot of people I know I came away pleasantly surprised. It’s hard to know what our defense is like when there is zero stunting at the line and barely a blitz. Our offensive line was pretty vanilla too. I was happy to see Thomas hit the holes and hit them fast.

I still don’t understand why Ludwig likes to line up 8-9 yards behind the line on most running plays, especially when we’re looking to just get a guy across the goal line, but that’s always been a problem with him.

I’ll be interested to watch the instate team play Arizona leading up to our game. But I think Whittingham will have us ready.

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My thoughts:

  • Jay Hill is a really good coach. They made some mistakes too, but like Devin Lloyd said, they’re really disciplined schematically.
  • Their QB Barron is a nice QB, was masterful at keeping defenders off-balance, like the time he dodged McKinney bearing down, turned it into a 30+ yard gain.

For us:

  • Our QB situation is really good this year. Brewer had 2 TDs dropped, put the ball where it needed to be, like the TD to Solo where he threaded the needle, or the first TD to Kinkaid, a perfect highpoint. I can see why the WRs and TEs are stoked. I’m amazed Rising looks as good as he does, a nice recovery from a nasty injury.

  • The reports about Thomas appear accurate - big, can bring a punch, but is surprisingly athletic for that size, good vision, good feet. Bernard will score some TDs, hopefully some from distance. Curry & Pledger - keep engaged, keep fighting.

  • Is Kinkaid better than Kuithe? Maybe, which is nuts.

  • OL is a work in progress. Sigh. But OL typically gels later, and we held some guys out, so I’ll try to be patient. Bam getting meaningful snaps - hope he works toward reaching his potential, because he’s got crazy long arms.

  • I’m glad the DBs got the workout they did, from the impressive Barron and Weber’s good athletes at WRs.

  • Intrigued by Furey when we’re in 4-3. Lloyd and Sewell are lights out, the 2s need to stay ready.

  • Safeties looked “solid”. Latu is close to being there, Bishop is solid.

We’ll see a lot more of the offense next Saturday. Can’t wait. BYU’s “Drop 8” coverage will be easy for Brewer, and if they bring 8 on a blitz, we’ll see Howard, Enis, Covey, Dixon & Vele make plays. RBs need to be ready in pass protection, and catching the ball out of the backfield.

9 Likes

This is one touchy-feely thing that struck me on the drive home:

It seems to me that a significant portion of our offense in recent years has come from guys (especially Tyler Huntley, Zach Moss, Ty Jordan, etc.) making something out of nothing on broken plays with superhuman seeming effort. Last night, the offense made plays, and moved the ball, without a whole lot of that. That is probably the thing that stuck out to me the most. Obviously there was a lot of inconsistency, but overall, I think the picture is rosy.

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anyone else as perplexed as me about how much we threw the ball? Is this what we’ll see this year, or was it due to the personnel missing on the O-line?

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We observed the same thing. Really a lot of it has to do with the composure of Brewer - he sure feels like a senior QB out there. He sticks with the plan, has great field vision and yes I know it is Weber St, but he sure seems to be able to thread the needle and put the ball in the right place. But he seems to have an innate ability to let plays develop and not get rattled easily (maybe that’ll be different when USC’s defense is coming quick…).

He sure seems to have the ability to make our receivers succeed. I’m pretty happy about the state of things that way.

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Perfect game from a coaches perspective. A lot of good things to point out and a lot of issues to address. It is easier to coach guys hard after a win.

I think this team can be very good. I’ll just hold my breath the next two weeks and hope we don’t stub our toe on the road against better competition.

3 Likes

I wasn’t perplexed by it. It may be because of a depleted OL, but I’m hoping that because of who we have at QB we might be able to keep offenses honest for once. I’ve always wanted a balanced passing/running attack.

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not even one targeting call on Chase Hansen, that’s a good omen I think :wink:

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Brewer looked really good. My only gripe is that he need to slide and not take unnecessary hits.

Speaking of hits, he took quite a few shots early on.

The OL… I don’t know if it is just PTSD from the past few years, but I have some pretty major concerns. I understand there were a couple guys out, but I was disappointed in their performance; missed assignments, Brewer taking hits early, can’t get a push at the goal line. Seems like we see the same thing from that group over and over. I am hopeful they can get it together, but my confidence level isn’t high.

Thomas looked good besides the fumble, Bernard was solid. Not sure about the other two RBs.

Devin Lloyd is just a beast, all over the field. Stoked that he came back.

Overall, a pretty sloppy performance IMO. Plenty to get cleaned up if this team is going to reach their potential, let alone extend the streak to 10 next Saturday.

2 Likes

My concerns (in order) going into this season were QB, OLine, DLine, WR, RB.

QB - Brewer was great. This is no longer a concern.

Oline - hard to say vs Weber, but we do know that every other team we play will have a better defensive line than the wildcats. They knocked Brewer down a few times and stuffed us at the goal. I remain very concerned about the Oline.

Dline - again, hard to gauge, but I still have nightmares from last season about not being able to put any pressure on the opposing QB. I’m still pretty worried about this group.

WR - it looks like the same group of WRs we’ve had for the past 10 years. It kills me that our best WR transferred before a season where we (1) are clearly eager to throw a lot and (2) have a good QB.

RB - nothing really stood out here in terms of speed, quickness, or hitting holes. Thomas’ stats look great, but I’m still a bit worried about this position.

Finally, we need to go to Kuithe more. He needs 10+ targets per game. He’s the best receiver we have (maybe our best offensive player?), and he could end up as the first team all-Pac-12 TE if we use him a lot. Good things happen when he’s heavily involved.

2 Likes

Vele was the invisible man. Did he even play? For all of the passing we did I don’t recollect one pass to him.

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FYI - Brian Thompson caught 1 pass last night for 16 yards, ASU only passed 10 times last night so not the best game to judge what his impact will be there.

They only passed 10 times? Wow. Are they saving the playbook for someone in week 2?

Anyway, I don’t know that it matters how he does down there. He was clearly our best WR last season (unless you count Kuithe). And he was a downfield threat, which we really need.

Jayden was 10/12 for 132 yards, 0/0 and 6 rushes for 40 yards. ASU was 14/18 on passing attempts. Carried the ball 40 times. Wanted to run the clock with a comfortable 28-7 lead at half.

1 Like

We basically used this game like a practice. What was with the short kicks? Redding I know can boom
It. And he did.

The run game will be our bread and butter this year. I think we passed to figure somethings out for our OL as pass blocking is generally more difficult than run blocking.

Our DBs were playing a lot of zone on third and medium and giving up a ton of cushion. They got several firsts off a scramble.

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I thought I remember last year that KW likes to kick short because he wants to pin the offense inside the 25… So he tries to kick high and short to get good coverage instead of kicking it out of the end zone Of course when you kick out of the end zone you eliminate the possibility of 100 yard return

One thing I liked about the game - Whitt’s flowing locks.

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And stubble. He’s Pushing the envelope on the idea of a two day beard

For those us with a lot of testosterone, that’s easily a two day beard.