Monday, September 17, 2012

Talent: 2009 vs 2012

On Saturday Eagle Outsider posters questioned if any of our current starters would start for our 2007 or 2008 teams. To me that felt like an argument designed to make any BC team look bad. 2007 and 2008 were epic years when a variety of different factors (including talent) all came together. What I felt was a more reasonable comparison was Spaz's first year as head coach 2009.

The 2009 season had a millions reasons to fall apart but didn't. BC was coming off the confusing coaching change and the devastating news of Mark Herzlich's cancer. Plus all the quarterbacks on our roster were new to college football. Yet to Spaz's and the players' credit, that team did enough to win and made a bowl game. Since 2009 we've been on a decline and although talent is a factor, it is not the only issue. Just compare the talent of our current roster to 2009.

2009 Offense:
WR -- Justin Jarvis
WR -- Rich Gunnell
LT -- Anthony Castonzo
LG -- Emmett Cleary**
C -- Matt Tennant
RG -- Thomas Claiborne
RT -- Rich Lapham
TE -- Chris Pantale**
FB -- Lars Anderson
RB -- Montel Harris
QB -- Dave Shinskie

Which current players would start now? Rettig is starting over Shinskie now. Pantale would start if he were healthy. Cleary is already a starter (although at another position). Other than that, maybe Wetzel at Right Tackle. It might not be obvious, but I would start Amidon over Justin Jarvis. Amidon's current run is much better than Jarvis's best at BC.

The real drop off comes at the offensive line and at running back. But once again, that's Spaz's problem. He ran off Harris and has yet to find someone as reliable (in three years!). He also has not developed the OL well. Things may be getting better, but OL should never be a weakness for BC. I don't think Spaz ever appreciated our legacy at the position. If he did, he wouldn't have let their performance slip as far as it did.

2009 Defense:
DE -- Alex Albright
DT -- Austin Giles
DT -- Damik Scafe
DE -- Jim Ramella
SLB -- Mike Morrissey
MLB -- Mike McLaughlin
WLB -- Luke Kuechly
SS -- Marcellus Bowman
FS -- Wes Davis
FC -- DeLeon Gause
BC -- Roderick Rollins

Which current players would start now? Look at that unit above. Is it all that different from the group that just allowed Northwestern to run 100 plays on us? We miss Kuechly, but 2009 Kuechly wasn't 2011. I would also argue that Clancy and KPL would start over Morrissey and McLaughlin. The 2009 secondary is better at every position, but still not an all star squad. Although neither were ever all conference, Ramella's and Albright's consistency was much better than our current DEs. Scafe was very good, but I would say Ramsey and Appiah are as good if not better than Giles.

[Also note that current players Colin Larmond, Jim Noel, Mike Marscovetra, and Kaleb Ramsey were all on the two deep.]

I could go back to some other randoms years under TOB and also find a roster of similar talent. I don't think our 2012 team is filled with future NFL stars, but historically similar BC teams have won more. There are many factors in play, but head coaching is the biggest factor. When I say Spaz is not a good coach, it is not just about his terrible interviews or head scratching use of timeouts. It is also about how we approach recruiting, how we develop players, how he interacts with his staff, how we practice and how we prepare for games. I also think it is about passion and belief. The 2009 team overachieved in part because there was still a level of confidence and belief left over from the 2007 and 08 teams. That's gone now and we will need a new coach to change the attitude.


Knucklehead said...

The 2009 defense is better at EVERY position.

Pierre Louis is good. I thought Appiah and Ramsey were good but thi season has caused me to reevalute that COMPLETELY.

Ironically Spaz' best tackler THIS season is not starting. DUGGAN.

FWRR said...

Agree 100% Knucklehead. Chase and Amidon are the only changes I make. You are insane if you think Clancy would start over McLaughlin.

Honestly if Chase is the QB of that team they win 10 games. They lost 4 that year solely because of the quarterback situation (Tuggle against Clemson and Shinskie in the UNC, ND and USC games).

Btoal said...

Agree with FWRR, no way Clancy would start over Mac....not even close! Mac was a glass eater, heart and soul of the D type of guy. Ramsey is the only guy who could start on D.

ATL_eagle said...

KPL starts over Morrissey for sure. 2009 McLaughlin was post injury and a step slower. Not as great as his 2009 season.

Claver2010 said...

As I was the one who brought it up, some clarity.

The point was as a result of Spaz's recruiting the talent has taken a nose dive in 4/5 years. It was framed in light of the rebuilding the next coach will have to do in a couple of months.

The 2007 D wasn't on the level of 2008, yet there isn't a single player on this roster that would start on that unit (and few who could even crack the 2 deep). Forget 2008.

In 2008, Chase could start over Crane (imagine him with that OL & Montel/Haden) but beyond that maybe Swiggert and not much else.

We all know and have drawn out Spaz's deficiencies as a coach and it's most certainly not trying ot make excuses for him. He was a mistake from the start and every day that he is still our HC, makes the rebuilding process that much longer.

JBQ said...

There is definitely a drop off in talent. Rettig is playing well under the circumstances. However, the team has the appearances of "Snow White and the Ten Dwarfs".

Danny Boy said...

Our players have never been great on paper coming into the program. Its not like those 2007 and 2008 programs were loaded with pristine talent and we were the envy of the ACC.

No, we coached our guys up. We brought in lesser known guys and turned them into NFL picks.

That is where we are lacking now. We're taking high school kids and doing nothing to help them grow into college athletes.