Sunday, October 13, 2013

Second viewing thoughts and grade report: Clemson

Watching the game back was encouraging and frustrating at the same time. Our defense is solid. Sure Clemson didn't play their best, but our D was a real source of frustration for them. Plus the D as a whole is getting better every week. In my review it may come off like I am defending Rettig. That is not my intention. We needed him to have a great game and he didn't. But watching it back did make me realize that many of his late game issues were the result of successes he had early.

Like Addazio, I am not happy with the loss. We had a chance to win and blew it. And that is reflected in the overall grade. But I do feel like we are actually building towards something.

Offense: C

Early in the game Rettig made multiple plays by scrambling or moving in the pocket to keep plays alive and keep drives alive. Later in the game it obviously came back to haunt him. The fumble was really bad. He's also got to avoid sacks. He's still a little too hesitant to make throws in tight coverage. Our guys aren't getting "open" but there are plays there. Rettig needs to get rid of the ball faster. I don't know the dynamics huddling late. I don't know if he is following orders, but Addazio was admonishing him to move faster and he didn't. It was a good start for his day and a bad end. He needs to play better.

I thought Williams ran hard. He was their key and they loaded the box, yet he was still getting positive yardage. There were no explosive plays but it was solid. Willis' TD was a great run on his part. He made a good cut, outran people and stayed inbounds. He was bottled up on most of the other plays. There was an option play where he got a late pitch, held on and got pounded. He's tough. Sinkovec looked good on his pass.

Amidon had the big game I hoped for. He caught tough passes and ran away when he got the chance. I wish we were forcing it to him more. The Tight Ends were fine. Spiffy looked good and the holding call on him late was borderline.

This was somewhat typical of this Oline. The run blocking was good and the pass blocking wasn't. Vardaro played the best. Gallik probably had the roughest day. He let guys dart by him and also got pushed around a bit. Patchan struggled a bit on the pass coverage. White was fine. Williams was good.

I am okay with the play calling. It is conservative, but we do build on plays like the play action, the counter and the bootlegs. I liked getting the ball to Amidon on runs (you have to get it to your playmakers). My biggest problem is how we approached the 4th quarter. Regardless of where the blame falls (Day, Rettig, Addazio, all of the above), we didn't execute a good "two-minute drill." That's on the OC.

Defense: B+

Ramsey had a good game. Gutapfel made a play. Edabali was good and looks so much better now that he's allowed to move around. Wujciak played well and was able to get consistent penetration.

KPL had a nice day and made big plays all over the field. Daniels looks so, so much better than he did in the beginning of the year. He's a solid tackler, hard hitter and in position make plenty of plays. Divitto was fine.

The DBs as a group are played well and are much improved. Sylvia's bit hit caused a fumble. Asprilla made some solid tackles. Bryce Jones looked really good. Williams was good. Rositano -- who I've been tough on -- broke up a pass. ALJ was the guy who got picked on a bit, but he was going up against the best.

Brown called a good game. As I've said before calling a game is a bit like Rock-Paper-Scissors, but what I appreciate about Brown is that we are showing different looks and keeping them guessing. We didn't blitz much early and then did later. Plus we got pressure in the backfield naturally. We got beat a few times by their skill guys but I feel like our players have a good understanding of what they should do and are making good plays.

Special Teams: B

Freese was good on kicks and punts. We missed one key opportunity to pin them but it didn't mean much in the scheme of the game. Spiffy and Willis both did well on their respective returns but didn't break anything big. At least they were aggressive.

Overall: C+

Clearly Addazio had the team prepared. The early gameplan worked well and the team seemed confident and willing to fight. The play I was most proud of was the Amidon TD. Clemson scored and we answered quickly. It was a huge moment and had me believing we would win. Good teams answer scores. But it wasn't enough.

The bigger issue was Addazio's use of the timeouts and clock management. As Austin Tedesco pointed out, Addazio's actions show that he's not concerned with preserving timeouts.

There are two schools of thoughts on timeouts. One is to use them whenever they are needed. The idea is that execution of a current play is more important than preserving time later. The other philosophy -- especially in a close game -- is that you don't burn them and only use TOs later in the game to maximize your possessions. Despite our scores yesterday, we are not a quick strike offense. Our current approach is to grind it out. With that mindset, sustaining drives becomes critical, so you can rationalize using them. If it becomes a trend with Addazio and costs us games, then I will readdress it.

The other game management issue was the lack of hurry up and the punting. This is another case where I will give Addazio the benefit of the doubt. Clemson is not a clock killing team, so punting and playing for possession when you are still within two scores makes sense. And as far as hurry up vs huddling, it wasn't a good idea, but I also think it can be explained by trying to execute rather than rush, just to save clock. If Spiffy's not called for a hold, Amidon's end around puts us just outside of the red zone with three minutes and down ten. Score and then try the onsides.

Overall, the game was a loss so I cannot give a great grade. But I remain encouraged.


eagle1331 said...

Great gameplan to start. Great execution early in the game. Great effort by the kids.

Day & Adazzio again showed that the Offense won't adapt again though. We had the chance to seize momentum in this game with consecutive turnovers because of our D's great effort and instead went 3 and out, 3 and out, 4 and out, three and out. There was a string of 9 possessions (out of 14 total) where we had 4 or fewer plays.. given one was a TD. We only had 4 possessions that went 20 yards or further.

Addazzio has a right to be upset that we didn't come away with the win, but the only person he has to blame is himself and his OC.

JBQ said...

Thought that the analysis was extremely well thought out and to the point. "Clock management" was the killer. Rettig has "brain lock" and that surprises me. He needs to "rock and roll" and as stated get rid of the ball in rhythm. He holds on to the ball for some inexplicable reason as the posting well states. Nevertheless in regard to Rettig, the "glass is half full" and we thank him for his efforts. He just has to do the "little engine that could" routine and try a little harder. It's all "in the Chase".

lbkjj said...

How about mentioning our " fake punt" fiasco

Big Jack Krack said...

That fake punt was poorly designed, IMHO.

As an alternative, I'd rather see the punter fake the rugby kick and run or throw a pass. One way or the other, we would have to catch Clemson completely by surprise, as their defense is very stout.

A pass to someone like Miller, who might be able to block out/hold off his defender through size and strength.

Concerning offensive adaptablity - I have no idea how difficult it is to design a plan to control the clock given our assets versus Clemson's defensive assets. I hate 3 and outs as much as everyone else - and 9 of 14 with 4 plays or fewer is pretty sobering. Still, I feel like we are improving each week. Clemson, after all, is the number 3 team in the country right now.

Great effort by the entire team. We need the week off, and let's bring it for the final 6 games, 4 of which are on the road.

It's a very difficult remaining schedule travel-wise and our guys need our support.

We have played USC, FSU and Clemson in 3 of our last 4 games, Hopefully that experience will carry us to many victories in our last 6 games.

Hell, let's win them all!!

Go BC - Go (not Golden) Eagles!

eagleboston said...

Believe it or not, that was the first fake by a BC special team in 5 years. It was not executed well, and it was probably not the correct down and distance to run the fake, but at least we have given opponents something to think about down the stretch.