Monday, October 31, 2016

Second viewing thoughts and grades: NC State

Watching this game back, I kept focusing on our talent. In my opinion we have better talent than NC State. Much better, actually. We have real player makers on both sides, where I didn't see that same on their side of the ball. If we are so much better, how do I explain such a close game? Well, the areas where we struggle bring down the whole team. But there is something there. Now it is up to the staff to get them to execute at their talent level.

Offense: C+

Towles was his usual mixed bag. I think at this point we need to emphasize what he does well and keep him away from the problems. What looked good: the quick throws on slants and skinny posts and running on option plays. What didn't work, deep drops where he had to survey the whole field. He makes bad decisions back there. Look at the number of penalties called on him. He also floated too many passes.

Hilliman looked solid. He showed a little burst and also made some nice cuts. Jones didn't get as many touches. It seemed like he was in the dog house after the fumble. However, the pass play was huge. Willis looked good on the outside stuff. The delayed draws up the middle were are bit of a cluster.

The WRs and TEs were great. Jeff Smith's run was great, but he also pulled in some tough catches. Walker also showed good hands. Sweeney was great all around. His blocking was crucial on some of our longer run plays.

The OLine was better but still not great. As a unit, the pass blocking was good. Towles had time on most of his throws. When the OLine has to move, is when things become a problem. We are not good at screening, especially to the left side with Johnson and Monteiro. Things were better when we pulled guards on the sweeps. Baker played well and did something I've never seen before. In the second quarter on a Hilliman draw, he basically pushed a Johnson -- who had already fallen and was on all fours -- into one DT and then kept moving forward to block other guys for Hilliman.

My initial reaction to Loeffler calling so many gimmick plays (Wildcat, RB throws) was that they were a waste of time. My gut tells me that BC shouldn't be using practice time on those plays when we can't do the basics well. But thinking back on it, I understand why he's doing it. We are desperate and need to get creative. We know the guys can't be consistent on base plays, so why not do things like get Smith the ball on running plays or have Jones throw a TD. Doing it the other way wasn't working.

Defense: B+

Landry changed the game. He was good against the run and pass. Hopefully he starts drawing more double teams and opening things up for others. Kavalec also had a great game. He was able to run down some plays even after they were beyond the line of scrimmage. Gutaphel was critical to stopping the run. Allen looked good (as do many of our younger DLinemen). Ray played well.

Schwab's INT was beautiful. (Too bad we didn't capitalize). Milano was very active. Strachan looked healthy.

Moore's INT closed out the game, but he has some nice plays prior to that. The only problem he really had all day was slipping. Johnson made some nice plays. Harris was burned for the TD, but that was the risk of not playing anyone deep. Torres was good.

PP called a good game. We shutdown their run and had them guessing on passing plays. I think bringing pressure with guys like Landry helps open other things, so I hope he keeps it up.

Special Teams: C-

The Special teams weren't good. We had a kick blocked. We kicked off out of bounds. We allowed a huge run back late in the game. We need to clean it up. Hopefully Knolls is oky.

Overall: B

One thing that seemed clear live, in the postgame clips and during the game, is that these guys haven't checked out. I don't know who deserves credit for this attitude, but it is a huge compliment to the players and even to Addazio.

Now that we've won, people are wondering how the opinion on Addazio can change so quickly. A win will do that. But I don't think anyone really changed their opinion. Is he suddenly a good game manager? Nope. Are either sides of the ball smooth units? Has he turned Towles into a great QB or finally shaped up the line? Nope. But we are doing a better job of covering our mistakes and playing to our strengths (see Landry). I think Daz will do plenty to frustrate in the home stretch, but considering where we've been and where we are, this was a good game.


Unknown said...

good summary

mod34b said...

I enjoyed the game. first time in along time. Team competed and had a will to win.

Towles is a real head-case when he drops back. He needs to stay in the pocket longer. Once he starts running, little good comes of it. Perhaps he is uncoachable on that score.

Shabby1011 said...

Great team win and enjoyable game. For someone who has been critical have to give Daz his due here, whatever made him make decision to be more aggressive on offense in all phases paid off. Hope he continues trend and the team gets two more W's.

Defense played great, looked like last year. Will need to bring it on Saturday, looking forward to game.

Big Jack Krack said...

I was very happy with the game and the result, and I watched it "after the fact". But I kept updated on the score during the game.

One of the reasons we have been so disappointed and disgruntled is that we wanted the playbook opened up, like what happened in Raleigh.

This is college football and we have very good players on our team. Give them a plan to win!

Go BC - believe in yourselves, and you can do it!! Pull a Virginia and win!!!

marcos said...

Agreed on Towles. Announcers did a good job (shocking) of pointing out the OL creating a nice pocket, but Towles getting impatient and scramble right into the pressure. He's done this way too many times and made me realize the OL isn't as bad as originally thought. Let's give him some easier reads etc as suggested.

Great win though! So happy the ACC winless streak is over.

EL MIZ said...

still somewhat miffed that Towles is starting. he is completing less than 50% of his passes, which is worse than walk-on Fadule last year. we have a 3rd year QB with two more years of eligibility sitting on the bench - Wade can't get any looks at all?

nice to see some aggression from the offensive staff with the trickery and going for the end zone. also seeing more of the pre-snap motion and change of formation that characterized Day's offense the first two years. J Smith has developed into a bona fide threat on offense - congrats to him.

good point that the players haven't quit on Daz yet - that goes on the "pros" side of the Daz ledger. also, hats off to Landry for developing into one of the best defensive players in the ACC. we need him on all cylinders for L. Jackson, who is the most entertaining college player since Vick.

next 2 weeks are almost sure fire losses. can Daz keep the games close and will he play to win? then, we have Uconn at home and at Wake to decide whether we get to play in the Toilet Bowl. Wake beat Cuse by double digits, but lost to NC State - that won't be a cake walk.

marcos said...

...and Wake just lost to Army. Tough to figure out

Bravesbill said...

Army isn't that bad this year. I think all their wins so far have been against FBS schools. Definitely will be going to a bowl. They have their big games still to come though.

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