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Comment 2 replies
I wouldn't call 7-5 throwing in the towel
I would call it what I see as the most realistic outcome for this team. This is a new coach in his first year, installing an offensive that’s considerably more complex than that of the last regime. There’s going to be growing pains. In addition, I don’t think even our own fan base really understands our talent level. I believe that Texas is a talented team, but it’s where we are talented that I think makes a significant difference between us and say, Kansas State; but also makes a significant difference between us and say, OU.
When I say we’re a talented team, what I mean is that with very few exceptions the talent drop off between starters and bench players at Texas is a very small delta. I also think the majority of our starters across all position groups is pretty fair to pretty good. In other words I think we have a bunch of 7’s & 8’s catching their breath and being replaced by 6’s & 7’s. That’s a luxury that I don’t believe a lot (or really any) of the other Big 12 schools have, save for OU. I believe most of those schools have a few positions where their 7’s & 8’s are being replaced by 6’s & 7’s; but also I believe they have a few positions where one of their 7’s has to be spelled by a 4 or a 5. And if you go even beyond the 2nd guys on the depth chart – I think that’s where Texas’ "talent" is. If West Virginia loses a starter, they may have comparable back up; but the guying now backing him up is far more likely, I believe, to be a substantial drop off than you would find here at Texas.
And that’s great. The issue is – almost everybody in this league has 7’s & 8’s starting. Having superior depth isn’t nearly as likely to show up as a differentiator in the win/loss column in a sport where you only play 12-13 games and get to take breaks in between plays. I genuinely believe that Texas’ backups are better in aggregate than the other Big 12 teams’ backups (save for OU). But I also don’t think that’s going to make any difference whatsoever to our win/loss record, because there’s not really a way to exploit that advantage on a consistent basis. Which leads me to the thing that I think does make the biggest difference in the win/loss column – which are how many 9’s & 10’s do you have? I look at this roster and I see a few guys I would put in that category (Bijan, Overshown, Jamison), but I think our number of true difference makers is pretty substandard to what we would hope/expect to find at Texas. The scarcity of true difference makers is why I think our most realistic outcome is 7-5. It has nothing to do with throwing in the towel, it’s just an honest assessment of our top end talent (or lack there of).
As for why we shouldn’t simply utilize Olinemen who will be back next year: I believe 7-5 is our most realistic outcome. I do not think it is our floor. I think Flood is playing the linemen that he believes actually give us the best chance to win. I might disagree with him on Okafor, but I genuinely believe he’s putting what he feels is the best group he has out on the field. And I’m grateful for that because while there may not be much difference between 8-4 and 7-5, there is a difference between 7-5 and 5-7. Also, you don’t have to start or even play someone in order to teach them the principals you’re trying to install. For Olinemen in particular, practice may actually be even more valuable than game time because for Oline and Dline technique is such a critical component of success. For defensive line, you can quickly sub out a player in the game and have an in-the-moment technique correction. But for offensive linemen you’re substantially less likely to sub off play-to-play which means most technique correction for them doesn’t happen in real time, if at all, during a game. But that correction can happen in real time in practice. Thus for offensive line, while getting some game experience is certainly valuable, it’s actually probably not quite as critical as it is for other positions. So the benefit of getting a younger, returning player game experience may not outweigh the potential negative of having a young player fall into bad technique habits that you can’t correct in the moment; or the potential negative of having a young lineman get his confidence wrecked by getting worked over.
We certainly could use some upgraded oline talent
That’s for sure – and I think it applies regardless of whatever offensive system we are trying to implement. I also think we could really use some difference makers at wide out. That’s really where Sark’s offense is make or break. Sarkisian’s offense requires WR’s who can make quick and correct decisions and stay aligned with their quarterback. I don’t think we need Alabama level recruits for this offense to succeed at a high level though. But it isn’t an overnight install. It’s going to take some time, and yeah, some growing pains.
Also to clear up a couple of things. Saban didn’t ‘adjust’ to the spread because he had to. He went to a spread offense because 1) the best offensive assistants available were all utilizing some form of spread at that time; 2) the best quarterbacks in the country were playing that style of football in high school and so already accustomed to it; and 3) because he was tired of winning by only 3 scores every game and decided that winning by 4 or more was more fun. In addition, Sarkisian does in fact have some zone read concepts in his offense. He’s just not going to rely on it to be a staple of his offense. He probably would utilize it more if it really meant the difference between a 10-2 and 11-1 season. But since it isn’t, I don’t see why we’d be using valuable (and limited) practice time learning and perfecting the zone read when that time can be used elsewhere learning concepts that we actually will use in the future.
Comment 2 replies, 2 recs
Sark isn't going to incorporate the zone read as a staple of his offense.
That’s just not going to happen. You don’t hire Mike Leach to run the wishbone, you don’t hire Gus Malzahn to throw the football 60 times a game, and you don’t hire Steve Sarkisian to run the zone read.
If you’re Sark you might be willing to sacrifice some of your core beliefs if you feel like you’re on the cusp of greatness, and you think that adopting something like the zone read can push you over the line. But short of that? You’d rather take the 7-5 and install/enforce the offensive principals you’re trying to teach, in lieu of installing some packages you don’t plan on using long term so you that you can maybe finish 8-4 instead. Especially if you feel that your principals are the very things that are going to get you back to the cusp of greatness to begin with.
Comment 2 replies, 6 recs
You'll bet "BOG MONEY" that Sark isn't Saban?
You mean the guy who has won 6 of the last 12 national titles and is pretty obviously the greatest college football coach of all time? Wow, what a revelation.
I swear it is a wonder that Texas gets any coach to come here sometimes with the way we hurl ourselves into the sea over every single loss. We’re probably not as good as we looked against Louisiana. We’re probably not as bad as we looked against Arkansas. I don’t believe either game is enough to make any determination about what kind of future success Sarkisian will have here. In fact, I don’t think any remaining games this entire season will reveal that. If Sark is really interested in building a program it’s going to take some time. Even Saint Nick took a 7-6 year with a home loss to Louisiana-Monroe to lay the foundation of his program. I’m not saying Sarkisian is building what Saban built – but I AM saying that we don’t have any idea what he’s building after two games and we should all probably calm our collective tits.
Also – betting that a college football coach isn’t going to turn out like Nick Saban is like betting that the ocean is wet, or that Oklahoma sucks. It’s so obvious I don’t know who you could possibly get to take that bet. I always find it funny when people pound their chest about correctly predicting that Coach X wouldn’t succeed at School Y. That’s like predicting that the house will when in roulette. Wow, what keen insight. Coaches fail at a much, much, much higher rate than they succeed in this business. That’s the nature of the beast.
Now if Sark doesn’t work out, there’s a candidate we may want to consider. In his first nine years of coaching he’s been at a P5 for 8 of his first 9 years, he’s got a .638 winning % and he’s won 10 games one time. That sounds good enough for Texas right? No?
Well read the last line of the title of this reply.
Comment 1 reply, 10 recs
As a Texas fan this was very mean.
Also as a Texas fan – this was hella funny.
And also as a Texas fan – this was very deserved. We have a long way to go before we’re ready for the SEC. Good thing we don’t have to play Bama until 2025. What’s that? 2022 non-conference you say?
Comment 1 reply, 5 recs
I think Sark is right to trust Flood
Flood has a proven track record. I think both Sarkisian and Flood believe that rotating guys will undercut the cohesion they’re trying to build within the line. I also think they’re aware that their blocking schemes are miles more complex (no judgement either way) than that of Herman – and with that it would make sense to believe that the more experienced OLinemen would be better equipped to pick up on those different schemes and techniques quicker. The one place I would disagree with them here would be Okafor. Coaches have been teaching him basic fundamentals for six years now. If by your sixth year you don’t understand that you have to pick up the inside rusher before you help your tackle on the DE; or that you cannot turn your shoulders as a guard/center (something that is taught beginning your freshman year of high school), then I don’t believe you’re ever going to get it. In fact I would argue the very fact that he cannot translate these extremely basic concepts to his play on gameday would give credence to the idea that he isn’t ever going to pick up on the more complex schemes or techniques being asked of him currently. In that case, you are probably better off trying one of the young guys, or rearranging the line some.
Flood has shown a preference to guys who have heavy bases; but I think we’d be better off putting Karic at RT, kicking Kerkstetter inside to RG and moving Angilau to LG. I would also be deploying Hoofkin to spell the guards more.
Regardless, this team doesn’t have the horses yet along the Oline or at WR to get even close to maximizing Sark’s offense. I’ve been very pleased with the DL recruiting to date. I am very, very anxious thus far around the OL recruiting. We need to hit on some of the guys we’re in for now or else we’re going to be mired in this mediocrity for a while. I said before the year began that I felt we were staring a 7-5 season in the face. I still think that is the case. For reference I think we’d be 7-5 with Tom Herman too; but again, going 7-5 in your first year is very different than going 7-5 in your fifth. And to be completely transparent, I don’t know that there’s a coach in football today that could get this Texas team to 10-2, or even 9-3. It was going to take time for any new coach to implement their culture on this program and produce serious results. There were some not great signs in the Arkansas game sure; but there were also some excellent signs during the Louisiana game. I think it’s probably a little early to be calling it either way for the Sark era.
Comment 1 reply, 1 rec
Where does Iowa State rank in that category?
You guys are a Michigan opening away from becoming Kansas. Again.
Comment 5 recs
Yeah how could we ever compete with A&M?
Sweet jumping Christmas are you fucking delusional. Texas doesn’t have a quality product and probably never will again? Texas finished in the top ten in 2018. In the last five years Texas is 20th in SP+. That’s not super awesome, but it’s certainly not that bad, and I’d say it’s more than a stretch to say that Texas doesn’t produce a quality product.
We’re fourth in wins in the Big XII in the last decade? Not great. How about the decade before that?
Texas has many built in advantages. You take that and say ‘we’ve done less with more’ but you miss the very key element in that statement – which is that Texas will ALWAYS have more. It’s actually easier to win at Texas than not to. We don’t have to make a once in a lifetime hire to have reasonable amounts of success (see Tom Herman).
I realize this whole having a semi-viable football team is new to you Iowa state fans, but before you come in running smack you might want to consider that in its worse decade in almost 100 years Texas had as many 9 win seasons as you’ve had in your ENTIRE FUCKING HISTORY. So shut the fuck up, enjoy the fact that you somehow actually have a winning streak (2) against one the most historic programs of all time, and pray that you get MAYBE one more year of Campbell before fading back in the ether of obscurity from whence you came.
Win a NC before Texas? How? With your future $15M/year deal you’re about to get even if you do win one – in like corn judging or some shit probably – you won’t be able to afford to keep the coach that won it.
ISU fans talking shit now? Get the straight fuck out of here.
Comment 2 replies, 10 recs
It doesn't matter if Texas and OU stick it out until 2025.
It wouldn’t matter if Texas & OU paid DOUBLE the buy out amount. The remaining 8 are still going to consider them ‘slime balls’. That’s going to continue to be the national narrative too.
For fucking years Texas has held this piece of shit conference together by duct tape and wire. Texas has tried to do everything it could to make sure the conference was viable, and that at least one other school in Texas (Tech) be included in any previous conversation regarding realignment (despite the now obvious fact that no other power conference wants them). And what have they gotten for their troubles? To be consistently be cast by the national media and by other Big 12 fan bases as selfish assholes, only looking out for themselves, and bad for any conference that would have them. Behind closed doors the other Big 12 AD’s and presidents knew that wasn’t true, and that Texas had been more than happy and gracious to tug them along on our coattails. Publicly though? Aside from Jaime Pollard one time acknowledging our worth, those same happy fat cats couldn’t be bothered to spent one breath to defend us to even their own ignorant alumni.
Well, now those shitheads get to see what it’s actually like when Texas looks out for its own interest. This whole time all these other fan bases have been whining about how much better off they’d be without Texas. But just like any spoiled brat making a bad decision – once they got what they were asking for they realized they didn’t really want it. Too fucking bad. Boo fucking hoo.
Good luck to these shitbirds. Maybe I’ll try and catch a future Big 12 game on Discovery + or Roku TV or where ever the hell it is they end up.
Comment 2 recs
It is interesting indeed.
The official statement from the Big 12 today said the vote "was approved unanimously by the eight continuing (emphasis mine) members". One could interpret that to mean that Texas and OU are still full members, only acknowledging they won’t be continuing; or you could conversely take it to mean that the remainder of the Big 12 does indeed view Texas and OU as already withdrawn. That little sentence just might become a bullet point in future negotiations.
I hadn’t considered the ramifications that adding additional members, assuming they get full and equal revenue shares would lower the buyout for Texas and OU. That’s a very good insight. It may very well have been that Texas & OU were simply waiting for the conference to (ideally) implode or if not implode, then at least expand to lessen the buyout.
Comment 1 rec
And the whole world (including you)
Would tune into watch. Which is sort of the point.
Meanwhile your team played future conference foe Houston in prime time on ESPN and me and a whole bunch of everybody else didn’t even fucking notice. You couldn’t pull a million during PRIMETIME on ESPN primary. And y’all think you’re going to mitigate your future revenue losses by bringing in Cincinnati and UCF? Get the fuck out of here. You’ll be lucky to get a deal with the home shopping network.
Oh – and for the record, Texas doesn’t have a losing record to ANY SEC team save for one – and it ain’t Bama and it sure as shit ain’t aggy.
Comment 2 replies, 3 recs
That is an excellent take.
I also wouldn’t discount that the Big XII (in particular its ‘leadership’) is already on very thin ice with ESPN over the whole cease and desist thing. Since ESPN has a very vested interest in Texas & OU making their way to the SEC (and preferably sooner rather than later), they may make their own leverage play. If the irate 8 are already worried about what future negotiations might look like – imagine a scenario where ESPN of all networks just refuses to bid on their content at all. In that scenario the Big XII would have to pray that streaming services get heavily involved – otherwise Fox (maybe CBS?) are going to be able to super low ball them. There goes the bidding war. It truly is in everyone’s best interest to get this thing over with as soon as possible.