coming out of high school. Classic tweener athlete who no established Div I coach wanted to guarantee would play QB at his school.
Down with OPP: Dave Clawson (Bowling Green)
So I missed last week because I was really busy. So I've picked up the baton this week and am resuming Other People's Pressers. Dave Clawson is the guy for Bowling Green and here are a few notes I took based on the audio (what? no transcripts??) of his 25 min presser. There is also audio of questions to LB Eugene "Champ" Fells and Bryan Wright, but I haven't had time to listen to those.
On our personnel:
- He coached in FCS at Richmond for several years and the closest analogue to Denard is Armanti Edwards. Richmond played Appy St in the FCS semifinals in 2006 and lost. Said Armanti Edwards "had a very good day" against them. (Incidentally, UMass coach said something similar in reference to Edwards when they played in the 2007 semifinals - the year of The Horror).
- Denard is strong for his size, quick, fast, makes impressive throws. Has great arm strength, makes nfl throws, and is accurate
- They have a kid (backup QB Caleb Watkins) "being Denard" in practice, but that it's "hard to duplicate the speed of what they’re doing" because DR is so fast. Mentioned that he heard DR ran something like a 4.32 40 in HS and that he's the fastest player on the UM team.
- Defensively, Mike Martin is a big strong guy, and UM has a big DL, averaging something like 290lbs.
- LBs can run, which is a challenge.
On our schemes:
- W/r/t our offense, it's like defending 2 back run game out of 1 back set. A lot of run-pass dilemmas due to ability to run QB. This will be a big challenge defensively for BGSU.
- On our defense, UM struggled defensively last week, but looking at the UConn and ND tapes, solid efforts. If they limit the big plays against ND, it's a blowout.
On their personnel:
- They're very young. Their starting QB (Schilz) is out this week, maybe next. #2 spot has been up for grabs, so both guys there (Aaron Pankratz and Trent Hurley) are pretty similar. All the QB's are young and inexperienced (per roster, all are FR or SO) and whoever starts will be starting for the first time.
- OL is also very inexperienced, which contributed to the injury to Schilz.
- RB Willie Geter is "probably the toughest 5-8 175lb back in the country." Last week vs. Marshall, was able to turn 2-3 yd losses into 2-3 yd gains (reminiscent of Mike Hart in that regard). They knew it was rock (ie, run), but couldn't stop Geter. Doesn't understand why he's not talked about as one of the top RBs in the conference.
- Kamar Jordan is now out of the bag, leading country in receptions. Not surprised that he's breaking out. Expects "cloud or hard corner coverage, safety invert coverage if they try to double him." Can anyone tell me what this means?
- Feel good about the other WRs as well. Lot of good players at that position.
- On Bryan Wright, haven't really talked to him about schemes and plays, they have the tape for all that from last year and this year. It's on the coaches to prep the team, not Bryan Wright to provide information. Did say that he asked about noise, atmosphere, wind, stadium, and if there were better ways to do things at BGSU based on his experience with both LC and RR.
- Said that Bryan Wright spoke very highly of both LC and RR, nothing but praise for both coaches. Reflects very well on Bryan Wright as a person and on the Michigan coaches (sidenote: Wright ended up going to BGSU because his graduate degree program - hospitality management - is not offered at UM).
On the game in general:
- Clawson has "told players they have an opportunity to do something very special for team, program, university."
- "After big loss, need to get refocused. Same after big win. Many new players this year, so need a lot more effort to stay level, not get too high or too low. Didn’t practice well yesterday with enough focus. A win doesn’t mean a great week. Players can get too high. " (I quoted it, but it's not really verbatim - just didn't feel like retyping)
- On Mizzou game last year, they were up 14 at one point, but lost the game. Said he didn't know if they truly believed they could win. It's 4 quarters. There were missed opportunities in the 1st Q that could've won them the game, just as in the 4th when they let it slip away.
- They get excited about playing in front of any crowd, even the 20k home field. But "how often do they get to play live in front of 110k people in the largest stadium in the country?" They don’t play Michigan again. Once in a lifetime opportunity, kids need to be ready to take advantage of it. If they’re not excited about it, nothing will wake them up.
- In reference to the UMass "little house on the prairie" remark, said that if the reporter knows how to control 110 kids, he's all ears (these are the jokes, people). Philosophy is that they need to enjoy themselves. This is a unique opportunity for them. If they're not having fun, they're not getting better. Obviously need to put in very hard work, but need to make sure they enjoy it, too.
sounds like a very open, honest and down to earth coach. I wish BGSU the very best beginning on 9/26.
"Wright ended up going to BGSU because his graduate degree program - hospitality management - is not offered at UM)."
Sure, cue the snide remarks from UM grads about hospitality management as an academic program, but it's still nice to hear of a kid who makes a decision not based on playing time and the impact on his NFL draft status but rather on a much more long-term future. I don't think we'll be reading pathetic stories twelve years from now about how Wright has managed to squander every penny of his multi-million dollar contracts on 12 houses and 35 cars and 18 children by 7 different women and a posse of parasites with their hands out and is now filing for bankruptcy with debts higher than the Bell Tower and no prospects whatsoever of finding a meaningful job.
I know someone who graduated from Cornell's (Ivy League, kids) hotel school, which is one of, if not the, most highly-regarded hospitality management program in the world.
I'm sick of Denard being compared to Edwards. If the kid was so damn good he would have played at a major division 1 school.
I wish I could say that we are going to blow this team out but after last weeks performance we do not know which Michigan team is going to show up. I will say if the defense shows up and has eliminated a lot of the mental errors that we had last week then I think Michigan rolls to a 42-17 win. If the Michigan defense of last week shows up and Bowling Green comes out early and puts points on the board then I still like Michigan 35-24. I'm hoping for the ladder so that we can get some of our young guys in and give Devin and Tate some extended time before hitting the Big Ten schedule next week.
I don't know why Armanti Edwards chose to play at Appalachian State, but that alone doesn't mean he wasn't an outstanding player. Great players can come out of Div. 1-AA. Ever heard of Jerry Rice? I only saw Edwards play one game ever, but I was pretty damn impressed with him.
Seeing as BGSU is a MAC school with their starting QB injured, I would say that if Michigan manages to eliminate the mental errors from last week then the score will be a lot more lopsided than 42-17.
Just to add to Jerry Rice: Walter Payton, Steve McNair, Joe Flacco, TO, Brian Westbrook, Kurt Warner, Howie Long, Deacon Jones.
The FCS/Div1-AA guys have been good for a long time now.
He coached in FCS at Richmond for several years and the closest analogue to Denard is Armanti Edwards. Richmond played Appy St in the FCS semifinals in 2006 and lost. Said Armanti Edwards "had a very good day" against them.
Been a long time reader of MGoBlog, but never created an account to comment. After reading this, however, I thought I could add some insight. I was born and raised in Ann Arbor, but actually went to the University of Richmond for undergrad (now graduated) and Clawson was the coach for my first few years on campus. I attended Richmond's home games as well as watching several of their playoff games live.
I was at this aforementioned game between Richmond and App. State and to say that Armanti Edwards had a "very good day" is the understatement of the century. In that game (actually 2007, not 2006...and Clawson's last season as our HC) Edwards rushed for 313 yards against our defense -- which I believe still stands as the D-I record for rushing yards by a QB in a single game (albeit I-AA).
Clawson literally seemed incapable of adapting a good defensive scheme against Edwards in specific and mobile quarterbacks in general during his time at Richmond. The Richmond defense that year was supposed to be our biggest strength as well. After Clawson left, Richmond hired Mike London (now UVA's heard coach) and we went on to win the 2008 I-AA National Championship. Our defense, comprised of all Clawson's players but with London's scheme, had a rematch with App. State in 2008 and effectively shutdown Edward's scrambling in route to victory. This was an excellent controlled experiment because App. State was as good as in 2007 and the only change for Richmond was a new coaching staff.
So, in summation, Clawson's defensive schemes in my experience are ill-suited to stopping mobile Qbs. And, as several posters have noted, Denard is simply in another league compared to Edwards. Having seen them both live, Edwards is best described as a poor-man's Shoelace. A touch slower and nowhere near as good of a passer.
Thanks for that perspective. That is really interesting. I hadn't looked up the stats, but yeah - MAJOR understatement. 313 rushing yards by ANYONE is nuts, but the QB? Yeesh. Fyi, I looked it up and Wikipedia says that Edwards had 495 total yards that game. Not bad, kid.
And I got a few of my facts wrong. You're right that Richmond and App St played in the 2007 Semifinals. UMass played App St (and Armanti Edwards) in the 2006 FCS Championship game and lost. I said above that Richmond played App St in 2006 and that UMass played App St in 2007.
My guess, seemingly confirmed with cursory Google, is that it's a zone coverage where the safety rushes up to the flat while the corner drops back to the deep zone. Not an expert so not sure why he would expect that per se. Would seem like it was designed to confuse the quarterback, not particularly to provide an advantage v. a good receiver.
Not an expert but I think there are some advantages other than just confusing the quarterback. The cornerback is already in the right part of the field for his zone he just has to drop backwards to the proper depth. This should prevent a receiver from ever beating him deep. We've seen examples of our safeties rolling over to cover the receiver deep and not getting there fast enough.
The downside is that it leaves a throw to the flat open much longer than if the cornerback stays in the flat. If you're vulnerable to a throw, that's a good throw to leave open. It's a long throw for not very many yards, and the safety will be headed to the area at the snap so there shouldn't be many yards after the catch.
Like I said, I'm not an expert but I did stay in a Holiday Inn Express. If there is anybody out there that knows more than me, I'd be happy to hear any corrections or comments. I'm always happy to learn more about schemes.
Edit: I forgot to mention that I don't know if our defense has done this at all though. Obviously we want to do whatever we can to win the game, but if we haven't shown this type of coverage I kind of doubt we break it out for this game.
Thanks. When we dropped the corners back last year the linebackers were supposed to cover the flat, in theory. don't remember the safety ever rolling up.
Three Deep – Rotate (“Cloud”)
The goal of this coverage is to take away the short passing game or protect against the wide side of the field when the offensive formation is strong into the boundary (short side). The PSR is based on the alignment of the SS and the C. The SS must be deeper than normal in order to cover the deep middle or deep outside (is aligned deeper than the adjacent C), the read is a rotate by SS; i.e., SS is covering the deep middle or outside. Also, in this coverage the C to the side of the rotation will be tight (up close) on the wide receiver as they have the flat. The secondary can disguise this by having both Cs up and on the snap the away (from the rotation) C back peddles to deep third [1/3] quickly (“bails”). However, we can determine the side of the rotation by the position of the Outside Linebacker (“OLB”). The OLB, whether W or S away from the rotation must be stacked or walked off as they have flat away from the rotation. You can confirm the 3D by the alignment of the FS. If the FS is off the hash and favoring the middle, assume 3D.
Basically, you show a two-deep look but play three-deep with the safety nearest their best outside receiver (in this case, Jordan) rotating to that third of the field. That way the corner matched can play him aggressively off the snap, without having to bail into the deep third.
The suggestion from the SF post is that the proper counter move if you get the proper pre-snap read is to go to the other side of the field with the pass. On a team with more talent, that's a better suggestion than it might be for BG. And since we don't have a ton of different players capable of playing deep thirds, I'm guessing they'll probably prefer longer passes more than typical. Then again, their QB situation is pretty ugly and that option might not be available.
the BG corch himself indicated (and possibly indicted) the offensive line as a weakness which won't help the first-start QB land many deep tosses. Heck, sounds like he all but blamed their OL for having to start a raw QB.