Picture Pages: Blowing Up The Inverted Veer

Submitted by Brian on November 12th, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Michigan couldn't get yard one with the veer against Nebraska, and most of them ended up with an unblocked Nebraska player blowing up Gardner. It is time to look at them. For some reason. Why didn't I start a blog about 1980s hairstyles? 1980s hairstyles never make you want to rub your face in gravel.

I digress. The first one comes on Michigan's first drive. A late blitz has just seen a power O slanted to and blown up for a one yard loss; it's second and eleven on the 24.

Michigan comes out with an H-back and two tailbacks in a twins formation, which necessarily means that the slot receiver is not an eligible receiver. Nebraska responds with 7.5 in the box, with the gray area defender just about splitting the difference between Funchess and the tackle.

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On the snap Bosch pulls and the gray area guy sits and stares the backfield down.

Michigan shows veer action with Kerridge leading Toussaint to the outside; Michigan blocks the playside end, which would mean they're expecting to option the slot defender except 1) Kerridge is out there, so they're using one of their blockers on him anyway and 2) Gardner does not appear to be reading him but something further inside, if he's in fact reading anything. Gardner's awareness of this slot defender seems to start after the mesh point.

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You can see that Gardner's helmet is not pointed at the slot defender as he starts making his decision:

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What's he reading? Is he reading anything? I don't know. it doesn't seem like it. Watch the video in real time to get a feel for it. Toussaint does react like a guy who might get the ball, juking the blitzer, so I guess they're reading something. What is unclear.

Meanwhile, Kerridge is expecting the slot guy to contain upfield; instead he shoots upfield inside of him hard, too hard for him to adjust to.

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Gardner pulls and seems to sense a disturbance in the force now; he goes straight upfield.

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Toussaint dodges the blitzer, running into Gardner; Kerridge  is prone, Gardner starts stumbling, and his momentum is taking him into the chest of an unblocked LB.

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It's now third and nine, and Gardner's soul is now worn 1% more.

Video

Slow:

Items Of Interest

Optioning no one. We're back here, in year three. Michigan has a rudimentary read option game on which their QB doesn't know what to do too often and gets plays blown up, but here we're back to last year's Alabama game, where the defense made it so that Michigan's option plays didn't actually option off a defender, with similar results. No matter what happens on the edge here, the play still spends Kerridge and Toussaint on one defender and leaves an unblocked guy.

It would be one thing if I'd ever seen this fullback on the edge thing work. I have not. At best it's wasted him as he blocks a guy shooting up on the edge who is trying to contain Toussaint; at worst:

I'm about to get some comments about how this is Gardner's issue or Kerridge's issue and that Borges can't be held responsible for the results of this play. Sure. Any one play can be traced back to some execution error by the offense.

These posts are an effort to explain trends I'm seeing in the offense with particular plays, though, and this kind of half-ass option is par for the course. Michigan cannot get the fullback to be useful on these read option plays, and hasn't made him useful for three solid years.

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This is the kind of stuff Denard papered over by being Denard. Even when Michigan was eviscerating Ohio State two years ago, they weren't really optioning anyone and it was left to Denard to make the magic happen against an unblocked dude at the LOS:

Michigan was fortunate that was a freshman Ryan Shazier on one leg. When you don't have Denard and you've turned your quarterback's ribs into a fine paste already, you no longer get 41 yard touchdowns and instead your unblocked dude gets a tackle for minimal gain, or more likely a loss.

They've had Kerridge for three years now and Gardner that long and Toussaint that long and they still can't get them to execute a real option. Either they're not trying or they're not coaching. And either way…

How is this supposed to work? It seems like the idea here is for the slot guy to run himself upfield outside of Kerridge to maintain a force back inside and then for Gardner to hit the gap between him and the rest of the defense. Nebraska beats that idea by using the slot guy super-aggressively.

How do you make this play work? Nebraska understood that Michigan's formation meant Funchess was not eligible; the gray area defender had no thought of a pass and ended up blowing up the play. But you can still make this work since Nebraska is sitting so deep with the safeties. Michigan has two options here: shooting Kerridge at the LOS, leaving Toussaint to his own devices, or using Kerridge to attack the slot defender and put Toussaint on the edge into acres of space.

This is the kind of thing you could come back to later with a tweak and bust a big gain. Clearly there were no big gains on this day. This design isn't necessarily bad; the inability to see what Nebraska is doing and get rock to their scissors at some point is. I mean, if you get this again and block the dude the defense has no force player, which means you get a lot of yards. This move by Nebraska violates a cardinal tenet of sound defense and works because they win on RPS, and if you probe at what they're doing here you can beat that. Instead Nebraska just kept chewing up Michigan's offense.

Hooray covered slot receiver. Hooray. I will never understand the point of that. If Michigan had some package where the ability of the H-back to get to the backside of the play meant something, okay. Instead you get nothing and if the D recognizes it, as they seem to here, you're playing 10 on 11. Temporary voluntary red card.

Again, maybe this is some sort of genius but since I've never seen it do anything productive it just seems dumb.

Comments

buddha

November 12th, 2013 at 1:35 PM ^

A couple points:

1.    We could probably dissect every play from every game and – with the exception of the successful ones – say, “Man, if only Player X had blocked his man, caught the ball, read the right man, etc…we would have really gashed the team!” The problem is, this year in particular, there are sooooo many “if statements” that it simply boils down to preparation (IMO).

2.     I know you want to confine your statements simply to this play (which makes sense because of the title and content!), but I think a lot of people are applying the lessons from “Inverted Veer” to nearly every other offensive formation we see. The same themes are cropping up: Tipping our hand, illogical formations, poor blocking scheme, poor preparation, etc.   

thisiscmd

November 12th, 2013 at 1:46 PM ^

I totally agree with you. We've seen plays broken down before that had no real chance of success. I wouldn't put this one in that pile is all. 

I could see someone saying Denard would have kept the ball and still made that player miss, thereby covering up Kerridge's inability to execute seemingly obvious assignment. (and to the bigger point, his coaches' inability to teach said ability).

I think many of us are arguing over the minute details of exactly how this offensive coaching staff is failing the team.

buddha

November 12th, 2013 at 1:53 PM ^

Agreed. Everyone recognizes the offense sucks; people are trying to find answers by either gathering data and assigning blame and / or using the eye test (which can play tricks at times). Frustration breeds irrationality. 

For me, I agree that if Kerridge blocks his man maybe this play gets broken open for some yards. However, I still cannot excuse the formation. Placing Funchess in that role seems mind boggling to me, knowing full well he is not a good blocker and excels in space. All around - seems like a strange play.

aplatypus

November 12th, 2013 at 4:40 PM ^

Especially the "if statements" - the vast majority of the time they come to blocking. I don't think w'eve had a PIcture Pages or play breakdown this season that didn't have at least one horrible blocking failure. I don't see how anyone in their right mind could put something like a dropped pass on the offensive coordinator. 

The issue is that there is a dichotomy here where a large number of people put all of those mistakes solely on Borges. Even worse is that many of those people aren't very technically informed in the matter and others are just the typical 'loud' posters that pretend they know more about how to block or call a play than Borges does. That's ludicrous. He may not be the best offensive coordinator ever, but he's not the worst and he certainly understands the basic concepts people here act like he's never even heard of. 

Even his biggest defenders in SpaceCoyote and reshp have said repeatedly there is a coaching failure somewhere with the team, particularly in preparation like you said or in the basic teaching aspect. But I don't think it's fair to unilaterally blame a scheme when we don't even get time to see the scheme develop most of the time because of a blown assignment. You can say he needs to put the players in the best position to succeed, but plays like this use about as simple of concepts possible that they should practice ad nauseum already and we still fail. As SC asked, what is Borges supposed to do when his linemen can't even make the simplest of reads? Is he supposed to try and go even simpler - just so that more people can talk about how predictable our offense is? Is he supposed to try new things - just so people can complain that we're chaning things and not practicing them enough? Everyone grants that it could be his fault the players don't execute high school level blocks, but I don't think that can be put on the scheme.

Since it was 'Paged - using this play. Nebraska didn't do anything special there, if Kerridge makes his block on their space defender (even with Butt screwing up and blocking the option defender) then it's a 4 yard gain at least. If they do that AND Funchess makes a passing block on the first safety it's a 10 yard gain. All that's asking is a FB to run into the guy he knows he's supposed to run in to and a large TE to run into a safety he's larger than and distract him for 1 second. You get that and it's a good play and no one cares that Funchess was ineligible. I don't think that's a lot to ask. 

There are scheme issues, particularly the lack of good counters. Sticking with the above play because it's already got the photos lined out; I think that is set up for a reasonably effective run to the left. In RichRod days, it very likely would have just been a Denard QB power to the left with Fitz as a lead blocker. That's almost a guaranteed 5 yards. But on counters as a whole, I'd guess we rarely try any misderection because we suck at simple direct runs and Borges thinks that would over complicate matters.

All in all, I don't think anyone has said Borges is perfect or above reproach, but the fanbase has had pitchforks and torches ready for him for months while ignoring the much more apparent issue in simple blocking failures. I feel like that needs to be addressed before worrying about playcalling and overall offensive schemes because none of that matters if you can't execute simple blocks. (and yes, I do advocate firing Funk. I don't like it but for whatever reason his players don't get it and failure of this level isn't acceptible)

itauditbill

November 12th, 2013 at 1:15 PM ^

I agree and also wonder how much this reminds folks of the defense under RichRod? In that instance you had coaches being forced to run a 3-3-5 or defenses they weren't good at. And we see what happened. Here you see Borges not being able to run his offense. Now sometimes coaches can adjust to this and change their philosophy. How much of the bad play calling may perhaps be tied to the fact that Borges is just mentally shot.

Also, in reference to play calling versus execution. As Brian said, at what point when the players rarely execute a play right should the staff realize that this play just won't work, no matter how often it gets called.

Finally, I'm reminded of Coach John McKay's quote during the 0-14 year of the Bucs. When asked about his team's execution he supposedly replied, "I'm all for it." I'm not sure if that was said, but in this time of coaches and bloggers talking about execution it does make me laugh.

umchicago

November 12th, 2013 at 2:27 PM ^

don't forget about that game.  people do because we won.  but we were getting torched at halftime because denard played mostly under center.  he threw 2 or 3 picks that killed drives.  we passed as much as we ran.  i think the yardage was ok but the INTs were killer.

in the 2H, borges said "take over denard" and he did.  we ran at least twice as much as passed and killed NW in the 2H.  we won that game.  unfortuneately, we ran out of time against iowa (or waited too long to make the switch).

thisiscmd

November 12th, 2013 at 1:01 PM ^

Kerridge whiffs the block, causes Fitz to stop after Devin keeps in an attempt to avoid being blowed up by incoming defender, Fitz trips up Devin by doing so and the play just kinda falls apart as Devin stumbles towards line trying to regain balance. If Kerridge gets just a piece of his man this play looks to be a huge gain. 

 

thisiscmd

November 12th, 2013 at 1:36 PM ^

Maybe. Maybe not. Probably not?

Either way I'm not arguing with you. Whether it's bad schemes or poor fundamentals it falls back onto coaching.

Is it weird that I'm encouraged that this play actually had a chance? I mean I could see them getting a first down here if things went right. (A first down is when we pass the line where the ball was snapped right?)

smwilliams

November 12th, 2013 at 1:00 PM ^

I don't think the point of this is that the playcall is necessarily bad (Brian mentions as much and I'm sure this is what Hoke sees) or that the players are doing their jobs and we've got Greg Davis up in the booth.

What I've seen is that Borges (and Hoke to some extent) have done a terrible job of recognizing what personnel can and can't do and adjusting accordingly. For example, on the other side of the ball...

Mattison sees a defense lacking in big-time playmakers and concerns about the man coverage skills of at least one of his corners in addition to a young safety that could be prone to big mistakes. He could dial up blitz after blitz, trying to bring pressure, and force turnovers (which is Mattison's MO), but recognizes that could lead to disaster. Instead, we get a more cover 2 scheme where the safeties and corners are protected, the linebackers are reponsible for the medium stuff and Mattison hopes the offense can't sustain a long drive down the field or shoots themselves in the foot.

That's why Michigan's D is in the solid B-to-B+ range and the O has gotten an F. Mattison adjusted to highlight strengths and compensate for weaknesses. Borges never came up with a counter.

reshp1

November 12th, 2013 at 1:17 PM ^

"What I've seen is that Borges (and Hoke to some extent) have done a terrible job of recognizing what personnel can and can't do and adjusting accordingly."

I don't think that's quite fair. We've done a ton of adjusting to paper over the personnel issues and in some cases it's brought even bigger problems (see: slide protection to simplify pass pro). You can argue that they weren't the right adjustments, but adjustments absolutely have been made. Furthermore, what position can you put a FB in that's easier than ID'ing a defender and hitting him? At some point it's out of coach's hands because plays are already dumbed down so much that they're "predictable" or "lack coherency." I certainly don't think Borges is doing a great job, but there are limits to what and OC can do when players can't do the basics.

smwilliams

November 12th, 2013 at 3:38 PM ^

My counter to that is something that has already been mentioned. Because the LB doesn't have to account for Funchess, you are basically asking Kerridge to adjust his blocking angle in a split second to account for the crash versus what he's expecting to be a contain arc.

It's not that idea isn't basic. Kerridge is supposed to block guy X. Simple, right? I mean, I don't know what you do for a living (nor is it really applicable), but let's say you were a decent enough mechanic. Nothing special, but serviceable. And I asked you to change the oil on a car. You could do it without issue most of the time. Let's say I then asked you to do it while blindfolded while I set the auto shop place on fire. Not as easy.

My issue with the coaching isn't that Borges is a moron incapable of putting together a coherent offense (you don't end up being an OC for 20 years like that). This year, Borges failed to identify the personnel issues and come up with a way to minimize those issues. The idea that other teams out there don't have youth along the offensive line or kids who miss blocks is ludicrous. They all do. Even Alabama.

I'm fed up because every game we run plays that haven't worked all year, still don't work, and will continue not to work. Then, we run variations of those plays. Then, the coaches blame the execution.

 

Goblue89

November 12th, 2013 at 1:00 PM ^

First off Gardner is obviously not reading anybody and that's fine this play could still be a success.  Why not have Paskorz and Kerridge trade responsibilities?  Kerridge could ran straight down hill to help seal the edge or go to playside LB, and Paskorz could shoot out to the grey area defender with Funchess cracking down to help.  This could be a straight give to Toussaint to the edge.  You could still run this as a read play as well by having Gardner read the grey area defender even if he is being blocked (by the way he is flowing).  Kerridge would shoot straight ahead and seal the edge or go directly to the LB and Paskorz could just take the gery area defender where he wants to go and Gardner reads his flow.  If he crashes hard inside Paskorz walls him off and Gardner gives to Toussaint, if he flows to the outside Paskorz walls him off and Gardner keeps to the inside of Paskorz with Bosch leading.  It's almost like and old school option veer look. 

ccarna

November 12th, 2013 at 1:20 PM ^

Borges obviously didn't teach Gardner how to do it right!  He doesn't know and Hoke is even more clueless when it comes to offense so doesn't even know that Borges doesn't know. They run it out of the wrong formation....They don't create the mismatch...There's nothing to read!  Instead of reading where one guy isn't your looking at a solid wall of bodies.  If it isn't there when they line up Gardner needs to call an audible for a quick outside pass......oh yeah, forgot there is no QB coach to teach him that....hmmmm

Waves

November 12th, 2013 at 1:43 PM ^

In my career I have encountered quite a few highly intelligent people who knew their subject matter like no one else but for whatever reason, just lacked the ability to teach it to anyone else. (Unfortunately some of them were in academia.) I don't know if it's a personality thing, inability to connect with other people or to motivate, whatever. Really doesn't matter.

Borges may be one of these people--an offensive guru who just can't connect with his players sufficiently to get his system to function correctly.

But it amounts to the same thing as being ignorant--poor results.

maznblu

November 12th, 2013 at 3:37 PM ^

That may be the case.  But don't take one semester to evaluate that teacher's ability to teach because sometimes you just get a crappy class (sometimes it takes just one annoying student to throw everything off).

Likewise, don't just judge Borges by this year (and I doubt you are).  You have to take the entirety of his resume. 

Based on just his three years at Michigan, he seems decent, but not exceptional.  I wouldn't say he can't teach at all (otherwise the team wouldn't have won so many games), but clearly some have a very reasonable disagreement with that.

I think the optimistic view is that Borges is an above average OC, and he really only started to implement his scheme/system this year because of Denard.  It is a complicated pro-style offense that takes time to learn, and isn't particularly suited to young players in some positions.  Give him time and he will achieve above average results (not exceptional results).  Along with an exceptional defense, we will be in the running for the B10 championship each year.

I think the pessimistic view is that Borges is incompetent because he either can't teach, his scheme/system sucks, or he can't make gameday changes.  Or all three.  We then won't see any progress next year.

I lean toward the optimistic view, but that is my coping mechanism.

ccarna

November 12th, 2013 at 1:16 PM ^

It's ridiculous that Borges can't run, or teach the RunOptionRead.......My god all he has to do is to look at some old film, or read "Three and Out" for a good discription.  It's crazy that they peform the play where the QB goes to where the RB was going to go and don't do it out of more of a spread to create a mismatch.......Running it into a "loaded" box is nuts!!!  Does Borges want to kill our QB/RB?  The entire point is to create a 2 on one situation and run to where the 1 isn't......or, at least do a pic on the 1.   I've seen many little leage football teams to a much better job and almost every HS team........Hey perhaps there are some OC's availble at a much lower cost than one of the highest paid OC's in college football!!!

KSmooth

November 12th, 2013 at 1:29 PM ^

Forget the play, what the heck is up with the formation? I mean, you've just taken Devin Funchess, who's a real receiving threat but a poor blocker, and put him in a position where he cannot go for a pass, and doesn't have anyone to block even if he wanted to.  So basically he's a wasted man, and the slot defender can blitz with impunity, knowing that we can't throw the ball to Funchess no matter how wide open he is.

Could someone explain the point of this alignment to me?

buddha

November 12th, 2013 at 1:43 PM ^

This play is Exhibit A for those (like myself) that don't believe Al Borges positions his players for success. You take Devin Funchess out of space (and out of the play!) and intentionally place him in a role where he is required to identify, isolate, and block a defender close to the line, knowing full well that Devin Funchess struggles in blocking / contain. It's truly mind boggling to me. 

antonio_sass

November 12th, 2013 at 2:42 PM ^

What are you looking at here? 

Devin Funchess is in the slot. He is in space. He is not required to block anyone close to the line. He is either tasked with blocking someone who's covering him or, like in this play, the safety who is playing deep. It's the same thing you would ask any WR to do.

ccarna

November 12th, 2013 at 1:29 PM ^

You don't run a RunOptionRead into the formation shown it's suicide......you call an audible to an out receiver.  Nebrask just knew that the M offense isn't taught to do this or they wouldn't have lined up in the D formation they did.......Almost any team in the country would have destoyed their D in the formation shown regardless of the O lines ability.

OldSchoolWolverine

November 12th, 2013 at 1:40 PM ^

They should make that play, and have Shallman replace Fitz, and have Gardner run behind Kerridge and Shallman,  along with the pulling Bosch...as a train.....  imagine if Gardner let Shallman go ahead of him.....    if executed properly then that play would be hard to stop in that defensive alignment.

And FUCK ALL... why not have audibles with designed train runs like this? When the defense allows it, audible into it and have Gardner run it.....  Instead Borges is too full of himself and his west coast ego.... FACT

readyourguard

November 12th, 2013 at 1:37 PM ^

why does Fitz slow down/dance/derp? He should carry out his fake at full speed which A) gives the slot defender at least a second of pause to honor the sprinting TB, and B) prevents Devin from tripping over Fitz.

NiMRODPi

November 12th, 2013 at 1:43 PM ^

Just watching the play it seems like Kerridge screws this up and that's that. I mean, even watching full speed, there is no confusion about who he is going to block. That's his man, he's running toward him, takes a horrible angle, and then reacts slowly to it. All he had to do was get in the way and he didn't even manage that. He had one job, one guy, and completely missed him. Coaching? Reps? I don't know, but the play call gets some frickin yardage if Kerridge gets there.

I don't want to rag on a kid, but I just don't even know what he's doing. There is plenty of space out there for Fitz if he just nudges this guy.

ccarna

November 12th, 2013 at 1:50 PM ^

1.) Fire Borges now! This must happen or we will lose recruits. It is actually possible to play call around a struggling OL.....(ie;Indiana).  I truly think that this could be a great team with good O play calling and teaching, but not under some cocky jerk who blames the players.  The obvious solution looking at the D formation was to call an audible but our guys, unlike the average HS team don't know this.  What does Borges get paid again?

2.) Fire Funk now! He obviously doesn't know what he is doing. Other teams have freshman and walkon's who can play the OL just fine.

3.) Fire Welman now! How can all of the lines be so week. With both the D and O lines doing so poorly there must be a strength and cond. issue.

4.) Hire a QB coach both Denard and Devin never reached their potential due to not having a QB coach. Borges' not being able to work with other coaches is another reason to can him (what he said regarding having a QB coach)

5.) Fire Borges now! Should have been done after he threw away last year's OSU game through pure stupidity! Didn't even pass the "man on the street test" on the play calling on that one.

Hoke is a good figurehead and recruiter, but that's it, so he needs the best assistants. Other teams hire the best not a bunch of MAC guys (WAC, whatever), that no one else wanted. Michigan can hire the best. If Hoke doesn't step up to these deficiencies than he needs to go. And my god the clock management is abysmal!!! I certainly hope that Hoke isn't responsible for that. Not playing the end of the 1st half and "leaving it in the hands" of the defense" is archaic football crap......Get Borges some diapers if he has to pee and can't wait until the half is over! Oh Yeh, we fired him, right????

umumum

November 12th, 2013 at 2:11 PM ^

let's stop the mid-season firing nonsense.   I know it makes some here feel like a hard-nosed CEO.  But it is unrealistic.  It lacks an alternative plan.  Its as likely to be counter-productive--with recruits and in other ways.  And, of course, it ain't going to happen. 

I say this as someone who has no confidence in Borges (and likely Funk) and hopes Hoke makes necessary changes in the off-season.

Maized n Confused

November 12th, 2013 at 1:51 PM ^

If I were the OC I wouldn't use any formation that makes Funchess ineligible, but it was blocked well enough that Toussaint gets a first down and more if Borges calls a Sweep. Getting Toussaint into the open field quickly is the best way to use him, because that's what he is - an open-field runner.

Goblue89

November 12th, 2013 at 1:55 PM ^

Why not run same action and formation with a slip screen to Gallon?!  Funchess blocks the corner Paskorz acts like he is going to block grey area defender and heads down field.  Kerridge acts like he is going to lead block to the outside before heading up field as well.  Gardner fakes read action (hell all he would have to do to get grey area defender to crash down would be to hold ball out of few seconds) takes a few shuffle steps back to get throwing lane if need and wings it out to Gallon who has slipped behind Funchess's block and is approaching there slot defender left.  You now have Gallon with the ball and a running start with 2 lead blockers.

markusr2007

November 12th, 2013 at 2:00 PM ^

If you're going to waste a guy, then make it Kerridge.

Kerridge's assignment could be to hightail his ass out to the flat. On a  counter to this option play, he's catching a quick pass for between 5 to 10+ yards versus oh nobody.

Which brings up the point about fullbacks and TE at Michigan. WTF happened?

In the Hokeian language, Aaron Shea is frequently uttered - as reflexive verb, noun and adjective. Yet it's a pointless word all the same. Hoke seems unaware of the fact that Michigan FB's are irrelevant in Borges' offense. 

I don't recall Borges ever using FBs to any meaningful extent at UCLA, Auburn or even SD State.  This continues at Michigan. So yeah defenses can safely ignore Michigan's FBs completely.  Ta-da!?

Every player who hits the field should be an offensive weapon of some description.  Michigan's fullbacks are always blocker weapons, which can work. But having them do some other stuff might give them pause to tee-off on Gardner and Toussaint every damn play.

 

 

 

The FannMan

November 12th, 2013 at 2:02 PM ^

I offer one, honest to God, non-agenda driven question that is not a defense of anyone or a cry to get someone fired:  Did Michigan ever get this again and not run the adjustment that was refered to in your post?  It seems like Nebraska gambled and won with the grey-area defender.  OK, fine - good for them I guess.  Did we ever get this again and do the same thing?  Did we ever try to bait them into the same play and punish them somehow?  (You may not know depending on how far you made it into the UFRs.  If so, cool - no problem.) Thanks.

BTW - I really hope we win on Saturday.  This site is descending into civil war o'snark.  I need this site.  Without it, I will have to do some actual work.  Please, think of the children!

 

umumum

November 12th, 2013 at 2:01 PM ^

"does Michigan have the single dumbest collection of players in the history of mankind?"

I sincerely suspect not.  If not, then they should be coachable--odds are they were in high school.   And while we are young on the OL, we aren't the only team young and largely inexperienced--particularly by Week 11.  At some point execution has to fall on the coaches just as much as scheme--and/or scheme has to match the skills and limitations of your players.

I appreciate there is a scheme divide on this Board--and, of course, it still relates to Rich Rod in whole or part.  But even those who want to defend the Borges scheme must at some point acknowledge a gross failure in the ability to teach it or make it fit this personnel.  The players ain't going anywhere.

Yeoman

November 12th, 2013 at 2:35 PM ^

I'll get into methodology later, but here's the complete list of equal or younger offensive lines in FBS:

  1. Arkansas
  2. Maryland
  3. Tulane
  4. Eastern Michigan
  5. Western Kentucky
  6. Wake Forest
  7. California
  8. Idaho
  9. UCLA

Their particular nightmares may have manifested differently, but those are some terrible teams. Bad as it is, Michigan's probably the second best offense on that list, after UCLA.