Upon Further Review: Defense vs Delaware State Comment Count

Brian October 22nd, 2009 at 11:45 AM

Personnel notes: Um, well, there were a lot of them. The most interesting things from my perspective: Sagesse reclaimed his spot as the backup NT, and Kovacs was the deep safety whenever Michigan went to eight-man fronts, which was frequently. Kenny Demens and Brandon Smith didn't even see the field, IIRC. And James Rogers moved to corner.

On with the very boring show:

Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
O5 1 10 Ace 4-4 under Run Dive Mouton -1
No one gets out on linebackers, leaving Mouton(+1) free to hit it up in the intended hole; Graham(+1) zips around two blockers to meet the Delawarian in the backfield; Roh there too.
O4 2 11 Shotgun 2-back twins 4-4 under Run Zone read stretch Roh 0
Roh(+1) flows down the line into the path of the tailback; Martin(+1) avoids a cut block and flows down the line to tackle on the cutback
O4 3 11 Shotgun 2-back twins 4-4 under Pass Screen Martin Inc
Martin spying on it and there to tackle immediately if its caught, but it isn't. (Cover +1)
Drive Notes: Punt, 0-0, 14 min 1st Q.
Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
O29 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 4-4 under Run Inside zone Graham 0
Martin(+1) slants past a guard, causing a cutback; Graham(+1) has also sliced past his blocker and tackles(+1) for no gain.
O29 2 10 Shotgun 4-wide 4-3 under split Run Inside zone Mouton 3
Linebackers flanked outside of the DL here, which I've seen before and will now attempt to deliniate as you see above. Same play as the last one; Graham(+0.5) again gets playside of his guy, causing a cutback. Mouton was blitzing, sees the handoff, and closes down on the cutback to tackle.
O32 3 7 Shotgun trips bunch 4-3 under Pass Hitch -- Inc
Quick three step drop finds a guy open for a few yards; it's dropped. Probably not a first down even if reeled in.
Drive Notes: Punt, 7-0, 10 min 1st Q.
Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
O20 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 4-4 under Pass Throwaway Martin Inc
Martin(+1, pressure +1) zips past the G and gets instant pressure on the QB; he responds by chucking a long, covered (+1) out route well OOB.
O20 2 10 Shotgun trips 4-3 under Pass Screen Heininger Inc
Heininger(+1) reads it and hangs back in the throwing lane; the QB turfs it in response.
O20 3 10 Shotgun 4-wide stacks 4-3 under Pass Out Warren 5
Complete, but well short of the first down and with no chance of getting one.
Drive Notes: Blocked punt, defensive TD, 21-0, 7 min 1st Q. Here it is, you sick bastards.
Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
O10 1 10 Shotgun 4-wide stacks 4-3 under split Run Draw Ezeh -2
Timing on this is really poor; develops super slow. Sagesse takes a double, as does RVB, leaving Ezeh(+1) wide open to read the play, shoot through a big hole, and tackle with help from Sagesse in the backfield.
O8 2 12 Shotgun trips Base 3-3-5 Run Inside zone Van Bergen 1
RVB is left unblocked and Sagesse(+0.5) cuts off the frontside so he can read the QB and close down on the handoff no problem. (Tackling +1)
O9 3 11 Shotgun trips Base 3-3-5 Pass Out Woolfolk 10
Am I going to give a minus here? I think so, actually. Woolfolk(-1) is play way far off of this, which means that this ten-yard throw could get turned up for the first down if it was more accurate. It's a marginal throw, though, and it pulls the receiver off his feet as he brings it in. (Cover -1)
Drive Notes: Punt, 21-0, 5 min 1st Q.
Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
O19 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 4-3 under Pass RB flat Heininger Inc
Heininger(+1) bats it down. Williams(+1, cover +1) was going to crush this for little or no gain anyway.
O19 2 10 Shotgun trips Base 3-3-5 Pass Out Williams Inc
Three-man rush and a short drop so no pressure(-1); receiver is just open at the sticks but cannot come down in bounds; Williams in good not great zone coverage.
O19 3 10 Shotgun 4-wide stacks 4-3 under split Pass Scramble Graham 6
Graham's(-0.5) pass rush move is to the inside and doesn't work; Ezeh is blitzing up the same lane. This induces a scramble from the QB, an unnecessary one, and gives him a lane to run up into. Williams(+0.5) tracks him down and tackles(+1)
Drive Notes: Punt, 3 min 1st Q.
Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
O24 1 10 Shotgun 2TE 4-4 under Run Zone read stretch Fitzgerald -1
Starting to rotate already, and hey, Fitzgerald(+1) does well here, reading the play and zipping up in a small crease that forms as Banks(+1) gets playside of his guy and into the backfield. DSU's ponderous tailback has to kick it outside, where there's help; game over, man.
O23 2 11 Shotgun 4-wide stacks 4-3 under Pass Out Mouton 3 (+15 pen)
A nothing play that's covered(+1) well; tackle made by mouton but he grabs the facemask, giving DSU its first first down.
O41 1 10 Shotgun empty 2TE 4-3 under Pass Out Brown Inc
Brown(+1) bats the pass down on a blitz (pressure +1); illegal formation declined.
O41 2 10 Shotgun 4-wide stacks 4-4 under Pass Bubble screen Warren 1
Warren(+1) shoots past the lazy, inept block attempt from the DSU WR out there and tackles(+1).
O42 3 9 Shotgun empty Base 3-3-5 Pass Sack Graham -5
Three-man rush but Graham(+2) comes tearing around the corner to sack.
Drive Notes: Punt, 28-0, 1 min 1st Q.
Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
O10 1 10 Shotgun trips 4-3 under Run Inside zone Van Bergen -2
Possibly more of an RB messup than a great play as Sagesse got blown back by a double team and there seemed like some possibility they could get some yards here. RVB(+1) does beat a guy into the backfield, causing a cutback into Roh and doom.
O8 2 12 Shotgun trips 4-3 under Pass Angle Williams 7 + 15 pen
Williams(-1, cover -1) gets bumped by a releasing TE, which opens up a little angle route under it that he's not close enough to to close on before the guy can rack up some YAC. He then misses a tackle and picks up another facemask call.
O32 1 10 Shotgun 2TE 4-4 under Pass Hitch Ezeh 12 (pen -15)
Simple hitch for five or so gets turned into more because Ezeh(-1, cover -1) is late reading and arriving, overrunning the play and letting a DSU TE zip up for eight more. A legit chop block call on DSU brings it back; Sagesse got the brunt.
O17 1 25 Shotgun trips 4-3 under Pass Angle Leach Inc
Same angle route they ran just two play ago; it goes through the RB's hands. Leach was coming up and this looked like a minimal gain. (Cover +1)
O17 2 25 Shotgun 3-wide 4-3 under Penalty Delay of game -- -5
Baby seal, no!
O12 2 30 Shotgun trips 4-3 under Pass Out Woolfolk 5
Two guys there, small gain, okay. (Cover +1)
O17 3 25 Shotgun 3-wide Base 3-3-5 Run QB draw -- 7
Give up and punt.
Drive Notes: Punt, 42-0, 9 min 2nd Q
Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
O44 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 4-3 under Run Zone counter dive Graham 3
They us it against us! Sort of! They actually block Graham and use the pulling h-back on Mouton; a crease opens up as Graham(-1) got caught outside. Kovacs, unblocked, fills after a few.
O47 2 7 Shotgun 3-wide 4-3 under split Pass Out Jones 6
Teric Jones in for Woolfolk, as Woolfolk has tweaked his ankle. Jones gets run off but does close to tackle immediately on the catch, so, hey, not terrible.
M47 3 1 Shotgun 3-wide 4-3 under Pass Sack Graham -5
Graham(+1) avoids a lame cut attempt and after the quick throw is covered(+1) comes in to crush the QB.
Drive Notes: Punt, 42-0, 5 min 2nd Q.
Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
M23 1 10 Shotgun 4-wide stacks 3-3-5 Stack Pass Corner -- 19
QB has plenty of time (pressure -1) and manages to thread a needle between Jones and Williams, hitting his WR a moment before he heads OOB. Um... good job, Hornets?
M4 1 G Shotgun 3-wide 4-3 under Pass Throwaway -- Inc
Plenty of time (pressure -1) but no one open, so a roll. Still no one open, still no one. Throws it away. (Cover +2)
M4 2 G Shotgun trips 4-3 under Pass Hitch Leach Inc
Leach comes on a good delayed blitz (+1, pressure +1) that gets to the QB, who attempts to throw it but ends up turfing it because he was hit as he threw. Coverage(+1) was good so that was probably for the best.
M4 3 G Shotgun trips 4-3 under Pass Dumpoff -- 0
Strange cut blocking ends up with a billion people chasing the QB, who can't find anyone (cover +1) and eventually dumps it to the RB, who is swarmed.
Drive Notes: FG(21), 49-3, EO1H. Charting stops. Certain second-half plays of interest are below.
Ln Dn Ds O Form D Form Type Play Player Yards
O36 1 10 Shotgun 3-wide 4-3 under Pass Hitch Jones 11
Representative of Jones' play; plays off, doesn't make plays on the ball does tackle after the catch. Obviously needs work.
O38 3 1 Shotgun 2TE 4-4 under Run Inside zone Fitzgerald 0
Hey, this is pretty good from Fitzgerald(+1), who recognizes the play, finds a hole in the line, shoots through it, and tackles. Taking that opportunity represents some progress.
O49 1 10 Shotgun 2TE 4-4 under Pass Stop & Go Jones 42
No to pick on the guy, but the story of the second half on D is DSU just going at Jones again and again. I'm surprised he wasn't given a redshirt.
O22 1 10 Shotgun trips 4-3 under Run Zone read stretch Campbell 21
Freshman and all that sure but man Campbell just doesn't know what he's doing here. I'm down on the guy. I'm sorry if that makes me pessimistic.
O44 2 9 Shotgun 2TE Twins 4-4 under Run Zone read stretch Banks -4
Banks(+2) cuts under his blocker and bursts into the backfield to tackle.

So… about that.

Yeah. About that.

Is there anything at all you can draw from this performance?



Well… I guess Brandon Graham is still awesome. Teric Jones got torn up by DSU, which isn't a surprise since he's a true freshman who was a tailback in high school and never saw a snap on defense. I'm shocked he's not redshirting. And Will Campbell was a primary reason Michigan got gashed on a zone stretch play late. I totally understand why he's a goal-line only guy right now. I know he's a true freshman and all that but I'm starting to get concerned he will not live up to the considerable hype. That would score one for ESPN's scouting service, BTW.

Other than that… no. There is nothing. I guess we know that Justin Turner is definitively redshirting.



What do you mean, "no"?

Man, there's no point. I only did the first half and the backups were in by then. Here's your chart.



Um. Everyone.


I guess if you want to pick on the freshman corner or something you can.

What does it mean for Penn State and beyond?

Absolutely nothing.



October 22nd, 2009 at 12:27 PM ^

I have to say that was fantastic. I didn't take kindly to being denied a chart so forcefully, though.

I also think any Campbell evaluation is premature at this point.


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:04 PM ^

Campbell is a true frosh playing on the defensive line. He lost a considerable amount of extra fat in the short time he's been here and because of that hasn't had much time to add a lot of muscle and strength. All the while adjusting to college football. And we're concerned he might be a bust? Maybe we should give him just a liiiitttllleee more rope than that.

The Original Seth

October 22nd, 2009 at 12:15 PM ^

It seems to me like it's also pretty difficult even to say he's not living up to his recruiting hype, given that most of the hype was iterations of "this is a very large man with a ton of potential who will need to work on his technique under the guidance of good corches" -- which is what he's shown us in the (very few) downs he's played.


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:21 PM ^

Maybe "bust" isn't quite what Brian was saying, but he did say this:

That would score one for ESPN's scouting service, BTW.

ESPN's scouting service graded Campbell at a 79. That corresponds to a high 3 star, according to their grading chart. That's still getting awfully down, awfully quickly on the guy.


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:15 PM ^

Brian - I watched the play you claimed Campbell is primarily responsible for screwing up on at least 10 times.

First off, he's getting double teamed.

Second off, whoever is lined up in the purported MLB position (it's either Leach or Kovacs, I cannot tell), flows right into the O-line, diving at the RB's feet, and cutting off Campbell if he HAD any intention of moving to the tackle at the line.

Third off, Campbell was busting ass trying to make the tackle.

Fourth off, Emilien got crack blocked to the ground by the WR, which is the real reason (along with purported MLB player) the play went for yardage....

....unless you also looked for Fifth Off, which was the whiffed tackle by whoever the LCB was (Anderson? Jones?)

All in all, that definitely was not the play by which to jump to the conclusion that Campbell is not going to be a very good player. You had some problematic evidence in the Iowa game. This play was NOT it.

Further, 18 years old, first year with proper training, strength, positioning, technique, is not the time to be concerned about his development. If the case though, based on that play, we should throw Emilien in there too.


October 22nd, 2009 at 2:43 PM ^

Brian was discussing living up to recruiting hype, of which Vlad did not have much. WC had tons, and as pointed out above, is doing less than Martin did as a freshman, with less talent in front if him than Martin had. Does that mean we should worry about "bust?" Nope, nor was Brian doing so. But considering the hype (without the hype we wouldn't even be discussing WC right now) it is fair to say that he has not lived up to it--yet.

03 Blue 07

October 22nd, 2009 at 2:57 PM ^

After watching that clip multiple times, I still fail to see how it's Campbell's fault. It's a run play outside of the right tackle. How is that Will's fault? He's lined up as a 1-tech and slants to the offense's left at the snap. Is it his fault for slanting? Or his fault for not fighting through two guys and a teammate who has fallen to the turf? How is it EVER his fault for failing to contain an outside-the-tackle run when playing the 1-technique? Is this an example of Will playing poorly because he didn't just detonate both guys trying to block him and get into the backfield in a half-second and piledrive the running back because it's "lolz DSU"? As far as assignments go, I don't see how he can get dinged that badly for this particular play.


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:19 PM ^

If you think Campbell is a bust...what about all the other freshmen who aren't even good enough to see the field?!?!?!

OMG this 2009 class is a waste!


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:21 PM ^

Not that I'm defending the general sentiment, but I still fail to see where Brian used the word "bust."

Saying a guy might not have been worthy of that coveted 5th star is hardly the most damning thing that can be said, no?


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:24 PM ^

5 star earth-crushing DTs - even the "raw types" - get dual hype. Hype 1: will leave their school with various accolades, etc. Hype 2: will make an immediate impact.

Maybe I'm wrong to give BC the benefit of the doubt, but I read his disappointment to mean that Hype 2 was unwarranted. Chitown - you're right that WC has been described as "raw" for awhile now, but it doesn't change that some (well, a lot) of people expected (more than hoped) he'd make an early impact. He won't. But as you suggest, that's OK. It'd be nice if he could work himself into being a viable backup this year given the thinness of the interior line, but it looks doubtful so far. That's all I read Brian to be saying.


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:28 PM ^

All BC says in this post is "I'm down on the guy." Totally agree that it might be too early to be down on a kid who had to simultaneously (1) shed weight; (2) actually learn technique, but let's not pretend it was a discrete minority of wack jobs that still thought WC might make some impact this year. Perhaps we let the depth chart needs cloud reason, I don't know.


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:53 PM ^

Fair enough. Perhaps I'm giving BC the benefit of the doubt with my intepretation. If he is, in fact, worried about WC long-term, then throw me in the group with "not worried yet." But re: short-term impact, I am a tad disappointed that, raw as he is, he isn't a viable "breather" option for our starters.

MI Expat NY

October 22nd, 2009 at 12:29 PM ^

Seems a bit harsh to lay all the blame on him for this one.

I'm not going to even try with names other than Campbell but here's what I see on that play. Campbell doesn't get off the ball very well, allowing the Center to execute a reach block. The end doesn't do too much to hold the end of the line, opening up a huge hole. The LB tries unsuccessfully to shoot up the hole, allowing himself to get cut by the Guard. The safety, who had crept up towards the line is waaaaay too passive and eventually allows DSU's runt of a WR to blindside him off his feet (head on a swivel young man), and the CB comes up and completely whiffs on the tackle. I'd argue that of all the elements that turn this from a 2 yard gain into a 21 yard gain, Campbell's sin is the least offensive.

Admittedly, not a good play from Campbell, he's too slow and too high. But in the end, he occupies two blockers one yard deep in the backfield, and busts it after the ball carrier down the field. With his raw skills, effort, and a year of development, he'll be fine.


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:33 PM ^

Teric Jones got torn up by DSU, which isn't a surprise since he's a true freshman who was a tailback in high school and never saw a snap on defense.

I think he played linebacker in high school too. But yeah, kind of surprised he is not redshirting.


October 22nd, 2009 at 12:46 PM ^

Brian, we need to get you out of your sometimes pessimistic rut, my man.

Yeah, we have not seen much out of Campbell and its too bad he could not have the immediate impact Martin did last year.

But, you know, any production immediately out of any freshmen is just gravy or icing or whatever analogy.

Think positively......yeah, Campbell has not showed us much this season.....but isnt getting the plays and serviceable productivity from Sagesse a good thing and negates that negative in your mind.

Meanning because of RS's development this fall, we dont need to Campbell to come through asap on his guru bonafides.

I'm quoting the Dead on you: BE PATIENT, LET IT GROW


October 22nd, 2009 at 1:00 PM ^

I don't think the concern is that he's not contributing so much as it looks like he has no idea how to play defense at all. It takes a while to learn things like leverage. At this point, he's got size and athleticism going for him, and that's about it.

Not saying he doesn't have potential. I am saying he has a long way to go and there is absolutely no guarantee he will get there. There haven't even really been signs, frankly.


October 22nd, 2009 at 1:10 PM ^

Seriously, what is up with the shoulder pads used by a bunch of the DSU guys? Watching these replays reminded me of how we were laughing the whole game at how sad they looked.

West Texas Blue

October 22nd, 2009 at 1:24 PM ^

Finally the whining about the coaches not playing Campbell will stop. He has size and power, but he has poor leverage and bad technique. He needs time to refine his technique. I expect Campbell will make a massive leap next year. Very rare for true freshmen DTs to impress and dominate.


October 22nd, 2009 at 1:34 PM ^

Demens was definitely on the field for the last series. I saw him in there on first down and on second down made a tackle. His name was also called over the PA system at this point for doing so.


October 22nd, 2009 at 2:39 PM ^

There is a big difference between Martin and Campbell.

Martin was a physical freak who had already spent hours and hours in the weight room. He was decent last year but really hasn't shown much improvement this year.

Meanwhile, Campbell was just a big, fairly fast guy who had the equivalent of zero coaching in inner city Detroit.

For a similar story, let's look at Brandon Graham and Craig Roh.

Graham: Undisciplined kid from downtown Detroit who ate his way out of being a MLB or even a DE and found himself playing rare minutes at defensive tackle as a freshman. He has improved significantly since his sad days as a chubby freshman.

Roh: A technically sound kid with a strong work ethic who came into college in good shape, needing only to add size and bulk. He has had a productive freshman season so far, and we'll see how his career arc goes from here...


October 22nd, 2009 at 2:52 PM ^

But as noted above, neither Brian nor as far as I can tell, anyone else is using the word bust, as Tim points out. But I might remind you that despite the clear rawness of Campbell last year, part of the recruiting hype was that he was supposedly owning fools at the highest level of practice against other top end recruits. And that the projections were that once technique came into play, watch out. Now that may still happen, but I think it's fair to say that expectations were higher for WC than what we've seen so far. If he was a 4 star guy with less hype we'd all think he was at where he should be. And that's Brian's only point I think.


October 22nd, 2009 at 3:22 PM ^

Dude, wow. I am in no way giving up on Campbell, but I am revising expectations downward after seeing him in sporadic action so far. Not that far down, but I don't think he's going to push for a starting job and probably should have been redshirted, which means he probably didn't deserve the recruiting hype.

I will note that the last time I got jumped on like this for being negative about a player, it was Cissoko*.

*(Not intended to compare the two.)


October 22nd, 2009 at 3:44 PM ^

but I have next to no short-term expectations for most players coming out of the Detroit PSL. The coaching in that league is simply sub-par. Only one team (Martin Luther King HS) has ever won a state championship out of that league. Most of its players are VERY VERY raw, but posses tremendous LONG-TERM upside. Campbell, Teric Jones, Cissoko, and I'm willing to bet even Dior Mathis and Delonte Hollowell (Sp?) are very raw as well, but I'm not 100 percent on them. To make this shorter, if the City of Detroit had the coaching of other major cities such as Cincy, Cleveland, Dallas, ect., the players would be much more game ready from Day 1.


October 22nd, 2009 at 4:51 PM ^

It's impossible for me to comment on the coaching of the PSL because like most of us, I've never seen the coaches in action. In fact, why are so many people here, most of whom are not grads or watch much PSL football (going way out on a limb) sure that the coaching is poor? I assume the answer to that would be "their grads technique is generally raw" or something along those lines. But I see Nick Perry is playing well at SC.