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The View From Section 241

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O.K., I'm sure that I would have seen more if I was at the stadium, and not stuck at a Bar conference in Chicago, but I did see the game so here goes. First, that was an outstanding defensive effort. The D played more than well enough to win against an explosive opponent. If we can continue that .... Andrew Adams was great. I thought Graham Stewart played his best game as a Husky by far. I thought Adeyami played really well. Great team effort. Just two negatives I would point out. We must, must be training the DBs to not turn and find the ball in the air. I know the college rules are different than the NFL rules and not as many penalties are called, but you can't play the ball if you don't find it. As for individuals, I've been saying I think Melinfonwu is overrated for two years now, but enough is enough. He is just making mistake after mistake after mistake. There needs to be another answer at Safety, no matter who it is.

Special teams, overall, played Boise more or less to a draw, and then made the big play on the fumble recovery. I wish we were better returning kicks (making athletic plays against Stony Brook don't count), but we're getting reliable kicking and coverage and the year to year improvement has been noticeable.

So if the D played well enough to win and the special teams played well enough to win, ... ? Oh yes, the offense. The offense showed some signs of life with the QB play (more in a minute), but you can only win with the amount of total offense we have if you play Edsall ball and don't turn it over. The difference in the game was we turned it over 3 times and they turned it over once. Period. Nothing more. So look at the three turnovers. Three games, and three different TBs have changed the complexion of the game with early fumbles. I assume Ron Johnson will be the culprit in Tampa on Friday night. Ugh. And then two late picks after taking good care of the ball by Chandler for most of the game. As for Mr. Whitmer, given the fact that the OL got totally overrun in the first half, and couldn't run block either, I thought he played well. Add to that that he is still not getting help from his receivers and after a crips start he got pulled so Boyle could play the third series, and it was a promising start to his last chance. Certainly much better than the first two games. But, but, but, it all gets undone when he then throws the two 4th Q picks and takes us out of the game. Is this what HCBD's choice is with him? Ever reign him in and watch him play poorly or let him play and watch the TOs kill us? I don't know. I think off this game it's too early to beat up on him, but it is a legitimate Q. I like the way Ron Johnson runs. Maybe we do give him an early chance to fumble this week? OL has to be better. Not much else to say.

So exhibition season is over. Do I think we maximized our chance to beat BYU and Boise? No. No argument. But were we likely to be 1-2 anyway, but now we are there with the whole team feeling like their play matters and practicing harder? I don't think, in hindsight, you can criticize HCBD here for anything other than a poor choice of words. Do I like all the play calling? NO. But no one ever likes all the play calling of a staff, and this is a new one. People have to lighten up on this. Do I hope the substitutions slow down? Yes. Please. Especially as to WR. But now we start playing the conference games so let's see what happens.

So we're 1-2. BYU was about what I expected. Stony Brook was far, far, far worse. But Boise was hopeful. So the next two games will go a long way towards shaping this season. Sweep them and bowling is probable. Get swept and bowling will be near impossible. Split them and we'll be fighting for a spot all year. Which, as I've been saying, would not be a bad result for what HCBD inherited. The D played more than well enough Saturday to give us a chance to win every game remaining against the crap teams our schedule is littered with. The O has to either step it up a bit in the running game and pass protection, or it has to eliminate the turnovers. We will have to see. But I'm far, far, far more optimistic than I was a week ago. Ask me again in two weeks.
 
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One thing I would add. The fans were ready to explode if UConn could have marched the ball downfield in the 4th Q, down 24-21. The fans really want the team to be good. They were so close on Saturday.

A win on Saturday would have created considerable positive vibes and momentum. The score may not reflect it, but UConn played well and I am more optimistic about the rest of the season than I was after the win over Stony Brook.
 

sdhusky

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Whitmer needs to play from a lead.

He turns it over too much when playing from behind.

The USF is as close to "must win" as you can get in week 4.
 
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One thing I would add. The fans were ready to explode if UConn could have marched the ball downfield in the 4th Q, down 24-21. The fans really want the team to be good. They were so close on Saturday.

A win on Saturday would have created considerable positive vibes and momentum. The score may not reflect it, but UConn played well and I am more optimistic about the rest of the season than I was after the win over Stony Brook.

After the first quarter the fans were absolutely into the game. Every 3rd down, the fans were on their feet. I was there in section 131 in front of the big board. Place was LOUD. Made me happy. Still took a while for all fans to file in, but they seemed to finally get there. Pissed me off to see people leaving with 5 minutes left and a 3 point deficit. WTF!
 
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Whitmer needs to play from a lead.

He turns it over too much when playing from behind.

The USF is as close to "must win" as you can get in week 4.

He turns it over too much period.
 
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We're 3 games into the season, and he's now thrown his first two interceptions, with only one of them really his fault. 1 turnover is too many, but he has improved his tendency to throw picks.

2012- 12 games, 9 TDs, 16 INTs
2013- 4 games, 5 TDs, 6 INTs
2014- 3 games, 3 TDs, 2 INTs.

The trend is at least in the right direction. This "he is what he is and can't improve" idea on this board is simply false. He can improve, his accuracy yesterday was far better than the week before. He made it through the first 2 games without a pick. If he can cut down the picks (and he seems to be trending that way), we'll improve on offense.

Boyle gets an incomplete. Did nothing early, looked great against a soft defense late.
 

sdhusky

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I think Whitmer is really working at throwing the ball way if it isn't there and letting the D do their thing after a punt.

BUt when coming from behind, he feels the pressure to make plays.

Against USF, I want them to feel the pressure to make plays, not us.
 
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Being at the game, I disagree on Stewart. He is explosive at times and will make a highlight reel play. I feel he bites on play action too much and gets caught in the middle sort of speak trailing a back or receiver in coverage. He gets cut block a ton by linemen that get into his legs, and he slips more than all of our other backers combined. I'm not a fan of his play.
 
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We're 3 games into the season, and he's now thrown his first two interceptions, with only one of them really his fault. 1 turnover is too many, but he has improved his tendency to throw picks.

2012- 12 games, 9 TDs, 16 INTs
2013- 4 games, 5 TDs, 6 INTs
2014- 3 games, 3 TDs, 2 INTs.

The trend is at least in the right direction. This "he is what he is and can't improve" idea on this board is simply false. He can improve, his accuracy yesterday was far better than the week before. He made it through the first 2 games without a pick. If he can cut down the picks (and he seems to be trending that way), we'll improve on offense.

Boyle gets an incomplete. Did nothing early, looked great against a soft defense late.

It's such a small incremental "progress" so to speak. He's not just going from sophomore year to junior year. He's a 5th year senior. He should be well past this point. But instead, we're left to talk about how he has limited his mistakes thus far, and game #1 he was limited, and not the full time starter like the previous two seasons. His currents stats could look even worse.
 
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It's such a small incremental "progress" so to speak. He's not just going from sophomore year to junior year. He's a 5th year senior. He should be well past this point. But instead, we're left to talk about how he has limited his mistakes thus far, and game #1 he was limited, and not the full time starter like the previous two seasons. His currents stats could look even worse.

5th year senior playing for his 5th offensive coordinator after finished 2 years under two of the worst college football coaches in the country. Everyone ignores that fact as if it doesn't have anything to do with his performance. The game slows down when you're comfortable, he's never gotten that chance.

"His current stats could look even worse'? They also "could" look better, because the second interception wasn't even his fault.

He's on pace to throw 8 INTs this season.
He threw 6 in 4 games last year. Which is 18 over 12 games.
He threw 16 in 12 games his first year.

"small incremental 'progress'"?

He's on pace to throw half as many INTs as his "best" season. He deserves more credit than he's getting.
 
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I think Whitmer is really working at throwing the ball way if it isn't there and letting the D do their thing after a punt.

BUt when coming from behind, he feels the pressure to make plays.

Against USF, I want them to feel the pressure to make plays, not us.

Agreed. It's a fine line between having the balls to squeeze a pass in and the wisdom to throw it away. (or the time to check down).

It would be nice to start 1 game out without an early turnover or two from a running back.
 
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He is tucking and running a lot more if he doesn't see anything. That is the biggest improvement I see. I did see a play where he tucked and ran but had a wide open back in front of the line. He knows he is getting blitZed every third down butrarely finds a hot receiver to make them pay?
 
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5th year senior playing for his 5th offensive coordinator after finished 2 years under two of the worst college football coaches in the country. Everyone ignores that fact as if it doesn't have anything to do with his performance. The game slows down when you're comfortable, he's never gotten that chance.

"His current stats could look even worse'? They also "could" look better, because the second interception wasn't even his fault.

He's on pace to throw 8 INTs this season.
He threw 6 in 4 games last year. Which is 18 over 12 games.
He threw 16 in 12 games his first year.

"small incremental 'progress'"?

He's on pace to throw half as many INTs as his "best" season. He deserves more credit than he's getting.

Whitmer's play is the singular reason on offense that led us to having any success on offense against Boise. It was his 18TH start. I expect continued improvement in #19. And hopefully some blocking and a running game to help. And no fumbles.
 
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5th year senior playing for his 5th offensive coordinator after finished 2 years under two of the worst college football coaches in the country. Everyone ignores that fact as if it doesn't have anything to do with his performance. The game slows down when you're comfortable, he's never gotten that chance.

"His current stats could look even worse'? They also "could" look better, because the second interception wasn't even his fault.

He's on pace to throw 8 INTs this season.
He threw 6 in 4 games last year. Which is 18 over 12 games.
He threw 16 in 12 games his first year.

"small incremental 'progress'"?

He's on pace to throw half as many INTs as his "best" season. He deserves more credit than he's getting.

Throwing to and hitting wide open receivers doesn't change no matter what coordinator you have.
 
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5th year senior playing for his 5th offensive coordinator after finished 2 years under two of the worst college football coaches in the country. Everyone ignores that fact as if it doesn't have anything to do with his performance. The game slows down when you're comfortable, he's never gotten that chance.

"His current stats could look even worse'? They also "could" look better, because the second interception wasn't even his fault.

He's on pace to throw 8 INTs this season.
He threw 6 in 4 games last year. Which is 18 over 12 games.
He threw 16 in 12 games his first year.

"small incremental 'progress'"?

He's on pace to throw half as many INTs as his "best" season. He deserves more credit than he's getting.

And again, small sample size and a little bit of progress. You make it sound like he's had a revelation and he's now going off for 300+ yards a game and 4 TD's. What are you his brother, father, sister or mother? You're always so quick to defend him.
 

ShakyTheMohel

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5th year senior playing for his 5th offensive coordinator after finished 2 years under two of the worst college football coaches in the country. Everyone ignores that fact as if it doesn't have anything to do with his performance. The game slows down when you're comfortable, he's never gotten that chance.

"His current stats could look even worse'? They also "could" look better, because the second interception wasn't even his fault.

He's on pace to throw 8 INTs this season.
He threw 6 in 4 games last year. Which is 18 over 12 games.
He threw 16 in 12 games his first year.

"small incremental 'progress'"?

He's on pace to throw half as many INTs as his "best" season. He deserves more credit than he's getting.

I like CW and I think he has a huge heart. But I really haven't seen anything this year to feel he has progressed.

The first game he split time with Casey...and everyone on this board thought Casey did better....and hated when Casaey left mid drive and CW was part of the stalled drive. CW didn't throw a pick, but he did fumble. Second game was against Stonybrook...he really shouldn't throw an interception. But...he did overthrow a lot of receivers. The third game was probably his best and he still threw two picks.

ALso...I saw your other post breaking down the sacks and your points around CW not being responsible for all of the sacks. My take is that he showed his "happy feet" not only on sacks..but pretty much every play. He gives up VERY early in his progressions and stops looking to throw very early. I wouldn't mind this if he had any ability to run. He is not slow....but he tends to run sideways and away from openings.

I know the offensive line is horrible...I know he has had multiple OCs..but CW still has happy feet. I don't disagree with how BD has used him, but it doesn't feel like UConn is going to make a bowl unless Boyle steps up and delivers. I just don't see the development in CW. Great teammate...great heart....just too many battle scars.
 
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I like CW and I think he has a huge heart. But I really haven't seen anything this year to feel he has progressed.

The first game he split time with Casey...and everyone on this board thought Casey did better....and hated when Casaey left mid drive and CW was part of the stalled drive. CW didn't throw a pick, but he did fumble. Second game was against Stonybrook...he really shouldn't throw an interception. But...he did overthrow a lot of receivers. The third game was probably his best and he still threw two picks.

ALso...I saw your other post breaking down the sacks and your points around CW not being responsible for all of the sacks. My take is that he showed his "happy feet" not only on sacks..but pretty much every play. He gives up VERY early in his progressions and stops looking to throw very early. I wouldn't mind this if he had any ability to run. He is not slow....but he tends to run sideways and away from openings.

I know the offensive line is horrible...I know he has had multiple OCs..but CW still has happy feet. I don't disagree with how BD has used him, but it doesn't feel like UConn is going to make a bowl unless Boyle steps up and delivers. I just don't see the development in CW. Great teammate...great heart....just too many battle scars.

Even on the touchdown to Bloom, he looked like a deer in head lights wasn't even ready to throw and appeared to be ready to tuck and run until he saw Bloom slip open in the back of the end zone.
 
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Great writeup, BL. Glad that your spirit is un-crushed and we can look forward to more recaps.

I think Whitmer is definitely doing better this year. Yeah, he's got some issues, but he looks much less lost to me out there and I didn't see anything from Boyle this week to indicate that he's ready to take over this offense. It's pretty amusing to me how many people here are screaming about how Diaco isn't doing enough to "win now" vs. "win later" but they want to throw a sophomore in as QB for long-term growth when the current starter is clearly better, even if he's in his last year of eligibility.
 
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BizLaw. Fair enough evaluation. But starting next week I expect the View from 241 to start playing to win.
 
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Great writeup, BL. Glad that your spirit is un-crushed and we can look forward to more recaps.

I think Whitmer is definitely doing better this year. Yeah, he's got some issues, but he looks much less lost to me out there and I didn't see anything from Boyle this week to indicate that he's ready to take over this offense. It's pretty amusing to me how many people here are screaming about how Diaco isn't doing enough to "win now" vs. "win later" but they want to throw a sophomore in as QB for long-term growth when the current starter is clearly better, even if he's in his last year of eligibility.
Whitmer is far from "clearly better" than Boyle...his happy feet and one look at a receiver before tuck and running are concerning. It seems as though after that first look, he doesn't have the size (to see over the line) or confidence to hang for a split second like CC used to do. Everyone says he's the fastest QB we have yet he seems to run nowhere extremely fast...He definately is not Lorenzen with finding the holes which he needs to be considering his happy feet...it's Boyle time!
 

Dooley

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Spot on BL. Turnovers are my biggest concern, followed by OL play and Obi's multiple blown coverage assignments. We are a 200-300 YPG offense and can't afford to fumble balls away inside our own red zone that lead to easy 7 points for our opponents. Take away the 14 easy points we spotted Boise and the game is obviously much closer with a great chance to pull it out late. Ball security needs to be a top priority at practice for all of our backs.

OL play is what it is. Going into the season, we all felt that this was the unit that everyone was most anxious about. Screens, draws, quick slants, reverses, whatever to slow down opposing fronts to give our guys on the line a little help would be beneficial. Boise has a top rush D but we weren't able to run against Stony Brook either and that's a concern. Pass protection is a different animal. We still look like we have difficulty with stunting and are slow to identify when and where the blitz rush is coming from. The only thing that can help this is time - more game experience and more film breakdown. It's a crappy answer but an answer. At this stage in the year, I want our OL to develop a toughness about them in the running game. At least it's quicker to turn around run block deficiencies than pass block. Get nasty up front and open up some holes so our backs can get through them with two hands on the ball.

You've been calling out Obi for years and you're right. His angles and awareness has gotten worse this season, not better and I'm surprised he hasn't taken a step forward. Boise's first TD was identical to BYU's second TD where a guy just ran a simple in-seam route and was wide open from our 20 on in. No recognition from our safety defense. There was another pass play to Ajayi in the 2nd quarter that Obi double covered their TE running a drag route (and for no reason because he was well covered) and completely left his responsibility open. If their guy didn't slip on our turf, he scores. The pass interference call was beyond frustrating because the ball hung up for a long time and it was enough time for Obi to turn his head and make a play on the ball. No need to crash into their receiver but he did because he was in scramble mode to get back on the play because he was fooled on a play fake.

Turnovers. OL. Obi. Those are my 3 caution flags after 3 games. We cut down on turnovers and we MAY be 2-1 right now. But yeah, 1-2 is about where we thought we'd be after 3 games. Time to go out and take care of business in the games that we have equal talent.
 

UConnDan97

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Even on the touchdown to Bloom, he looked like a deer in head lights wasn't even ready to throw and appeared to be ready to tuck and run until he saw Bloom slip open in the back of the end zone.

:rolleyes:

Comments like this drive me up a wall. So he looked like a deer in head lights....until he threw a very accurate pass to the TE in the endzone that only he could catch. Okay. And people actually feel like they are behaving rationally in the Whitmer debate...
 
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:rolleyes:

Comments like this drive me up a wall. So he looked like a deer in head lights....until he threw a very accurate pass to the TE in the endzone that only he could catch. Okay. And people actually feel like they are behaving rationally in the Whitmer debate...

Just watch the play again. It was on the big board. He looked scared. And you're right threw an accurate pass. Good for him and Uconn.
 

UConnDan97

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Just watch the play again. It was on the big board. He looked scared. And you're right threw an accurate pass. Good for him and Uconn.

I watched the play live, and I watched the play again on tape. And you're right; good for him and UConn...
 
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