…I have finally gotten over my frustration over the game enough to sum up where this fan is at.
I have supported and defended CBB for five years, but I have to admit it appears to be time for a change in leadership. After five years, we have a team that would be understandable if this was his first or second year. We have true freshmen playing in the offensive line, corner back, receiver, running back, backup linebackers, backup QB, etc. The players recruited for those positions in previous years are either gone or not good enough and we have to throw together a bunch of new guys to try and make up for that. Most of these freshmen are not bigtime, great, recruits. They are mostly walk-ons (Clary & Morgan) and projects who come in better than the returnees on the team. If this was CBB’s first year, we would be blaming the previous coach for letting recruiting slip and leaving the new guy a bare cupboard to work with. I think that is the case now and the guy responsible for this team’s cupboard being bare and the talent not being up to SEC caliber needs to take the blame and the consequences.
He was successful in Wisconsin, in the Big Ten, with Barry Alvarez guiding him. He left all that behind and has found that he left some key factors behind in Wisconsin that, when absent, leaves him and his system unable to succeed on its own. Great Master Sergeants don’t always make great Lieutenants. Great Captains don’t always make great Admirals. People rise to their level of incompetence and stop. I think CBB has reached his level of incompetence and needs to move on. JMVVVVVVVHO
It has been a painful observation time for me, because I was quickly unsure of BB and his hiring plus he has proven his on field management reputation too many times to count. Bret Bielema is the epitome of the Peter Principle. Some on the board cite his historical success and his continued practice of what he thought made him successful at Wisconsin. Toto, this ain’t Wisconsin.
" ubiquitous observation: Anything that works will be used in progressively more challenging applications until it fails. This is the “generalized Peter Principle”. Peter noted that there is a strong temptation for people to use what has worked before, even when this might not be appropriate for the current situation. " straight out of Wikepedia. Bielema has met his level of incompetence which can also be seen in the positive slant that he was successful before to be able to get here. He is not a captivating throwback, at least he is no longer whaling away at the windmill of evil hurry up offenses. If Alvarez had played any role in his success at Wisconsin, only a fully energetic JFB could have helped make him successful here and he lacked that from day 1. We have many more years of hm because we are not wealthy enough to buy him out and he will keep us mid pack because to his credit, he does seem to work his butt off. I have never seen any semblance that he has sparked the team or found a way to win beyond the expected or easy peasy games. I like both his coordinators this years, and had hoped those hirings would be notable for more wins on the field. I was wrong.
I was offended by Jen’s karma statement for Wisconsin which was undeserved and ill intended. Wisconsin operates within their financial limits and has proven wise to not have gone overboard to keep BB or his assistants. We have many more years in this rut or resting place whatever state of mediocrity is chosen to describe us. BB is a good television interview and will probably be witty often enough to generate semi positive media impressions of us. Damn fine facilities, great place to live, improving academics and all the other things that make the U of A a better place than most expect. One great leader on defense, offense or assistant and we could actually jump up in wins on the field which is all that counts.
The most frustrating thing to me is, after having five years to get players to play his style, we are having to resort to gimmicks and trickery to have any success in short yardage situations. We are rushing up to the line trying to snap before the defense gets set. We can’t get any push in the offensive line and our running backs are repeatedly stuffed for no gain or losses when we try to run and they know its coming. So, now we have to move on to the wildcat gimmick and the gigantic running quarterback gimmick because our regular offense cannot succeed in short yardage situations.
I understand many of these thoughts (and they are good points), but not all of them. I wouldn’t blame anyone for using tricks or a running quarterback. It sure seems others do that, too. Why would you not want to try those things? I would think some of these same things were used at Wisconsin with Russell Wilson and others. Aren’t they used in the NFL with an NFL offense? They are some of the same things that Petrino has done, and others. I sure would try those things. Shouldn’t this team?
Clay I agree with this…I was encouraged by some of the offensive innovation on Saturday.
However, the bottom line for me is his “build from the inside out” philosophy has not worked out here and he’s had ample time to make it work. We are a mess on the OL and also the DL is average at best. As you often say the team with the best tackles usually wins. More often than not the other teams we’ll play will have better tackles and more of them.
We went 5 for 5 in the red zone Saturday. I give the Offensive coaches and CBB a lot of credit for that. They overcame their patch work O-line. Now why do we have a patchwork O-line, a give up massive chunk play Defense and awful special teams in year five? Those are questions I’d like to have answered. Better yet, fix those problems well enough to go bowling this year and win 9 or more next year. If that can’t be done, it will be time to move on.
My take on the situation is a bit different. I’m not happy with where the program is, but I’m happy with where the program is headed. When BB got here he had really good players that a different coach recruited, but they didn’t fit his system. His first couple of recruiting classes were duds. But Arkansas doesn’t have the luxury of getting the top-notch recruits. Saban was able to walk in and do so because of Alabama’s geographic location and its history. I think we are just now getting to the point where BB has the young pieces in place for a run at a title. Really, the only position of concern is what BB is supposed to be best at: OLine. If it weren’t for a couple guys not working out the way they were planned, we wouldn’t be having this conversation.
This is how I know we are going places with BB. Tell me which position group doesn’t have a talented freshman or sophomore we can build a future around.
Clay, CBB made it clear from the beginning that his goal and expectation was to be able run the ball when they know it is coming and they still can’t stop you. That is what he had at Wisconsin and that was what he promised to build at Arkansas. So, five years later, when that is nowhere near to being the case and he has to resort to tricks and gimmicks, something is wrong and it does not seem to be getting better, rather the opposite.
So the “Peter Principle” is in play because he keeps trying to do the same thing without the same success.
But then the responder to the post complains because we are "having to " resort to innovation to correct a weakness.
So anyone can pick and choose elements of discussion to back up their own bias, which is to fire the coach.
This is classic example of “not letting the facts get in the way of a good argument”.
This is what I “think” I know:
the discussion about firing CBB is moot.
It will not happen with the current buyout in his contract.
In two years, maybe.
But it would be fiscally irresponsible to pay any human being that much money to not work.
Now you can argue the wisdom of ever setting up a contract that way if you like, but for this moment in time, with things as they are, it would be foolish to fire him.
I don’t disagree with the points. To be good in the SEC, you must be good in the offensive and defensive line. That’s the most basic fundamental that I know. But I also want coaches to look for ways to scheme. Recruit better. That’s the bottom line. But coach them to take advantage of tricks or scheme. All coaches should do that.
Again, I don’t disagree with some background, but I think it would be encouraging to see signs of solid coaching in game plans.
The better question is which position group has juniors and seniors that can lead and you can be successful with now?
Quarterback? Allen has regressed this year but may be able to pull it together if he can get time to throw and some receivers get open to throw to.
Running Back? So far, a graduate transfer and a true freshman are our best. Whaley has not been effective but that may not be all his fault.
Defensive Line? None
Linebacker? Greenlaw is the best player on the team, period, when he is healthy. Beyond him, none.
Secondary? Pulley is gone for the year, Tollver and Richardson are seniors but are not outstanding, just OK.
Offensive Line? Ragnow is it and maybe Froholdte. Gibson seems OK so the inside three are good, but there is a huge NONE at offensive tackle.
Tight End? Cantrell is OK, O’Grady is showing potential, and Patton may be in time. This is our best recruited position by far.
Scott, the Peter principle basically states that a person rises through the ranks in an organization until he reaches his level of incompetence. Since BB was a HC at Wisconsin, and had the same title here, he did not rise to that level here. I suppose you could argue that being an HC in the SEC is tougher than in the B1G, but it’s a stretch to contend that taking the Arkansas job reached his level of incompetence (although I suspect a large chunk of our fan base would say that is exactly the situation).
The quote about insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results has often been misattributed to Albert Einstein, but there is no evidence that he actually said it. The first reference to that I can find is actually a fictional character in a novel written in 1983.
The buyout drops to $7+ million on Jan. 1. Theoretically, if the season completely goes down the tubes, JL could wait until NYD to pull the trigger and save half of the buyout, but that would likely cripple the recruiting class (although I guess the December early signing date kicks in this year so maybe not). Firing BB after kids sign in December would be risking mass defections, though. I think he gets the 2018 season, with a scalding seat, unless things turn around significantly in the last nine games. Or completely go in the tank in the last nine games.
CBB was the Captain of the Wisconsin ship under Barry Alvarez as the Admiral. He came to Arkansas where Jeff Long let him be the Admiral (as far as football) and he has not done as well. Good Captain, not so good Admiral. That is the original point and I sincerely believe it is not misapplied.
But why do you think that’s the better question? He is paying for bad recruiting classes his first couple years here. If he gets fired this year, a different coach will reap the benefits of a stellar group of young players, unless these players don’t fit the new guy’s system (kinda like what happened to CBB).