defensive secondary vs red Kool-aid

We all have read the Insiders’ and even our secondary’s rather high opinion of their improvement going into this year. We all know the problems last year and past years were pass rush, trained eyes for the safeties, enormous cushions for the cornerbacks, and poor tackling. We are reading this year that training going into this year should have corrected eyes and tackling and that new talent and better depth will help solve our pass rush.

Has anyone reported that the gigantic cushion by the corners will become “normal” for very good SEC caliber corners? I don’t remember such reports.

Seems very critical to defensive success this year.

Don’t ask me to drink pre-season Kool-Aid until our corners close on the receivers prior to the play—no cushion!!!

We need corners that can play press coverage or what some of us old school guys call “bump and run”

I was a football player in high school, but I played Oline. So I have never really studied or been taught much about the secondary. But, it has always amazed me (and I am talking about for the last 40 or so years that I have been paying attention to Razorback football, this isn’t a complaint about this staff) that almost always, if it is say, 3rd and 8, our secondary guys will be lined up beyond the first down marker, and then RUN BACKWARDS on the snap, it is almost impossible in that situation to stop a quick slant, or curl that is at or beyond the first down marker. I just don’t get it.

I know that all these dback coaches, defensive coordinators, head coaches, etc. that have come and gone are not stupid. They all have forgotten more about football than I will ever know. But, I don’t get it. I don’t see how that type of alignment (and moving back on the snap, they already have given them 10 yards or so of space so they can adjust to what the receiver is doing, why start running backwards at the snap when you don’t even know if the receiver is going to run down the field, do a quick slant, do a 8 yard curl, etc.) is supposed to stop someone from getting a first down.

I, too, played HS football. Most of it in full leg casts. But as a junior I held the clip board for the DB coach. I got to know the DB positions much better than I ever knew my OL position. What I saw last year was a defense desperately playing contain. The flaw - until late in the season - was unfortunate DE play and poor penetration on the interior. You can’t let the QB live an unmolested life. Many times I thought our guys were in no-mans-land. You can’t tackle well in no-mans-land. They were trying to do too much and were lost in space. I thought they were poorly coached. I think CBB thought the same thing, too. I’m getting the impression that for CBB, you get one year as an assistant. You don’t produce on the field, you don’t recruit, he’ll help you find another job. No heat. No hard feelings. Get the job done. I look for real improvement this year. Depth and experience at LB plays huge into this. You don’t have to be so mindful of the running game as a DB if you have fresh, mean LBs punching the lights out of RBs and slot receivers. The field gets smaller. That field was vast for our guys most of last year.

Sounds like Tutt got hurt today or yesterday and it may be bad enough to redshirt him. With Dean already out, a position of what was thought of as depth is depleting. I think Pulley is going to be a good one. He is going to have to step up and we have to keep the rest of our guys healthy there. Starting to get a little more concerned about our secondary.

No Kool-aid from me. As I posted in another thread, I’m skeptical about the secondary because it has a long way to come from last season. I think it can be better - maybe much better - but I’ll take a wait and see approach. The TCU and Texas A&M games will be good gauges of how far they have come.

I agree Matt we find out early if we have seen improvement in technique with Coach Rhoades teaching

Our opener might also be a bigger test if we can’t cover the spread…Sept will definitely answer some questions on the secondary

A good pass rush can make a secondary look a lot better all by itself.

What we all want to know and hope you will ask as a direct question:

“coach, do you have any intentions to bring the corners closer to the LOS/WRs, or do you still intend to scheme a GAINT cushion like in the past?”

Here’s another way to maybe answer this question. In our scrimmages do the corners come up or stay back? Recall that Austin and other QBs have had trouble when our defense is turned loose. I’d think this would show our corners need to be close to the receivers when the QB first realized the rush is closing in on him.

What have our Insiders observed? Please make note of this aspect for Saturday and let us know. It’s critical this year.

Lifelonghog nailed it beautifully. A very good explanation of the connected issues of other positions.