Insiders: Coach Rhoads

In your dealings with Coach Rhoads do you think he is shocked by his inability to turn some of these individual defensive players around?
He seems like such a positive guy. I think going into the season his confidence led him to believe he was really going to be able to better Robb Smith. At some point the experienced defensive coach must have realized that some of these players have critical weaknesses that appear to be unchangeable and looked around and saw there was no one else.
Then again he coached the secondary last season. He had to have known what he had to work with. So did he see dark clouds on the horizon from the start and lightning and hail when Pulley went down?
This is a complex fix. So much so that I would be okay if our recruiting class consisted of a QB and a RB, 5 offensive linemen and the rest defensive players.
Then next season no one’s position is set except Harris at MLB and Greenlaw at one LB position.

They don’t have the personnel to run the 3 - 4 upfront.

And I’m assuming that the reason they went to the 3-4 is lack of quality D linemen. But that is just a guess.

Capps and Jackson aren’t NT. The key to the 3-4 is you NT’s have to handle two OL, neither Capps or Jackson can thus the failure of the 3-4.

It was a whim thought out by CBB to save his ass, didn’t work, should be fired by Monday morning, if Jeff had a sack.

Rhoads probaly knew. He has a good football mind I think, but what was he to do? Say, “We don’t have good defensive players”? He seems to be a positive person and telling the world he has no material will certainly not inspire what he does have.

If Gooden comes, they should move Capps to OL.

Bigger question: does the next coach keep him?

Rhoads told me – and I wrote it – that they had to recruit to the 3-4. He said the critical areas were at outside linebacker. The outside linebacker over the tight end is the super freak that can rush the passer and handle the tight end, but drop when needed. I don’t see anyone like that on the team. The player who has that kind of ability. What you are looking for is missing on this team.

There was hope that Randy Ramsey was going to make a jump. He’s been inconsistent. Dwayne Eugene has been the best of the other OLB, but is not a physical presence and doesn’t seem to make plays. The outside linebackers are not up, up and away talents required to make the 3-4 into something that causes trouble.

The nose tackle is the critical player in the 3-4 as far as down linemen. He has to be a menace and require double team so that the linebackers are clean. That isn’t happening on a consistent basis.

The ends are OK. Agim is the best. Guidry is improving. I see some flashes from Jonathan Marshall, but not consistency.

Santos Ramirez has made a jump, but that’s the highlight in the secondary. Ryan Pulley was the best player on the defense, so all things that Rhoads predicted in the offseason included his presence as a lock-down corner. I don’t see one in this bunch. Pulley’s injury was a blow.

Montaric Brown is a terrific prospect and is a downhill player with skills to cover and play the ball who should be able to help. He needs a few pounds, but that will happen. Curl and Calloway have potential. I think Edwards and Smith have some ability, too.

Nope. New coach will hire his own people.

It’s noteworthy that Iowa State is a solid competitve team today; two years later.