One year ago our team and Auburn’s team were equal ( 4 OTs pretty well mean a tie). One year later, they are 50 pts. (and it could have been more if they pushed it) better, and we have 9 of the same players on defense. How does that happen? More importantly, why, and even more importantly, how is it fixed?
A couple of weeks later we also went to LSU and beat them soundly. I saw LSU last night and there is no way on earth this team can stay on the same field with them. Why?
I think it is a pretty good question and I would like to have an answer. I bet I am not the only one.
Some big reasons: Tretola, Kirkland, Smothers, Collins, Allen, Henry…1st 3 mainly. They, along with Skipper and Ragnow gave us the ability to run the ball and keep this defense off the field. The skill guys have been adequately replaced IMO but not the big guys.
The offense comes down to O-line play, period. We have everything else we need for the offense to be deadly.
The defense lacks talent and comes down to a DC that is trying to fit kids into a scheme, rather than scheming to match the talents of the kids. 2014 worked for a reason. NFL caliber talent. 2015 and 2016 are not working because we dont have NFL talent.
The only thing that’s gotten better is the coverage of the DB. We have a lot of kids that lack football smarts.
Saturday night was a perfect storm. But I look back on one play that could have changed everything: The interception that Ryan Pulley dropped. That was gonna be a pick six and tie the game. But he drops it, they go down and score, and the tidal wave buried us. Not saying we win if he makes the play, but I bet we don’t lose by 46 if he does either.
I thought the difference in the game was the two offensive lines. Auburn’s was terrific. Gus said afterwards they have six true solid SEC offensive linemen. They have moved some guys around to have the best fit, but he admitted that they had one that was the odd man out. The Arkansas offensive line has what looks like two SEC offensive linemen right now, with one coming on. Ragnow and Skipper are SEC linemen, Ragnow being the best of those. Wallace has shown that he has the strength and ability to play in the SEC and is close. Hopefully, his injury is not severe. This team would be best served is Ragnow could play guard and Rogers could play center. When the Hogs play an even front and the guards are covered, it’s a bad matchup. Auburn did that at times in this game and it was tough on the offense.
Agree on that play…also, another play that stood out to me was the delay of game penalty when we had driven from the 20 or wherever to about their 30. We had 3rd and less than 1 and AA lets the play clock run out. This has nearly happened before and the coaches haven’t failed to bail him out with a TO. This time, inexplicably, the coaches did not call TO. That made it 3rd and 6 and AA’s pass was batted down. We decided to punt and then Auburn scores another TD after the Pulley drop. If we convert that 3rd and <1 and end of scoring a TD, then who knows??
The delay-of-game penalty was on the coaches totally. They were late calling the play, which caused the huddle to break with around 10 seconds on the play clock (it usually breaks around 17 seconds). There wasn’t time to run the play they called at that point.
All true, but a 50 pt gain (and it was really more) in one year? that should not happen. Sure, guys come and go and you have better teams some years, but 50 points.? In year 4, you have a makeshift Oline, slow linebackers and safties? Why was that not addressed? You have to plan ahead. Right now, plans should be firming up for the 2018 team. 2017 should be set with just a few tweeks and as it is, we cannot put a defense on the field now? Why?