Auburn's Option v. Tech's Option

jeagt

Georgia Tech Fan
Messages
29
The new qb was HUGE in that equation. He fits that O to a T on top of being a helluvan athlete. Wish I could say the same for our guy.

Auburn seems to be pretty good at plucking QB's that were kicked off of other SEC teams and riding them to MNC games.
 

techman78

Jolly Good Fellow
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494
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Toccoa, Ga
Difference between good coaching and bad coaching. Malzahn took basically the same roster that was undisciplined last year under Chizik and won the ACC and was a few stops from being the National Champs this year. Only thing that really changed for Auburn this year was the coaching staff and the starting QB.

Not saying CPJ is a bad coach, but when players keep making the same mental errors it's on the coaches. Detroit Lions have the same problem. Tons of talent but they pretty much beat themselves.
I agree with you. Kinda how CPJ came in 08' and took the same roster that had won 7 games in 07' (I know that's much better than 3) and won 9 games in 08' with an absolutely totally different system. The thing that bothered me more about us this year more than anything though was all the dang false start penalties. Up until this season tech had been one of the least penalized teams in the nation. Those bonehead penalties were backbreaking against VPI and BYU. Seems like we even had some against Clemson too. Eliminate those stupid penalties and we win 9 games.
 
Messages
154
Wow. Is that what an run-first, option offense is supposed to look like?

Okay, so apart from the four- and five-star athletes executing it, what is difference between Auburn's option and ours?

And for you TO haters, who must have been bored out of your minds watching Auburn's Tre Mason grind out 195 yards in a cloud of dust, how many times late in the game did you hear Brent Musberger (commenting on the fact that FSU's no. 8, Jernigan, was on the sideline) talking about how Auburn was running up the middle to set up the run to the outside? Or that as the linebackers moved up to stop the run in the middle, the pass over the top was opening up? Does any of this sound familiar to Tech fans? The dive sets up the pitch and the throw over the middle.

Now, if only we could DO it like Auburn does it. It looks to me like the Jimmy's and Joe's matter a lot.

Tre' Mason is a lot closer to Dwyer in talent level than our guys are.

Why not take Sims and Laksey and put them in that Auburn offense in lieu of Mason with everything else being the exact same.

Now imagine the results.................
 
Messages
154
I concur with this. Same guys that sucked last year end up #2 in the BCS this year. It isn't just talent. Our scheme can work with the right guys, but even when we had good teams in 2008 and 2009, we were beating ourselves. We sucked against a far inferior UVA team when Groh was coaching there and almost got beat by Garner Webb. I am not even go to talk about the LSU game in the CFA bowl. In 2009, we looked horrible against Miami and collapsed against an inferior UGA team. We had as much or more talent than both that year. Even this year, I think the best game we played was in a losing effort against UGA and we went pass happy in that game compared to any other game in the CPJ era, save Duke (I think) in 2008 when Jaybo and BeyBey lit it up. Our offense is either feast or famine. We either look like a well oiled machine or a train wreck. We put up huge numbers against the likes of Kansas and Syracuse to only crap the bed against VT and Miami every year. Our system is very complex, takes a long time to learn it, is very one dimensional, is incapable of changing pace and is hard to recruit 4 and 5 star talent into it. We recruit receivers to block, not to spread the field. We recruit quarterbacks to be A and B backs instead of recruiting top notch running talent out of HS. It doesn't have to be this way, but it is coached that way. Our coach is stubborn and doesn't seem to want to adjust. We beat the crap out of Duke running the diamond and virtually dropped it for the rest of the year. Duke then wins the coastal and had Texas A&M on the ropes in the CFA. And we're better and more talented than them. Option offenses can and do work. But ours has become far too predictable and boring given the way we run it. I was hoping to see more of a UGA-like game against Ole Miss, but we went right back to the same formula that has gotten us into an annual 7-7 rut for the last 4 years. It's frustrating.

Auburn really sucked at QB last year, this is Auburn's first year with the JUCO/criminal Marshall.

These aren't the same guys, Lawson was a 5* recruit and a GT legacy with the academics for GT, and would have fit our 4-3 PERFECTLY.

I'm willing to bet his DAD, hinted to him, go to a college where they really appreciate CFB and then take your academics very seriously.
 

techman78

Jolly Good Fellow
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494
Location
Toccoa, Ga
I'd respectfully disagree with those people. We ran the same few plays repeatedly and then punished Duke through the air for cheating up to stop those plays.

Vad had a good game with his arm there. IIRC, two of his TDs were thrown from under center, for what that's worth.
Better overall game than against UGA for him, IMO.

Vad's passing problem wasn't that he wasn't capable of making great throws - the TDs v. Duke to Smelter (the first one) and Laskey, the long pass v. Pitt, the scramble and throw to Smelter v. UVA - it's that he wasn't making them consistently and that he often got lost in coverage looks/locked in on guys.

I don't think JT has Vad's arm. Maybe though, with enough work, he'll be better at consistently reading defenses in the passing game.

I believe from what I've seen (although it is a small sample size) that JT's arm isn't as strong as Vad's but he does throw a really nice ball. I liked Vad a lot but I believe that we may be in for an upgrade at QB (not a knock on Vad) just think JT may be better suited for our O. Whatever the case may be I will be in the stands wearing white and gold yelling THWG!
 

stylee

Ramblin' Wreck
Featured Member
Messages
603
Not the same question, but I think Sims and Laskey could have similar years here under Gus as they did under CPJ. Our scheme isn't magic - you've still got to have pretty good running backs if you want to average 5-6 yards per carry.

On that note, Tre Mason would probably have pretty great numbers here under CPJ.

The number one thing Gus and Paul have in common is that they run and teach what they know. That's not to say the systems are inflexible...just that they are committed 100% to what they're doing schematically and teach/coach the kids accordingly. There are some similarities in some of the option concepts too, but I don't think that's the biggest overlap
 

Boomergump

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3,260
This is a good discussion. Some thoughts:

A majority of our blocking concepts attempt to neutralize a defender for an instant because our plays are quick hitting. We cut or scissor block lineman because we want their hands down for an instant or confused for an instant on the dive. We cut on the perimeter because all we need is a gap for a second with the numbers advantage. Auburn's run plays utilize option principles to create a simple man advantage as well, but because their plays take longer to develop off the SG snap, OLs must hold their blocks longer and they really don't need to cut much. Auburn zone blocks primarily. We zone blocked a lot more this year than years past, but not to the same extent as they do. Personally, I see a couple advantages either way. The time available for the MESH off the deep snap / zone block is far greater, allowing for the QB to read plays more easily. It is more basic and it is slower, defenders are forced to commit to a greater extent, which makes it easier to execute. The TO from under center is quicker and harder to execute at the MESH point, but, in theory, it should be easier to execute blocking on the interior, AND it options off 2 players instead of 1 putting more pressure on the defense. The payoff is potentially greater but difficulty in the reads and execution are greater. It is just two different ways to play. Pick your poison.

In terms of arm strength and the QBs we have had in the system to date, this is how I see it. If you lined up JN, VL, TW, and JT on a certain spot on the field and asked them to wing it down field as far as they could (like a javelin throw) the results would be as follows: VL and JN would be about even, JT would be about 10 yards behind them, and TW would be about 10 yards behind JT. That is talking pure arm strength period and nothing more. Obviously JN was not accurate, etc. The reason there is hope for JT is that a couple of other variables fall his way. He is better than all 3 others at keeping a play alive with his feet (hugely important with our splits), he has pretty good touch, he appears to scan the field well while buying time, and finally (if rolling to his arm side) he throws very comfortably on the run. To the left side he is atrocious ( a little work on shoulder position would be good for him rolling left). With some work, and swallowing a huge patience pill, JT could develop into a lethal player. Will he? Time will tell.
 

nodawgs

Jolly Good Fellow
Messages
366
Guys listen. Auburn's offense is in no way similar to CPJ's offense. The option that Auburn runs is a zone read. We do not run a zone read. The zone read is MUCH easier for a qb to read than a Veer read. The rest of Auburn's run game is actually more similar to Gailey's run game than Johnson's. Alot of Power G and counter blocking, pulling guards to lead up on LBers. The only play that has similar blocking is Auburn's fly sweep which is blocked like our rocket toss. It's the blocking you will see on the stretch play out of the I formation.

Auburn uses a lot of motions to vacate defenders and open running/passing lanes. Malzahn knows exactly what he wants to run based on what the defense does to long motion. 1) do they chase? 2) do they bump out/pull the rope? 3) do they bring the safety down? or 4) do they not move at all? Malzahn knows those keys well enough to be able to know what play he wants to run next before the last play is over. Yes the motions are window dressings, but they are also critical to the play and play calling. It tips the defense's hand.
 

ATL1

Helluva Engineer
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7,377
I can't imagine 6'6 340lb Shamire diving at a DT's ankles or knees. I would think we'll do more zone blocking. Upgrade

Also instead or Sims & Laskey we should have Custis and I hope Wilson pounding the middle. Upgrade.

The QB position is a ? But competition should be good at that position.

Next year will be interesting.
 

bke1984

Helluva Engineer
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2,218
From my layman's perspective...

...It wasn't their offense that lost the game, it was their defense.

One of the other things about running no huddle is that you are off the field quick as well. That means that your defense is on the field a lot more...the effect is that your defense gets tired as well.
 

dressedcheeseside

Helluva Engineer
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13,671
I believe from what I've seen (although it is a small sample size) that JT's arm isn't as strong as Vad's but he does throw a really nice ball. I liked Vad a lot but I believe that we may be in for an upgrade at QB (not a knock on Vad) just think JT may be better suited for our O. Whatever the case may be I will be in the stands wearing white and gold yelling THWG!
All that stuff was early in the year and our OL had hardly been together as a unit. Remember all the injuries and rehabs in the offseason. Not only that, but I highly suspect Vad was trying to vary his cadence to throw off the guys jumping the snap. That had an ill effect as well.
 

techman78

Jolly Good Fellow
Messages
494
Location
Toccoa, Ga
All that stuff was early in the year and our OL had hardly been together as a unit. Remember all the injuries and rehabs in the offseason. Not only that, but I highly suspect Vad was trying to vary his cadence to throw off the guys jumping the snap. That had an ill effect as well.
Very true cheese. It was just so so frustrating to see that happen. Guess we will never how the season would have unfolded had we beat VT.
 

dressedcheeseside

Helluva Engineer
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13,671
I really liked Auburn's "quick huddle". I actually think it's more effective than the no huddle. Think about it, the D sees the O huddling and think they have some time to catch their breath. This causes them to lose focus for just a second. Before they know it, Auburn has broken huddle, lined up and snapping the ball before they can line up accordingly. Really cool concept, imo.
 

Rodney Kent

Ramblin' Wreck
Messages
558
Location
McDonough, GA
techman78: Yes, the penalties and other problems killed us. I have a different slant on all the penalties and lack of effectiveness at times during the season.

I believe it was the VT game where we had 9+ false starts and offensive penalties. As I watched the game, it seemed obvious to me that some were on purpose. I know many do not think this could happen, but it has many, many times to teams over the years who are trying to show the coach that they run the show and not him. It generally happens when many of the starters think another player (mostly quarterbacks) should be playing instead of the one the coach has in the game. I have seen the same thing on defense when the defensive players are not happy with the coach. It was as obvious to me during the Gailey years when some of the players were not happy when removed the Chaplain (Catholic) of the team and replaced him with a Baptist Chaplain. The first Tech/Georgia game under Gailey appeared to be thrown by some of the players. One player in particular on defense (I still remember his name, but will not call it) missed just about every tackle, and he was regarded as the best of our defensive backs. It was obvious he did it on purpose.

The Fresno State bowl game was another indication that the players lost that game on purpose. If you can ever get these two games and watch them again, you will surely see the lack of effort by disgruntled players. So, it has happened at Tech, and it has happened at many schools. I am convinced it happened in the VT game and no one can change my mind on it. I tend to watch a game from a coaching standpoint and the effectiveness of the game as it is played rather than being a obsessing over certain players during a game. That game was also the turning point of the season for the team. If it is only a couple of players, then the solution is simple, bench them and send in subs. If it is a lot of players then it takes a different solution.

Were the players wrong in being upset? Yes and no. Yes, they have a right to be upset over certain things, but they must as a team approach the coach and try to work these things out with the Head Coach. No, they should never provide less than there absolute best in any game. They are cheating the school and fans who pay for their education when they do these things. If a player/or players cannot reach agreement with the coach, then they should quit and move on. The coach would then be forced to play substitutes. This would still have its effects; the coach would struggle over the wins and losses which would probably rectify the problem anyway if the fans and boosters don't back him. The substitutes would then get a chance to play and would be very happy to do so. In the final analysis, the team would do just as well playing without disgruntled players and an unbending coach. The results would be the same, but the players would have done the honest thing of just leaving the team.
 

Rodney Kent

Ramblin' Wreck
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558
Location
McDonough, GA
There is a lot of debate regarding the effectiveness of nexty year's team with a different quarterback. If the coach and players are on the same page mentally with each other, then a round peg in a round hole will solve one of the problems on the team. If the harmony returns within the team and with the coaches, then we could have a better won-loss record. I still think we have the athletes to beat any team in the ACC, but it is essential we have the right players in their best position utilizing their best talents, and there has to be harmony between the coaches and team. It is certain we will have a new quarterback. If harmony returns to the team, then we can have a better won-loss record next year. If the harmony is not restored, then the results will be the same or worse and the team will be "sick".

Oh, yes, one other thing. The coaching staff must use more substitutes to keep players fresh, especially on defense. The lack of using subs, because the coach thinks the starters are always his best bet, will cause a morale problem on defense and continued disharmony on the team.
 

takethepoints

Helluva Engineer
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4,582
A couple of comments:

We have attracted 4 - 5 star RBs to run this offense: for instance, Custis last year and Leggett this year. I don't buy the idea that we can't get good RBs to come to Tech; we've done it. Admittedly, a lot of that has been with players who weren't highly ranked in high school, but fit extremely well with our scheme (Orwin Smith springs to mind). I think the main problem has been a combination of Tech's admission standards and the limited curriculum.

The second has to do with an unspoken assumption here that I question: that we are not doing as well as we would wish because our O limits who we can recruit. Here's a natural experiment we've been running on just that question. Our O is unusual, but our D isn't. We've run pretty much the same kind of Ds over the last few years that the pros and other colleges do. If the O was chasing players off because the pros and other colleges don't run it, then we'd expect the average ranking for the D recruits to be higher, if everything else was equal (and it is). I don't have the time to do an analysis of this (feel free), but I don't think it's necessary. I can't recall any big breakouts in D recruiting; the players we get over there are about the same rank as those we get on O. This suggests another variable in the mix and I think I id'd it above: Tech's admission standards and its limited curriculum.

That is probably not going to change substantially. I conclude as I have before: that, given our pretty good record over the last few years, we are running a program that is getting the maximum out of the players we can get into Tech.
 

ATL1

Helluva Engineer
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7,377
A couple of comments:

We have attracted 4 - 5 star RBs to run this offense: for instance, Custis last year and Leggett this year. I don't buy the idea that we can't get good RBs to come to Tech; we've done it. Admittedly, a lot of that has been with players who weren't highly ranked in high school, but fit extremely well with our scheme (Orwin Smith springs to mind). I think the main problem has been a combination of Tech's admission standards and the limited curriculum.

The second has to do with an unspoken assumption here that I question: that we are not doing as well as we would wish because our O limits who we can recruit. Here's a natural experiment we've been running on just that question. Our O is unusual, but our D isn't. We've run pretty much the same kind of Ds over the last few years that the pros and other colleges do. If the O was chasing players off because the pros and other colleges don't run it, then we'd expect the average ranking for the D recruits to be higher, if everything else was equal (and it is). I don't have the time to do an analysis of this (feel free), but I don't think it's necessary. I can't recall any big breakouts in D recruiting; the players we get over there are about the same rank as those we get on O. This suggests another variable in the mix and I think I id'd it above: Tech's admission standards and its limited curriculum.

That is probably not going to change substantially. I conclude as I have before: that, given our pretty good record over the last few years, we are running a program that is getting the maximum out of the players we can get into Tech.

Custis and Leggett weren't/aren't 4 -5 stars.
 

daBuzz

Ramblin' Wreck
Messages
965
A couple of comments:

We have attracted 4 - 5 star RBs to run this offense: for instance, Custis last year and Leggett this year. I don't buy the idea that we can't get good RBs to come to Tech; we've done it. Admittedly, a lot of that has been with players who weren't highly ranked in high school, but fit extremely well with our scheme (Orwin Smith springs to mind). I think the main problem has been a combination of Tech's admission standards and the limited curriculum.

Custis was a 4-star on Scout and 3-star on Rivals.
Leggett is a 2-star on Scout and a 3-star on Rivals.
 

dressedcheeseside

Helluva Engineer
Messages
13,671
A couple of comments:

We have attracted 4 - 5 star RBs to run this offense: for instance, Custis last year and Leggett this year. I don't buy the idea that we can't get good RBs to come to Tech; we've done it. Admittedly, a lot of that has been with players who weren't highly ranked in high school, but fit extremely well with our scheme (Orwin Smith springs to mind). I think the main problem has been a combination of Tech's admission standards and the limited curriculum.

The second has to do with an unspoken assumption here that I question: that we are not doing as well as we would wish because our O limits who we can recruit. Here's a natural experiment we've been running on just that question. Our O is unusual, but our D isn't. We've run pretty much the same kind of Ds over the last few years that the pros and other colleges do. If the O was chasing players off because the pros and other colleges don't run it, then we'd expect the average ranking for the D recruits to be higher, if everything else was equal (and it is). I don't have the time to do an analysis of this (feel free), but I don't think it's necessary. I can't recall any big breakouts in D recruiting; the players we get over there are about the same rank as those we get on O. This suggests another variable in the mix and I think I id'd it above: Tech's admission standards and its limited curriculum.

That is probably not going to change substantially. I conclude as I have before: that, given our pretty good record over the last few years, we are running a program that is getting the maximum out of the players we can get into Tech.
People are just going to say the weird O hurts D recruiting too.
 

Mack

Helluva Engineer
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1,361
Difference between good coaching and bad coaching. Malzahn took basically the same roster that was undisciplined last year under Chizik and won the ACC and was a few stops from being the National Champs this year. Only thing that really changed for Auburn this year was the coaching staff and the starting QB.

Not saying CPJ is a bad coach, but when players keep making the same mental errors it's on the coaches. Detroit Lions have the same problem. Tons of talent but they pretty much beat themselves.
Agree and of course with good coaching comes good attitude....Gus did good job and guys play for him and we all know that is important.
 
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