Expectations for the 2021 season

BilldGopher

Jolly Good Fellow
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Sorry Gopher, had I been thinking I would have noticed where they put Minnesota and I just know you would have liked to see where they placed Wisconsin since you seem to like the Badgers so much /s/
No apology needed Heisman. Looked and was quite surprised:

Minnesota #19 Don’t sleep on a Gopher team that struggled last year. It gets back QB Tanner Morgan, RB Mohamed Ibrahim, and a defense that welcomes in a few high-end transfers.

Thanks for making me look. The Red Horde to the East is #11...that's OUR Red horde and not YOUR Red horde...
 

InsideLB

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Given our OL and front seven defensive personnel I felt we'd improve some this season but still not be truly competitive in the ACC. Physical maturity and experience just matter a ton in the trenches.

Then the portal happened and we added a lot of experience and depth in the trenches on both sides of the ball. Are we loaded? No. But we should be significantly better. Barring a crazy rash of injuries my expectations have gone up. I expect to have an obviously better and more competitive football team, with better execution in all phases. Assuming we don't get hosed by the football gods (more than our share of freak bounces, crappy calls, injuries, & covid), I think we see a few more wins. With luck we go to a bowl. Without luck we don't, but it should be obvious we are more competitive.

Key said it best in his most recent interview: "It all comes down to the OL and DL basically" to paraphrase. Compete in the trenches and you will compete on the scoreboard. Out of HS it takes time on the OL and DL for bodies to mature and for guys to get seasoned. Getting some vets to make us more competitive now as well as to provide leadership for the younger guys IMO will help a lot.
 

augustabuzz

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Given our OL and front seven defensive personnel I felt we'd improve some this season but still not be truly competitive in the ACC. Physical maturity and experience just matter a ton in the trenches.

Then the portal happened and we added a lot of experience and depth in the trenches on both sides of the ball. Are we loaded? No. But we should be significantly better. Barring a crazy rash of injuries my expectations have gone up. I expect to have an obviously better and more competitive football team, with better execution in all phases. Assuming we don't get hosed by the football gods (more than our share of freak bounces, crappy calls, injuries, & covid), I think we see a few more wins. With luck we go to a bowl. Without luck we don't, but it should be obvious we are more competitive.

Key said it best in his most recent interview: "It all comes down to the OL and DL basically" to paraphrase. Compete in the trenches and you will compete on the scoreboard. Out of HS it takes time on the OL and DL for bodies to mature and for guys to get seasoned. Getting some vets to make us more competitive now as well as to provide leadership for the younger guys IMO will help a lot.
Agree except our front includes only 6 people, which is why teams that can, will run straight at us.
 

slugboy

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Agree except our front includes only 6 people, which is why teams that can, will run straight at us.
Our Nickel is more like a Rover or Wolf—a combo of Strong Safety and Linebacker. They support run, similar to a 4-3.
The 4-2-5 isn’t the reason we had trouble with teams like Pitt and BC. We had issues because the G-C-G combo from the other team was winning at the line of scrimmage.
Earlier in the season, we also had assignment confusion with linebackers and in the secondary, but that got better later in the season
 

HurricaneJacket

Ramblin' Wreck
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679
No apology needed Heisman. Looked and was quite surprised:

Minnesota #19 Don’t sleep on a Gopher team that struggled last year. It gets back QB Tanner Morgan, RB Mohamed Ibrahim, and a defense that welcomes in a few high-end transfers.

Thanks for making me look. The Red Horde to the East is #11...that's OUR Red horde and not YOUR Red horde...
I refuse to call that school a horde. It gives them too much credit, insults a fine lineage of conquerers who actually did something, and implies that they are competent at something other than losing hilariously.
 

BilldGopher

Jolly Good Fellow
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109
I refuse to call that school a horde. It gives them too much credit, insults a fine lineage of conquerers who actually did something, and implies that they are competent at something other than losing hilariously.
Point taken. No more Red hordes to anybody's north, south, east, or west in my football vocabulary.

We have a red-colored fanbase to the east and yours is red-and-black. Much more appealing labeling actually...Thanks.

Our spring game is this weekend. Perusing what you guys saw for the Jackets pretty much confirms the thinking before...better looking athletes across a lot of positions but will they be prepared to achieve...?

That is the question for every team...some better positioned than most.

Before then Gopher fans are watching where Bateman goes? That's where we are...getting football fan esteem bumps from a possible first round NFL pick...rarefied air for us...He is VERY good though...
 
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Buzztheirazz

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better looking athletes across a lot of positions but will they be prepared to achieve...?
I def think our WR room is better with Avery Boyd and Tyric McGowan. I also know that our DL should be improved especially at DE and added depth. We will see if these guys make our coaches look like geniuses or idiots.
 

SOWEGA Jacket

Ramblin' Wreck
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I don’t think anything will make our coaches look like idiots or geniuses. The sport of football is fairly easy to predict. It all depends on what the lines do. And right now we don’t really know if our lines will be even average let alone above average. It’s a methodical process and takes time. Collins is pulling every card he can to do it as fast as possible but it still takes time. The first two years we’ve recruited guys with size with questionable skills because all the 4 stars were already committed or had been recruited since 8th grade by others. So Collins goes after size. Then the portal opens and we get a windfall of guys. But the goal is to be able to recruit the skilled big guys from the 7th and 8th grade until they commit to GT. But that’s a long process. Unfortunately, our process is much different than state U who recruits itself regardless of coach. This year is huge for GT football - if we show a pulse, then Collins tenure really begins in year 4 with young studs now looking at GT as a true option because the coach is liked and he showed progress. If we languish then it will be apparent Collins may not be the guy and we’ll be in a cycle like hoops has been in for over a decade.
 

Augusta_Jacket

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I don't think asking for 6-7 wins, is over the top. Heck, last year, we basically beat ourselves, in 3 games, just with mistakes. I think limiting turnovers and mistakes is 3 wins, in itself. Improvement is vague. I would like to see better execution and less mental errors.

So can you specify which 6-7 games you expect to win, and spell out exactly why we should not only win those games, but throw the coach out if we lose? We might well win 6-7 games this season. If we do, however, it will most likely be because our younger players developed much faster than normal. I'm hoping for a bowl next year, but I don't have any lofty expectations until 2022.
 

takethepoints

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I don't expect much for the coming year. The reasons given above for improvement overlook that other teams in our division and league are going through the same process and have a lead on us. As I've said before, let's get to 4 wins and see what happens. That's a possibility by mid-season but we could also be at 2 wins at that point.

It takes time and luck and the coaches to exploit both to build good football teams. So far our record is not promising on any of these fronts. But you never know. The players we need may already be in the dorms waiting. I sure hope so.
 

gville_jacket

Jolly Good Fellow
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392
So can you specify which 6-7 games you expect to win, and spell out exactly why we should not only win those games, but throw the coach out if we lose? We might well win 6-7 games this season. If we do, however, it will most likely be because our younger players developed much faster than normal. I'm hoping for a bowl next year, but I don't have any lofty expectations until 2022.
I think we may well get 6 wins this season. But I also think we are still very young so even if we win 6, we'll probably show flashes but the young mistakes will lose us a game or two. Then the fans will be saying "we won 6 but should have won 8." I think the wins will really materialize in 2022, with 9 or 10 wins.
 

WreckinGT

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I think we may well get 6 wins this season. But I also think we are still very young so even if we win 6, we'll probably show flashes but the young mistakes will lose us a game or two. Then the fans will be saying "we won 6 but should have won 8." I think the wins will really materialize in 2022, with 9 or 10 wins.
In 2022 we drop ND but add FSU, Ole Miss, and UCF to the schedule. If we win 10 games that would be an incredible season.
 
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Funny thing about this year...it will tell us what we might do the next two, in a different sort of way. If Clemson maintains and Georgia steps up, it means we lose to them in 2022 and 2023. If UVA continues to improve, that becomes an issue. If Mack Brown finally is able to utilize talent, UNC is a problem. Same with Miami. We will need to see if Va Tech is as good as they were in 2020. My point being that the teams we play are probably getting better as well which will mean we need to take a huge step up, or find a way to scheme around our opposition...aka...good coaching and adjustments
 

Jim Prather

Ramblin' Wreck
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681
So i guess Dave Braine was right 6 or 7 wins every year maybe 9 once in awhile.
I know for me, I want to see the 8-9 wins become the norm not the exception. If the CGC experiment of hiring a recruiter as a head coach works out, then maybe it will be possible. If not, we will be looking for a new coach after next season.
 

stech81

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I know for me, I want to see the 8-9 wins become the norm not the exception. If the CGC experiment of hiring a recruiter as a head coach works out, then maybe it will be possible. If not, we will be looking for a new coach after next season.
remember he is here for 7 years , if not look for a new AD remember he went out on a limb to get him. ( or no one really wanted the job which would not surprise me other than another unproven coach)
 

lv20gt

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1- QB. Obviously with a true freshman QB last year, especially with the situation involving the pandemic, there was a lot of learning on the job. Sims improved in some areas as the year went on last year and got worse in others. The most obvious was improving in turnovers but getting worse in sacks. First 4 games he had 8 INTs but just 1 sack. The last 6 he had just 5 INTS but 20 sacks. Part of that was likely the difference in opponents getting home a bit quicker, but it probably was also a result in a change of focus to try to limit turnovers. Overall that tradeoff isn't really the point. If we're stuck choosing to be either terrible in turning the ball over or terrible in protecting our QB, we're not going to be good. So Sims needs to improve and we need to have him have a bit more freedom to try and make something happen without all the turnovers, but we also need

-2 - OL play. Last year the OL play took a step forward from the year before, but still has a long ways to go. It needs to take another step forward this year, and I would hope that comes in the form of consistency against the middle of the road teams or lower that we didn't see enough of last year. My opinion on OL improvement is that there is some critical point where before you reach that point, improvement in line play likely won't have a huge effect overall, but once you reach that point, there will be a big jump. What I mean by that is things like you can improve from having a lot of three and outs, to a lot of 6-7 play drives that stall because of a bad play. While there is improvement there, the improvement doesn't lead to a huge return in terms of points or wins. However, when you reach the point of turning those stalled drives into FGs, and previous FG drives into TD drive, there is a big leap forward.

-WR play. Last year our receivers did little to help out a freshman QB. That needs to change and I'm hoping we see someone step up. I doubt we'll have a true legit #1 threat next year, but hopefully one of the young guys steps up and gives reason to believe he will be it going forward.

-Defensive line in general. Ends should be able to be pretty impactful, but I do worry about the middle of the DL. It's hard to be good on defense if the DL can get handled as easily as it was at times last year. That extends to the LBs as well.

In terms of wins and losses, I don't know what to expect. Ideally we'd make at least a bowl game, and the path is there to do so, but we do play a schedule that features at least 3 teams that are going to be very likely losses just based on the rosters at this point. And while we have varying chances against the remaining 9, I only see 2 or 3 that I would really point to and say we for sure should win those games. Regardless, how the improvement translates to wins and losses likely comes from how even the improvement is. We'd probably be a lot better off if all the areas mentioned above have a moderate improvement compared to say the DEs and WRs making big strides while the OL and middle of the DL have little improvement. We still need to improve in so many areas, that it's hard to say what impact improvements will make on the W/L columns.
 

Jim Prather

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681
remember he is here for 7 years , if not look for a new AD remember he went out on a limb to get him. ( or no one really wanted the job which would not surprise me other than another unproven coach)
I know, but if we have 4 consecutive 3-4 win seasons, I fully expect some of the big boosters to say "enough is enough" and buy out his contract...
 
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