The OIine was better than you think

Dakota2

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Say what? Aren't they receiving accolades from all quarters? Weren't they voted as a unit the offensive MVP of the baseball bowl? Didn't we average 200 yards a game rushing? Aren't at least three of them likely to be drafted this year?

The answer to all is yes ... a resounding yes.

But they are underrated. They accomplished what they did while handicapped by the worst game planner and play caller in college football. They did it despite the fact opposing defensive coaches had the easiest job possible. They knew with near-certainty what was coming.

Alabama or Georgia Oline starters could not do what our guys did given a vanilla, predictable play book that always allowed the opposing defense to be in best position to stop us.
 

Bob_Loblaw

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Our OL is rated about as highly as they should be. They were dominant this year and most of us agreed that they were. Their job was more difficult because of a lack of a passing game but it also hid some of their deficiencies. As good as they were, they were MUCH better run blockers than pass blockers (especially the tackles).

As far as opposing defensive coaches having an easy job - - nope, no, they did not. They knew a run was coming but their job is to stop it, not predict if it was a run/pass. Our running game was varied, multiple formations, multiple backs. etc. The only way to stop a really good running team is to be gap disciplined and our running game coordinator did a fantastic job at making that blurry. Then the defensive coordinators had to stop us. . . and they struggled doing so.
 


GopherJack

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So we're replacing two guards and two tackles on the O line? (the only remaining starting lineman next year is center JMS, correct?)
But we do have some backup experience with the returning group, right? Can a Gopher Holer give me an idea as to our starting O Line in 2022. Thanks in advance!
 

A_Slab_of_Bacon

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Our line was great for running, I'd say below average for passing.
Yeah there were games Tanner had plenty of time, other times dude was running for his life and I was all "These guys are ... really good?"

Going forward or laterally the line was amazing, holding still, sometimes they struggled a lot.


I feel like OLine needs multi aspect grades.
 


Dakota2

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Our OL is rated about as highly as they should be. They were dominant this year and most of us agreed that they were. Their job was more difficult because of a lack of a passing game but it also hid some of their deficiencies. As good as they were, they were MUCH better run blockers than pass blockers (especially the tackles).

As far as opposing defensive coaches having an easy job - - nope, no, they did not. They knew a run was coming but their job is to stop it, not predict if it was a run/pass. Our running game was varied, multiple formations, multiple backs. etc. The only way to stop a really good running team is to be gap disciplined and our running game coordinator did a fantastic job at making that blurry. Then the defensive coordinators had to stop us. . . and they struggled doing so.
To sum up, you don't think a defense is helped by having a good idea what to defend rather than defending the whole field? Ok, that's one way to look at it.

On the other hand a good football coach brought a struggling Illinois team into our house and shut down the predictable offense. Good BG coaches brought a bad team to our house and used Sanford's weakness to beat us.
 

Dakota2

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Yeah there were games Tanner had plenty of time, other times dude was running for his life and I was all "These guys are ... really good?"

Going forward or laterally the line was amazing, holding still, sometimes they struggled a lot.


I feel like OLine needs multi aspect grades.
A lot of that was blitzing that Sanford failed to adjust to and defeat.
 

A_Slab_of_Bacon

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A lot of that was blitzing that Sanford failed to adjust to and defeat.
I’m very much inclined to believe something tactically was wrong and those guys weren’t just jekyll and hyde OL men.
 

Bob_Loblaw

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To sum up, you don't think a defense is helped by having a good idea what to defend rather than defending the whole field? Ok, that's one way to look at it.

On the other hand a good football coach brought a struggling Illinois team into our house and shut down the predictable offense. Good BG coaches brought a bad team to our house and used Sanford's weakness to beat us.
That's how you'd sum up what I said? Obviously a defensive coordinator is helped by knowing what the other team is going to do but that doesn't make their job easy. You said that our opponent's defensive coordinators had the "easiest job possible". I assumed that statement was chalked full of hyperbole, which I realize you mean "the defensive coordinators had an easy job". No, they did not. You have to STOP the other team not simply predict if they are going to run or pass. Stopping us was not very easy.

As to pointing out Bowling Green, yep, two teams did stop us. Those were awful games for us and a reason our team needs to get better at a number of things, including passing. That said, it still is not easy, much less the "easiest job possible" to stop our offense last year. It was really hard, that's why way more teams failed at it than succeeded.
 



PhillyGopher

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The whole point of the original post was not to praise the OL but to bitch about someone who is no longer with the team. Seems kind of dumb to me, but what do I know?
 

WriterGoph

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Say what? Aren't they receiving accolades from all quarters? Weren't they voted as a unit the offensive MVP of the baseball bowl? Didn't we average 200 yards a game rushing? Aren't at least three of them likely to be drafted this year?

The answer to all is yes ... a resounding yes.

But they are underrated. They accomplished what they did while handicapped by the worst game planner and play caller in college football. They did it despite the fact opposing defensive coaches had the easiest job possible. They knew with near-certainty what was coming.

Alabama or Georgia Oline starters could not do what our guys did given a vanilla, predictable play book that always allowed the opposing defense to be in best position to stop us.

If you think Sanford was the worst OC in college football, you didn't watch enough college football this year. He didn't achieve what he should have with the talent we had on offense - although people seem to conveniently forget we lost the Big Ten RB of the Year and were missing some of our top WRs for many games early in the season - but there were FAR worse OCs in college football.
 

Dakota2

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If you think Sanford was the worst OC in college football, you didn't watch enough college football this year. He didn't achieve what he should have with the talent we had on offense - although people seem to conveniently forget we lost the Big Ten RB of the Year and were missing some of our top WRs for many games early in the season - but there were FAR worse OCs in college football.
Name a few.
 

Dakota2

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The whole point of the original post was not to praise the OL but to bitch about someone who is no longer with the team. Seems kind of dumb to me, but what do I know?
Wrong. The point of the post was to say our wonderful offensive line was actually better than anyone can appreciate because of the handicap they were working under.
 




Gophergrandpa

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We passed for only 2100 yards and 12 touchdowns in 2021 (in 2019 we passed for 3300 yards and 31 touchdowns). In 2019 we had 25 rushing TDs; in 2021 we had 27. For many teams, this kind of dramatic fall off in passing production would equal a losing record. The OL enabled our running game to control TOP and do enough on offense to win most games—even though opposing defenses often knew what was coming, as our offense was quite predictable in many games. So, I think the OL was awesome. (The 2021 defense helped a lot, too, of course!).
 
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Dakota2

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The guy he replaced in Colorado - Darin Chiaverini.

Whoever Florida's OC was - you know how well they recruit?

Northwestern's OC.
Ok, good job. That's a credible list. Not sure we can include guy at NW since Fitz didn't fire him yet.

But if we go with this I guess we could say Gophers had only third or fourth worst OC. Not good at all.
 


Gophergrandpa

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The guy he replaced in Colorado - Darin Chiaverini.

Whoever Florida's OC was - you know how well they recruit?

Northwestern's OC.
There are probably many more, too. We had a 9-4 record for Pete’s sake. The offense under-achieved expected potential in the passing game, but there might have been factors of which we mere fans were unaware. So, it seems a little harsh to say a 9 win OC is the worst. I think he was “fair to middling”—and might have utilized the OL talent we had better than any of us realize. But he wasn’t “elite” in his two years here. I don’t think his passing game plans and performance were a good fit for the balanced offense, with explosive play threats, that I believe PJ wants to put on the field. I wish him luck in Colorado, except for in one game.
 
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Off-GridTNgopher

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Regardless of how many o.c's were worse... For the talent we had on this roster our offence was sup par.... Yes we ran all over people... But that was it... I'm glad k.c. is back... I'm glad Sanford landed on his feet and wish him all the best .. he just wasn't the guy here
 

Nax5

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The OL was one of the best in the country. Their biggest weakness were smaller, faster defenders. Players we encountered out of conference like Fresno State and Miami Ohio.
 




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