Monday, September 04, 2017

Jinks Presser! LIVE

OK, I facebook lived the presser since today isn't a work day.  Very nicely done.  (Also, if you like to people watch, don't go to the big Facebook Live map that shows all of them around the world and peek in on some guys drinking, smoking hookah and listening to music on the North Coast of Turkey)

So, there wasn't any big, big news.  The biggest takeaway is pretty straightforward.  Coach has said since the beginning that his goal is to compete on New Year's Day and he is 100% not backing off that.  He says that our expectation is to go into Big Ten stadiums and "come back with Ws."

The Michigan State game serves as a recent example of what needs to happen.  In particular, he looked to the 2nd Quarter.  He said the Spartans were "searching" and BG had the ball with 4 minutes left and coach told them we needed a 4-minute drive, score or not.  Defense had been on the field a lot, offense had to stay on the field.

Andrew Clair got one first down and then BG had a 3rd and 6 and they called a slant and it was there (MSU secondary was searching) and Guyton dropped a perfect ball.  If that's caught, he's down the field, BG gets nothing less than a FG and it is 7-6 going into the locker room.  (Note:  BG had a holding call on that play as well, but the overall point he was making is that if you are going to win @MSU you need to make that play happen).

Similarly, he pointed to Dirion Hutchins with a free shot on Lewerke.  Hutchins is in the first half of his first game bearing down on a QB who outweighs him, doesn't wrap up...instead of 2nd-18 MSU is on schedule again.  Make that sack, probably 7-3 going into halftime.

Those were his examples, to be clear.  And he attributed it to a lack of "focus."  Which is all well and good...the coaches need to teach that....there's only so long that remains on the players.

In short, "we let them off.  Can't do it."

He showed confidence in Morgan.  I know Morgan's taken a lot of heat and he certainly did not play well Saturday (my comment, not Jinks).  There were other issues.  He's still a young QB and I think incremental improvement is what we should expect.  Saturday did not exhibit that but I haven't given up hope for him.

Coach said we didn't make the big plays but we didn't make a catastrophic mistake.  Well, OK, but the only thing keeping that Pick 6 from being catastrophic is the score when it happened.

Another positive he noted was only 4 penalties for 20 yards. He did not address the ejection, though he did after the game.  Says he wants the players going for the ball, not the hit.

Oh, and obviously the defense getting those turnovers is a good thing he cited as well.

Also:  "Youth is not an excuse."

Also:  props for Caleb Bright who stepped in unexpectedly when Taborn was injured warming up.  He battled...tough assignment against a very good MSU lineman, but he battled and was fighting the whole way.

My comments from here on in.  I think those are (except where noted) reasonable views.  Here's the thing.  I feel like we had a game plan that was ready to work.  The players didn't execute.  That's part of coaching, too.

I got a few comments on twitter about our coaches.  My view is the same as it has been, which is that we entered an experiment when we didn't have to...but here we are.  We need to see if these guys can (in Coach's own words) "get the team ready to win."  We have yet to see them win a game that was a challenge and until that begins to happen, anyone is reasonable to have their doubts.  Having said that, I think some people thought this was all going to happen quickly in a PJ Fleck style thing.

The expectation should be for incremental improvement this year---some proof that the coaches can get players to focus and execute and develop at this level.  Win a couple tough ones.  That, combined with recruiting, should provide us with success.


Schadenfreude said...

I'm surprised to hear that people are criticizing the coaches. it seemed pretty simple to me: Players didn't execute.

Orange said...

Right, but players who aren't focused and not executing can also be a coaching issue, especially with a staff with no track record to fall back on. They have yet to show they can put all the elements together. I don't think you can fairly judge them until next year but until they win a game they aren't supposed to win, there are going to be people who doubt them.