Biggest loss from last year – surprise

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This topic contains 10 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by Butlereer Butlereer .

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  • #95708

    Grier? Nope

    Cajuste? Nope

    Sills? Nope

    Jennings? Nope

    Simms (timing) ? Nope

     

    Kenny Robinson – unless he implodes mentally I’m pretty damn sure that kid is an NFL starter very early in his professional career. Given our issues in the secondary having that talent anchoring the back end would have been huge. Hard to quantify!

    #gotoclasskids

    #95728

    Count me among the few that thought Robinson was overrated, and I’m not saying that because he left. I thought so last year. IMO he was a good player, very athletic with great range. But his decision making at free sometimes left WVU open to big plays — much more than an all-league pick should.

    Of course, I could be entirely wrong. If he proves me so, I will be happy for him.

    Biggest loss to me was Gary Jennings. Consistent, sure hands, always did the right thing, played hurt. Grier and Sills would be right behind him on my list.

    #95729

    I can respect Kevin’s take on Robinson to a point.  However, if I could have just ONE player back from last year on each side of the ball, and given the make up of this year’s squad – strengths and weaknesses – I would take Robinson back in a heartbeat for the defensive side.  On the offensive side it would be Jennings and on him, Kevin and I are in agreement.

    Robinson because he would help shore up the perceived weak area of the defense.

    Jennings for the same reason on offense.

    #95749

    count me in the group (pair?) that was not a big fan of Robinson.  While I understand speed is something that can’t be taught it is not enough simply by itself.  For some players being fast just gets them to the wrong place sooner.  With the overall speed now in the game once you are in the wrong place almost no amount of speed will allow you to recover soon enough.  Also, my assessment of Robinson’s tacking ability was not favorable.

    Most plays in football begin and end within 20 yards of where the ball is snapped, often less.  Quickness, a nose for the ball, and speed in the 20 yard dash may be the most important parts of a players game, least at the college level.

    So, perhaps, the most important players on this year’s defense may turn out to be Sean Mahone and Jake Long.  Both RS juniors, both from good football locations in Ohio.  If they can provide solid play then Norwood may actually be able to contribute to both the safety and corner positions, depending on both opponent and situation.  Neither has played a lot but that does not mean they are not ready to contribute.

    I think it is just going to be fun to watch how this group of players and this coaching staff interact, on both sides of the ball.  I’m hoping we have enough talent on the defensive side where 18-22 players get meaningful playing time without a significant drop off in the unit’s performance.

    #95761

    I could go both ways on Robinson.  He made some great plays and then you saw a WTF was he thinking.

    That being said, my mindset on the biggest loss is always going to be a guy that starts each play with his hand in the dirt.  It all starts up front on both sides of the ball.  Lose your best players there and don’t have a second best to immediately replace him and you’re toast.  So, my vote is for Cajuste.  No doubt about it.  Hands down.  He’ll be missed anchoring the line.

    #95765

    The strength of the entire team may turn out to be the Defensive Line, inclusive of the new Bandit role.

    I’d simply choose to have one of the two safeties that left back as a starter, but Grier is the biggest loss until Kendall shows that he’s come here to win.

    #95784

    The strength of the entire team may turn out to be the Defensive Line, inclusive of the new Bandit role.

    You all know I don’t go out on the limb making predictions, but I am optimistic about the DL. The numbers are there, and from what we have seen and gleaned, I think WVU’s three down positions on defense could be very good. Donahue, Stills, Stills, Alston, Jones, Pooler, Thrift and Jefferson — I have good hopes.

    At Bandit, if Cowan and Qualls can come through, I think we’ll all be happy with the front line. Qualls has just moved over from DE, and we’ve discussed Cowan, so there’s still a question here, but if they do then agreed this is going to be a group that can be trusted and depended upon.

    #95789

    I hope the OL comes along to match the DL.  Personally, I think this year, in particular, we will be best served if we can grind it on offense a bit.  With our proven stable of RBs, if the OL can give them some running room, then the ability to grind it will allow for a more controlled and natural environment for the QBs and WRs to develop.

    For the defense, sort of the same scenario.  If the DL can be disruptive at the point of attack and in the backfield and thereby keeping the opposing offenses out of sync, then that allows that same controlled and natural environment for our DBs to develop.

    Anyway, the big question to be answered in order to work my vision above is whether the OL will deliver.

    #95792

    I wonder how many snaps the Bandit will take as the 4th lineman?

    Anyhow, I don’t know if Cowan is in good standing with the program or not. Don’t recall hearing his name from the DC lately. Hoping we get a depth chart this pm. Also, I didn’t know if Reuben Jones was a Bandit. And then there’s Charlie Benton. What’s the ACL situation?

    #95795

    I wonder how many snaps the Bandit will take as the 4th lineman?

    Anyhow, I don’t know if Cowan is in good standing with the program or not. Don’t recall hearing his name from the DC lately. Hoping we get a depth chart this pm. Also, I didn’t know if Reuben Jones was a Bandit. And then there’s Charlie Benton. What’s the ACL situation?

    I would expect to see Cowan/Qualls on the field as the bandit in most situations. The exception might be long passing downs, and that’s only if WVU has two DEs that it thinks are better pass rushers, or more equipped to beat a tackle in pass pro, than that duo. Qualls is a speed guy, though, so I think we’ll see him get a shot at that role first. Jones is a DE, not a bandit type, but read on.

    A “true” DE can also take the bandit’s spot – that’s something I’ve talked with the coaches about — if the desire is to go to a “true” four man front with four DLs that have their hands on the ground. A lot of that depends on available personnel, though, and we know that WVU isn’t overly stocked with defensive end types. Alston/Jones gives WVU a good 1-2 punch at DE, but I don’t think that’s enough to play what amounts to two DEs a lot of the time. There are just more hybrid backer types available, so the bandit will be more of that sort of player this year. Just do’t count it totally out.

    Benton appears to be still battling the knee. I requested him for interviews, but he has not been made available. I hate that, because we got really good reviews on him last year in preseason, then he goes down after what, 18 snaps, in the opener. He could be really good at either bandit or will in this defense, I think, but right now doesn’t look like he’s 100%.

    Cowan has been at practice. Has had a mix of snaps with different units, as several players have as the fall camp evaluation process wound down, but my perception was that he wasn’t a first team lock at this point. Zach Sandwisch and Qualls were getting a number of those reps.

    #95806

    3 guys with their hands in the dirt or 4, it doesn’t matter as long as we are getting the push on the QB.  The days of the 3 man rush for our base set is over …… I HOPE ….. We’ve seen this for 18 years since RR came to town.  We haven’t put an emphasis on recruiting DL (or OL for that matter) since the days of Dandy Don.  IMO this is a welcome change.  Getting to the QB should give our DB’s a little break and not have to cover for those extra few seconds.  With the dominate QB’s of the B12 that pressure is needed.

    I know, I know, I know …… it’s a catch 22.  Pressure the QB or defend in the backfield.  You have to do both.  But even the best DB’s can’t cover forever when the QB has ample time to pick us apart.  And that has happened way too often.

    I like HC NB’s way of thinking.  It may take a year or two to get all of the pieces in place to make this work, but I like it.

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