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  1. meh130

    Do we have a 5* Curse?

    Here is a list of Auburn's 5-Star recruits from 247 based on their composite ranking. I have ordered it by year. I list any player who transferred as a "Bust" if they never played significantly at Auburn. There are 5 of 12 "Busts" in the Chizik/Malzahn era (41.6%). In the Tubberville era, we had 2 of 5 "Busts" (40%). Owen Pappoe, 2019 - TBD Bo Nix, 2019 - TBD Calvin Ashley, 2017 - Bust Derrick Brown, 2016 Byron Cowart, 2015 - Bust, Invited to 2019 NFL Combine Roc Thomas, 2014 - Bust, Currently in the NFL Tre' Williams, 2014 Montravius Adams, 2013 Carl Lawson, 2013 Christian Westerman, 2011 - Bust, Currently in the NFL Michael Dyer, 2010 - Bust, Not Currently Active Trovon Reed, 2010 Tray Blackmon, 2005 - Bust, One Season in CFL Ben Obomanu, 2002 Carnell Williams, 2001 Lemarcus Rowell, 2001 - Bust, Two Seasons in CFL Jason Campbell, 2000 Ashley and Cowart supposedly had work ethic issues. Dyer, Blackmon, and Rowell had discipline issues. Playing time issues were factors with Thomas and Westerman. The majority of these "Busts" appear to be behavioral. Good sports psychology in the recruiting process could probably identify potential behavioral risks and how to manage them. Saban is a big believer is sports psychology. Also, Saban instructs his recruiters to not look at film until they have talked to the prospect's coach. What do they talk about with the coach? Probably not how fast the kid is, or how hard he hits. That's on the film. More likely they talk about work ethic and behavior.
  2. meh130

    Do we have a 5* Curse?

    I think what people miss is exceptional players in high school is often based on exceptional talent, not exceptional player development. For example, with Byron Cowart, he was a world-beater on defense, big, lean, strong, and fast. So his HS coach puts him out as a weakside defensive end in a "Wide-9", standing edge rusher, and tells him to just rush the QB. And he was stellar at that. The recruiting services saw him and said, with his height, strength, and side, he projects as a strongside defensive end, not weakside DE or an edge rusher. 4-3 base defensive teams recruit Cowart as an SDE, and 3-4 base defensive teams like Bama recruit Cowart to be a 3-4 DE, not a Jack/Buck edge rusher OLB. We don't know what Muschamp was promising Cowart at either Florida or Auburn. He may have been promising Cowart would be a pass-rushing Buck. But Cowart was listed at 277 lbs as a freshman on the 2015 roster. By the end of his career Maryland listed him at 293 lbs. Cowart gets to Auburn and is put in the SDE role, and has to learn to actively engage blockers, not avoid them or discard them. He just wants to fight off the blocker and get the QB. Which may be fine for the Buck, but is how you get burned on a draw or a screen as an interior lineman. Cowart benefits from an SEC strength and conditioning program. He spends more time being coached by a hard-ass Rodney Garner, who wants a particular behavior out of each and every position on the DL. It is no longer high school, where it was about Cowart's exceptional physical skills overwhelming opponents. Eventually we move Cowart over to 3-Tech DT, as we have more SDEs who are simply performing better for the role. Garner figures Cowart would be a good passing down 3-Tech, playing to his physical attributes as well as his natural ability to rush the QB. Cowart quits AU, and eventually lands at Maryland, who puts him at 4-3 SDE, where Cowart wins the starting role and performs well. But it was the years spent at AU that developed Cowart into a successful interior defensive lineman. Maybe, by being the most talented and most coached up SDE on the roster allowed Cowart to finally be confident in his role. Maybe he finally realized he was never meant to be a dedicated edge rushing Buck, but was destined to be a 4-3 SDE, or a 4-3 3-Tech DT, or a 3-4 DE. That acceptance and confidence is why he declared for the draft. He is going to project as a 4-3 or 3-4 DE. He is not a "tweener" 4-3 DE or an "edge" player who might play a 4-3 hybrid DE or a 3-4 OLB. I think Cowart's comfort and confidence in his role finally caught up to what the coaches saw in him years before. There are a lot of high school athletes who are the biggest and baddest bullfrog in their small pond. Then they get to the big lake called Division 1 and their egos get checked. But that happens to many of us in some form or fashion. It is called life.
  3. meh130

    Interesting Overtime Proposal

    I think TV had a lot to do with it. The NFL may be 100 years old, but it is, and has been, for half of that time, a sport of, by, and for television.
  4. meh130

    Calvin Ashley Transferring

    Also, the DL rotates and situationally substitutes, so the second string gets plenty of paying time and quality snaps. The OL does not rotate players. It plays as a unit. Second stringers do not play unless there is an injury or we are in a blow-out where the entire second string line comes in as a unit to play. This is why it is a bad idea to manage your OL personnel so you have 5 seniors starting. Ideally you want to lose about two per year to graduation/early declaration.
  5. meh130

    Calvin Ashley Transferring

    Given how thin we are in the OL, all expected starters will be seniors, and the fact Ashley could play both OT and OG, I have to believe Auburn had nothing to gain with Ashley staying. The simple fact is Ashley he does not expect to be able to win a starting position over the current backups. Time to move on.
  6. meh130

    Florida State dismisses Francois

    He already has. Witness the aftermath of the aTm-LSU game, with an assistant coach picking a fight with the LSU coaching staff and a waterboy slugging an LSU coach.
  7. meh130

    Interesting Overtime Proposal

    I think a key change would be to require teams to go for two point conversions starting with the first overtime, and perhaps consider not allowing field goals at all. Putting more risk into OT would change the decisions around allowing the game to go into OT in the first place. The downside of no field goals would be the risk of a defensive stalemate.
  8. meh130

    Time for a little Sunshine Pumping

    I agree with the OP. 2019 should be a very solid year, assuming we can get a QB to step up. 2020 will likely be a down year due to losses in both the offensive and defensive line. I still have serious problems with our O-Line recruiting. We should be signing an average of 4 OLs per year. Historically, we redshirt OLs so they can spend a year focused on diet, nutrition, and strength and conditioning as well as getting coached on playing. Even then, it is rare a redshirt freshman starts, so we are often looking at a redshirt sophomore as the entry point into starting. I hope some of the younger players step up this year. Will Calvin Ashley return? Will he live up to his billing? Will Nick Brahms again compete for the starting Center? Will Austin Troxell compete for the starting right tackle? Will Tashawn Manning, Brodarious Hamm, or Jalil Irvin compete for a starting guard position? How about Kameron Stutts? Will Prince Sammons ever live up to expectations? If any of these guys displace a starter, or in back filling an injured starter demonstrate a high quality of play, it would be a big step in the right direction.
  9. meh130

    Carnell Williams new RB coach

    This is a really good point.
  10. meh130

    Prince Tega graded highest pass blocking

    This is exactly it. It is better to have five average O-Linemen then have an average O-Line comprised of two good, one average, and two poor O-Linemen.
  11. meh130

    qb's - who will start in 2019?

    I don’t doubt given good film study of a defense’s tendencies that a Zone Read could be “called” instead of optioned. I also can see early in a game running the ZR Option with a predetermined give to see exactly what the defense is doing. But both of these open themselves up for a negative play if the defense does not do what is expected. It is a risk with no more upside than running an option, but a bigger downside. I have to ask “why”? The more likely approach is to run a true Inside Zone play with the RB give but not leaving the backside edge defender unblocked, or a Split Zone play where the backside OT releases inside but a play side offensive player pulls to block the backside edge defender. Similarly, a designed QB pull with the H-Back as a lead blocker allows the H-Back to block the backside edge defender if he was playing the QB.
  12. meh130

    qb's - who will start in 2019?

    Bo is a wild card. Unlike most (any?) other highly touted QB we have recruited, he has been taught by a college QB level coach. How many high school QB coaches were SEC starters? How many have been assistant coaches at a major level? So Bo Nix has had a high quality QB coach his entire HS career. That means it is not just raw talent, which it was with Keihl Frazier and Jeremy Johnson The drawback is Bo Nix has had only one QB coach his entire career. Pat Nix was even the QB coach for the Under Armour game. So how will Bo adapt to a different coach? I think Bo Nix is far more "coached up" than any QB we have gotten ever in the history of Auburn. He many not have the raw talent of a Tua Tagovailoa or a Trevor Lawrence, but there are few high schools with top caliber QB coaching (IMG, and others with QB coaches with former major college or pro experience). If Bo can adapt to a new and different QB coach, and adapt quickly, my guess is easily two years ahead of what we have come to expect of new QBs. The last part of this is how Bo adapts to the increase in competitive level of the defenses he will face. These are not 190lb high school OLBs he will be facing. If he is mentally and physically tough, and has a confidence that is not easily shaken, I think he can easily be a true freshman starter like Jalen Hurts or Trevor Lawrence.
  13. meh130

    Jordan-Hare Stadium Renovation

    I found this on the web, and it is consistent with what I heard at Auburn as a student when the East upper deck was being built: "The stadium is designed in such a way that the upper decks can be connected above either end zone stand, as are the decks at Tennessee and Georgia." "The plan assembled during the Dye years had called for the eventual enclosure of each end of the stadium by connecting the Upper East and Upper West decks across the end zones. At the time, Neyland and Sanford stadiums' enclosed endzone "horseshoe" layouts were popular,. Today this may not be wise today because of uneven settling of such heavy structures. Also, the desire to have large video screens makes unenclosed corners valuable space for screens.
  14. meh130

    Jordan-Hare Stadium Renovation

    As I recall, when the East upper deck was being built, it was built so the West and East upper decks could be connected via a horseshoe North end zone upper deck. I faintly remember this being mentioned, perhaps by Pat Dye. The reason Bryant Denny Stadium has disconnected end zone upper decks is because the two sideline upper decks are at different heights.
  15. meh130

    qb's - who will start in 2019?

    I think it will come down to two vs. two. If the Bo Nix - Cord Sandberg pair looks strong as a pair, one of them will start. They both can run similar playbooks/systems. If the Joey Gatewood - Malik Willis pair looks strong as a pair, one of them will start. Again, these two both can run similar playbooks/systems. I think if the stack rank is Bo, Joey, Malik, Cord, or Joey, Bo, Cord, Malik it will create a problem.