The article is from yesterday, so no point in commenting online, but…
I remember Griffin, Daniels, Henry & Wilson well. They were truly thrown out there, as our level of talent was really bad, and Wayne Howard pulled these 4 talented DBs out of LA before his first season.
Griffin was an NFL talent who could impact a game from the CB position like few could. I remember we played at Houston, and Griffin had the first four 4 tackles for the Utes… even though the plays were going away from his side.
The game has changed so much since then. Rarely do you see things like marginally athletic BYU receivers being open by 10+ yards. Pass defense is far beyond the loose “coverage” back in that era.
Also, it’s not like our FR DBs are all going to start. Phillips… maybe. Ritchie… maybe.
JT Broughton saw how Jaylon & Guidry and Nurse/Tareke Lewis prepared, he’s not new to the schemes. Bronson Boyd has been here 2.5 years. This is Mata’ele’s 3rd fall, IIRC. Hubert & Vonte Davis have significant game snaps (and Davis got his ass chewed on a blown angle vs Northern Illinois that resulted in a TD).
We’ll see some of the FR get game snaps, is my guess, because we need to find out what we have, but the guys who start won’t exactly be thrown to the wolves.
I think we won’t be able to do a lot of exotic coverage masking and some of the crazy deception having Burgess and Blackmon allowed last year. Have those kind of cover guys as your safeties… well, they’re making us proud now, on Sundays.
Our guys will get burned some, but instead of 4 talented true freshmen, we have more like 8-12 talented DBs, depending on who shows up, and only 1 senior, Vonte Davis (who can play on the back end and on the LOS)
I’ve thought about this a lot. What do you do if you are Scalley? Your front 6 are very solid. Very solid. Maybe not great, but above average and are more than good enough for your offense to win game. If the offense gets to 30, they beat everyone except maybe USC.
But the back 5. How do you scheme for success? You can’t be as aggressive. You probably play more cover 2/cover 3 to prevent the big play.
But if you go cover 3, that leaves four people to cover the middle of the field. That makes it so you can’t be as aggressive getting to the QB.
We always talk about this, but the key to this defense will be first and second down. Stopping the run. Getting to third and long. I feel comfortable with some of the freshmen coming in on 3rd and long at DE and creating chaos and getting to the QB. But first and second down seem like a lot of base plays with Tafua, Moala, Lloyd and Hubert really having to step up and make plays to get us to third and long.
What say ye? How do you scheme to protect this group?
Wayne Howard was an amazing coach who would have a statue and many conference championships to his name had he stuck it out. His hatred for BYU consumed him and he couldn’t deal with it. If only he had Larry K’s salary he could have bought himself a one year break from the cougs and it would have been smooth sailing from there.
No question the front 6/7 will make or break the risks for the DBs, in general, but the offenses & QBs we face in the PAC make it really tough to completely rely on pressure up front. Play calling, play action, draws, exploiting the pass rush, trying to iso a quick RB or WR on a LB… it’s hard to escape risk.
At the end of the day, it will be about guys doing their jobs the best they can, then picking up on the subtleties and out-of-the-box the stuff that Jaylon, Jav, Blackmon & Burgess were implementing last year, based on their experience and raw talent.
Back in the MWC days, getting a good rush on the QB meant they’d throw early or way off target, and the coverage guys could get away with not bringing their eyes back to the ball at the right time. In the PAC, look out. Half the QBs will have a good shot at making money at the game.
I think with Lloyd & Sewell, Scalley will try to mix things up as much as he can for the short game, plug holes, make it a down & distance / play the odds game. That will work a little, against some opponents.
Common sense tells me the DBs are going to get picked on, from basic coverage and contesting the pass, to getting suckered into double-moves, to drag routes that are tough to deal with if you’re playing mostly man, etc.
With a lot of young cover guys, and 1.5 Safeties who’ve seen most things, I think we’ll be in Man a lot. Have to crawl before you can run.
Maybe to win some games Scalley pulls out some Gary Andersen crazy ■■■■, like rushing 2 and having 9 in coverage, a few times, or bringing pressure from the corners or up the middle with a Safety and drop Lloyd into being a 230 lb FS.
Gotta try and disrupt, because any good PAC QB and WRs will singe our young guys, if we try to play straight up D.
Since the season sort of doesn’t count, this is Defense 101, 201 and 301. It will be a blast to watch.
I agree. Howard was charismatic and knew how to recruit and motivate guys. We were truly horrid when he arrived.
There was an incident at Provo (that I was an indirect witness to) in 77 after we got stomped which made the Utah-BYU game a blood hatred thing for Howard. After 5 years he left coaching and went into real estate development, I think in Florida.
Howard brought Ronnie Mac. So you could make the case that the foundation of Utah football today went back to Howard. (We struggled a bit after he left with Stobart & Fassel, granted, and Mac really shored up the talent and intensity issues.)
Sadly, since we only to get to see games on TV, we really won’t get to see the whole scheme. Maybe we’ll get lucky and have someone break down game film for us after the fact.
Yeah, it will be weird not seeing everything. We’ll have to piece things together on replays, at best.
Please, for the love of God, no!! Scalley was an admin assistant in 2006. I hope he got a good view of that tragedy.
It’s all risk / reward. If Hubert can be the center fielder, fight through blocks and be the last line of defense and a sure tackler, then some gambling to disrupt might be warranted, at key moments, in games where our inexperience is being exploited.
Get the other team’s offense off the field.
The “circus defense” worked against BYU in 2005, late in the game, some chaos that disrupted their offense, even the great John Beck.
I’m just saying if we’re having to layer defensive concepts in as our secondary is getting seasoned playing against talented P5 WRs, Scalley might need to throw some curve balls to disrupt, more than he will need to in ‘21.
We’ve never really played vanilla D, granted, we’ll always be moving around presnap. Once the play is underway, we might need to roll the dice here and there more than we’d like. Zone blitzes, drop Tafua or Tupai in coverage, send Lloyd and/or Sewell, etc.
There’s enough young talent, you have to think Scalley is scheming situationals with athletes like Mata’afa. Make it fun, get guys involved and learning, getting experience.
I expect a short learning curve for Broughton, probably Phillips, and sounds like Mataele. Then blend it in the middle, until those guys can get to the upper division concepts. 7 games is a cram session for really absorbing the Utah 4-2 under Scalley.
Didn’t the incident involve an N-bomb hurled at our freshmen Californian defensive backs by somebody on BYU’s staff? Bugs me that LaVell has the squeaky clean image he does, his teams were truly classless.
Actually, the N-bomb was hurled at Howard when he told them it was classless to bring Marc Wilson back into the game late in the 4th to break a record.
“Take your dirty N-words and get out of here”.
I remember it like it was yesterday, because it was weird watching our head coach having to be restrained (by other Utah coaches). What I was told at the time, wondering what the ruckus was about, was it was an assistant or somebody else on the BYU staff who made the remarks.
This was before BYU really had any black players, before the church changed their policy. It was a different era, the nation was still adjusting to civil rights, and prejudice was present in Utah, too, and the next year the LDS church made a 180, which is a good thing. Howard was from California and considered all his players like his kids.
I’ve always wanted to ask Ronnie Mac about this, not to dredge up an unfortunate incident, but to get his take, since he was right there, his first year out of Cali and at Utah.
Utah had a number of African American players that year - one WR I really liked was Roland Solomon. Another was RB Tony Lindsay from Denver, uncle of former CU RB and current Bronco’s RB Philip Lindsay.
I’ve felt that way as well. IMHO, LaVell wasn’t the saint that many made him out to be. Personally, I lost a lot of respect for him when he failed to suspend that player who beat up a referee during their game with Utah State. The conference had to suspend him.