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FishDuck Article

Colorado GameDay Thread: The Best Approach to the Endgame?

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My FishDuck Friends–this is the official Colorado GameDay Thread for discussion before, during and after the game. As before, addressing any negative in the game is fine, but let’s not be venting on other Oregon fans. Thanks. Now let’s look at what happened at the end of the UCLA game with all the quotes in one place (below) and discuss ...

 

Read the full article here...

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Mario wanted to be aggressive? Wanted to score? This sums up exactly why back to back championship coach Cristobal has some of us in knots!

 

"Not now!" you explain, reminding him that you have made it clear that you don't want all those points. You're winning now, all that noise is unnecessary. 1-0, you've got it. Get another 1st down, and the time will run out. But now you want to score? 

 

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 Chip, he was on the other side of the field. He used to coach at Oregon. He loved points! But once his team went 9 minutes, without scoring, on purpose!!! Because that was the best way to get the W!

 

But you wanted to score?

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The best defense is having the ball in your hands!  I agree "first downs are important as touchdowns" when the clock winds down, you lead, and the end is near!

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Yes, I completely agree. We really have some slow learners up there in the coaching box. The pattern has been set. This endgame mess is going to repeat itself.

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Goodness Charles, your observation, analysis and explanation was very impressive. Thank you for taking the time to provide the picture that gave us what AB could or should have seen. 

 

As you and others have consistently pointed out, football requires a 60 minute game plan on both sides of the ball......

 

Within the 60 minute game plan the players execute in seconds what is practiced repeatedly. This is just one of those times that AB made the choice to play away from his skill set. That young man is a powerful, yet elusive runner with the ball in his hands.

 

You are so right that stepping inside the Dye block nets yardage and takes another 35-40 seconds off the clock. That's probably the worst case scenario if AB runs it. He may not be as fast as MM was but he may have got a fresh set of downs or even scored. End game, game over. 

 

Based on the picture, the solid O line was blocking to the right and the play call had a protection blocker (Dye) for AB. Even though from MC and JM 's comments the play was designed to pass for the score....

 

The fluid game of football still allows the QB to make split second decisions.

 

I have been a big supporter of AB, still am. But in this case " he chose poorly"... Thank goodness this is a team game because the defense came in and saved the victory.

 

Again.......

 

Enjoy the day fellow Duck lovers. Looking forward to your comments, feelings and laying my head on the pillow,  7-1.

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Charles, in your last screen shot, it looks as if JJIII is running past the defender and a perfect pass will be a TD.  Only problem, that throw is usually not in AB repertoire.  High risk, looooow reward.

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The positive, Mario wanted to be aggressive and let Moorhead go for the jugular. In the past, maybe Mario was being aggressive, but he would have limited that to aggressively attacking the line, in one spot.

 

The negative Moorhead thought he should go for the jugular with an aggressive play with AB. I agree an aggressive play, in that situation is going for a first down with a pass, inbounds. 

 

This also calls into question Moorheads' understanding of AB limitations, and understanding the situation, very troubling. Worse case scenario, Mario goes back to calling the plunge, scary.

 

The extreme negative, AB only saw the jugular pass on that play. This further confirms my bias that Anthony Brown doesn't see the whole field, just the play called, and the primary intended receiver.

 

We need a qb who can see the whole field and process a dynamic situation, not an easy thing to do. Thankfully we may have a few guys on the sideline with that exact DNA, hopeful.

 

We also need a coach who wants a dynamic qb. Maybe Mario and Joe love that Anthony sticks to the primary receiver, number one choice on an RPO. I certainly hope Mario and Joe aren't dumbing down our young qb's before they see the field, scary.

 

I will say teams have lost, up by 10, with 3:00 minutes on the clock, with the other team having the ball. I would put Chip, along with Whittingham and Smith, as a coaches, I wouldn't want in that situation on the opposing sideline, also scary.

 

No team has ever lost with possession of the ball, up by 3, and the clock running out, hopeful for the future. That is if we can get past this scary halloween weekend.

5se0ex.jpg

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It was second down! On the 24 yrd line! Plus they had one TO left. Make them burn it. Sheesh

 

Brown is very black and white - throw the long, I throw the ball long. Run the ball, I Run the ball. Coaches have to take his limitations into account and call plays accordingly, which they did until the last drive.

 

But, it was an improvement however small.

Remember, MC said at half to not let the refs decide the game and coached accordingly. 

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Unlike those in charge in Afghanistan, at least the Duck brass owned their mistake. I didn't like the call, but I like their honesty. 

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Great take Charles, thank you.

 

I'm not thrilled to learn that Mario is that involved with the in-game play calling.  I do not understand this in the least. Certainly he should participate in developing the game plan but then, get out of your $1M a year OC's way. 

 

I do not believe Mario recognizes his own weakness when it comes to clock management?  I hope Mario is in Eugene for decades and brings football titles to UO but as a leader you have to know your own strengths and weaknesses and accordingly, delegate to the quality people you have hired.

 

You have to know your personnel. AB worked hard and played well to get you a lead. He played within himself. For the 3rd time this season he ran for what turned out to be the winning TD. But he is not a guy to turn the game over to when, I am going back to 1st late in the game pick, you have a 2 score lead in the 4th quarter. And in this game your D is playing great and has basically shut down the powerful Bruin run game.

 

You so perfectly nailed it Charles. When you have the lead late in the game 1st downs are often the equal of touchdowns.

 

Coaches and players, how about making it easier today on us fans; blow out these Buffs all the way back to Boulder!

 

 

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On 10/30/2021 at 9:30 AM, 30Duck said:

Mario wanted to be aggressive? Wanted to score? This sums up exactly why back to back championship coach Cristobal has some of us in knots!

 

"Not now!" you explain, reminding him that you have made it clear that you don't want all those points. You're winning now, all that noise is unnecessary. 1-0, you've got it. Get another 1st down, and the time will run out. But now you want to score? 

 

giphy.gif

 

 Chip, he was on the other side of the field. He used to coach at Oregon. He loved points! But once his team went 9 minutes, without scoring, on purpose!!! Because that was the best way to get the W!

 

But you wanted to score?

 

Love the meme. "I don't think that was my fault?'

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On 10/30/2021 at 7:22 AM, Steven A said:

it looks as if JJIII is running past the defender and a perfect pass will be a TD.

 

I have the video cued up to the replay, so click below, watch No. 3, and tell me what he is doing!

 

 

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Mr. FishDuck

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On 10/30/2021 at 9:10 AM, Charles Fischer said:

 

I have the video cued up to the replay, so click below, watch No. 3, and tell me what he is doing!

 

 

I meant #2, Williams.  Agree, JJIII looks lost in the crowd, and why the crowd?

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I totally agree with the time element that running out the clock was easier than scoring a touchdown to win the game. Just want to make one comment to the contrary. Fans here and everywhere have been criticizing MC for four years about his lack of keeping the "pedal to the metal"... playing not to lose instead of playing to win.

 

Above you see comments of surprise that MC wanted to score?!?!?!?!

 

I'll take this as a positive development in MC's thinking. After the game last week MC mentioned the need to play a whole game and put teams away. So.... maybe today the Ducks will win by more than a touchdown.  We will see.

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While I’m in agreement with the higher % chance ball control would have had in that situation over going for a score that AB finds difficult to execute, JM may have been playing the likelihood that the UCLA defense would provide a better shot at the home run ball by ratcheting-up it’s own endgame plan in the box to stuff ball control, leaving our receivers in man. On both offense and defense, endgames are always going to be a choice between playing it safe or rolling the dice. Considering the strength of UCLA’s front 7, I’d have been tempted to go for it. Don’t think I’d of pulled the trigger though.

 

Against  Colorado’s frosh  QB, we don’t run the same risk we did with DTR’s 2 minute drill efficiency. Endgame should be more manageable with wider range of choices.

 

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On 10/30/2021 at 9:10 AM, Charles Fischer said:

I have the video cued up to the replay, so click below, watch No. 3, and tell me what he is doing!

Looks like a bit of a broken play with JJIII confused about the route and the play call.

 

On 10/30/2021 at 10:20 AM, Jon Sousa said:

Just want to make one comment to the contrary. Fans here and everywhere have been criticizing MC for four years about his lack of keeping the "pedal to the metal"... playing not to lose instead of playing to win.

 

Time and place. We want the petal to the metal when we are up 3 scores in the first half. Not when we are up at the end of the game and it's time to burn the clock. It's all about situational awareness. The situation dictates the tactics and strategy. This is where Mario and Co. seem to struggle.

 

In order to compete at the highest level they have to clean up these mistakes. They have made them time and time again, including in at least a few games this year....see Stanford in particular.

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On 10/30/2021 at 10:20 AM, Jon Sousa said:

I'll take this as a positive development in MC's thinking.

 

Jon...I think you are being very kind.  I look on this as yet another confirmation that Cristobal does not know what-the-heck he is doing on offense, as he is without a system and clear objective.  

 

So the times during the game when he should be scoring more--he doesn't want to, and at the time during the game when he should be burning clock...he wants to score?

 

giphy.gif

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Mr. FishDuck

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On 10/30/2021 at 10:33 AM, Charles Fischer said:

I look on this as yet another confirmation that Cristobal does not know what-the-heck he is doing on offense, as he is without a system and clear objective.  

 

giphy.gif

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Great article Charles, and it clearly explains the endgame issues with Cristobal that have driven me crazy for a long time, but most notedly in the last three games. Clearly, the time time to be aggressive is NOT with 3 minutes left in the game and a lead. It's hard to believe that, left to decide for himself, reputed offensive genius Coach Moorhead would go along with that ridiculousness.

 

First downs are as good as touchdowns at the end of games you are leading is basic football coaching 101. Maybe MC needs to be reading less about Navy Seal philosophy and more about the basic tenets of good football coaching strategy.

 

The whole idea about needing to get a bigger lead is even more ludicrous when considering that Oregon's offense on that drive was moving the ball down the field, the Ducks were inside of the 30, and if Oregon kicks a field goal, UCLA is forced to drive down the field to score a touchdown to win with probably no time outs against a defense that was playing well. All I can say is Booooo!

 

Thanks for posting the cued Youtube video. I appreciated being able to replay it over and over again to digest the many aspects of the play that resulted in the interception. Why were Pittman, Johnson III, and Williams all in the same area with all of their defenders right there with them? 

 

Most notably, What WAS Johnson III doing there? My guess is that he completely messed up and shouldn't have even been in that area which is why, at first, the coaches were saying that the failure of the play was a "player issue".  Either Pittman, Johnson III, or both were not where they were supposed to be. Justin Herbert would have seen every defender in the same area, realized someone had blown the play, tucked it, and ran. Brown is not at that level and, as others here have mentioned, has a "just doing what they told me to do" attitude. 

 

As far as running goes, Brown would have had to make the decision to do that pretty quickly because Dye's block wasn't very good and the defender was a step away from getting to Brown. Regardless of that, running would have been a much better choice.

 

The real problem here, that was so adeptly addressed in Charles' article, is that Cristobal's understanding of endgame strategy is terrible. It's also come to my attention that MC is fairly bull headed about the way he sees and does things so we are sure to see what we consider to be crazy coaching decisions at the end of close games many more times to come in the future, although hopefully not today.

 

Edited by latracey
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I would say he is our guy on a journey figuring out how to be the best coach, and it isn't pretty, very often.

5sempo.jpg

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There as a lot of second guessing the coaching decisions in a game that we won.  It would be one thing if ANY of us could do it better, but  we can’t (If we could, we’d be pulling in six figures to do it).

 

My least favorite thing about football has always been the Monday morning quarterbacks, and it seems a lot of them come here to pontificate how they’d have done things differently.

 

Since we are pontificating, let’s look at the play. If AB he’d thrown it to the corner where the receiver was heading, it was a score.  But no, he throws it behind the receiver and into the arms of the defender.  
 

If he had cut behind the blocker and run, it was second or third and short, if not a first down.  It was a good call, with poor choices and execution by a fair to middling player on a team full of playmakers.

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Seems like we are unhappy when he is too conservative in play calling, and now we're unhappy he stayed aggressive. If the play had worked...?

We wouldn't even bother with this question. 

 

The previous week we gave up long drives in the 4th, against Stanford we did, AB was playing pretty good, I say good call.

 

The previous interception was miscommunication between qb and wr.

The endzone shot was just a throw to the wrong side of the wr. It almost was a perfect throw, timing, distance, but alas, to his left, not his right.

 

In this case, I agree with the aggressive play call.

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On longer throws Brown is always a few ft behind or a second or 2 behind the receiver. Hopefully today he will get it right.

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Oh give me a home where the Duckies all roam and the Ducks and the Buffalos play, Where seldom is heard a discouraging word and Anthony Brown is on target all day.

 

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On 10/30/2021 at 11:14 AM, PittDuck said:

There as a lot of second guessing the coaching decisions in a game that we won.  It would be one thing if ANY of us could do it better, but  we can’t (If we could, we’d be pulling in six figures to do it).

 

My least favorite thing about football has always been the Monday morning quarterbacks, and it seems a lot of them come here to pontificate how they’d have done things differently.

 

Since we are pontificating, let’s look at the play. If AB he’d thrown it to the corner where the receiver was heading, it was a score.  But no, he throws it behind the receiver and into the arms of the defender.  
 

If he had cut behind the blocker and run, it was second or third and short, if not a first down.  It was a good call, with poor choices and execution by a fair to middling player on a team full of playmakers.

Amen! Post-game couch coaching is undefeated.

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