Ketch's 10 Thoughts From the Weekend (Is Todd Orlando the new Tim Beck?)

Discussion in 'Ketch's 10 Thoughts From the Weekend Archive' started by Ketchum, Nov 4, 2018.

  1. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    [​IMG]

    As the founding member of the Todd Orlando Fan Club in Austin, let me tell you a quick story about the Longhorns defensive coordinator that you may or may not know.

    After more than a decade at UConn, including six seasons as the defensive coordinator, Orlando decided that he wasn't content with his primary scheme (4-3) or placement in the sport and decided to take a leap of faith in the name of change.

    In moving to Florida International and then Utah State, Orlando took a leap of faith in not only making a move, but opening his mind up from an ideology standpoint, diving head-first into a 3-4 base scheme that he had never really worked with before. In doing so, he emerged very quickly as one of the most under-the-radar successful defensive coordinators in the nation.

    Since that move away from UConn, Orlando's defense has continued to morph into something of a hybrid of the old school 3-4 (more like a 3-3-5 or a 3-2-6) because of the offenses he faces week-in and week-out. Unlike a lot of guys in his position, he's never been completely married to any one single kind of defensive ideology, even he's probably been engaged to the principles of a 3-4 scheme for most of the last decade. Flexibility has been a career strength.

    I bring all of this up for two reasons.

    a. I'm not sure that the current pieces (players) on his defense meet the requirements of his scheme.

    b. I'm not sure that the future pieces (players) on his defense meet the requirements of his scheme.

    [​IMG]

    For those of us that have harped on the inability to recruit defensive linemen at an elite level through three different Texas head coaches, the chickens have come home to roost. As West Virginia battered the Texas defense with basically any play it wanted to run, the Texas pass rush problem suddenly appears to be something more significant than a mere problem. At the same time, circumstances often left the Longhorns in a position where their defensive line looked incapable of helping stop the run.

    While a base defense with a three-man front seemed like a good idea in the off-season because of the lack of volume in quality and proven defensive linemen, it's easy to wonder if the Longhorns truly have enough numbers to not only supply depth to a three-man front, but numbers that actually fit a three-man front with regards to talent fit.

    It's not an ideal situation to lack defensive line talent, but it's even less ideal when the defensive line talent that exists doesn't fit the scheme. When you look at next season, it's fair to wonder if Gerald Wilbon is best suited to play nose-tackle in a three-man front? Are either Taquan Graham or Marquez Bimage suited to start as ends in a three-man front? Considering he was moved to linebacker in the off-season, is Malcolm Roach?

    Outside of the true freshmen that have barely played so far this season, what other options will Orlando have to lean on next season? It makes the continued lack of big-time defensive linemen in the 2019 recruiting class even more concerning. Considering that what the Longhorns currently have up front hasn't been good enough all season, you'll forgive me if alarm bells are sounding at the thought of this current defense not having Charles Omenihu, Chris Nelson and Breckyn Hager available next season.

    Heading into the off-season, Orlando is going to need to go through a little soul-searching and figure out what defense best fits the talent that is available to him. What's happened to the defense this season isn't all his doing, but figuring out what to do moving forward is, especially since 2019 will mark the third season in Austin for Orlando and Co. to recruit talent that fits what they want to do.

    What he does with the defense is officially the story of the 2019 off-season. A year ago, Orlando was given the benefit of the doubt by every observer of the program because it seemed as if he had earned that trust after his first season. Well, that benefit of the doubt is gone, especially after the last month.

    At some point, Orlando has to find the answers or this team won't stop playing in 50-50 games each week and the Texas defensive coordinator could ironically emerge into the same type of trouble area that Texas fans viewed the offensive coordinator to be before Tom Herman took over.

    No. 2 - Oh, and about the linebacker position ...

    The elephant in the room on Saturday night was just how poorly the linebackers played on Saturday, a group of players that is coached by Orlando.

    All of them. Gary Johnson. Anthony Wheeler. Jeff McCulloch. ALL. OF. THEM.

    At the end of the season, only an inconsistently okay McCulloch will remain in the program, which means that the likes of Joseph Ossai, DeMarvion Overshown and Dele Adeoye will have to take over with basically zero experience from this season on which to build.

    Ready or not, here they come in 2019, potentially without a defensive line in front of them that can carry some of the heavy lifting.

    Like I said, Orlando has a lot of work to do this off-season.

    No. 3 - The biggest reason for continued optimism ...

    His name is Sam Ehlinger.

    The biggest cloud that hovered over the program going into this season was the need for someone to emphatically take over the quarterback position and Ehlinger has most certainly done that.

    Personally, I thought Saturday's performance against West Virginia was the best of his young career, replacing his performance against Kansas State from last season (or against Oklahoma from this season, if you like). If Ehlinger can play anywhere near that well in these final three games, I think the Longhorns will finish 9-3.

    No. 4 - West Virginia's final drive ...

    Right before Will Grier ripped the heart out of every Texas football player, coach and supporter like he was Mola Ram from Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, the dirty little secret about the whole scenario is that Grier's throw and the catch by Gary Jennings with 16 seconds left in the game completely covered Dana Holgorson's backside.

    Up until that that throw, Coach Big Balls had been calling quite the inefficient last drive of the game, wasting what appeared to be way too much time on the clock with a series of run plays that kept the clock running.

    Before that play started, about the only thing that Texas couldn't do in that scenario is let a West Virginia wide receiver get behind them. Of course, that's exactly what the Texas defense did.

    Speaking of which, how in the hell did that happen?

    Actually, we know.

    It was that kind of day for true freshman Caden Sterns. It was just one of those days.

    No. 5 - Compare and contrast ...

    After taking a look at the defensive ends and quarterbacks from the Class of 2015, I thought I might just go ahead and run through all of the positions that currently make up the true seniors in the departing Class of 2018.

    Today I'm going to look at the running back position, which featured a monster class of backs, five of which ranked as state top-40 prospects.

    [​IMG]

    Top in-state RB prospects


    1. Soso Jamabo (Signed with UCLA) - A total bust. Had a very pedestrian career through his first three seasons, fell out of the running back rotation and is now out for the rest of the season because of concussion issues.

    2. Ronald Jones (Signed with USC) - In three seasons with USC, Jones rushed for 3,619 yards (6.1 avg.), while catching 32 passes for 301 yards and three touchdowns. He finished his collegiate career ranked fifth in school history in rushing yards. Was drafted in the second round of the 2018 NFL draft.

    3. Chris Warren (Signed with Texas) - Had an up and down career with the Longhorns, eventually moving to tight end as a junior. Went undrafted, but was one of the stars of the Oakland Raiders' camp in the pre-season before injuring himself. Currently on injured reserve.

    4. Rodney Anderson (Signed with Oklahoma) - Anderson emerged as one of the best backs in the country in 2017 with the Sooners, but injured his knee early in the 2018 season and has already announced that he will declare for the 2019 NFL Draft instead of returning to school for another season.

    5. Aca'Cedric Ware (Signed with USC) - Has had a solid senior season with the Trojans, rushing for 627 yards and six touchdowns this season. Over the weekend, he posted his first 200-yard game and scored a career-high three touchdowns.

    Top OOS RB Prospects

    1. Damien Harris (Signed with Alabama) - After back to back 1,000-yard seasons, Harris currently leads the Tide with 542 yards and six touchdowns in his senior season.

    2. Derrius Guice (Signed with LSU) - A two-time All-SEC running back, Guice was drafted in the second round of the NFL Draft by Washington and is currently on injured reserve.

    3. Jacques Patrick (Signed with Florida State) - After a very promising junior season, Patrick has fallen off the cliff during his senior season and is nothing more than a bit player for the Noles.

    4. Soso Jamabo (Signed with UCLA)

    5. Kerryon Johnson (signed with Auburn) - Won SEC Player of the Year honors in 2017 and declared early for the NFL Draft. Was selected in the second round by Detroit and is currently the team's starting running back.

    (Note: Saquan Barkley was the No. 11 running back in the class.)

    No. 6 – Buy or Sell …
    [​IMG]

    BUY or SELL: Tim Beck has done a better job than Todd Orlando this year?

    (Buy) While it's hard to know how much credit he deserves, there's no getting around the truth that Sam Ehlinger's growth as a player has occurred on his watch, while Orlando's players (outside of Gary Johnson) have been a major disappointment. Or you could simply say that the offense is better than the defense.

    BUY or SELL: The staff will have to double down on recruiting Juco front 7 players to bridge next year to allow the younger recruits to develop in the weight program?

    (Buy) I'm buying, but that is so much easier said than done. Capable JUCO players that represent upgrades over the options already on the Texas roster are hard to find and even harder to pull in when you consider that Texas is recruiting against the entire nation to land them. Of the top 20 JUCO prospects in the Rivals JUCO rankings, only five players are still uncommitted. We're talking needle in the haystack type stuff.

    BUY or SELL: Texas gives up over 500 yards of offense and 40 points to Tech?

    (Sell) My answer would be different if Alan Bowman was playing, but I have to believe he will not.

    BUY or SELL: Herman turns over at least two staff members, if only for recruiting purposes?

    (Sell) I think he'll make a single change.

    BUY or SELL: West Virginia will beat Oklahoma in Morgantown due to the Sooners horrible defense and the fact that the offense can be had for long stretches this season?

    (Buy) It's a 60-40 game for me at this stage of the schedule with the Mountaineers being the favorite.

    BUY or SELL: There is a real and concerted effort behind the scenes to sabotage Texas with Big 12 officiating?

    (Sell) the Big 12 just doesn't want to spend the money to insure that the officiating is at the highest level possible.

    BUY or SELL: Through two seasons, and Sam Ellinger’s growth this season, Sam has a higher ceiling than Colt McCoy?

    (Sell) I think he has the same upside that McCoy possessed, not more. Let's keep in mind that McCoy was a two-time Heisman finalist.

    BUY or SELL: Herman should have marched the ball methodically down the field (as we did against Tulsa, K State and ou sux) for a TD or FG on our last meaningful possession rather than the quick strike TD to Duvernay thus leaving too much time on the clock for West Virginia to score?

    (Buy) Better game management was critical in that situation. At that stage of the game, it mattered more that UT leave West Virginia with as little time as possible (or none) more than it mattered to score seven points right there. It's easy to say you'll take the points whenever they come, but there are consequences for not managing the clock better and Texas paid the price for them this week.

    BUY or SELL: Herman makes a run at David Beaty to join our offensive staff?

    (Buy) I'm sure he'll make the phone call, but I have a hard time believing that Beaty will join any staff without offensive coordinator duties (at the very least) and I'm not of the mind that Herman will replace Tim Beck.

    No. 7 – If I had a vote that mattered …

    1. Alabama
    2. Clemson
    3. Notre Dame
    4. Georgia
    5. Michigan
    6. Oklahoma
    7. West Virginia
    8. Ohio State
    9. Washington State
    10. LSU

    Heisman Top 3: Tua Tagovailoa, Kyler Murray and Gardner Minshew.

    No. 8 – Eternal Randomness of the Spotty Sports Mind …

    ... Yes, Alabama, we respect you. I'm not sure how this even became enough of a storyline that the defending national champions were able to use it as a tool for motivation.

    ... Oklahoma caught a break with the injury to Bowman. It was the difference in the game.

    ... Damn, J.K. Dobbins is good.

    ... lol @ Jimbo.

    ... Iowa State is going to be a handful in two weeks. That defense is the real deal.

    ... I'm not sure, but I'm pretty sure Bill Snyder drove a Greyhound this weekend.


    ... The Rams might not have won on Sunday in New Orleans, but Malcolm Brown did this...


    ... It kind of feels like home-field in the NFC is going to matter a lot this year. The Rams DO NOT want to play in New Orleans a second time this season.

    ... The Texans won a road game with its B- game on Sunday. A little lucky, yes, but color me impressed. Some just tell Bill that he needs to keep his foot on the gas when his offense has the ball. Trust your quarterback, Bill.

    ... I'm kind of looking forward to seeing what Amari Cooper looks like on Monday night. Consider me intrigued, first round price or not.

    ... I'm pretty sure Andre Drummond is going to throw hands with Joel Embiid before this season is over. What Embiid did to Drummond on the court on Saturday (39 points, 17 rebounds) was emphatic, but his social media remarks after the game will linger for a minute.


    ... Man City is incredible.

    ... The officiating in the EPL isn't much better than the officiating in the Big 12.

    No. 9 - The List: Top 10 female athletes from the state of Texas ...

    This week Texas super-hero Simone Biles became the first woman to ever win four all-around gold medals at the world championships and is in the discussion for the greatest female gymnast of all-time.

    Upon some consideration on Sunday, I've decided she's actually the greatest female athlete the state of Texas has ever produced.

    10. Brittney Griner (Basketball)
    9. Carlette Guidry-White (Track)
    8. Nastia Liukin (Gymnastics)
    7. Teresa Weatherspoon (basketball)
    6. Betsy Rawls (Golf)
    5. Cat Osterman (Softball)
    4. Mia Hamm (Soccer)
    3. Sheryl Swoopes (Basketball)
    2. Babe Didrikson Zaharias (Golf, Track)
    1. Simone Biles (Gymnastics)

    No. 10 – And Finally...

    Thirty seconds into this video, I found myself a little bored by the quest of this baby bear, yet 60 seconds later I found myself wishing I had more of this baby bear inside of me.

    In the life-long quest to forever strive to be better, this baby bear is now a role model.

     
    1 Ketchum, Nov 4, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2018
  2. ThrowittoRoy

    ThrowittoRoy Chips and Queso
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  3. Horny Gambler

    Horny Gambler Card Player, Gambler, Scoundrel
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  4. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    He's a national treasure.
     
  5. rjenk

    rjenk 4.3 40 400 lb bench
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    And that one staff change?
     
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  6. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    Warehime out. Maybe bumped into an admin scouting/role.
     
  7. rgvhorn 89

    rgvhorn 89 Well-Known Member
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    Ol’ Momma Bear should be in jail for reckless endangerment.
     
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  8. MB-HORNS

    MB-HORNS SUPERFAN
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    If this happens a rematch with WVU in the Big 12 championship game would be glorious.. Of course assuming Texas can win out....
     
  9. MauiHorn

    MauiHorn Well-Known Member
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    Not much to say at this point in the season says it all...
     
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  10. Ketchum

    Ketchum Resident Blockhead
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    Iowa State is in a sneaky good position. They are playing better football than Texas right now.
     
  11. Mars512

    Mars512 Well-Known Member
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    @Ketchum so...what the plan with front 7 recruiting? Or, are you suggesting Texas accept they can't recruit defensive linemen by switching gears to a 4-3?
     
  12. bkennedy404

    bkennedy404 Well-Known Member
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    Agree, we finally have a legit QB.

    [​IMG]
     
  13. txnsoul

    txnsoul I'm just a soul whose intentions are good
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    Love that baby bear and the mom saying don't make me come down there and get you, you got this. : )
     
    13 txnsoul, Nov 4, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 4, 2018
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  14. MB-HORNS

    MB-HORNS SUPERFAN
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    yes they're but I am going with this..

     
  15. dirtman

    dirtman Well-Known Member
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    Meanwhile, we are about to get a sixth wide receiver to go along with two 3 star DL. And, our only other likely addition is another 3 star if he gets rejected by LSU. Peachy....
     
  16. JuarezYourProblem

    JuarezYourProblem Our best can beat anyone in the country
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    Missing on guys like 5-Star Erick Fowler, 4-Star Derick Roberson, 5-Star Baron Browning, and 4-Star K’Lavon Chaisson is now noticeable. Look at who are supposedly our impact players on the D-Line: 2-Star Breckyn Hager, 3-Star Charles Omenihu, and 3-Star Chris Nelson.

    Recruiting better on the D-Line is a MUST. That’s where the OOS recruiting efforts should be, IMO. Go get some country boys from the SEC region.
     
  17. A-10HORN

    A-10HORN Wars not make one great
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    Chances we get to the big 12 title game?
     
  18. McLovin327

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    The much heralded 2016 DT class has been a complete bust and we're paying the price right now. We signed Chris Daniels, Marcel Southall, Gerald Wilbon, D'Andre Christmas-Giles and Jordan Elliott and all we have to show for it is 3 transfers, 1 back-up and 1 buried on the depth chart. That's a killer.

    3-4 or 4-3, I'm not sure it's gonna matter with the lack of experience and talent among the Longhorns front 7 in 2019. Yikes!

    Herman is on the fast track to leading a shootout program. I'm not sure that's gonna work out.
     
  19. CoBo31

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    Pretty simple as to why the LB'ers are not getting production, the O line men are able to get hats, hands or just in the way to handicap them in a variety of fronts. The 3 man D line Orlando is trotting out there is horrible, cant stop the run, zero pass rush and blitzes are getting picked up mostly by the other 2 free O linemen, rb or te. Unreal he keeps trying this mess with tons of proof it's not working at all. Cost us 2 wins in the last couple of weeks.
     
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  20. Ketchum

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    Is there a plan? They are doing the best they can, but without a ton of high end success.
     

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