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But where is it most crucial?
c) Special Teams
Choose one and explain why.
Well how many National titles has offensive speed won?? Miami Fla vs Ohio St, Oregon vs. anybody with a defensive pulse, USC against anyone with a defensive pulse, WVA vs. anyone with at least 10 guys on defense, etc.
There is a reason Alabama, Fla, LSU, play for Titles. They line up the speed on D, relative to every position. Ask Denard Robinson ;-)
When hired by Notre Dame, Lou Holtz claimed that you could not win a National Title until you were ranked in the Top 5 defensively in the nation. Prophetic? 2 years later his Notre Dame team with Barry Alvarez as his D-Coordinator won the National Title with the #3 rated defense in college football against the 2nd toughest schedule in the country.
And Iowa, are you throwing us peasants a bone?? This is a wheelhouse subject for you if I've ever seen one
This post has been edited 3 times, most recently by bee keeper 16 months ago
I think he is being sarcastic with the whole SEC speed crap,
Forgetting, technic, film study, knowing your assignments & where to be. Speed helps but without being a student of the game or fundamentally sound you just another fast player just playing off your speed.
Example Shazier, before he settled down & actually let the game come to him, he was just a fast player.
Heck, fans think its only speed, but speed can't make up for knowledge, leverage.
You can draft or recruit all the speed guys but if the can't catch at WR, can't tackle or read defenses on offense or WR that can't run the right route or know his assignments..you are screwed like the raiders.
I guess JJ watt is considered slow since he is from the B1G, doesn't have SEC speed.
Speed is for the ESPN analyst that pretty much don't know what they are talking about. You don't see lou holtz spewing that crap or any other analysts' worth a crap.
Too logical, too obvious, too simple, therefore unacceptable to this board...
"Peasants?" Oh, how drool!
Like you, I prefer a fast defense, which is why I'm not overly concerned about our perceived lack of speed at WR--the NFL is always looking for "possession receivers" like Wes Welker--guys who run precise routes to get open and can catch a cold in a furnace. The offense always has the advantage because it knows where the play is going. Because of that, they get the benefit of the "first step," which means a) the defense starts each play a step behind, and b) must react to what the offense is doing.
That means the defense HAS TO BE faster than the offense because it's constantly in a position where it has to play reactive football and catch up. Being faster also allows it to go on the attack so it's not just about physical speed but how fast the defense reads what's going on and get aggressively react.
a) defense. Historically defenses win championships. Great defenses also help offenses with field position via 3 and outs and turnovers. If your offense is having an off day defenses keep you in the game. Great defenses also score points. I also think they need to be smart by being able to recognize what the offense is trying to do. Speed on D makes players look smarter.
I think we will have all three soon!
Defense, hands down...Examples:
All faster than their competition... Raiders and Steelers had a running game, they won Championships, Rams did not.....02 MNC Buckeyes, speed won the game on DEFENSE...Da U was great when their "D" was fast... Hartline, damn little speed, but catches the ball and moves the chains.. Same for Largent and Rice...
How firm thy friendship O-HI-O
I will continue the trend and say Defense. To piggy back what Iowa said, Defenses have to have speed to make up ground. Look at the secondary. A lot of teams play zone defenses because they don't have the speed. With more speed you can play man to man a little more.
Also on the Watt comment, he is a beast, he does have speed, but in terms of defensive speed in the south - they have more of it. Wisky had Watt and that's it, the other 3 were average or below. Southern teams have 3-4 players on the line with the same fast speed. That's the difference.
Anybody remember the FL D against us in '06? Troy didn't know what planet he was on that night. Awesome display of defensive speed. Cant' wait for it here.
Dude, that is a painful ...but SO accurate and succinct point...
It's hard for me to choose one and the reason is because if you just watch our 2002 team, how often did you hear people commenting on various players' 40 time. I mean did we ever know what Gamble, Allen, Doss, Jenkins or Clarett's 40 times were?
I didn't. The only person whose 40 time I had heard discussed at length was Drew Carter's prior to and at the NFL combine the following year.
My point is that if you watch the LBers and DLinemen they likely weren't the kind who could run a 4.6-4.9/40 on a consistent basis. But what they did have was quick reaction time. They played fast. It's cliche of course but there's a lot of merit to it.
We recently had a LBer trio (Sabino, Grant, Shazier) who in the early part of the season couldn't get a hand on a QB to save their lives. And I'm not talking about a dual-threat/mobile type but pocket passers for the most part. Same with our DL who were clocked somewhere in the 4.7s. You never saw this a decade ago when our defenders lived in opposing offense's backfields.
After all this is still the game of football and not a track meet. Speed alone doesn't kill but speed with discipline, determination and attitude can. Imagine how much more effective Pryor could've been here if he had more attitude and determination on the field. He got over largely on his innate athletic ability whereas Cam Newton and Vince Young used that plus their desire to win above all to break tackles in the open field and put close games away late.
Clarett is probably not even in the top 5 of the fastest starting running backs we've had in the past decade, however what he had that few if any of those who've started here since is the attitude and determination to will the team toward wins. He ran angry and ran as if his life was on the line each time he ran with the ball. It wasn't just his innate ability but desire. That is essentially what the game of football is all about. Not speed alone.
This is why I use the 2002 team and even some of those great Buckeye teams before. And even the 2005 team. All those teams had players with speed but it wasn't an emphasis in our recruiting strategy then. It wasn't until after we got embarrassed by Florida in the title game and then again the next year by LSU when it became an issue. Unfortunately though Tressel and others missed the mark because they began going after smaller LBers and speedy WRs, QBs and tailbacks as the answer to the critics who'd say about us: "Not enough speed."
Yet when many of them took the field, we didn't play any more dominant or nasty.
And that's because many of them lacked that killer will. They were thinking too much and just getting over on their God-given athletic ability. Most of them lacked or still lack those essential intangibles which separate average players from great ones.
So I've said all of this to say that you need hungry, determined, focused and fast players on offense, defense and special teams if you truly hope to be a successful, championship-caliber team. Now if I were to choose just one it'd be defense because it's the sure way to neutralize a fast, high-flying offense. And as we know in most cases, many of those high-flying offensive teams lack a solid defense, thus they're one dimensional and break down when their offense fails. Whereas you seldom see a team with a solid defensive unit break down if their offense isn't putting up 30 or more/game.
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