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The official fire Luke Fickell Thread

  • I think this thread has turned more into a rant thread then a fire anybody thread. Personally, I don't know who is at fault for the defensive performance. But I will say something has to change. That is terrible. Completely terrible. I don't blame anything on the offense right now. New system to everyone and it takes time to establish. And it is a great offensive scheme, but takes time. The defense is the same. Hell it doesn't even matter if it is different. Tackling is taught in midget football. All the way past that too. Suddenly we get guys diving at peoples feet without even trying to wrap. 512 is disgraceful. It would be different if it was a 200 yard field. Cal QB tip-toed around too many of our defenders. Yards after contact was bad. And its not like it was a fullback plowing up the middle. Wrap and complete the tackle the same way you were taught in 5th grade. That bothers me more then anything.

  • While the defense definitely isn't playing up to their expected standard, there's not a whole lot you can do when the officials aren't calling the holds by their WR's on the outside. They got away with that nonsense alllll day. Both of the long Cal TD runs were sprung by holds on the outside. The bubble screens they kept running there is no excuse for not defending. The players seem confused at time and get caught far to many times by mis-direction plays.

  • Let's be honest: Tim Tebow was a fullback masquerading as a quarterback. He was robocop. The guy was 6-3/235 strong enough to shake off DLs, stiff arm LBs and run over DBs. Braxton's not only smaller, he's more fragile with a history of injuries. And Tebow's competitiveness may be right up there with Michael Jordan's, and that's as good as it gets.

    Urban and Herman are living off borrowed time letting Miller run as much as he has. I would like to see us mix up some formations. Spead-option, power-I, empty backfield. My concern is the less versatile we are, the more predictable we'll become.

    And is it me or is Braxton's "slap count" becoming a little too predictable? I'll gladly defer to anyone who can tell me the strategic benefit of slapping his hands and then Linsley snapping the ball a second later.

  • Luke Fickell won't be around next year. Urban Meyer is an old school coach who doesn't take excuses from the coaching staff especially from Fickell, Vrabel and Withers. Fickell and Vrabel didn't make that many game time corrections as the season progressed last season. This defense might get a little better next game but Urban will have to get his foot up these guy's a$$es for them to respond. Let's face facts these linebackers are terrible except for Shazier. Simon is the only one who plays every down. Big Hank needs to lose more weight around his belly. He's too damn slow for a defensive tackle. Fickell needs to make some f..king game time adjustments. How many times did Ohio State get beat on the Cal bubble screens? Poor tackling and never being in the right position to get the tackle. No offense but California $ucks and OSU struggled against them. 512 total yards is a joke! D'Amato, the California kicker and Braxton Miller were the MVPs for OSU. No, the defense was NOT SOLID! Secondary coverage $ucked a$$ as well. Fickell will be gone next year. Urban will get a big time defensvie coordinator. Urban will pay the $$$ to get him.

    P.S. the only reason Fickell is around this season is Gene Smith forced Urban to put him on the staff this year.

    This post was edited by buckibball4ever 19 months ago

  • I remember back in high school when we played teams that used the same cadence every single snap, we'd get used to it and start anticipating it. And of course at the end of the game when they needed a quick first down, they'd change it up and we'd jump. I can only guess they're going to try something similar against a better team, perhaps Sparty for the conference opener and hope that their D line jumps. Just a guess.

    A Proud Red Coat For Life

  • If your rockstar Head coach is forced to keep a coach he doesn't like, He is a pussy .. Im just saying

    This is 2012 not 1920 you owe nobody no favors.

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    Too logical, too obvious, too simple, therefore unacceptable to this board...

  • We had a big play or two in defense, but overall, yes they stunk. But they have stunk in the other two games as well. Our secondary looks confused. I thought the front four was much better today.

    This defense tackled poorly today. They just didn't wrap up. They gave up 512 yards including the longest run by an opponent in Ohio Stadium history!

    I'm not a Luke Fickell fan, and I do think Urban Meyer was somewhat saddled with him. A lot of people say, "Poor Luke took one for the program last year." I declared Luke a fool when he named Jim Bollman his offensive coordinator and Joe Bauserman his starting quarterback. The truth his 'Poor Luke' guaranteed his own failure and pissed away a HUGE opportunity.

    If he was REAL coaching material, he would have seized the day!

    And by the way, Cal missed THREE field goals. That's called dodging a bullet. We probably had more of an escape today than a victory. But we will take it.

    The good news is.....Urban Meyer is fully aware and acknowledges it. We essentially get a 12 game exhibition season this year. Give Coach Meyer a couple of recruiting classes and he is going to DOMINATE the Big Ten! He will adjust his coaching staff.

  • 3 pages on this thread, 3 full threads about Luke and how his defense sucks. Not one person has brought the name Everett Withers up. Don't get me wrong there needs to be a lot of improvement on the D, and I guess Luke is calling the plays (or is he), but Withers is in the booth, and sees the field (not luke) Isn't he the co-defensive cord? Can't Withers make adjustments as well? I just don't get all the hate on Luke. Yes the defensive is playing poor, yes we haven't seen 2 years this bad almost never, yes we gave up over 500 yards. It's ugly gents. But like I said, is it all Luke's fault?

    The only bad thing about Luke is that he is the only LB coach. And the LB's are pretty bad right now. Curtis Grant is done. His career is over. He is going to be like Sabino and never get it, and then when you say ok he is a senior he will get it- nope. The other thing is why not play Crowell, or Roberts, or Perkins or Marcus. Why play Storm Klein? Why??????????

  • I started this thread after the Cal RB did a miraculous spin move, and ran for a TD. Our guys seemed to just stare at him, not tackle him. I was frustrated and extremely pissed off. I posted in haste.

    I don't think Fickell should be fired. But this defense must get better.

  • Defensive line was absolutely awesome today.

    The secondary gave CAL 10 yards space, and Maynard was dunking 5-7 yard passes and screens at us all day. Linebackers are weak and can't tackle or take poor angles.

    It's a work in progress - young players, new coaches, etc. GIve them time. Fortunately, the B1G TEN is weak this year and we'll be fine this year. It's just going to get better but there will be obvious growing pains this year and possibly next year as well.

    Meyer will make us an elite program but we're not yet there. Let's hold off on the "Fire Fickell" diatribes for now. Give this defense (and offense) time to gel.

  • As much as I hate to say this about my former classmates, what have Fickell and Vrabel done in the two years they have been here together. The D is a mess. Our d-line is above average, no where near the preseason hype that it received. The secondary is OK, but the LBs are bad. Shazier and Grant are doing anything. Especially, Shazier. He cant tackle and overruns plays.

    So, why should Fickell and Vrabel be kept around. I guess Vrabel is a good recruiter, but it appears he is not a good coach. Wouldn't tbe the first time we have seen a player who was very good at the pro level turn out to be a bad coach.

  • i think Spielman said it best, our linebackers don't attack the line of scrimmage. Shazier made a few plays, even then, I still saw him miss a few tackles. On one particular play, I was stunned to see Shazier outrun our safety and cornerback to make a tackle on the ball carrier from behind... anyone else remember that play?

    The linebackers need to read the offensive lines better, their lateral quickness from sideline to sideline needs to improve a lot more. We can't stop the run. We're starting to look a lot like some of those mid-tier SEC defenses going for arm tackles, or going for the big hit highlight reels and completely whiffing. I've only seen a few instances this season where our defender has kept his head up, wrapped up the ball carrier, and make the sure tackle.

    I don't think this is all on Fickell. He's been the linebacker coach for years, and has coached numerous all-americans- Hawk, Laurinaitis. All of a sudden, this season, he doesn't know what he's doing and should be fired????? I highly doubt that.

    This post has been edited 2 times, most recently by dossbuckeyes 19 months ago

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  • I could not possibly agree more with this comment by shep!

    "Hopefully the homers realize that Tress left Meyer the same type of cupboard that Bruce left Cooper. Marginal talent combined with suspect coaching leads to 500 plus yards gained by a bad team."

    Tressel proved himself to be a very destructive force on the Ohio State football program because of his constant temerity.

  • here's his name Chu on page 2...btw, i brought up he and Coombs 3 or 4 days ago....but it's more popular to JUST hate on fick.

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  • I wasn't going to read this thread because of the title but now that I've waded through it, it's a pretty good thread. Here are some of my thoughts without repeating too much:
    1 The idea that UFM had to keep Fickel is ridiculous. Urban is the new sheriff. He could keep, hire, or fire anyone he wanted to. If you believe Urban, he kept Fick on staff because of his knowledge of the game, work ethic, dedication to The Ohio State University, and, most of all, he's a hell of a recruiter.
    2 Watching yesterday's game reminded me how important all phases of the game coordinate. Other posters have mentioned how the 3 and outs by our offense put added pressure on the defense to stop them time after time after time. This is true. Also our special teams have been ordinary at best. I'm amazed that our kick-off returns are so weak. Ben punts the ball high but short. I haven't seen the first half yet but during the second half, we started each possession with poor field position and Cal started with better field position.
    3 I believe we are a talented but immature team. Many of these guys want to play angry but don't seem to be able to keep it under control. The stupid personal fouls, the over-pursuing, hitting without wrapping, and missing assignments are often a sign of letting your emotions run away with you.
    4 After a disappointing performance like yesterday, it's hard to see any silver lining. I thought Hall played well under the circumstances on the offense. We'd be lost without Brax. Who else played well? I liked John Simon and Hank. While he missed a tackle or two, I thought Shazier played great. Same with C Bryant. I thought that was his best game as a Buckeye. It was a mixed bag with Williams. He was able to put pressure on the QB but seemed so single-minded with that idea that he often lost contain on the outside. Of course it all depends on the scheme. We sure seem more aggressive on the D-line with him on the field.
    5 It was a very exciting game full of big plays for both teams. I'm really glad we won!

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  • I agree with new coaches, and new scheme. By this is the 153 time I heard young players, "We are young".

    Stop please with "We are young" excuse. We are OSU we are going to be young a lot, but we reload. Look around all the top programs, they are all young in their depth chart. Hell look at Bama, lost their entire defense, play a lot of Soph and freshman, has a top RB in Yeldon who is a freshman. Oregon is young. All the top programs are young, because a lot of them bolt early to the NFL. Plus elite/top programs play their best players- no matter how young they are or not. This is all new to us, since JT always would play his seniors and juniors.

    Yes I do agree Brax is only a soph, and we might be young in key positions. But are defense is not young. This is the most experience portion on our team. Here's a question, are we young because they are soph and freshman, or we inexperienced- since Meyer's is putting players in new positions.

  • Now unless you're being facetious I'll inform you that Everett Withers was the defensive coordinator at UNC under Butch Davis. He is largely credited with recruiting many future first round NFL Draft prospects prior to a good many of them being suspended going into the 2010 season (Marvin Austin, Quentin Coples...)

    And like Fickell, he too served as the interim head coach for his respective school last season after the head coach was fired.

    Before his stint at UNC he served as an assistant at places such as Minnesota and Appalachian State where he also graduated from.

  • Tackling is the biggest problem. Thing is many people saw what they wanted to see with the defense. It wasnt dominating last year so why was anybody expecting a Silver Bullet type D? I remember seeing posts about this being our best defense ever. Jump the gun much?

  • It's good to read a lot more honest assessments of Fickell than a bunch of "How dare you say such about a loyal and commited Buckeye"? rants.

    The offense is clearly a work in progress. Meyer and Herman have implemented a whole new system and playbook. It click at times and others it doesn't quite as much. So that's to be expected whether it frustrates us or not. Eventually the kinks will get worked out.

    The defense however is a different entity simply because it's the one constant of this team. The same player personnel and the same defensive coordinator in Luke Fickell.

    Last season we chalked up the poor performance of the defense to the fact that Fickell was serving as head coach thus being unable to put in the time there as he previously had as asst D-coordinator/LB'er coach. Plus losing the likes of Chekwa, Heyward, Rolle, Homan, Hines and Nathan Williams from the defense. That was quite a bit.

    But now in year two, we're basically seeing the exact same defense as we had last year--even with a reshuffled deck on the defensive staff. Fickell is the lone constant. Vrabel last year was LB'ers coach and Withers' defenses were stout full of future first round NFL Draft picks while at UNC. This is the Fickell/Heacock defense pure and simple. And now that Heacock is gone, Fickell will shoulder the blame for any of the defensive woes.

    Heacock/Fickell's defenses were efficient and great against the run, however, it largely lacked a punch. But after Tressel's departure, the defense really took a step back. Makes me wonder if he was involved there as well as he was with the offense. In other words, this is not a new look defense. It's old hat. We've seen it before and thus again, that falls on Fickell.

    We're not seeing a lot of exotic blitz schemes, no Cover two/three, no forced turnovers. No aggressiveness. No prototypical DEs, 3-4 alignments. Quite predictable. And the only way it's going to change is for Fickell to be given his walking papers or for another program to hire him away. He's too intertwined with the previous staff and thus will only get in the way of change and progress in the future.
    In the way of this defense being reimagined and let's hope get back to the ways of the original Silver Bullets: fast, furious, mean and nasty! You'd think he'd know all about that since he was a co-founding member of the unit. But after watching these first few games, I have my doubts strange as that may seem.

  • Definitely.

    The preseason talk about this defense being "SEC-like" was as premature as when Vince Young proclaimed the Philadelphia Eagles a "Dream Team." And that "Dream" season finished 8-8.

    Let's not state anything in the affirmative until we see it--esp when it comes to a group or team dynamic.

  • by sec like .... they meant kentucly

  • I was being facetious...... Notice the smiley faces at the end of the sentence. Can't get the emoticons on my iPad... :):)

  • I just think it's me and you 3yrds that agree with everyone blaming Luke and not Withers.

  • I hate to tell it to you Doc but Ohio State is already the DOMINANT team since this football conference has sucked the last two years. Ohio State can win the pitiful B1G this year versus bad competition. It will take Urban a few years to get the necessary linebackers, DL and secondary that it takes to beat SEC teams in BCS bowls. Luke was a horrible head coach. Frankly, it was too late for Fickell to find an interim O-coordinator. You never know with Gene Smith, he might have forced Fickell to keep Bollman. I think Luke calls all the plays but I don't know if it is a joint effort with Withers. This should be a question for Meyer. When is Meyer's call-in show, I would love to ask that question. Fickell won't be here next season if he cannot keep the defense in gear. 512 yards is a total joke!