September 13, 2011

Iowa Mid-Week Thoughts

Filed under: Coaches,Football,Players — Reed @ 7:15 am

It’s mid-week between our win over the might Maine Black Bears and our upcoming scrum against the corn fed Iowa boys.  Last game has generated more discussions than any since the Cincy loss in 2009 I think.  First and foremost the debates and bitches have been on the QB play so far, setting aside the defense which I can’t bear to talk about.

   Todd Graham took some time to go into (surprising) detail on the subject of where we stand at QB right now, how the starting QB has performed and what is expected from the QB in his offense:

We are a timing passing team — 1-2 and out on our quick passing game; 1-2-3 and out on our drop-back passing game,” Graham said. “The play has no chance because we are not reading what we are supposed to be reading, and we are not getting the ball off on time.  “There are about 10 or 12 plays a game like that. Then, the play breaks down, and it becomes a mess. Fans get frustrated. We get frustrated.”

Basically you need to be able to count to three and throw the ball.  Here’s one example of this problem: “Pitt quarterback Tino Sunseri threw two interceptions against Maine, but Graham said an even bigger issue is Sunseri “freelancing” on some plays rather than trusting the offense and executing it.  He said one of Sunseri’s interceptions Saturday was a ball thrown to a receiver “who wasn’t even in our progression.”  That had to be the sideline INT where Sunseri forgot which color uniform we were wearing.

Now I’m projecting a bit, but add to that the 11 plays that Graham said failed in the same way in the Buffalo game and that’s 22 plays over two games.  22 out of 65 attempts folks… a 34% failure rate because the QB didn’t execute the play as designed properly.  Given he has 37 incompletions in total, let’s assume that means that he missed on 15 properly executed passing plays in two games; that isn’t shabby at all.

Boy, imagine how well he’d be doing if he was actually running the plays as taught and practiced, even knowing not every pass would be complete it might be a whole different story for Sunseri and the offense.  This has got to be giving Graham and Dodge heart palpitations.  If Sunseri can turn that around and he quite possibly could, then things will look a lot brighter going ahead.

On the flip side of this issue imagine what we could have if we played Anderson who has three years, albeit HS ball, experience in this offense.  I dare say that he’d at least run the play as conceived and that 34% failure rate would drop dramatically.  This is why Graham calls Anderson “the Little Operator”, because he executes the plays as expected.  It would give the other players on offense a fighting chance to finish the plays as called.  Again, I’m projecting with this because Anderson will miss  his share of passes also.

   To switch subjects.  You just know that as the season moves on we are going to hear a lot of discussion on the staff’s personnel decisions and redshirting players.  That seems to happen every year regardless of the HC.  Graham’s stance is this:

I think more of them need to play. I think we’ve got to get some young guys in the receiving corps and get some more speed on the field. 

You like to redshirt them. There’s some guys we’d like to try to redshirt but the bottom line is if we have to play them to win, that’s what we’re going to do. Nicholas Grigsby is coming back this week, he’ll be back. I doubt that he will redshirt. LaQuentin Smith played last week, he’s not going to redshirt. Ejuan Price definitely is not.  Lafayette Pitts is our backup bandit (safety) and backup on most special teams and we’d like not to play him but if he progresses and he can help us win then we’ve got to play him.

OK, that’s three true FR who have played right there.  Add Cory Davis, Ronald Jones, Trey Anderson, K.K. Smith, and Darius Patton to that list and you have eight true FR who have already seen action, and burnt redshirts, so far this season.  I may be mistaken but I did a quick look back over DW’s 1st and 2nd games of his seasons and didn’t see those kinds of numbers for true freshman playing time.  It shows a different approach IMO.

   Regarding Anthony Gonzalez’s attitude and return this Saturday, Graham says this;

“…outstanding. A lot of people would probably tell you that was a pretty harsh punishment and it probably was because it wasn’t just the two games. He had to do a lot of other stuff, community service, things like that. Anthony’s a great young man. He made a mistake. I’ve got tremendous belief in him. He’s a winner. …He’s a very selfless guy in that he’s going to play another position for us this year.” (emphasis mine).

I think that settles the Gonzalez as QB issue once and for all. As I have said previously Gonzalez will play QB only if there is a string of injuries or completely disastrous play from the other three QBs.

   So, looking forward to Saturday’s game Graham has said that there could be a little bit of a “package” installed for backup Trey Anderson.  We’ll see Anderson for sure against Iowa and I think that package will involve getting the most speed in the receiver corps as possible on the field at the same time.  When this system is executed as planned it revolves around the short to intermediate quick passes (1, 2 and out with the ball!) and letting the receivers get as much yardage after the catch as possible.  Anderson can do that.

   It also looks like “freshman EJuan Price was elevated to the starter at “panther” linebacker. Graham said Price is just too good of a player not to play the maximum number of snaps available. In order to make that happen, senior Brandon Lindsey moved to defensive end and is the starter, and Aaron Donald moved from end to backup nose tackle.”

   Obviously this is a “Big Test”, (gut check, where the rubber meets the road, separate the men from the boys, see what we are made of, men to move mountains – thanks Stew –  etc.) for our team and we need to see things click, both offensively and defensively, as much possible.  Even if we lose we just have to show progress.  If not… it will be a long, long season.

I have been doing some thinking (which of course is very dangerous) but now have come to the conclusion that what we have seen so far is the way it is supposed to work.

You all may remember that while Tulsa’s offense was very highly rated, their defense was very lowly rated. And it could well be that the learning curve for defensive incompetence is steeper than for offensive competence. We all knew that the offense would be a work-in-progress but apparently the defnse are quick learners. Thus, if we play a team like Maine next year, we will win 59 to 32. We just have to get used to it.

I am kind of concerned that our best defensive player (and pre-season All-American in one poll) has been moved to DE after all the hype of how he is perfect for the ‘Panther’ LB (named for Hugh Green??)

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 7:32 am

Iowa has their share of problems and issues, this is a very winnable game.

Graham is just trying to put the best 11 players on the field to give them a chance to win.

Comment by Anton 09.13.11 @ 7:58 am

If Tino plays like he has for the last two games, we lose to Iowa, in fact, probably get embarrassed and possibly we get Tino hurt by lack of protection from our “work in progress” O line’s lack of pass protection.

Tino is going to make a great improvement in his performance this week because of???

It’s an away game? NO.

Because he is going to be up against much stronger opposing defense? NO.

Because he is going to learn how to become mobile while throwing accurate passes on the run? DEFINITLEY NOT!

Because he will all of a sudden learn how to manage the game and think faster on his feet? UNLIKELY.

Sorry Todd Graham, but your experiment to fit your “square PEG” QB into a round hole has come up with less than stellar results against very weak foes.

Surprise everybody with your brass balls decision to start Anderson right out of the gates come Saturday, hope for the best and keep Tino in reserve if Anderson is not ready to assume the role of starting QB after giving him the chance.

I’d much rather see Anderson on the field with a healthy Sunseri on the sideline to back him up if needed rather than NEEDING to put Trey in there because a big angry Iowa defensive end just blind sided Sunseri and knocked him into next week while he and his happy feet waste time in the backfield deciding who to throw an interception to.

That would not be the way to welcome Anderson into the role of our starting QB. Trey’s upside is huge, give him the opportunity to make your “High Octane” offense really work.

Comment by Dr. Tom 09.13.11 @ 8:02 am

wbb– I also thought it was interesting that Lindsey got moved back to the line so quickly, but two things of note from Saturday:
One, I thought Lindsey looked much better on the few times I specifically watched him as a down lineman. I remember at least one instance when he fought through two O-lineman to force a scramble (and eventually get the sack I think). Two, the more I see of Price the more I agree he needs to be on the field as much as possible. He looks to have the speed and skill so many of our LBs are lacking. He’s a bit undersized right now (especially to be put in a middle LB spot) but I’m all for sending him flying into the backfield as much as possible.

Comment by JW 09.13.11 @ 8:13 am

I won’t argue with anyone that Lindsay is better suited as a rush end, as opposed to dropping back into coverage.

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 8:30 am

Lindsey is fine at panther until he has to drop into coverage. With all the spreads we’ve been facing, he finds himself doing something other than rushing. He has failed at this aspect of the panther position and is likely part of the reason he is playing more DE. And like JW said, part of it is just getting Price on the field

Comment by BnG 09.13.11 @ 8:32 am

I’m really getting tired of giving a 23 year old young man the benefit of the doubt. Graham needs to earn his paycheck and make a decision on him– fix him or bench him. It is time to move on.

I do believe, however, that a player sitting on the sidelines for a series or two can really help in his maturation process. It is a good reminder that he cannot get complacent (obviously), but moreover, it rekindles that fire in your belly to compete and survive.

I remember vividly the benching of Palko (for Flacco) in the Nebraska game. That changed him for the better…

Maybe Tino getting pulled after a bad series would do him good. Let Trey get in there and shake it up. If we’re going to get rolled, you might as well see if the young kid can play.

Comment by Pauly P 09.13.11 @ 8:32 am

Iowa does not use a spread (unless they changed since the last time I saw them.) It should be interesting to see how our defense plays against what I assume will be more of a power running game.

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 8:54 am

great points by Dr. Tom. Make the move now. We have seen enough of Tino. ND, Texas et al. have made moves at QB already. TG should follow suit. Go with Trey at Iowa.
This is not a lovefest with the backup QB, it is simply putting your team in the best position to succeed in this HO offense with a QB better suited to run it.
And what happened to Buddy Jackson returning kickoffs?

Comment by Bossdaws 09.13.11 @ 9:14 am

I am beginning to think Sal Sunseri has a lot more pull with the Pitt brass than we thought. Anderson goes in the game and almost flawlessly leads the team on a TD drive…why the debate? It seems like Sunseri will be out of the game quick on Saturday and that Graham is playing the QB question close to the vest so as no to piss off Daddy. Do Tino’s teammates even like him?

Comment by TonyinHouston 09.13.11 @ 9:30 am

Lindsey isn’t moving because he has done a poor job or is a better fit on the line, he’s moving because Price has been so impressive and they want to get him on the field more and obviously keep Lindsey on the field.

Comment by sweet caroline 09.13.11 @ 9:46 am

That would mean that Sal had influence over two different coaches and an AD who fired one of the coaches and wouldn’t hire Sal to the HC position, even though he was interviewed for it.

My theory is that Tino is great in the classroom and on the practice field but freezes at game time … resorting to always looking to the right side of the field and/or seeking out Shanahan 1st, whether he is primary or not.

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 9:46 am

I like what TG is doing. He is playing the best players to win, moving guys into places where their skills can best suit them, and communicating. Those are 3 things DW didn’t do. He rarely played underclassmen, always had to fit the square peg into the round hole, and never seemed to have answers/ analysis on what is going wrong other then “we need to run faster.”

There is lots of room for improvement at QB, and he is calling it out. If Tino won’t/ can’t learn the quick offense, he will be benched. There won’t be any questions why either, as TG has made it clear from the getgo what his weaknesses are. I’ve been telling people from the Buffalo game that I think Anderson will be slowly integrated into the offense and if Tino does not get it, Anderson will be our starter by Homecoming.

Comment by Big A 09.13.11 @ 9:50 am

2 points. 1. The pass TG was refering to was the first one in the end zone when Tino was scrambling. 2. So far we have run as simple an offence as possible. In 2 games we have run 1 “special” play, a reverse that went for 14 yards. Just maybe TG has planned a suprise for Iowa. We can only hope.

Comment by Pitt Letterman 09.13.11 @ 9:51 am

I agree with wbb, everything I’ve seen from Tino and from what I’ve heard, the kid is a gym class hero. I think he kills it in practice but just isn’t bringing it to the game. It’s the only explanation.

Graham is hoping to see the Tino that practices on game day, if he doesn’t show up at Iowa, I look for Trey to get the shot late in the game or possibly vs Notre Dame.

Comment by BnG 09.13.11 @ 10:06 am

Big A, so Wanny didn’t move guys into places where their skills best suite them??

-Pinkston moved from DL to OL and just started his initial NFL game as a rookie
-Session moved from MLB to OLB and Blades went from OLB to MLB. Blades had 4 years in the NFL, and Session just signed a $30m contract as an OLB.
– Malecki went from DL to OL and now is on Steelers’ practice squad as an OL
– and speaking of Steelers’ practice squad, nobody was ever moved more than D Dickerson in an effort to find his best spot. Who would have thought that he would have ended as a TE when he 1st came to Pitt?
– Brandon Lindsay was originally an LB moved to DE (by Wanny) .. and now has repeated the process
– Williams (forgot his 1st name) was an LB in high school but immediately moved to DT at Pitt, and became BE co-defensive layer of the year a couple of years ago

And I can go on and on …. no doubt that there has been some experiements that had failed (these kids are 18-21 yr olds and their bodies are changing) … but this constant clamout that Wanny did everything wrong and Graham does everything right is both silly and premature

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 10:15 am

AMEN! Dr. Tom – It will be interesting to see how our fast paced Offense works against a big slow Iowa defense…exactly what the spread was designed for.

Comment by Dan 72 09.13.11 @ 10:39 am

I thought Lindsay looked slow at panther, not a good fit. As much as TG says Price should be on field, what about Donald, I think he has been doing well and now he will be losing snaps. Tino will progress well as the season goes because he now has true competition. I just hope the D learns to tackle, Iowa has a big back.

Comment by Justin 09.13.11 @ 10:46 am

Strangely, after these first two games, I find myself actually kinda getting pumped for the Iowa game. They’ve given me no reason too, but, yet, I am.

Comment by DAN 09.13.11 @ 10:51 am

Justin, I agree that Donald belongs on the field .. however, I assume that IOwa ha a big, bruising OL so I expect that he will see much action as the backup nose. I fully expect that the 2-deep DL will come in quite handy on Saturday.

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 10:52 am

Mick Williams?

Comment by shadyforpresident 09.13.11 @ 11:04 am

I am all for Trey but 1 thing I haven’t heard from anyone is game experience. Double edged sword because you can’t get it without playing in the big games. Think graham is starting Tino and gradually bringing in Trey because tino has been there before? Starting Trey could be a disaster at a big ten stadium on the road with nerves.

Comment by silverfox 09.13.11 @ 11:57 am

It is a tough decision. Graham can’t be faulted for not wanting to start a freshman in front of a hostile crowd, but then again, I could remember just a couple years ago Heinz Field being pretty hostile.

But seriously … two drives against an FCS opponent at a nearly empty home field does not exactly prepare for this coming Saturday.

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 12:24 pm

I am extremely nervous about Saturday. Not nervous that we are going to lose, because I have seen nothing from this team at this point to indicate they can defeat a Big 10 program (albeit one that just lost to Iowa St). I am nervous that we get flat out embarrassed.

By no means do I think Anderson would be the deciding difference but I would love to see his moxie on the road against a big time opponent.
How many times is Sunseri going to get sacked against Iowa, 15?? He is not suitable for this offense. He holds onto the ball WAY too long, is not even a threat on the read option, and has difficulty throwing deep.

If I am Iowa I would sell out to stop Ray Graham and beg Sunseri to beat them.

I was hoping that our defense could keep us in this game but they are a work in progress to say the least.

Throw in the fact that we may have the worst kicker in the FBS and every FG/Extra Point is a gut wrenching experience, well, I don’t like our chances.

I really, really hope that I am 100% wrong and everything “clicks” Saturday, but this may be a Ravens/Steelers type game from this past weekend.

Comment by Roman 09.13.11 @ 12:27 pm

@ silverfox. Did you bother viewing the entire Trey Anderson 2010 highlight You Tube on the previous thread? Anderson played a career game at Cowboys Stadium in front of 45,000 people against Trinity HS, which BTW looked better, bigger and faster than either Buffalo or Maine players and TORE IT UP for the Texas State 5A Championship! He’ll do just fine I reckon at Iowa.

This kid has “IT”. Some do, most don’t but just watch how he commands the tempo of the play, his fakes fake, his runs make yardage, his passes on the run have more zip and can be thrown are deeper and more accurate than Tino’s are when he is set up in the pocket, feet planted and letting it fly from a stable throwing position.

Lastly the kid “feels” the pressure and reacts to it in such a manner that he stays just out of reach, baits guys into committing to the move and then makes them pay for it by making a counter play on his own. It’s like he has a “spidey sense” bubble around him and he is as quick as a cat.

How did he NOT get offers out the ying yang from colleges all over the country is beyond me, but then again Dion Lewis came to Pitt under the radar too, didn’t he?

I’m I the only one who is seeing this stuff? Get him in the game, for goodness sake!

Comment by Dr. Tom 09.13.11 @ 12:29 pm

Moving Lindsay to DE and Price to the Panther LB means Donald does not start Saturday against Iowa. I hope, however, that he will be on the field for about the same number of plays as we’ve seen through the first two games.

Someone who really needs to step up and make a play is Hendricks. I hardly notice he is on the field most of the time and when I do recognize him I see his #32 chasing after an opponents WR running with the ball.

TG has us all really wondering how many different players are going to see increased minutes as the season goes on. Ronald Jones and Davis need to be incorporated for big play potential and to help keep the huge target off of Ray Graham’s back.

I know it sounds simple but if you are Iowa can your defensive game plan be anything but stop Ray Graham at all cost after what you’ve seen the 1st 2 weeks??

Comment by JAM 05 PITT 09.13.11 @ 12:36 pm

If Sunseri starts, and is terrible, then put Anderson in.

Point being, who cares if he’s a freshmen, if we’re getting thumped and the offense isn’t moving??

What’s the worst he could do, keep getting the team thumped and the offense not moving???

Gotta try something if Tino isn’t working out.

I’m hoping and cheering for Tino, but, I certainly hope Graham isn’t afraid to pull the trigger.

Comment by DAN 09.13.11 @ 12:51 pm

I have bitched abought tinos play but i have been mild for me. But if he stinks up the iowa game and coach says he is still the starter i will go nuts i hope the coach is not blind. It may be a 2 bottle JD season every game if that happens.

Comment by FRANKCAN 09.13.11 @ 1:03 pm

I will be IN Iowa to cheer this team on, win or lose. Pitt taking a beating in this game could be for the better, but I don’t think Iowa will blow us out, if we lose it’ll be something to the tune of 24-10. Iowa will try to control the clock and keep their defense fresh.

Comment by BnG 09.13.11 @ 1:16 pm

I absolutely think Iowa can be beaten regardless of who our starter maybe. If we SUCCESSFULLY can toss it deep a few times then Graham will break a few big runs.

If Tino tosses it 10 yards past wide open receivers then we are in for a long day.

Comment by Tony in Harrisburg 09.13.11 @ 2:00 pm

Well, Iowa isn’t exactly tearing it up in the running game and that has been the strength of our defense – so we may have an edge there.

Comment by Reed 09.13.11 @ 2:25 pm

The next three games are on national TV. Winning these will have a big impact on recruiting.

Comment by Pittastic 09.13.11 @ 2:25 pm

change of topic:

The SEC has no “immediate plans” to add a 14th team, he said. Slive said the conference isn’t “thinking in terms of numbers” and that the league only considers the strength of the SEC and the “attractiveness of Texas A&M as an institution.”

SEC presidents voted to accept Texas A&M last week, but the invitation was contingent on Texas A&M being free of legal issues regarding its departure from the Big 12. Several Big 12 schools, including Baylor, have said they have not waived their right to consider litigation.

Slive was once again adamant Monday that Texas A&M approached the SEC about membership and that the league was not trying to poach schools from other conferences. But his statement is more proof that conference realignment is closer to reality.

“In the 78 year history of the SEC, the conference had accepted the membership applications of only two institutions – Arkansas and South Carolina,” Slive said. “Texas A&M is now the third … As I said over the past year or so, the SEC has had no particular interest in expansion. We were, and are, happy with 12 teams.

The above is from yesterday’s remarks from SEC Commish Slive. Once again, we can talk about expansion scenarios until the cows come home (we are playing at Iowa), but nobody is sure just what is going to happen or IF anything will happen. If TAMU goes to the SEC, it is a big possibility that BYU goes to the B12 and it’s all over … but who knows/

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 2:27 pm

Big East expansion no i am not talking abought Big 12 or SEC or Texas A&M or any of that. I dont think that will be happening any time soon. But i do think we need to add at least one team to bring us to ten teams be it UCF or houston or who ever. I think we need to do it soon and move the BB schools aside if they are holding it up what say you all ?

Comment by FRANKCAN 09.13.11 @ 2:28 pm

Where is Chas?

Comment by Pitt_Panther_1982 09.13.11 @ 2:38 pm

UCF, defending CUSA champ, crushed BC on Saturday and held UGA to 6 pts on bowl last year.
Houston would be a sister to TCU and is in the other big Texas TV market.

we could do a lot worse

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 2:39 pm

Chas has back issues … clearly a stress issue enhanced by our OL giving up 7 sacks to Maine.

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 2:41 pm

I rescind my above posting that maybe nothing will happen in the expansion area.

Just heard an update on The Fan which states that Oklahoma and Ok St are considering the PAC 12 (14) .. and Texas is talking to the ACC

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 2:47 pm

Chas isn’t getting rid of the ball fast enough.

Comment by Reed 09.13.11 @ 3:23 pm

I just read this to day coach Calhoun of connecticut said he could see BB and FootBall schools splitting apart he did not say when but intersting.

Comment by FRANKCAN 09.13.11 @ 3:23 pm

Reed dont you think we need to add a team to go to ten if big 12 does not fall apart bye end of sept? UCF or some one i dont tink we can wait mutch longer what say you do you think BB schools are holding us up on this?

Comment by FRANKCAN 09.13.11 @ 3:31 pm

I hope to eat my words, but without the offense being in the groove of the system yet I believe this will be 1 of the 4 losses for the season. I think the hometown advantage and Big 10 atmosphere will be the decider in this one.


Comment by Cool Hand Nuke 09.13.11 @ 3:36 pm

Let me see. We have four scholarship quarterbacks on the roster. Sunseri and Anderson are listed on the two deep as quarterbacks. Myers is also a QB backup but now he is also the backup punter. Sunseri has punted at least twice now in game situations. Anderson can also punt based on several YouTube videos. What is it with this staff and QB punters? Now if only Gonzalez can punt will have four of a kind.

Comment by John In South Carolina 09.13.11 @ 3:53 pm

too bad any of them can’t kick.

Comment by wbb 09.13.11 @ 4:11 pm

Maybe it’s all smoke and mirrors… And we’re gonna go wildcat with Trey and Tino the first couple series ! (Tino to the right, of course)

Comment by CompLit 09.13.11 @ 4:23 pm

FRANKCAN – I don’t give two sh*ts which conference we are in.

Comment by Reed 09.13.11 @ 4:33 pm

Reed i did not say any thing abought being in a conference i ask if we should add a tenth team what the hell are you talking abought and i dident start this line of talk wbb did so what the hell are you mad abought

Comment by FRANKCAN 09.13.11 @ 5:18 pm

Actually the Anderson kid had some nice punts in that video Reed linked. A lot were quick kicks during the Texas State playoffs.

I gotta believe that Sunseri will get the hook if the offense is not moving the ball and scoring in the 1rst half. TG has to know this high octane offense is producing in the 87 unleaded octane rating after watching the game films ad nauseum.

And it all revolves around the QB. That simple.

Add in the fact, that as Reed pointed out, what like 25 plays weren’t even run as planned. This should be a no brainer.

Comment by melvinbennett 09.13.11 @ 5:47 pm

But there’s always that OTHER factor to consider…

isn’t there! haha

Comment by melvinbennett 09.13.11 @ 5:48 pm

No Doc Tom,

You are not certainly the only one. On Reed’s blog yesterday the QB Quandry, the vast majority of the bloggers (90%), agree with you and me and FrankCan and Dan and Dan72 and TonyinHouston and TXPanther and I can’t remember all of them. But all agreed that we’ve seen enough of the current QB.

He isn’t all of a sudden going to be transformed into an accurate passer or get quicker to avoid the rush or faster to run the triple option the way it’s supposed to work or suddenly get new found decision making abilities. Unless they put someone else in his uni. haha

Comment by melvinbennett 09.13.11 @ 6:01 pm

Melvinbennett do you think coach will pull tino or do you think he goes with him to the bitter end like dave did. Iwould rather lose with anderson or myers knowing they will get better in time than lose with tino who as you point out is not goin to change he is what he is and that is not good. once agein melvin you have nailed it you are so right.

Comment by FRANKCAN 09.13.11 @ 6:16 pm

I gotta believe if Tino doesn’t get it done in the 1rst half, he will be pulled. Contrary to what TG said(of course all coaches do the same thing as to not totally wreck the confidence of the player pulled), I don’t think he had plans to play Trey the WHOLE 4rth quarter. maybe half the 4rth quarter.

What changed his mind, were the 2 picks Tino threw in the 3rd quarter and on the last series Pitt had the ball in the 3rd quarter. Meaning he gave Tino the hook, rather than just making a substitution to get Trey some playing time.

Also the issue that over 25 plays were not run at all, as Tino freelanced or whatever, has to weigh on that decision as well. This is a system type offense and as I’ve blogged several times, this is a ‘timing’ offense. The ball HAS to be thrown immediately to the WR or the play ‘blows up’. Tino’s limited abilities are even more exposed in this ‘timing’ offense and even more so in the triple option read aspect of this offense.

And your right about Wannstache, he is much more steeped in coaching fraternity loyalty and coaching cronyism, so he’d be much more likely to stick with Tino indefinitely.

Comment by melvinbennett 09.13.11 @ 6:49 pm

Btw, I’m not saying TG doesn’t have coaching fraternity loyalty, as he clearly does, since he brought so many of these guys that use to coach with him at WVU. But Wanny being around so much longer, is much more steeped in it obviously.

Comment by melvinbennett 09.13.11 @ 6:58 pm

Melvinbennett did you read were coach Calhoun said he could see BB and FootBall schools spliting up. No time frame or any thing but it is someting to think abought why did he say it?

Comment by FRANKCAN 09.13.11 @ 7:41 pm

For melvinbennett info FSU forming realignment committee posted bye chip patterson CBS SPORTS. I wonder why.

Comment by FRANKCAN 09.13.11 @ 8:10 pm

Your news is a day old and a day in this business means a lot. Oklahoma is getting out of the Big 12. Texas did not convince them to stay. I hope the attitude you have is not the prevalent one in the Big East where “wait and see” has almost always meant do nothing. The conference picture is changing and Baylor’s embarrassing attempt to slow it down and the Big East’s recalcitrance to do anything proactive won’t stop it.

Comment by TonyinHouston 09.13.11 @ 8:26 pm

To Jam – You raise a concern about how much playing time Donald will get now that Price is playing linebacker and Lindsay is moved to down lineman. Also you say need to get best players on field. Well if we were not forcing a 3-4 defense on to Pitt personnel not suited to play it we could play 4 down line men (making room for Donald) and bench a linebacker (Gruder) getting our best players on the field.
Again I have no problem transitioning to a 3-4 once you recruit the right players but in the interim play your best which translates to 4-3. TG has to demonstrate he is a game day coach by applying the right formations, not a systems guy forcing the players on hand to play a system they are not suited for. TG coach the defense don’t pigeon hole it to your system.

Comment by Spindler's Spirit 09.13.11 @ 8:43 pm


Hard to make out, what is what with this conference crap. One insider(apparent) blog seems to contradict another supposed insider blog.

I have no idea of what to think about FSU since I was led to believe the SEC had a gentlemen’s agreement not to have 2 schools from the same state. (ie. Clemson & SC, UF & FSU, etc.)
However when you think about it, they ALREADY have two schools in the same state in several instances. ( Auburn & Ala., Miss St & Ole Miss,
Tenn & Vandy). So that’s go to be a lot of hogwash.

Comment by melvinbennett 09.13.11 @ 8:54 pm

right TonyinHouston,

According to Orangebloods, the big weekend meeting between the bigshots of TExas & OU did not go over so well. OU is not happy that the conference appears to be so unstable. However they might be playing Texas for concessions or might be trying to get something more from ESPN or Fox Sports.
Who the frick knows.

Comment by melvinbennett 09.13.11 @ 8:58 pm


Any word whether Calhoun was drunk or sober when he made those comments? haha

Comment by melvinbennett 09.13.11 @ 9:01 pm

FRANKCAN – I misread your post. Yes, I agree that 10 teams would be ideal. Nine conference games and two OOCs would be about right.

I wasn’t angry. I was just stating a fact. I really don’t care and since I have no control over any of it I don’t read all the rumors.

I follow PITT football for the program and the play on the field. Whether or not that is in the BE or somewhere else all means the same to me.

Comment by Reed 09.13.11 @ 9:44 pm

TG is doing the old coach trick, put him out there and he will “fire himself”. Andersen will be put in midway thru 2nd quarter,

Comment by black and blue 09.13.11 @ 11:39 pm

^^^ Nine conference and three OOC games obviously.

Comment by Reed 09.14.11 @ 4:44 am

Texas talking to ACC, does it ever end????

Comment by DAN 09.14.11 @ 9:23 am

Great post, I cherrish playing a round of holdem.

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