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More defensive numbers

  • * Texas Tech ran the ball 24 times against the straight (no stunt, no blitz) nickel alignment of Texas for 114 yards (included are plays that resulted in penalties).

    * Tech ran the ball just 6 times against a blitz or stunt. One of those plays was Okafor's sack.

    Taking that "run" play out, Tech rushed for 12 yards on 5 carries against a non-conventional defensive look from Texas.

    * The big difference here is that Texas played straight nickel in most run situations (24 of 29). That's 82% of the time.

    By comparison, there is little question in my mind that when I go back and look at tape from just about any other game this year, I will find that Texas ran some sort of stunt or unconventional look against the run as much as 50% of the time against.

    That is the single biggest change week to week IMO. And it resulted in the defense being able to expect certain results as opposed to playing high-risk, high-reward defense.

    * What's more, if you take out three of the last four runs which came in the 4th quarter against Texas of +14, +10 and +12 which totals +36, then you get an even better picture of the run defense played straight up.

    Before those runs midway through the 4th quarter, Texas had allowed just 88 yards on 20 carries using nothing more than a straight (no stunts, no blitz) nickel. Playing a potent offense like Tech's, that is very good.

    * The next thing I want to mention are big plays.

    By playing a less risky defense, the Horns did not give up as many big plays.

    The biggest run of the day for Tech was +25.

    The biggest pass play was +24.

    Compare that to other conference games:

    Oklahoma State

    West Virginia




    Just look at those numbers and you can see the difference. The lack of major game-changing plays by Tech was huge from both a momentum and score standpoint.

    * Next up, let's look at dime defense pass efficiency.

    Texas played dime 10 times during the game by my count (inserting Demarco Cobbs and Tevin Jackson and an additional DB).

    Tech passed the ball 9 times against the dime.

    Here are the play results:

    3rd and 11-- pass for +13 (first down)
    3rd and 8-- pass for +21 (first down)
    3rd and 18-- pass for +15 (punt)
    4th and 6-- incomplete pass
    3rd and 8-- incomplete pass
    4th and 8-- pass for +24 (first down)
    3rd and 8-- incomplete pass
    3rd and 11-- pass for +13 (first down)
    3rd and 6-- incomplete pass

    The dime defense worked 5 out of 9 times. That's a 44% first-down conversion rate for the offense. That's not very good considering the down-and-distance. It should be no more than 30%.

    This is part of the reason why Texas is having a problem getting off the field on 3rd and long or 4th down.

    On three of the four conversions, Texas got no pressure from the blitz and the linebackers vacated the middle of the field. Tech ran dig routes inside the hashes and completed the pass.

    On one of the dime plays, a Tech receiver dropped a ball near the sideline for what would have been a first down (last play for of the first half for Tech).

    On another of the dime plays, Tech was in the Tech red zone so it changed the tightness of the coverage of the DBs. It was the final offensive play of the day for Tech. That means the corners and safeties were already tight and did not leave the middle open despite how the linebackers worked that play.

    In other words, when Texas left the middle of the field open in the dime, Tech took advantage of it more often than not.

    At some level, a defense has to pick its poison, but the problem is that when you blitz and don't get there, it hurts you on the back end.

    Either Jackson and/or Cobbs must get more out of the blitz or they need to play more to the sticks in coverage. That's my opinion.

    This post was edited by BobbyBurton 17 months ago

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  • Way, way, way, way, way, way, way, way, way, way too many third and long conversions, and we're not talking about squeaking by the sticks, but just plain old blowing by the defense.

    Thank you for the breakdown.

    I got brains. I got big ol' brains. I got dinosaur brains.

  • Damn good breakdown Bobby.

    signature image signature image signature image

    XoGisele, Ashley Sky, Niki Skyler

  • Tech on 3rd/4th and long pass plays vs the blitz

    3rd and 11-- +13
    3rd and 8-- +11
    3rd and 18-- +15
    4th and 6-- 0
    4th and 8-- +24
    3rd and 6-- 0

    vs the blitz on earlier downs

    2nd and 6-- +15
    2nd and 10-- 0
    1st and 15-- +15
    1st and 10-- 0
    2nd and 8-- +13
    2nd and 3-- 0
    2nd and 4-- +13 (TD)
    1st and 10-- 0
    2nd and 10-- +20
    2nd and 12-- +6

    There's a reason it's considered a feast or famine play. Half of them went for 10+ yards.

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  • Thanks bobby
    Great breakdown. Love this site

  • Blitz Panther

    Half the time, it works every time.

    I got brains. I got big ol' brains. I got dinosaur brains.

  • The jail break blitz up the middle especially doesn't seem to be working. We seem to end up with three men blitzing the same gap and taking themselves out of the play.

  • Some of that is intentional. We'll often throw more than one defender at a gap. Tech blocked it well, but they haven't always blocked it well this season.

  • I know that it is intentional. All Tech did was pinch its linemen and clog the gaps.

  • The other issue that should be added to the pass defense discussion is that we don't have the players in the middle of the field to be very successful irrespective of Dime with blitz or not. Our Safeties just aren't very good in coverage (Phillips, Thompson) and to a lesser extent our LBs in drop zones aren't very active or aware. Yes, Edmond made one really good play, and Cobbs did too, but Tech went to work on routes inside the numbers between the Safeties and drop LBs. Sure getting pressure always helps, but I don't think we should convince ourselves that getting home on the QB is goin to solve our coverage problems.

    That said, I say we should still just keep the offense in front of us with deep Safety coverage and force opposing offenses to keep successfully executing on 3rd and long all day to get to the Red Zone. Things then get tougher in the Red Zone. If we can hold teams like Tech to 22 points thanks to having to kick FGs in the red zone (and timely penalties that help too), then I'm good with the approach.