Offensive coordinator Tim Beck had some interesting comments at the THSCA convention. Here are some that struck me:
The Running Backs
Coach McKnight the strength coach has done a fantastic job with our guys. I mean, the transformation of their bodies and how they look from the end of spring until now, what a difference. So, I like where we're at and we get some young guys also. They've showed some good things so far so I think it's going to be interesting to see in the fall if any one of those guys just really jumps out because there's four or five really good players back there.
Another shout out to McKnight. Dude needs a body shaping show on ESPN4. I’m not sure I agree with Beck’s assessment on having 4-5 “really good” players back there, but this is more encouraging to read than my own more cautious diagnosis. A healthy Kirk Johnson would be a boon and the coaches will be interested to see what Daniel Young might do as a middle reliever. Carter certainly showed ability in the passing game in the Spring. I expect to see as many as four different guys throughout the course of the season during meaningful game action. I’d be delighted for Chris Warren to flip that script and drop a smooth 1700 yards, but I’m from the Show Me State for now.
As a young player when he came out of high school, I think they tried to keep things really simple for him as a true freshman playing and I see his development, that he was able to grasp our system when he came in and then be able to apply it, and it's grown even through the summer. His ability to – we call it direct teaching, he can teach me now. He can get up on the board, I don't have to lead the questions. He's gained weight, which was one of the things that we needed him to do to be able to withstand and all quarterbacks will get hit on the course of the season, to be able to do that.
Roger that. We can fret over our 5th OL or TE optimization, but season upside rests on a healthy #7. Whatever our risk mitigation, college spread QBs get hit, no matter how cautious our deployment in the running or passing game. You trade those hits for open receivers and opportunities in the running game. Let’s see how Shane takes them.
...we've got big play receivers, really electrifying receivers, I really like that group.
I do too. The deepest, most talented part of this football team right now. The coolest part of the WR group is that beyond Collin Johnson and Big Play Duvernay, there’s a legitimate argument involving 5-6 athletes as to who our #3 and #4 wide receivers will be. We opine and justify in TTF that blocking, situational awareness and reliability will be greater determinants of snaps for them than theoretical big play upside.
...that group in my opinion probably has come the farthest since I've been here. I think that Coach Warehime has really done an outstanding job with those guys. I mean, their bond, the togetherness, the toughness, the things that we've talked about and preached about. Derek has been phenomenal with them and got those guy playing now, they believe. So it will be, it will be interesting to see who those five guys are going to be out there.
His first and last sentences don’t have to do with Connor Williams. I think he’s hinting at some depth developments that the coaches are hoping to see solidify in August. A healthy Shack, getting Denzel Okafor ready a year ahead of schedule or finally seeing Tristan Nickelson learn how to use his leverages would be big for us.
On open invites to any coach in the state
We're just regular guys, like, we're dudes, that's what we are and we're not trying to hide anything. So we tell you what a play is, I know that you're going to watch it on film and see it on TV anyway, I mean it's not a big secret. You know what I've probably been running it, it's the same plays. That's why you mentioned, it's not plays, you don't win because we're going to come up really with something really unique, that doesn't happen, most of the time.
I think the attitude conveyed here was a big reader takeaway in TTF.
Herman isn’t an on field innovator trying to reinvent the game of football. It’s about being a fast follower in best practices, creating a culture that attracts elite motivated athletes, developing and coaching them soundly, having them play really hard and tough on Saturdays and generally employing all of the natural advantages of Texas to whip wholesale ass.