Yes, this is a working title. Since it is summer and we are all out of ideas and flowcharts, we figured it was time to dust off an old blog staple and one of our favorite features from the football season... let's sidle up to the roundtable.
- A wide open one to start. Will the loss of Dana have a negative impact on the offense, or is the system the system and Monken will be able to manage what is already in place? (Follow up:Will the loss of Dana have a negative impact on the operating income of all casinos within 100 mile radius of Stillwater?)
- Last week LeBryan Nash tweeted: "Dam just think about something next year around this time they could b sayin my name 4 the nba draft but I got put n the work". Do you think he has the talent/drive/heart to be a one-and-done type of player and be drafted next year? If so, will he be similar to Carmelo and Durant and have a special season that will be remembered forever, or will he be more of a Josh Selby who shows a lot of promise that goes unrealized at the collegiate level?
- Which general geographic part of the country is Stillwater in? For example: Alabama is definitely in the South, Iowa is definitely in the MidWest, Colorado is in the Mountains, UConn is in the Northeast, and all of those places feel like the epitome of their areas. Well a lot of cities aren't smack dab in the middle of a specific area and fall into tweener areas where they dont exactly fit into these made up regions we have designated. I have seen Stillwater referred to as being in the south, the midwest, the southwest, the southern plains, and south-central. We need to clear this up ASAP.
1) I don't think losing Dana will affect the offense this season. With Weeden being the field general and having a great understanding of the offense (not to mention the amount of playmakers at his disposal), I expect it to keep humming. Now, we may drop a few spots in the national offensive rankings but I think that will have more to do with the fact that Monken will control the clock a bit more than Dana (that's my prediction anyway). Next year, though, I think can be a different story. In my opinion, 2012 will be the first year we will all be able to see what kind of playcaller Monken can really be.
2) I think it depends on his tweet; how much work is he going to put in? Nash is still an enigma to me. I've seen him absolutely dominate at times and at other times I've seen him give subpar effort and quite frankly, look like he is throwing a temper tantrum when he doesn't get his touches. In my opinion, whether he is ready or not, he'll probably leave for the NBA...that is unless the CBA rewrites the eligibility rules during the lockout.
3) The midwestsouth plains. And I kind of mean that seriously. I've seen so many different cultures combined in Stillwater that I can't really put one label on it. Go to one bar and you're line dancing. Go to another and you're discussing the affect of The Smiths on today's hipster bands...either way, you're probably drinking PBR or Keystone Light.
1) The thing that stands out to me is that everywhere Dana has been he has produced a top 5 offense. We have been used to having potent offenses so the explosion we saw last season wasn't as shocking as it should have been, but the numbers were staggering. #3 scoring, #3 total yards, #2 passing yards, even #36 in rushing yards, and on and on. I don't think we approach those numbers this season, and I don't think Weeden or Blackmon match their totals from last season. I believe Dana was the impedes of the offensive explosion of 2010, and that Weeden and Blackmon would not have been the breakout stars they were without him (they still would have been good, but not heisman contender good).
In addition, I think having an "offensive savant" on your sideline gives your team a huge edge in the mindgame matchup that happens between the coaching staffs. Defensive Coordinators did not know what to plan for all week, and during games were unsure of what adjustments to make because they respected Dana so much. I'm not sure Monken will command that respect (and hey, that may work to his advantage). I am expecting a decent dropoff in offensive production this season, and some initial frustration at watching the offense struggle compared to last season, somewhat reminiscent of the UGA and Houston games from 2009 where you could tell right away that the offense had taken a step back from 2008 (mostly due to Zac's hammy IMO). I'm not saying we will be worse as a team, we may be better overall as the defense will get some rest, but I don't believe the offense will be the reliable juggernaut it was for most of last season. I think that in 2011 if OSU is down 2+ scores in the 2nd half, the game is probably over, where in 2010 that was just the beginning.
2) I think Nash will be great in his first year. His tool set is too extensive. Highlight reels are highlight reels, and I could put one together that would make Pilgrim look like a lottery pick, but in all the footage of Nash his remarkable skill shines through. Moves like a guard, jumps through the roof, has unreal handles, is big and tall, has a nice jumper, and can finish at the rim. The issue, as always, could be his head. I have heard that he takes big chunks of time off, that he has too big of an ego, and plenty of other headcase type issues about him. Not knowing any of this for sure I can't make that educated of a judgement on this aspect, but I can say that a lot of the game he has was learned through hard work. A player doesn't naturally have a stepback jumper like Nash's, isn't able to pass like he can, and doesn't have some decent post moves unless they work on it... a lot. For this reason, and this reason alone (as this is all speculation anyway), I am going to say that he averages like a 17-7-3, is on sportscenter plenty of times, and leaves after one season to be a top 15 pick.
3)There are really only 6 main parts of the country: West Coast, The Rockies, The Midwest, The South, The Northeast, and East Coast. We obviously don't fit well into any of these, but we have to be either Midwest or South. And if it is between those 2, I would say that the people of Stillwater are more similar to the people of Georgia or Alabama, than to the people of Michigan or Iowa. So to stick to the 6 main regions, I guess we are in the South. If we can create a 7th major region, I am for OK being in the "Southern Plains" with TX and KS.
Sam, I will agree with your point on #1 for next season...but not this season. If you want to compare seasons for the last time we switched coordinators, you have to go from 2007 to 2008 instead of using 2009. With that said, look at the numbers of 2008 (when Gundy took over at OC) compared to 2007 (Fedora's last year). In 2007 OSU was ranked 7th in the nation in total offense. In 2008, they were ranked 6th. When you have the majority of your playmakers and the same QB back at the helm, I think the offense remains very powerful. Like I said, we may not have the matching gaudy numbers as last year, but I think that will have more to do with Monken slowing down when necessary as opposed to playing the "hurry up" regardless of the game situation.
In 2012, though, I can totally get behind your point.
1) I think losing Dana will hurt our numbers slighty (less than 10%) but will make us a better offense and much better football team. I know it's fun having a mad genius and all that air raid crap, but we were totally unable to keep the defense on the sidelines for any sort of rest. We were unable to execute long (6 or more minute) scoring drives, we either hit a home run or punted. I don't think that type of offense will take you very far if that's all you rely on. OU runs a fast paced offense, but it's diverse. I'd rather put pressure on the opposing d by being at the line quickly than using a spread. Hell, we fumbled from under center, and if Weeden can't take a snap from under center well he'll never make it in the NFL. I also think Monken will help us recruit, he can say "hey, Dana Holgerson can teach you to play blackjack, i can get you to the NFL,
I know what they want I've been there". As far as the casinos, I have it on good authority that the president of the hard rock cried after he found out Dana was leaving, considering it cost him 13% of their revenue last year. That's not funny, im sorry.
2) I'm worried about next season, we know Nash wants to be a one and done-er, and unless we win a big 12 and make a final four it's not worth it. Sure, we may get to witness a special player, but after he leaves then what? We're right the fuck back where we are now, a young team with no leadership and little experience. I'm also about to get worried about our APR numbers, since Ford seems destined to turn the roster over every year.
3) If Alabama is the south there is no way we are as well, I'd say we're in the west (it's a big place).
Really though Royal, I see you point regarding #1. I think there are 2 ways to look at the offense from last season.
1. We undervalued everyone at every position. The O-line, Weeden, Blackmon, and the other WR's all exceeded preseason expectations, so the expectations must have been way off.
2. Dana was the catalyst for the explosion.
Odds are the answer was somewhere in the middle, but given Dana's reputation for creating top 5 offenses, I think he had a lot more to do with it that we want to believe. I hope I am wrong though. Still, Fuck You.