The more I think about the toughness and culture that has been created here the more I am all in for CTO. I understand some people are about candidates with their flashy offense, etc., but I still think that defense wins championships and that has been proven for us big time this past year.
Some complaints I have heard was CTO blew it against Navy, SMU, and Memphis. Let’s look at some facts.
Navy: We were down 3 starting LBs including our play caller, leading tackler, etc. We did give up 306 yds rushing but only 382 yds overall. I contribute the rushing yds to the loss of our LBs. However, the deciding factor in this game was not the defense but the offense. We had 3 turnovers that game, 2 INTs and 1 fumble. One of the INTs being a pick 6 and the other being just past mid field. The fumble being on our side of the field. The latter INT led to a field goal and the fumble led to a touch down. Then you take into consideration of the safety, that is a total of 19 points I contribute to the offensive blunders. Without the safety we are still talking about 17 points that I feel the offense is responsible for. If you want to split hairs, you can say the offense was accountable for the pick 6 and that would still put us with the W.
SMU: This was just a horrible game all together. This of course was right after we found out we were not getting into the big 12. The defense did not play great but I think this one still is on the offense. The first two drives I think set the mood and tone for the game. We fumbled twice when it looked like we were marching down and about to score. One within the redzone and them going down and scoring a touchdown immediately. Luckily the second fumble led to a missed FG. It seriously looked starting out that we were dominating them but after that it was all down hill. We then followed up with 3 - 3 and outs with them scoring a touchdown after each punt. Note we had several more 3 and outs or 4 and outs the second half and the rest is history. I think the defense did not play well but the offense was horrible and did not set the tone.
Memphis: I think the rumors didn’t help none but let’s still look at facts. We won’t count the fumble at the end because it was a moot point but the interception was costly. It was on our side of the field and led to a touchdown and a big swing in the game. Instead of scoring and being down 27-24, we go down 34-17. To add insult to injury we go 72 yds all the way down the field after they score and we don’t get a field goal or touchdown. Horrible offensive time management and play calling that you can march 72 yds down the field in 1:17 and get nothing out of it. I feel like the same could be said about us taking the lead toward the end of the game and then after they take the lead our “2 minute” drill at the end was abysmal. I think better offensive management could have been done to put us in a better place to win.
Granted there have been some blunders on defense this year but I feel that there have been some that were way more noticeable and serious when you look at our offense. In addition, our defense has bailed out our offense way more times than the other way around. The most glaring this year was the Cinci game.
That is my two cents. Let me know your thoughts.