September 24, 2006

Tiger report card

Quarterback

Again, we will try to remind everyone that this is Chase Daniel's fourth collegiate start. Even in playing average football, he threw for 258 yards and two touchdowns and ran for another. The kid can play. But he was off on Saturday. In this offense, he should complete 60% of his passes and, even adding in the drop by Martin Rucker, he was just a little over 50%. He made some bad throws and could easily have been picked three or four times in the first half. Whether he likes it or not, Daniel has to start sliding when he runs or he will not finish this season. The Tigers have to have him in the lineup. Daniel needs to understand that sometimes the best play is simply to throw the ball out of bounds or to take a two-yard gain.

Final Grade: C-

Offensive Line

We refuse to simply look at sacks or rushing yards to judge this unit. Daniel avoided a couple of sacks all by himself and, as mentioned, the backs were caught before they could make a move far too much. Again, the stats look good, but there were a lot of plays with defenders in the Tiger backfield.

Final Grade: C-

Coaching

For those who say Gary Pinkel does not make halftime adjustments, stop it already. Obviously, he did something right in the locker room on Saturday. The Tigers showed some blitzes and mixed things up defensively. But the play-calling was baffling at times. Presented an opportunity to simply line up and run Ohio over, Missouri tried to be cute. It resulted in an interception by Daniel and a game that was closer than it needed to be for a while. The gimmick formation on third and four simply defied all explanation. Overall, we're not penalizing the entire staff for some calls that we thought were questionable at best, though. This staff got its team through non-conference play unbeaten, which is what it had to do.

Final Grade: B-


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