I posted a bunch of noise over at UFN about the OL. Basically it boils down to

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    • #132764

      Ute Fan

      this: Everything is ok. In fact, everything may be amazing with the OL. Let me explain.

      #1: The USC game. Our OL avg recruiting rank is .8599. USC’s average DL recruiting rank is .8908. They are significantly more talented than we are position vs position. Then, add in COVID, their third game/our first…what did we expect? Look, this isn’t the MWC where a bunch of .84 kids can be coached up and develop. Talent wins. If you have talent, you have a chance to win it all. If you don’t, you don’t, as we saw vs USC, Oregon and Texas last year and USC this year. Talent wins.

      #2: So, what about talent? Our OL averages a .8599, which puts us squarely in the middle of the P12. You have the top tier teams, who are a .87 and .88 average with Stanford, USC, Oregon and Washington. You have the middle tier teams in UCLA and Utah, who average an .85 and the bottom tier of .84 and lower, which is everyone else. 

      BUT, here is the kicker. IF you take out the last two years’ rankings, we are a low .84…not good. BUT, the last two years we average over a .87, which puts us in the top tier. 

      When you realize that it takes three years for most OL to be an above average player…we are headed in the right direction. 

      IF Harding keeps recruiting at a .87 level, he’d be one of the top recruiters to OL in P-12, considering how much harder it is to recruit to Utah vs USC/UW/Oregon/Stanford. 


      There is NO WAY you walk away from that. We are getting there. Be patient. Trust the process. Harding gets this year, next and most likely the next before Whittingham even LISTENS to replacing him. 

    • #132765
      1 6

      Ute Fan

      That explains why Wazzu with an average recruit ranking lower than Utah’s would pass 60+ times per game and still gave their QB time to make his progressions… Oh wait.

      Stay away from this site.


      The last 5 years Utah’s pass protection has been among the worst

      • #132769

        Ute Fan

        Nah. Leach’s philosophy backs me up. The hardest postion to recruit to is OL. So, what do a lot of guys, like Leach, do? Create a system that minimizes the OL. Shotgun, three step drops, quick throws of 5 yards or less. Then the OL doesn’t matter as much.

        Let’s look at Leach’s record vs talented DL’s, shall we? He was 13-27 vs teams with good DL’s at WSU. So, if that is what you want…I don’t know what to tell you. 

    • #132783

      Ute Fan

      While we DID lose to USC, all is not lost.  All we’d done was lose to a better team.  There’s nothing unusual about that.  However, while the “scoreboard” reflects us getting beaten handily, the stat lines showed something else.  It showed that Utah was making “first game errors”, whereas USC was showing “3rd game improvement”.  Taking a closer look…

      1st Downs:  Both Utah and USC had 17 apiece.  Edge:  Even.

      Passing Yards:  USC: 264;  Utah: 216.  USC outpassed Utah by 48-yds.  Not too shabby considering the fact that Slovis is one of the premier QBs in the conference right now, and we were playing the majority of that game with our #2 guy.  Slight edge:  USC.

      Rushing Yards:  USC: 93;  Utah: 111.  Utah outrushed USC by 18-yds.  Not too shabby considering that we’re still platooning something like 4 RBs, who will find it difficult to get into a groove if they’re not getting all the carries.  And I think Brumfield is the only upperclassman we have at that position group who’s getting touches.  Slight edge:  Utah.

      Total Yards:  USC: 357;  Utah: 327.  Sure, the endzone stopped a lot of USC’s drives — courtesy of a pair of series of “short fields”, but to only be outgained by 30-yds to the preseason division favorite isn’t the end of the world.  Slight edge:  USC.

      Penalties:  USC: 5-49;  Utah: 6-52.  So essentially, Utah was flagged ONE more time than USC, and for only 3 additional yards.  That’s not bad for a 3rd game, much less for a team making their 1st start.  Slight edge:  USC.

      Turnovers:  USC: 2;  Utah: 5.  This right here is the primary reason we’d lost that game.  Rising and Bentley both made some questionable passes into double coverage, but if we can get that cleaned up, we’re going to see the Utes field a FAR more competitive team.  Huge edge:  USC.

      Possession:  USC: 30:41;  Utah: 29:19.  USC held possession of the ball for a grand total of only 1-min, 22-sec longer than Utah.  The total yardage and TOP really point to the Turnovers as our deepest game-changer, as apart from that critical area, we were performed fairly competitively against what will likely be the toughest opponent not-named “Covid-19” we will have faced all season.  Slight edge:  USC.

      I firmly believe that with USC’s two prior games experience, coupled with our Covid-interrupted practice schedules, we’re going to see a much improved team come this weekend.  It’s not time to panic yet…

      • #132784

        Central Coast Ute
        Ute Fan

        I like you’re thinking. I’ve been saying since the game, clean up those TO’s and they will be fine. I expect the OL to play better as we move forward here, at least I hope they do.

        • #132786

          Ute Fan

          Totally agree. With 8 mins to go in the game we had the ball down 13. We still had a chance, even with the TO’s up to that point. 

          This game is 100% on the TO’s. That is the beginning and end of it, imo. We fix those, we still might not win (USC is just a better team) but we are fighting for a win with 2 mins to go, and I’ll take that every time. 

          What are the most important stats, outside of the score? Holding them to under 100 yards rushing, you getting over 100 yards rushing and TO’s. 

          If you get 100 yards rushing, hold them to less than 100 and win the turnover battle, you win. 

      • #132785

        Ute Fan

        Beautifully said. 

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Welcome to Ute Hub Forums Utah Utes Sports Football I posted a bunch of noise over at UFN about the OL. Basically it boils down to