Saturday, October 31, 2009

A look back at Ohio State

The Aggies went to Ohio State and were beaten soundly by the Buckeyes.

Most has been covered already in my game story and column.

The Aggies didn't do anything offensively, although the team was respectable on defense. The score was 0-0 after the first quarter, forcing an Ohio State missed field goal and a punt. But when the offense doesn't get a first down, a defensive effort like that isn't sustainable.

Piling on the offense isn't the best method in the world, but at this point in the season it will continuously be pointed out. Sure, the team hasn't done much in its last three outings — the Aggies haven't scored an offensive touchdown in 13 quarters and just six offensive points in that span. And when you look at the entire year, the unit hasn't really done much of anything.

Against Idaho, the team scored just six points although actually threw for 235 yards. Looking back at that passing performance, it actually was a strong one for a team that has been in a major slump.

They had a good first half against Prairie View when Seth Smith ran wild. They were timely in the win at UNM — who can forget the game-winning drive in that game, as well as some good first-half possessions against the Lobos when the team moved the ball deep into enemy territory. Against Utah State at home? Really, nothing. Marcus Anderson had a lot to do with 10 of the team's points in that game with a stellar effort in the return game. The team needs to finish the season better offensively.

On defense, the Aggies are playing respectable. It's funny because the team has changed so much since the last few years. Now, the defense is the strength and the offense hasn't been able to do the job. I do think it's better to be consistent on defense and have to piece together an offensive gameplan. It seems like you can scrap out some more wins with a philosophy like that.

....

Walker was direct about his feelings following Saturday's loss.

“I felt like our defense came into this game early and really challenged (Ohio State),” he said. “I felt like if we could have generated any offense early in the game, I'm not going to say we would have won the game, but I think we would have made it a little bit more interesting throughout the game.”

On the team's gameplan against Terrelle Pryor.

“We knew we had to cage him up and I was still going ballistic because there were a couple times he got out on us,” he said. “It was wishful thinking to think we could keep him contained the whole game. I thought our gameplan was pretty good. I just wish we executed a little better and gotten some help from the other team areas — special teams and offense.”

While the team fought on defense, it should be noted that Davon House dropped two first-half interceptions in the game that could have swung momentum.

Special teams has tapered off a bit since the game against Utah State which saw Anderson and Hughes carry the team to victory. Hughes' punting numbers have been good, although his performance has seemed inconsistent, with him getting off some bombs here and there and getting some flubbers off as well.

Donyae Coleman returned kicks on Saturday, getting one out to the 30 and his other two getting brought down inside the 20.

Ohio State's onside kick in the second quarter caught the Aggies by surprise.

“It did,” Walker said. “I think it's a teachable moment for our special teams coach. It's something that he (worked on) this week.”

OSU went on to score their second touchdown of the game on the ensuing drive, making a 0-0 game into a 14-0 contest in the drop of a hat.

....

The team started Jeff Fleming at quarterback over Trevor Walls. Neither quarterback did much, although Fleming did create some things with his legs when protection broke down. Walls' scenario was tough, coming on in the second half, cold from sitting on the bench.

“We just knew he could get himself out of trouble,” Walker said of starting Fleming. “He's more athletic, he's more mobile. (The Ohio State defensive line), they're pretty athletic and mobile too. We just felt like Jeff could get himself out of trouble more so than Trevor.”

Walls was diplomatic.

“Whenever coach thought it was right was when I came in,” Walls said. “It didn't go too hot for me. But that's just the way it goes.”

Walls did lose a fumble in the third quarter that was recovered by the Ohio State defense in the Aggie endzone for a touchdown. He finished 0-for-2 on the afternoon.

Fleming went 6-of-13 for 22 yards and an interception. He gained 31 yards on the ground on seven carries.

As far as getting into a game at The Horseshoe, it was exciting. Walls, a Waverly, Ohio native, said there were about 200 fans from his hometown attending the game.

“It was a dream come true for me,” Walls said. “I always watched them play, grew up a Buckeyes fan. Just a dream come true to play in this stadium.”

Walls wasn't the only Aggie fired up to play at Ohio State.

“Ohio State was my dream school out of high school,” linebacker Ross Conner said. “I made it to The Shoe.”

....

I believe the team is still headed in the right direction under Walker. OSU simply overpowered the Aggies.

Yes, the offensive issues are concerning. You would figure the team would have walked into some points over the last three weeks. But they really haven't gotten anything going.

This is a long rebuilding project. And I think the team will still get another win this season. Four wins isn't bad for the 2009 Aggies. It's more than what many predicted.

45 comments:

Anonymous said...

I too think a better defensive team gives the Aggies more of a chance at winning. But without an Aggie offense that can make the opposing team's defense defend at least 20 yards down field, what we will see is a few wins, more "respectable" losses to teams closer in talent to the Aggies, and big losses to better teams where the Aggie defense plays well for a quarter and a half.

We don't need the spread offense we had last year. We do need the coaches to open up the game some. We don't have the talent to run consistently against 11 defensive players playing within 7 yards of the line of scrimmage.

Anonymous said...

The coaches are trying to get the passing game involved but it is pretty hard when your receivers drop the ball- I saw at least 3 dropped passes, two of them were right to the chest and the third was right in the hands- it is also hard to pass down the field when your QB mishandles the snap or the O-line doesn't pick up the blitz... I personally think the Walls experiment should be over..keep Fleming in and let him create something with his legs once in a while or (tongue in cheek here) if he can catch, move him to WR and put in Galland...the announcers kept giving credit to the staff for having the offense executing well -timing etc.- but mentioning that the players just were not up to that level of play yet...funny thing, they stopped saying that late in the 3rd qtr...and yes, keep the spread offense it keeps the defense honest...the receivers just have to catch the ball....remember that this is a rehearsal for next year, the goal is to catch the eye of those talented receivers who are seniors or juco transfers..they aren't going to want to come to a place that doesn't throw the ball...

EVL said...

I say keep Walls as QB and move Fleming to WR. Everyone says our wideouts need help. Why not try this?

Anonymous said...

I agree that the Walls "experiment" should be over. It's obvious Walls cannot perform at the Div. I-A (FCS) level. Fleming is the best we have for now and I hope that Tanner Rust will get a chance next season.

I honestly wish that Las Cruces grad Dante Caro would transfer to NM State and be our QB. He would do much better than Fleming or Walls.

Anonymous said...

It's tough watching the team improve except, for the QB's.

I think we really need to go the JUCO ranks and bring in a QB for next year and give Walls & Fleming an opportunity to transffer.

Everyone gets on Rosenbach for not "opening" it up but, he just doesn't have the QB's to do it.

Anonymous said...

i personally think that no qb. has a chance if you dont throw the ball down the field once and a while, it will never work,
they dont even have the receivers to run routes down the field, so the safetys are always up on the line of scrimmage, send receivers down the field, spread out the defense and then run the ball,
and pass down feild sometimes
so what if you dont complete it, it is better than what they are doing now the same play over and over hand off to seth or qb keeper,
a decent high shool defense can stop that, you just key on those to players, the problem is the play calling
walker is good coach but rosie is just not getting it done, walker needs to make a change in coaching staff or it will never get better
just my 2 cents worth (well maybe 10 cents)

Anonymous said...

If anything the Fleming experiment should be over. You guys that keep pointing at Walls and saying that we dont move the ball when he is qb tell me how Fleming did against FSU when the team was all his for almost 3 quarters. Did we score? No. Sure we moved the ball a little but in the red zone he couldnt punch it in just like Walls. How did he perform against Idaho, UTEP and Praire View. Did those games look like belonged in D1? No. What you dont seem to understand is that this sytem fits Fleming and so far he hasnt proven that he gives us a chance to win. I havent seen the offense score a point under his watch in the past games and all we do is run the ball which is his specialty. Walls has not been impressive either but I would like to see the coaches give him as many passing plays as they do running plays then we can see who the best qb is when they both have their respective strengths called.

GS

Anonymous said...

I agree we need to stretch the field. Even if we don't have the QB for that, and we don't hit a lot of them, if we don't try the opposing defenses will crowd the line. Throw the thing 30-40 yards down field and make the safety's respect that possibility. If we don't, we'll be playing a 5-on-9 game that we can't win with (unless we play UNM again).

Anonymous said...

Guys have some patience. I know it's tough, but no one expected us to do anything against OSU anyway. We've already exceeded every expectation for the year. Realize that QB maybe our youngest position. Fleming is the oldest and he's only a Redshirt Soph. Our future qb is already here, Tanner Rust will take over as qb1 come spring ball. As for Caro transferring, he's not even a qb at unm, he's listed as a safety. Plus, he or any other transfer would have to sit out a year, so it's not really much of an option. I'd rather have Rust take over or at least bring in a guy who can contribute next year. But realize that there are already 5 qb's on the roster so unless someone gets moved or cut, I don't know how many more scholarships can got to the position.

alf said...

I think it stands to reason that neither qb has given the coaches a reason to name him the permanent starter. They've both been given plenty of opportunities to get the show what they can do and neither has separated himself from the other.
I'm sure that Walker would name one of the two a permanent starter if they were to give him a reason to.

Anonymous said...

Here's my response to the comments regarding the "Wall's experiment". To the morons who call this an experiment-shove it, he's a 19 year old in a system that just doesn't fit his style. Would Tom Brady,Big Ben,Byron Leftwitch or Tony Pike have made it as young QB's in this system? No way. Waverly's coaches who were at the game are dumbfounded as to how they are using Trevor.The kid is 6-6 225lbs and isn't even shaving yet...his best days are done the road.

Anonymous said...

To all Ohio once and for all,

Your high school coaches and the rest of your arm chair quarter backs do not know more than D1 coaches, and guys with NFL experience. I get your frustration, and I agree that we should throw the ball more down field with Walls. However, your posts are getting old. Walls is a freshman and if he's got the stuff he will get his shot. Quit filling his head with negativity. Up to now he has conducted himself with great maturity given the situation. Don't ruin that. You're right, Walls best days are down the road. Hopefully in an Aggie uniform. Your negativity is going to force him to want to transfer, sit out a year, then have to compete somewhere his Junior year for a starting spot. Which he is not guaranteed. Let the process work itself out, and if he deserves it, he'll get his shot.

Anonymous said...

my guess tanner rust probably wont be in spring ball since he is there to play baseball also,
form what i have seen and heard he did not look that good in this past spring ball he has legs but arm strenght is no where close to walls or flemming
we will never improve if we dont throw down field who cares if it is incomplete half the time, it will free up the defense a little allowing us to run the ball, and we may just complete half of the passes, you never know until you try (more than just a couple times)
try the pass down the feild on first down and then run on second
then mix it up dont stay perdictable like we have been!!!

Anonymous said...

For the season 2 positives are pointed out in the blog, yet the producer wasn't given credit...

Idaho 235 passing yards, of which 230 were generated by Fleming.

UNM winning drive-Fleming.

The above does indicate something, especially in light of Idaho going bowling! We need to get back to what created that success and make it work again!

Anonymous said...

Yeah, right, the defense is the star.
Giving up more yards per game than last year, only 11 turnovers in 9 games, giving up more than 500 yards per game the last three games. 3 consecutive blowouts.

Who's delusional? Hint: his initials TF.

Anonymous said...

To all of the posters bashing the Ohio followers, a couple things need cleared up. No one has been playing Mr. Walls up like he is going to be the next Peyton Manning. Most of us wanted him to get a fair shot, and when given, allowed to go down field. Both Trevor and Fleming are in a horrible situation. The passing plays consists of a shovel pass, three yard out, preschool version of the screen pass and an occassional fade down the sideline to a very small receiver. As a result a result of not attempting to stretch the field, defenses will pack the box, jam the small receivers with man coverage and bring lots of pressure. The bump and run coverage causes a timing problem for the QB as the receiver has trouble getting off the line and with pressure coming must either take a sack, throw the ball away, or make a hasty throw that gets picked. That my friends is not the QB's fault, neither Fleming nor Walls. Moreover, you cannot establish a running game with this. People will say you don't have the talent. Hogwash! Even worse talent can put up better offensive numbers.

Anonymous said...

0 rushing yards on first down. 2 yards on second down. what's next? pass for three yards, complete. Yay! 4th and 5, what to do? Punt...

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:46

Aside from the only game where the Aggies were daring enough to throw the ball (we lost by the way, so "success"?) and one drive that Fleming engineered, can you mention anything else that has been worthwhile while he has been quarterback? I mean he took control against Fresno and Ohio, any success there?

GS

Anonymous said...

GS, what an a$$! Yes, positive offensive yardage is success! Especially in light of what has been going on.

This team needs positives! However small they need them now more than ever! You can dig the grave and put them in if you wish, but I choose to give them a hand and help them up.

Why don't you suit up and but your sorry a$$ on the line and take the fan abuse you dish out! I am quite sure you couldn't handle the pressure!

NMSU Phantom said...

What I am curious to know is how would Walker go up and defend his own offense? I would like to hear what he has to say. The reason that I ask is, why hasn't he discussed that with Rosenbach.....because Rosenbach is not a play caller or maybe his plays are no good!! This issue is not a players' issue, it is a philosophical issues with the way plays are called! This same team was a passing team the past 4 years. You just don't forget how to pass from one year to the next!

Anonymous said...

Phantom, they didnt forget how to pass but this is not he same offense we've had the last 4 years. All of the skill players are gone. No Chase, or Chris or any of the other WR's. So when your starting from scratch it pretty much is as if they forgot how to pass. Not to mention that this is not Coach Walker's or Rosenbach's approach.

Anonymous said...

I see a fellow Ohioan has made a very good,clean and educated observation of Rosenbach's system. I for one,know that TW loves it in Las Cruces but is a little frustated with his future in this offense. I hope things work out for him in the long run and the coaches and frustrated fans like many of you, don't essentially run him off. I remember a kid named "Ben" who was eerily similar to Trevor at that age... that made something of himself! It will take time for him to physically mature... which is obviously not complete at this point. I just don't want the young man's confidence to get pummeled into the ground.

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:42,

Haha. I was not being an ass as you call me but just simply asking you why Fleming earned the starting job in your mind by those two examples that you used. I am an Aggie fan and I am extremely pleased that we have three wins this season with three winnable games left. However, that does not mean that I have to look at one game and a winning drive and be smitten with Fleming. He was replaced by Walls after that and Walls was replaced by Fleming. Neither qb is good enough in the coaches eyes to be the starter for good. So I think that if we had had success with Fleming as you mentioned Walls would not have been name the starter for several games. Also, you said that we needed to go back to the thing that brought the team success and we did. Like I mentioned, Fleming did start against ohio and took over in the second half against Fresno. He had a few bright plays but the score did not move in his watch.

On a seperate note, Teddy what are the chances of the vball team going to the NCAA tourney this year in your mind? We wont beat Hawaii, dont have many quality wins and recently lost to Idaho. Will we make it this year as at large?

GS

Anonymous said...

GS, First my origional comments were to point out that this blogger refuses to give any credit to Fleming. As by his own admission he is a "bandwagon" guy for Walls. GS, look at your posts as well.

The Idaho game did produce positive offensive yards! As for going back to what was working, I was referring to the plays not the player!

Walls and Fleming are not average QB's both are exceptional in their own right, just different.

GS, how would you know if the system fits Fleming vs. Walls? I don't believe it fits either one! YET, only time will tell.

Our offensive problems are not the sole fault of the QB's. But, it's easier for armchair types to put the blame on them, as it takes less knowledge!

So have another beer coach!

Anonymous said...

NM State doesn't have the best tradition, but we have had some good QB's come through here and sorry to you Ohio people...but we produce better QB's right here in New Mexico and in this region. Walls has put up embarrassing numbers....stop trying to blame the system, coaches or other players around Walls...he's just not good, plain and simple.

If Walls were this "God" like you Ohio people play him up to be, he'd be putting up better numbers or playing at Ohio State or some other Big Ten school. Get a reality check.

Anonymous said...

Anon 3:29

Put your name up so I dont have to keep putting anon and the time. Lets see, from what I see our offensive scheme involves running the ball. We dont get the passing game involved at all which is what most bloggers here have mentioned. By this point in time and before it was clear that Walls was the passer with limited mobility while Fleming was the qb that made plays with his legs. So, if we have a system where we like to run the ball a lot with limited passing plays.... which qb does that fit?

GS

Anonymous said...

That is a real smart post bashing of Walls, Ohio QB's and Ohio football in general. Your a certified idiot. Coach Mumme knew QB's and he signed Walls and a man named Dick Vermeil also thought Trevor had the talent to make it big after seeing him play in his junior year. Why don't you take your frustration out on the real culprit, Timm Rosenbach. Rosenbach commits various cardinal sins when it comes to running an offense. Oh, by the way, NMSU under it's current regime would get smacked by D3 Mount Union College here in . . . . . thats right Ohio. Most of the Buckeye fans were not making fun of the Aggie players Saturday, the majority that I set with wanted to know who was calling the pathetic plays for the Aggies.

Anonymous said...

ANON 6:39

Don't get carried away just because you can write anything you want on a blog like this. I live right hear in Las Cruces and I know that New Mexico does not produce better QBs than Ohio. Any time you want to match your list of NM QBs against the Ohio QBs let me and all the Ohio fans on this blog know and we will have a contest.

Big Al

Anonymous said...

GS,
NMSU site stats:

Fleming:
Pass Yards- 514
Rush Yards- 171

Walls:
Pass Yards- 339
Rush Yards- (-56)

Yea, I guess Fleming doesn't pass only runs.....Sure glad he can run!

Anonymous said...

Just an observation, Fleming seems to have better numbers than Walls from a passing standpoint, and if you give back the 20 or so drops he has had (5 at OSU alone), by my calculation he would be about 60% passing. That's not bad for a new qb in a new system. I like his feet as well. Let's not give up on him or Walls just yet. We still have 4 Wac games and 2 winnable IMO.

NMSU Phantom said...

People, stop blamming the QBs it is much higher than that! Rosenbach isn't doing his job. What we should all do is draw up some simple sound passing plays and send them to the coaching staff at NMSU! And hope they get use them before the next home game>

Anonymous said...

I don't care which QB is playing. Give them the chance to throw the ball down field. Aggie coaches, quit calling those predictable plays for the offense...mix it up. Get the Aggies into more 3rd down and 2s as opposed to 3rd and 6.

Anonymous said...

Anon: (November 3rd@ 6:39pm)

First of all,Your "God" and "he's no good" comments about Walls are pathetic and shallow. It's funny how Mumme had so much faith in his ability and truly he believed he was big time material isn't it? Say what you want about Hal, but he does know QB's and could score points...he just had a little trouble keeping the other team from scoring more. If I remember correctly, TW was shredding his 1st team "D" on a daily basis last year. Once again...a difference in systems and objectives.

Teddy said...

GS, to your volleyball question:

I think the team will have a difficult time reaching the tourney unless it can win the WAC tournament. It's been kind of a down year for the program and there have been some uncharacteristic losses on their schedule.

Anonymous said...

For those who just think the his HS coaches do not know QB's, just remember, both Walls' QB coaches and OC were DI QB's. Also in the past 20 years at Waverly HS, the school has put 4 DI QB's to the NCAA, plus 2 more at DIII level.

If Walls plays is up to the coaches, can he play is a different question. Yes, he is a DI QB, but the system is just hard to understand. It is not fair to Flemming or Walls.

Anonymous said...

The system is not hard to understand. My son (galland) completely understands the system, having been coached by Huard (name will be familiar to anyone who knows football, and been in a pro style offense all through high school- he knows it backwards, forwards and upside down)...and recruited by Mumme..unfortunately Scott's armstrength isn't what Trevor's is and his footspeed isn't what Fleming's is....i won't divulge the conversations I have had with either he or Rosenbach but know this...if Galland's arm was stronger he would be your QB...Fleming has a better grasp of the system than Walls but tends to tuck and run...they have tried to develop a system around this strength because it does keep the defense honest....the hope at the beginning of spring was that whoever won the QB spot would throw the ball down field-a reason Scott was not given the shot earlier- unfortunately three things developed: 1. Fleming's inaccuracy and Wall's decision making/lack of mobility 2. WR's not able to perform and 3. O-line not being able to provide pass protection- esp. for Wall's who is more of a pocket passer....

So...next year will be better offensively...better receivers, more experienced QB's, stronger O-line....we all just need to be patient and welcome the huge improvement by the defense and the running game....it doesn't do any good to batter Wall's or Fleming and I can assure you that Rosey is doing everything he can to get the offense on track....we just simply do not have the offensive tools just yet...at this point in the season it is not fair to Trevor to keep him in because the offense doesn't play to his strength- pocket passing, down field passes etc...- My guess is that Fleming will get the majority of the time from here on out because he has the ability to get away from trouble with his feet..again this does not mean that any of the other QB's are terrible...you guys all know there are two ways to form a team...around a system or around the ability of a player(s)...as Walker and Rosey are able to recruit over the next couple years they can get guys who fit their system..right now they are scrambling to fit the system to a player ...which from here on out is going to be Fleming...i can almost guarantee it....so, hopefully everyone can stop bashing the underlying/basic abilities of each QB and start to think as a team...believe me it has been extremely difficult for me knowing that my son can run the system but isn't even given a shot because of his arm strength...Go Aggies!

Galland

Anonymous said...

Being from Ohio I do not see the offense as complicated. Again it comes back to play calling. On top of that, let the QB's try and make big plays. Yes, they are going to mess up, but at least try. There is no doubt in my mind that Fleming will play from here on out. It makes Walker/Rosenbach kind of look bad when he does not play. Trevor Walls hanging in there and staying at NMSU and then getting some playing time is a testament to his character and competitive nature. All of us back here in Ohio were glad to see him last Saturday. Hang in there big guy!I have seen more elementary kids wearing Aggie Trevor Walls Jerseys than any Buckeye jerseys in the past six weeks in this town. It is so good to have young kids look up to a true role model, not some guy that gouges another players eye, etc. Galland, I am sure your kid is a great kid just like Trevor.
The Crooked Creek (Waverly) Columnist

Anonymous said...

Din't coach Walker say in the Spring that the "QB didn't have to be spectacular, just make good decisions and move the chains"?

Well, seems like Scott Galland would be the right fit with short routes.
I realize Rosenbach want's to develope his QB's but, we also want to get a couple more wins.

I say give Galland a shot!

Anonymous said...

If Walls is so good, then take him back Ohio people...please take him back. He got zero passing yards in one game..lol...and thanks to the ignorant person that called me an idiot...it's easy to talk smack on a blog.

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