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    Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    Almost forgot the last little bit, leading into Media Day

    The Offense
    Knowns
    An offensive line tackle to tackle with starting experience—plus one. A trio of proven running backs. Two quarterbacks with experience. Six receivers with experience.

    Questions
    Can one or both of those experienced quarterbacks eliminate their mistakes? How soon will the offensive line meld into a cohesive, efficient unit? Can new or old players add some flash and dash? Does having a new OC magically fix everything that was wrong the last few seasons?

    *note—Having Kyle Lichtenberg slide inside to guard helps shore up the interior rotation with Dika injured, whoever starts. Kyle’s athleticism would have been wasted sitting around as the third tackle, and I think he and Gannon both play a lot.

    Mystery Meat
    What might the likes of Quenton Bundrage, Ernst Brun, DeVondrick Nealy, Rob Standard, Tad Ecby, or JaQuarius Daniels add? Might someone like Duaron Williams add some imposing beef and athleticism to the front wall? Will Shaban Dika make it back this season?

    tentative grade: When all was said and done, last season’s offense couldn’t be ranked as more than a 4.0, so improvement wouldn’t take much. Given the impact of injuries and inexperience, I think that this unit starts off with a little more than that…to say nothing of the addition of several players the staff thought about pulling redshirts on last year, including Bundrage, Daniels, Brun and Nealy, IIRC. Next up for that question? Dondre Daley. 6.5-7.5


    The Defense

    Knowns
    Knott and Klein are the most badass pair of linebackers (sorry Cap!) I’ve seen in thirty years of watching the Cyclones. Three experienced defensive backs, height is an issue at corner, but this is probably the most depth and athleticism I’ve seen in an ISU secondary since the days of Ronnie Osborne and Land Shark Arnaud. Defensive tackles will go six deep with experience, the ends nearly as much.

    Questions

    How soon does the secondary come together? Roosevelt Maggitt—can he recapture his explosiveness? Does Irving put it all together this season? If so, those two could be quite the pair of pincers on the edges.

    Mystery Meat

    Not a whole lot here <koff>, though it seems to me that Jansen Watson, Ken Lynn, Clifford Stokes, Matt Thomas and Sam Richardson are going to do some interesting things at corner this season. Or would you care to dawdle over the young defensive ends? Or C.J. Morgan? Or Quinton Pompey? Or…?

    tentative grade:

    I am a lot more confident about the defense than the offense, just because they made so many strides as the season progressed last fall, while the offense is still trying to capture lightning on a bottle. Experience at end compensates for the one possible weakness. 8.5




    Paul Rhoads' players never quit.


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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    Pretty decent analysis.... good job overall.

    One thing I would say is that I sure hope we don't need Duaron Williams to play as a true freshman. I hope we can RS him.

    WR probably intrigues me the most, besides QB of course, because of all the young guys that are going to be playing. I think that can be exciting, because this has been a weak spot, and it can only get better IMO. I think Bundrage, Ecby, Daniels, and possibly even Daley can be pretty special WR's for us.



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    My initial impressions of the ratings by posters of the 2012 team look like this:

    1) I think we're being a little hard on the qb's. Neither qb is great, but both qb's led us to victories last year and should be better this year. Thus, I think the QB position is going to exceed expectations.

    2) I think RB's are rated mostly on par with what we should expect, especially with SJ back. We still don't have a complete package back, but we have a bunch of guys that bring a little bit different perspective for teams to prepare for.

    3) I think we might be under-selling our WR's a little. I think Gary is poised for a breakout year, and we've got a bunch of other guys that have major game experience. If one of the RS-Fr can be effective, this group is going to look darn good out there.

    4) The OL is getting way overrated. Boy do I hope I'm wrong, but I see as weak of an Oline as we've had at ISU in years. Sorry, the talent is just not there this year. If they can be a notch above serviceable, ISU is going to surprise teams, but this is the weakest unit on the team.

    5) The DL is also being overrated. Way too much credit is be given to guys that have not produced. Rosie was a solid player but not exceptional PRIOR to major knee surgery. Irving is still an athletic freak trying to play football. I think we'll still need some major growth from him before consistency shows up. I like McD, but the other spot is not good.

    6) The LBs are great. I don't care if Jake Farley would have been our third LB this year the unit still should be highly regarded heading into the season. Too much experience with guys that have exceeded every expectation ever put upon them to not be excited about this year.

    7) The defensive backfield is being significantly overrated. The safeties lack speed. The CBs lack size, and the combined united lacks experience together. I think we have a good group for depth, I just feel the ceiling on that depth isn't that high. So, that's good and bad. It's way worse to have no depth on average talent than to have a lot of depth of average talent. I think we'll see the corners picked on more this year which worries me about their ability to react more quickly in run support.

    Overall, we've got some units getting too much credit, but I think WR and LB are looking very, very good.

    6-6 is till a good to great year. With 4-8 to 7-5 being the likely window.



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    I think both sides of the ball have the POTENTIAL to be surprising good (or not).

    Seems to be a normal progression in building a program from the ground up, which is really what we're doing.



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    Quote Originally Posted by Istate View Post
    4) The OL is getting way overrated. Boy do I hope I'm wrong, but I see as weak of an Oline as we've had at ISU in years. Sorry, the talent is just not there this year. If they can be a notch above serviceable, ISU is going to surprise teams, but this is the weakest unit on the team.
    Not disagreeing with you; just wondering what you're basing this off of. I thought the returning experience plus losing our two biggest false-start offenders was a good thing.




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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    The only way Duaron Williams plays is if our line gets decimated by injuries. Other than that, no way.



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    What happened to the 2012 WR recruit Qwan West? He looked solid



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    Quote Originally Posted by cyclonpediaJoe View Post
    What happened to the 2012 WR recruit Qwan West? He looked solid
    Typically pretty hard to break onto the depth chart as a true freshman. Especially with all of the young talent we have at the position.



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    Quote Originally Posted by CYCLNST8 View Post
    Not disagreeing with you; just wondering what you're basing this off of. I thought the returning experience plus losing our two biggest false-start offenders was a good thing.
    Yes, between the two of them they were probably good for 3-4 gaffes like that a game. But losing what they had to offer for the other 50+ snaps a game certainly hurts more than eliminating a few false starts helps. Last I checked they were both on NFL squads. They don't just give those spots away to any Tom, Dick or Harry.


    "There are five real good recruits in the state. We got three of them. One couldn’t get into school, and the other went to (the University of) Iowa...which is about the same thing." - Coach Johnny Orr

  10. #10
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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    Quote Originally Posted by Istate View Post
    My initial impressions of the ratings by posters of the 2012 team look like this:

    1) I think we're being a little hard on the qb's. Neither qb is great, but both qb's led us to victories last year and should be better this year. Thus, I think the QB position is going to exceed expectations.

    2) I think RB's are rated mostly on par with what we should expect, especially with SJ back. We still don't have a complete package back, but we have a bunch of guys that bring a little bit different perspective for teams to prepare for.

    3) I think we might be under-selling our WR's a little. I think Gary is poised for a breakout year, and we've got a bunch of other guys that have major game experience. If one of the RS-Fr can be effective, this group is going to look darn good out there.

    4) The OL is getting way overrated. Boy do I hope I'm wrong, but I see as weak of an Oline as we've had at ISU in years. Sorry, the talent is just not there this year. If they can be a notch above serviceable, ISU is going to surprise teams, but this is the weakest unit on the team.

    5) The DL is also being overrated. Way too much credit is be given to guys that have not produced. Rosie was a solid player but not exceptional PRIOR to major knee surgery. Irving is still an athletic freak trying to play football. I think we'll still need some major growth from him before consistency shows up. I like McD, but the other spot is not good.

    6) The LBs are great. I don't care if Jake Farley would have been our third LB this year the unit still should be highly regarded heading into the season. Too much experience with guys that have exceeded every expectation ever put upon them to not be excited about this year.

    7) The defensive backfield is being significantly overrated. The safeties lack speed. The CBs lack size, and the combined united lacks experience together. I think we have a good group for depth, I just feel the ceiling on that depth isn't that high. So, that's good and bad. It's way worse to have no depth on average talent than to have a lot of depth of average talent. I think we'll see the corners picked on more this year which worries me about their ability to react more quickly in run support.

    Overall, we've got some units getting too much credit, but I think WR and LB are looking very, very good.

    6-6 is till a good to great year. With 4-8 to 7-5 being the likely window.

    This is a solid rundown of the team this year. Most of the write ups I have seen are pumping groups that shouldn't be getting inflated grades.


    NHL teams need to be added to the favorite teams section.

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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    I'm usually pretty optimistic but I am extremely skeptical of the offensive line. The past couple seasons, they have been very hot and very cold at times. Like last year against UNI, they looked horrible. Then against OSU, they played awesome. It makes no sense.



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    I think the OL has the talent to be as good or better than last years unit. They may not have the individuals that stand out as much, but as a unit I think they are better fits for our intended offensive style.
    However, I think they will need to gel as a unit first. How long that takes will probably be a big factor in how well the offense runs in the first few games.

    I am hoping that they can get rolling eary in the Tulsa game but we will see.



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    Quote Originally Posted by Istate View Post
    My initial impressions of the ratings by posters of the 2012 team look like this:

    1) I think we're being a little hard on the qb's. Neither qb is great, but both qb's led us to victories last year and should be better this year. Thus, I think the QB position is going to exceed expectations.

    2) I think RB's are rated mostly on par with what we should expect, especially with SJ back. We still don't have a complete package back, but we have a bunch of guys that bring a little bit different perspective for teams to prepare for.

    3) I think we might be under-selling our WR's a little. I think Gary is poised for a breakout year, and we've got a bunch of other guys that have major game experience. If one of the RS-Fr can be effective, this group is going to look darn good out there.

    4) The OL is getting way overrated. Boy do I hope I'm wrong, but I see as weak of an Oline as we've had at ISU in years. Sorry, the talent is just not there this year. If they can be a notch above serviceable, ISU is going to surprise teams, but this is the weakest unit on the team.

    5) The DL is also being overrated. Way too much credit is be given to guys that have not produced. Rosie was a solid player but not exceptional PRIOR to major knee surgery. Irving is still an athletic freak trying to play football. I think we'll still need some major growth from him before consistency shows up. I like McD, but the other spot is not good.

    6) The LBs are great. I don't care if Jake Farley would have been our third LB this year the unit still should be highly regarded heading into the season. Too much experience with guys that have exceeded every expectation ever put upon them to not be excited about this year.

    7) The defensive backfield is being significantly overrated. The safeties lack speed. The CBs lack size, and the combined united lacks experience together. I think we have a good group for depth, I just feel the ceiling on that depth isn't that high. So, that's good and bad. It's way worse to have no depth on average talent than to have a lot of depth of average talent. I think we'll see the corners picked on more this year which worries me about their ability to react more quickly in run support.

    Overall, we've got some units getting too much credit, but I think WR and LB are looking very, very good.

    6-6 is till a good to great year. With 4-8 to 7-5 being the likely window.
    I agree with this for the most part, especially the part on our OL being way overrated by our fans. They are my biggest concern this year actually. I do think the other DT spot is pretty solid though. I agree on DE, I'm not expecting much from that position yet again.



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    Quote Originally Posted by CYCLNST8 View Post
    Not disagreeing with you; just wondering what you're basing this off of. I thought the returning experience plus losing our two biggest false-start offenders was a good thing.
    You have to be freaking kidding me. Those were our two best offensive lineman last year, period. I can't see how anyone would think losing KO especially would be a good thing. Some fans are way, way overrating the impact of a couple false start penalties a game relative to losing a dominant OL in KO and a good one in Hicks.



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    Re: Pre Two a Days...Offense and Defense

    I doubt Daley plays this year simply because of his youth. He's only 16 years old right now.



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