About that "youth" thing ...

rockford

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How young of a team are we? Well, here are the numbers: (Numbers now, maybe some perspective later. ;))

After seven games, 59 players have appeared in at least three games; 40 players have played in all seven.
• 11 freshmen
• 8 sophomores
• 12 juniors
• 9 seniors

Note that the freshmen count doesn't include Faalele, who will likely be starting for as long as he wants.

On offense, 25 players have played in at least three games: Only two are seniors. Nine are freshmen.

On defense, 29 players have played in at least three games: Seven are seniors. Eight are freshmen.

JTG
 

#2Gopher

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Oh good another thread on the "youth" thing.
 

Spoofin

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Wow, we are super young. I didn’t realize that. Explains the atrocious play thus far.


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Some Day...Maybe

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How young of a team are we? Well, here are the numbers: (Numbers now, maybe some perspective later. ;))

After seven games, 59 players have appeared in at least three games; 40 players have played in all seven.
• 11 freshmen
• 8 sophomores
• 12 juniors
• 9 seniors

Note that the freshmen count doesn't include Faalele, who will likely be starting for as long as he wants.

On offense, 25 players have played in at least three games: Only two are seniors. Nine are freshmen.

On defense, 29 players have played in at least three games: Seven are seniors. Eight are freshmen.

JTG
Here’s a question, how much experience is in the secondary? Take out Shenault who didn’t play last week. None of them were starters last year correct? What happened to the depth in the secondary? Defense has been awful, but I believe what I stated are facts. Could careless if you’re a junior or senior if you were never good enough to play prior.


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rockford

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We have 11 Dbacks who've played in at least three games (four, really). No way of knowing if that experience was all on special teams, or on defense.

Two are seniors (Shenault and Huff), one is a junior (Williamson). Then we have five sophomores and three freshmen.

JTG
 

rockford

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Always interesting to see guys jump into a thread to say they're not interested in the thread. :rolleyes:

Now a little perspective. Since most would agree that beating our neighbors is a priority, let's see how we compare to Wisconsin and Iowa.

At this point, the Badgers have 41 guys who've played in all seven games.
• 8 freshmen
• 13 sophomores
• 12 juniors
• 8 seniors

Wisconsin has slightly more underclassmen in their "core 40" than we do (21 to 19).

JTG
 

Face The Facts

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Here’s a question, how much experience is in the secondary? Take out Shenault who didn’t play last week. None of them were starters last year correct? What happened to the depth in the secondary? Defense has been awful, but I believe what I stated are facts. Could careless if you’re a junior or senior if you were never good enough to play prior.


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I am glad you asked.

From a study I posted yesterday, the study determined that QB was the number 1 area where inexperience / youth (non-returning starter) was most important.

The second most important area was secondary. It was by far the most important defensive category.

The least important on defense was linebacker. A position where we are deepest.

So if we had just known that, we would have known our defense had huge obstacles to overcome.
 

Some Day...Maybe

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I am glad you asked.

From a study I posted yesterday, the study determined that QB was the number 1 area where inexperience / youth (non-returning starter) was most important.

The second most important area was secondary. It was by far the most important defensive category.

The least important on defense was linebacker. A position where we are deepest.

So if we had just known that, we would have known our defense had huge obstacles to overcome.
So what’s your point? Fleck should have recruited secondary players with 2 years of D1 experience that are very good?


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Face The Facts

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Serious or sarcasm? Hard to tell sometimes. ;)

JTG

Here is the excerpt.


https://www.footballstudyhall.com/2015/9/4/9254347/a-better-way-to-measure-returning-experience

An excerpt
"You need a seasoned secondary
Here are the correlations between different types of defensive data and change in Def. S&P+. Since I'm now using an adjusted point total for offensive and defensive ratings, one would expect a negative correlation -- % of returning ___ goes up, adjusted scoring averages go down.

Again, if I'd made wagers beforehand, I'd have bet on linebacker correlations being low. Everything I've read from others, and everything I've noticed myself, suggests that linebackers are a little bit less hard to replace than others. Or, the range between great linebackers and just fine linebackers is smaller than in other units.

This suggests that experience in the front seven isn't as big a deal as it is in the back of the defense. It is pretty remarkable that the correlations between returning DBs are almost as strong as those for the defense as a whole. I didn't see that coming.


And, for 2014, at least, the data suggested that the ability to get hands on passes was more valuable -- or at least, less replaceable -- then getting hands on the quarterback. I didn't see that coming either."


So it matches what we've seen. O-line is surprisingly easy to replace with new players.
Also, linebackers are easily replaceable where secondary is not.

QB and secondary experience with returning starters is most important.


So again, we are weak in secondary because we lost about 8 secondary people between Fleck's two safeties and all the other transfers, expulsions, etc.
Also, for two years in a row we have a QB with no experience.
 
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Face The Facts

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So what’s your point? Fleck should have recruited secondary players with 2 years of D1 experience that are very good?


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What part of PJ's history of recruiting JUCO's makes you think that going against his plan would be wise by recruiting JUCO's?
 

rockford

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FTF, thanks for the link. I missed that. (But the link doesn't seem to work.)

Iowa has a smaller "core" than Minnesota or Wisconsin, with just 33 players who have appeared in all seven games. (OTOH, they seem to have an inordinate number of players who have appeared in six games: 13. What's that all about?)

• 3 freshmen
• 7 sophomores
• 12 juniors
• 11 seniors

Percentage of underclassmen among players who have appeared in all seven games:
47.5% Minnesota
51.2% Wisconsin
30.3% Iowa

Yeah, I know, this tells us nothing about the quality of the players. That's a whole 'nother can of worms, and a lot more subjective.

JTG
 

Face The Facts

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Edited the link. Try it now.

https://www.footballstudyhall.com/2015/9/4/9254347/a-better-way-to-measure-returning-experience


I think there are a few factors at play.

1. Returning starters (experience / youth) whatever you want to call it.
2. Is the scheme consistent. IS the defense being taught the same to the players with same concepts year after year.
3. Talent
4. Are players getting on the field by choice or by necessity

My assessment:

1. Our starting secondary was Shenault, Huff, Winfield, and Smith.
Shenault changed positions, and now we have two rookies getting significant time.

2. The scheme was not consistent for the veterans who are playing. Winfield, Huff, and Shenault all are playing under a new scheme as of 2017. (So after learning for a year or two, it's changed and vastly different just in whether the CB's are taught to look back or not when defending passes).

3. Talent. Outside of Winfield, we don't have an upperclassman who would look like a Buddy-Calhoun, a Eric Murray, or a Jalen Myrick. Also hurting is with Winfield off the team, we probably lost our leader in the secondary who would have been that strong point to help the secondary play well. Now Huff or Shenault are essentially the leader of the defense for the freshman to rely on. In my book that's a significant gap.

4. Terell Smith is playing and isn't doing it by necessity, but Jordan Howden is playing by necessity. I don't think it was ever the plan for a freshman walk-on to be playing as much as he is at safety.

So in all four areas, we're subpar.
From the study, if this was our linebacker core or even our Defensive line, it would be easier to cover it up. But instead, we don't have NFL caliber talent, we changed the way the secondary has to play, we are thin on numbers so players are playing by necessity, and now we are playing two freshmen, one who was not heavily recruited.

Part of the issue is we had two safeties leave from PJ's first class, but that also happened after PJ had mostly wrapped up recruiting on his 2018 class which was heavy on O-Line due to deficits there. Other part of the issue is we lost significant players due to transfer / expulsion.
 

WorkingMyTailOff

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Hmm based on this thread it’s dial 911 for juco secondary help unless we have someone who is redshirting to play next to Winfield next year (if Winfield can stay on the field).
 

Some Day...Maybe

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What part of PJ's history of recruiting JUCO's makes you think that going against his plan would be wise by recruiting JUCO's?
Sorry FTF. I couldn’t tell where you were coming from. Now I can, and I agree with you. Thanks for the great info!


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Some Day...Maybe

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Great point FTF, I totally forgot about Adam Beck. Man, loosing both safeties from the 2017 class is some bad luck when you combine it with the lack of depth already there.

Thing is, he only has 1 safety in the ‘19 class. Must have some guys pegged that he thinks will be good safeties.


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Some Day...Maybe

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About that "youth" thing ...

Edited the link. Try it now.

https://www.footballstudyhall.com/2015/9/4/9254347/a-better-way-to-measure-returning-experience


I think there are a few factors at play.

1. Returning starters (experience / youth) whatever you want to call it.
2. Is the scheme consistent. IS the defense being taught the same to the players with same concepts year after year.
3. Talent
4. Are players getting on the field by choice or by necessity

My assessment:

1. Our starting secondary was Shenault, Huff, Winfield, and Smith.
Shenault changed positions, and now we have two rookies getting significant time.

2. The scheme was not consistent for the veterans who are playing. Winfield, Huff, and Shenault all are playing under a new scheme as of 2017. (So after learning for a year or two, it's changed and vastly different just in whether the CB's are taught to look back or not when defending passes).

3. Talent. Outside of Winfield, we don't have an upperclassman who would look like a Buddy-Calhoun, a Eric Murray, or a Jalen Myrick. Also hurting is with Winfield off the team, we probably lost our leader in the secondary who would have been that strong point to help the secondary play well. Now Huff or Shenault are essentially the leader of the defense for the freshman to rely on. In my book that's a significant gap.

4. Terell Smith is playing and isn't doing it by necessity, but Jordan Howden is playing by necessity. I don't think it was ever the plan for a freshman walk-on to be playing as much as he is at safety.

So in all four areas, we're subpar.
From the study, if this was our linebacker core or even our Defensive line, it would be easier to cover it up. But instead, we don't have NFL caliber talent, we changed the way the secondary has to play, we are thin on numbers so players are playing by necessity, and now we are playing two freshmen, one who was not heavily recruited.

Part of the issue is we had two safeties leave from PJ's first class, but that also happened after PJ had mostly wrapped up recruiting on his 2018 class which was heavy on O-Line due to deficits there. Other part of the issue is we lost significant players due to transfer / expulsion.
This is a great post! By far the best I’ve seen to describe this team’s issues. Well done!


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rockford

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Edited the link. Try it now.

https://www.footballstudyhall.com/2015/9/4/9254347/a-better-way-to-measure-returning-experience


I think there are a few factors at play.

1. Returning starters (experience / youth) whatever you want to call it.
2. Is the scheme consistent. IS the defense being taught the same to the players with same concepts year after year.
3. Talent
4. Are players getting on the field by choice or by necessity

My assessment:

1. Our starting secondary was Shenault, Huff, Winfield, and Smith.
Shenault changed positions, and now we have two rookies getting significant time.

2. The scheme was not consistent for the veterans who are playing. Winfield, Huff, and Shenault all are playing under a new scheme as of 2017. (So after learning for a year or two, it's changed and vastly different just in whether the CB's are taught to look back or not when defending passes).

3. Talent. Outside of Winfield, we don't have an upperclassman who would look like a Buddy-Calhoun, a Eric Murray, or a Jalen Myrick. Also hurting is with Winfield off the team, we probably lost our leader in the secondary who would have been that strong point to help the secondary play well. Now Huff or Shenault are essentially the leader of the defense for the freshman to rely on. In my book that's a significant gap.

4. Terell Smith is playing and isn't doing it by necessity, but Jordan Howden is playing by necessity. I don't think it was ever the plan for a freshman walk-on to be playing as much as he is at safety.

So in all four areas, we're subpar.
From the study, if this was our linebacker core or even our Defensive line, it would be easier to cover it up. But instead, we don't have NFL caliber talent, we changed the way the secondary has to play, we are thin on numbers so players are playing by necessity, and now we are playing two freshmen, one who was not heavily recruited.

Part of the issue is we had two safeties leave from PJ's first class, but that also happened after PJ had mostly wrapped up recruiting on his 2018 class which was heavy on O-Line due to deficits there. Other part of the issue is we lost significant players due to transfer / expulsion.
That's a solid post. I guess you're not just a pretty face. :D

JTG
 

rockford

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How about Indiana, you say?

The Hoosiers have played 8 games, but have 44 players who have appeared in all 8.
• 10 freshmen
• 9 sophomores
• 13 juniors
• 12 seniors

Percentage of underclassmen among players who have appeared in all seven games, along with overall and conference record:
51.2% Wisconsin (5-2, 3-1)
47.5% Minnesota (3-4, 0-4)
43.2% Indiana (4-4, 1-4)
30.3% Iowa (3-1, 6-1)

Incidentally, Northwestern, Purdue, Illinois and Nebraska apparently don't provide "participation" data online. Haven't checked the rest yet.

JTG
 

caliGopher

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About that "youth" thing ...

Here’s a question, how much experience is in the secondary? Take out Shenault who didn’t play last week. None of them were starters last year correct? What happened to the depth in the secondary? Defense has been awful, but I believe what I stated are facts. Could careless if you’re a junior or senior if you were never good enough to play prior.


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Well, Fleck couldn’t keep Beck and Handy-Holly on the team. Those two, his recruits mind you, would certainly made a difference this year.


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rockford

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So far, we've been looking at what percentage of core players are underclassmen. Now, let's try to quantify how much those underclassmen are being relied on.

Here's a breakdown by position for the Gophers, with a percentage of the production by underclassmen at each position:

QB: 100% of passing
RB: 82.8% of rushing
WR: 48.4% of receiving
TE: 20.2% of receiving (minimal amount)
OL: 60% of starts (approximately)

DL: 17.2% of tackles
LB: 2.3% of tackles
DB: 51.4% of tackles

Offensively, we're obviously very young. After losing our top two running backs, junior WR Tyler Johnson is our only upperclassman playmaker. Take away Johnson, C Jared Weyler and T Donnell Greene, and our offense is closer to being a high school team than a Division I starting lineup.

And yet our major problems have come on the other side of the ball, where two of the three position groups are dominated by upperclassmen. As mentioned earlier, only our D-backs -- where eight of the 11 who have appeared in at least four games are freshmen and sophomores -- are particularly young.

And therein -- as FTF pointed out -- lies our primary problem. It's not "youth," per se, but youth in the defensive backfield.

Now, that's hardly breaking news. But looking at the numbers have changed my perceptions a little bit.

• Overall, we're probably not remarkably young compared to conference foes. Indiana has nearly as high a percentage of underclassmen in their core group as we do. Wisconsin actually has a higher percentage of underclassmen in their core than us.

• Without looking at it, I had assumed inexperience was a primary problem across the board. But while the offense is dominated by youth, it has performed fairly well. Defensively, it's only in the backfield where underclassmen are being relied on in a big way.

Since we have only three D-backs in next year's crop of recruits (more youth!), the current compliment of players in the secondary will likely determine what level of success the Gophers attain the rest of this year ... and next year.

JTG
 

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I think PJ should be looking for a couple of JUCO db's....
 

diehard

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How about Indiana, you say?

The Hoosiers have played 8 games, but have 44 players who have appeared in all 8.
• 10 freshmen
• 9 sophomores
• 13 juniors
• 12 seniors

Percentage of underclassmen among players who have appeared in all seven games, along with overall and conference record:
51.2% Wisconsin (5-2, 3-1)
47.5% Minnesota (3-4, 0-4)
43.2% Indiana (4-4, 1-4)
30.3% Iowa (3-1, 6-1)

Incidentally, Northwestern, Purdue, Illinois and Nebraska apparently don't provide "participation" data online. Haven't checked the rest yet.

JTG
If these are important stats we lose to Indiana and beat Wisky. Thanks, good to know.
 

MaxyJR1

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Edited the link. Try it now.

https://www.footballstudyhall.com/2015/9/4/9254347/a-better-way-to-measure-returning-experience


I think there are a few factors at play.

1. Returning starters (experience / youth) whatever you want to call it.
2. Is the scheme consistent. IS the defense being taught the same to the players with same concepts year after year.
3. Talent
4. Are players getting on the field by choice or by necessity

My assessment:

1. Our starting secondary was Shenault, Huff, Winfield, and Smith.
Shenault changed positions, and now we have two rookies getting significant time.

2. The scheme was not consistent for the veterans who are playing. Winfield, Huff, and Shenault all are playing under a new scheme as of 2017. (So after learning for a year or two, it's changed and vastly different just in whether the CB's are taught to look back or not when defending passes).

3. Talent. Outside of Winfield, we don't have an upperclassman who would look like a Buddy-Calhoun, a Eric Murray, or a Jalen Myrick. Also hurting is with Winfield off the team, we probably lost our leader in the secondary who would have been that strong point to help the secondary play well. Now Huff or Shenault are essentially the leader of the defense for the freshman to rely on. In my book that's a significant gap.

4. Terell Smith is playing and isn't doing it by necessity, but Jordan Howden is playing by necessity. I don't think it was ever the plan for a freshman walk-on to be playing as much as he is at safety.

So in all four areas, we're subpar.
From the study, if this was our linebacker core or even our Defensive line, it would be easier to cover it up. But instead, we don't have NFL caliber talent, we changed the way the secondary has to play, we are thin on numbers so players are playing by necessity, and now we are playing two freshmen, one who was not heavily recruited.

Part of the issue is we had two safeties leave from PJ's first class, but that also happened after PJ had mostly wrapped up recruiting on his 2018 class which was heavy on O-Line due to deficits there. Other part of the issue is we lost significant players due to transfer / expulsion.
Add to it that we have guys playing out of position and have a lack of some talent in the front seven and it magnifies the issues in the secondary.
 

Gophers_4life

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And yet our major problems have come on the other side of the ball, where two of the three position groups are dominated by upperclassmen. As mentioned earlier, only our D-backs -- where eight of the 11 who have appeared in at least four games are freshmen and sophomores -- are particularly young.

And therein -- as FTF pointed out -- lies our primary problem. It's not "youth," per se, but youth in the defensive backfield.
Saying "this is our primary problem" doesn't even hardly do it.

It's the entire kit and kaboodle of why our defense gives up so many big plays, which is the reason teams score against us.


Without Winfield, the secondary pretty much is horrible. Awful tackling. And sometimes breakdowns in coverage. Nebraska first two big TD runs were 100% caused by whiffs on tackles by CB. And they got two more big TD passes, one where a TE snuck out uncovered if I recall. So we really only got "beat", via drives with several smaller players, for 2 TD? Much more acceptable.
 
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