Is it hopeless, or can the season be salvaged?

RememberMurray

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Yes,Taulia could have a very good year when it's all said and done. They also have some real quality receivers. My concern is that one of the problems with this defense can't be cured completely by scheming: slowness of foot.
Yes. I may be wrong, but I don't think it's a scheme problem. However, it could be that young, inexperienced players are struggling with understanding positioning, gaps, coverages. Those issues can make a player look slow, to some degree.

I remember during the darkest of the Robb Smith days, players looked really slow. After Smith was let go there was a lot of talk about simplifying the defense, and suddenly the very same players appeared to be much faster.
 

Taji34

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— Can the defense improve, at least a little, yet this season?
Can they? Certainly. Will they? Uncertain. Look, we lost 7 starters to graduation so we already knew it was going to be a young and inexperienced squad, but we were hopeful they would get some tune up OOC games to prepare for a B1G slate and things wouldn't be that bad.

Then COVD hit, and spring ball was cancelled. So now they are missing out on crucial practice time where they are figuring out how to play with each other, anticipate where their teammates will be, and cover each other's weaknesses. In addition Braelen Oliver got injured, so we lost a projected starter.

Then the season became conference only, and then was cancelled, so fall practice was not what it was supposed to be, more lost time just getting the new starters to gel with each other. When the season resumed, we had an accelerated fall practice schedule and now were playing a ranked opponent.

What started as just losing 7 starters (which was already not great) turned into the perfect storm of events to prevent the new starters from really becoming a unit. They certainly can turn it around, but it is going to be very tough. I hope they will though.

— Will we get some key players back, and in time to make some impact?
The only players we can really expect to get back are our FG specialist and new punter. They both will have a positive impact when they get back, but it will only help so much. FG Specialist will boost our FG range a bit, giving the offense some relief, and hopefully the new punter is as good as his stats seemed to say and will consistently pin our opponents deep in their territory, which will help the defense too.

Will it be a huge difference, probably not. Will it be enough to turn some potential close losses to close wins? Maybe.

— Is it possible that some of the newbies on defense will start to improve, with experience?
Possible, yes. Likely? Who knows, see above.

— Can the coaches regroup somehow, and pull a rabbit out of their hats?
I think so. More just a gut feeling though.

Look, as unlikely as it is we could still win out and be undisputed division champs. That is a very unlikely possibility it seems, but could still happen. If we do that, while I'll be disappointing in our early game performance I would consider the season salvaged.

Bare minimum, I'll take somehow beating Iowa, Wisconsin, and Nebraska as a consolation even if we lose every other game.
 

MennoSota

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The season can certainly be savaged even more.

Oops...my bad. The OP said salvaged. Ah...No. 😏
 

Great Plains Gopher

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Going .500 in the remaining six regular season games will be difficult - right now we'd reasonably be underdogs to every opponent except Illinois.
 

TurfGopher

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Yes the season can be salvaged! The coaches will pull together this rag tag group of underachievers in practice and they will rise to glory as Fleck charges them up with over the top raucous locker room speeches. We have the tools, we just need to execute! The wins will come!!!
 

tmvander

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I posted in another thread this so apologies for repeating but my only hope rests on the fact that we've started out like garbage the last two years and rebounded nicely.

2019 we were getting hammered and our defense looked similar to this. We changed DC and won like 4 of 6 down the stretch.

Last year we could have easily been 0-3 in non conference. Play calling was brutal, defense gave up 32 to Georgia Southern and 35 to Fresno St. We all know how we rebounded there.

Personally there are a lot of problems but I think we can definitely win some games and compete in others. Can we win the west? Probably not which was a hope for me going into the season.
 

gophernut1

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Best Case Scenario for rest of the year: Win a Trophy and improve all around for next year.

Thing that Shock Me: How slow our defense is. We have a lot of young talent that is slower than I anticipated. Not sure if it is slow reaction times due to experience or just slow athletically. I am excited to get Oliver back and see some of our new recruits on D next year. On offense I am surprised at how bad we are passing the ball. Morgan seems off and are passing game lacks any diversity. Not sure if that is a talent issue or a coaching issue or both. Either way it is depressing to go from a dominant attach to what we have now..
 

alaska

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I think this season has to be salvaged somehow. I don't believe that winning out the rest of the way is out of the question. But something is drastically wrong. We saw how the defense became strong with Rossi took over, and how it seems that we have completely lost guys out there. We are not even close on some of these running plays right up the middle. Is that fixable with the guys we have? I am not sure, but I also am not hopeless.

This season is crazy, outside of Alabama, Ohio State, Georgia, and Clemson(they almost went down too) I don't believe anyone will have a steady season. Everyone has gone down so far. Everyone is losing a game to a team they should beat. Its a crazy season. Lets let this thing play out and see where we are when the dust settles.

PJ needs to up the urgency immediately and get everyone going. If I am the coordinators I am a bit worried I am about to get canned if I don't prep my side of the ball completely from here on out.

Also, can someone let Morgan know its ok to sling the ball around like last year. He looks scared for some reason.
 
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