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Not having a ST coordinator - what do we get?

OttoinGrotto

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This might be discussed elsewhere and I missed it, but what is the specific coaching function we've gained by not dedicating a coach to special teams?

I assume some unit has a second coach?
 

javadoc

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This might be discussed elsewhere and I missed it, but what is the specific coaching function we've gained by not dedicating a coach to special teams?

I assume some unit has a second coach?
 

sufandu

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Someone is currently coaching special teams, it's just not their only job. It wasn't Lustig's either. Someone needs to get better at it or we need to hire a position coach that's good at it along with whatever position they're responsible for.
 

RF2044

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It's had a detrimental impact -- no question about that.

Lustig provided upper echelon special teams. Special teams are anything but this year, in all phases.
 

RF2044

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our coverage teams have been outstanding. Our return teams have been very good. Pena has been great since he got put on notice.

Punting has been atrocious. So have punt returns. The kicking game has also been poor relative to the recent past, especially with a kicker on par with what we have.

I agree, coverage has been solid. So perhaps saying 'every phase" was too harsh. But in the main, special teams have taken a collective step downward, and the unit isn't as strong as it's been in recent years. In no small part to Lustig's departure.
 

PhatOrange

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Punting has been atrocious. So have punt returns. The kicking game has also been poor relative to the recent past, especially with a kicker on par with what we have.

I agree, coverage has been solid. So perhaps saying 'every phase" was too harsh. But in the main, special teams have taken a collective step downward, and the unit isn't as strong as it's been in recent years. In no small part to Lustig's departure.

we’re averaging about 9.5 yards per punt return and our opponents a little over 5.

Pena ranks #29 in punt return average and #21 in punt return yards. As a team we rank #49 in punt return yards average, #26 in yards.

 
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AngryOtto

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Only issue I see in special teams is the kicking game. Williams has not been the answer in punting. AS has had issues this year.
Need to look at getting a really good Australian style kicker for next year.
 

PhatOrange

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Only issue I see in special teams is the kicking game. Williams has not been the answer in punting. AS has had issues this year.
Need to look at getting a really good Australian style kicker for next year.

That's the only issue I see as well. But it's a big issue. We have to somehow get our place kicker back on track and the punters need to keep at it.

But coverage wise we're very very good. We're #13 in kickoff return defense.

I feel like our KR and PR is going to break one before long. Pena has been very good since getting benched. He's trying to field them and make returns even when theyre on top of him.

I don't like when they fair catch inside the 10 and we did that last weekend to start our last drive. I cringed at that. The fair catch there may have saved us some time on the clock though.
 
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SU94

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Punting has been atrocious. So have punt returns. The kicking game has also been poor relative to the recent past, especially with a kicker on par with what we have.

I agree, coverage has been solid. So perhaps saying 'every phase" was too harsh. But in the main, special teams have taken a collective step downward, and the unit isn't as strong as it's been in recent years. In no small part to Lustig's departure.
I am not saying you're wrong, but I will offer another way to look at this: We have a Groza Award winner who is now pedestrian at his craft. That decline began with Lustig these last few years and has continued this year. He's not an NFL kicker. Even in 2018, his kicks did not have the exit velocity needed to consistently kick comfortably in the 45-55 yard range.

We had a 4-year punter who was drafted and is at least NFL caliber (he also did kickoffs IIRC). We now have a redshirt-frosh punter with strong HS accolades that has been injured to some degree and a walk-on backup. They've both struggled.

The coverage teams have been strong outside of Pena deciding a few times to let the punt bounce and losing about 15-20 yards of extra field position. But again, like Williams, he is a red-shirt frosh and I like what I see to date.

Personally, I think the coverage teams are much, much more of a reflection on a special teams coach, as opposed to the kicker and punter.

Beyond Szymt, I think many of the struggles can simply be attributed to youth and the "curse" of living up to 2018, when we had the best kicker and one of the top 2-3 punters in CFB. In other words, the downward trend of SU Special Teams was equal parts predictable and happenstance. But, it will improve from here, almost assuredly.
 

dollarbill44

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I don't know exactly what we're getting. But, I drove by practice the other day and saw the special teams unit standing over by the soccer stadium smoking cigarettes and playing hacky sack.
A bunch of unsupervised delinquents, if you ask me!
 

RF2044

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we’re averaging about 9.5 yards per punt return and our opponents a little over 5.

Pena ranks #29 in punt return average and #21 in punt return yards. As a team we rank #49 in punt return yards average, #26 in yards.


C'mon -- we both know that this data set doesn't reflect the issues that have been massive problems, like letting punts roll back to the 5 yard line, etc. To look at the return yardage alone as the only measuring stick does NOT paint the full picture.

ST has not been "special" this year. In 2018, it was a major weapon, and was a beneficial factor in some close games. This year, our special teams miscues have cost us games and left lots of points by the wayside.

Now, if you want to make the case that we're showing improvement in certain areas from the beginning of the year, okay. But I don't think it's an exaggeration to suggest that we may have lost 2 games -- possibly all 3 -- due to special teams mishaps.
 

upperdeck

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I am not sure a ST coach would have done much to fix any of the issues we have seen.. Not gonna make a punter appear out of thin air? And the fact that one game a punter who hit hard to handle punts that happens. i didnt really cause the kicker to miss kicks.

you could say maybe it would help the return game but you would have to identify the kicks that would be changed by scheme
 

qdawgg

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I am not sure a ST coach would have done much to fix any of the issues we have seen.. Not gonna make a punter appear out of thin air? And the fact that one game a punter who hit hard to handle punts that happens. i didnt really cause the kicker to miss kicks.

you could say maybe it would help the return game but you would have to identify the kicks that would be changed by scheme

By that logic a QB coach wouldn’t help a QB. A good ST coach would absolutely help the kickers. It might be something purely technical causing the issues that a ST coach might pinpoint and help work to fix it.
 

upperdeck

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By that logic a QB coach wouldn’t help a QB. A good ST coach would absolutely help the kickers. It might be something purely technical causing the issues that a ST coach might pinpoint and help work to fix it.
yup.. but not every ST coach helps all those things.. Babers has been a ST coach.. pretty sure he is not a punting/kicking GURU. much like not every QB coach is a QB guru.. there are many things that you can help a QB in that are not related to throwing/footwork/reading D/understanding the offense.
 
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