Taken from Rivals with CL's ongoing permission: http://colorado.forums.rivals.com/threads/causes-of-offensive-drive-failure-q2.11711/ Q1's final drive spilled over into the beginning of Q2 and culminated in a Gonzales field goal to narrow the score to 17-10 Arizona. In the last three drives, the CU offensive platoon had racked up almost 200 yards and 10 points. However, from here foward is where the offensive unit would hit their first major slump of the game. The next three series, the CU offense would manage nary a first down and only 11 total yards. Quarter 2 Possession 5 Series: 1 Play: 1 Down: 1 Distance: 10 Formation: Shotgun Personnel: 12 CU aligns with a 12 personnel grouping out of the shotgun formation. Notably Carr is in at RB with Huckins and Kough at guards. The play is a simple inside zone. The failure here occurs when Nembot advances off of the combo block up to the second level, which leaves Irwin to fend for himself against the DE. The Zona DE makes a nice play here and slides off if the block to the inside. Irwin looses his position and falls to the ground. The DE wraps up Carr and reinforcements rally to finish the job. Elsewhere on the OL, Kough pancakes his man, Huckins and Kronshage root their assignment from his position and Kelley doesn't get a great push but neutralizes the NT. This play was never going to go for major yardage but if Irwin had been a little better perhaps this would have put CU in front of the chains. Spoiler Series: 1 Play: 2 Down: 2 Distance: 8 Formation: Shotgun Personnel: 11 CU aligns with an 11 personnel grouping, swapping Frazier for MacIntyre who now fills the slot to the field side of the play. The call is a run that may appear to be designed to go to the B-gap. Notice how Kelley seals the NT while Huckins and Kronshage drives their men outside. This creates a crease. Carr does not like what he sees in the initial hole and tries to bounce it wide and then wider. This completely negates the blocks by the OL to that side of the line. MacIntyre who is also a neophyte blocker at WR is again easily discarded as the defender pursues upfield forcing Carr back inside. It looks like Carr just elected to try to use his speed to get to the outside instead of picking up the tough yardage inside. This is a bad habit many super fast RBs have coming out of high school. Often in HS they can usually outrun the defense to the outside on almost any given play. He'll need to learn to break this habit. I could be totally wrong on that analysis, but judging how the play appears to be blocked, this is my guess. With that said, this is just unwise play selection with the personnel group. Kronshage is not a great run blocker and MacIntyre is not even a pylon at this point. Running to their side with an inexperienced RB seems like something with a long shot for any meaningful success. Spoiler Series: 1 Play: 3 Down: 3 Distance: 12 Formation: Shotgun Personnel: 10 It's 3rd and 12 and now CU is behind the chains. Lee has subbed in for Carr. He motions to the boundary side presnap. Zona again shows blitz but bails into coverage at the snap. The call is a speed option. Initially, CU appears to have a the numbers advantage but their is no space to adequately execute the play, especially for a team that doesn't run option. Kronshage and Huckins are both unable to get good blocks on anyone and the LB that showed blitz and bailed gets pushed off of Bobo's block by Kronshage, which frees the LB to make the tackle. It actually kind of looks like Bobo then hits Kronshage instead of the backer. Even if the backer had been sealed to the inside, there were other tacklers in position to stop the play. The play is an immense failure. I wonder if this option package by shown on the reverse and now this was the doing of BL or the offensive consultant brought in last week to jump start the offense. I don't ever recall BL running this before. This is one of the worse play calls thus far. Spoiler Conclusion Going to go out on a limb here but perhaps one the biggest problems with the offense is that we are trying to use too many personnel groups. The core guys just cannot find a rhythm together. This goes for the OL, the RBs, and the WRs. Maybe we really need to shorten the bench like basketball or hockey teams do in crunch time. This may draw criticism but after another abysmal blocking effort by Jay MacIntyre on this drive, there is no reasonable justification why he continues to play ahead of guys like Lee Walker or Bryce Bobo, who have both shown to be effective and willing run blockers. Lee Walker is one of our best athletes and is exactly the sort of athlete we need to get the ball to more often. Bobo has already proven he is a capable WR 3 if given the opportunity. Carr has had a few explosive plays this year but other times appears totally out of sync with the offense. He does need touches but down 10-17 at the start of the Q2 with a sputtering offense is not the time to try to break him in. Quarter 2 Possession 6 No gif here but Fields fumbles on the first play of the drive. Just a mistake by a young guy trying to make a play. The Arizona DB doesn't even look like tries to go for the strip, just kind of hits the ball. CU's defense makes a huge stop and Zona misses the FG on fourth down. Quarter 2 Possession 7 Series: 1 Play: 1 Down: 1 Distance: 10 Formation: Single back Personnel: 12 CU returns to the single back 12 personnel grouping set up for possession seven. Play call here is not too different as to many of the early drives started, with a come back route to Spruce on the sidelines. The thought process here is just to get ahead of the sticks on first down. Unfortunately, on this play it appears that both Irwin and Kronshage surrender pressure too quickly, though Zona does bring two extra rushers. This affects Liufau who may have wanted to throw to his right as his first read. Instead almost truncates his drop, wheels around toward his left and rushes his throw to Spruce before he looks balanced to throw. This play encompasses the debate on the among the community: The OL doesn't great protection, Liufau also doesn't appropriately shift in the pocket and becomes flustered. The throw is then off the mark. The play call itself while simple doesn't have a quick check down for Liufau to get rid of the easily and safely. Spoiler Series: 1 Play: 2 Down: 2 Distance: 10 Formation: Shotgun Personnel: 11 After the incompletion on first down, CU elects to return to the pass on second down to get ahead of the sticks. This play features the 11 personnel grouping with Irwin in the slot. The amazing camera angle by Fox prohibits us from seeing the receiver all the way to the field side of the play. Zona again shows blitz at pre-snap with off man to man coverage on the outside. As Zona has demonstrated throughout the first half, they show blitz with five or six defenders but will only bring a one or two extra men. Here the MLB feints the rush and drops into an underneath zone / spy assignment. The outside back rushes but is dispatched of by Lindsay on a great block. Either by virtue of the pressure of the play before or his own volition, Liufau panics. It's not totally clear where are the defenders are on this play but we can surmise that their appears to be bracket coverage on Fields to the boundary side of the play at the top of the screen. Irwin appears to have slight separation from his man but it also could be because his defender sees Liufau scrambling around. It does appear as though there was some space to potentially throw Irwin open. Regardless, Liufau sifts around trying to escape otherwise great protection and eventually scrambles for a decent gain. As the above play, this again exhibits why there is a great debate centered around Liufau, the OL and BL. Liufau clearly does not trust his OL to handle the blitz and does not have the flexibility to hot route a player or check into a different play or protection. Note, this drive appears to be the first time all game the Arizona defensive postures appear to be affecting his psyche. Spoiler By great fortune, the ensuing punt on the series above hits a Zona blocker in the back and is recovered by CU on the Arizona 24 yard line. A run to Lindsay and a throw to Spruce get the drive started on the right foot, not unlike what we had seen BL try to do previously. CU almost self destructs when Kelley and Liufau miscommunicate on the snap count. Bryce Bobo makes a stellar effort on second down to weave threw traffic to get into a third and manageable situation. CU punches it in on a QB Power over the right side. Here is a summary of the plays that lead to the touchdown: 1-10 Ariz 24 Lindsay,Phillip rush for 6 yards to the ARIZ18 2-4 Ariz 18 Liufau, Sefo pass complete to Spruce, Nelson for 10 yards to the ARIZ8, 1ST DOWN COLO P10 1-G Ariz 08 Fumble by Liufau, Sefo, Liufau, Sefo rush for loss of 5 yards to the ARIZ13. 2-G Ariz 13 Liufau, Sefo pass complete to Bobo, Bryce for 11 yards to the ARIZ2 3-G Ariz 02 Liufau, Sefo rush for 2 yards to the ARIZ0, TOUCHDOWN, clock 02:26. The next post will analyze the Q3 offensive woes.