As always, posted from Rivals poster CL34: http://colorado.forums.rivals.com/threads/some-ucla-analysis.12836/#post-187880 Responding to a thread following the game where some requests were made to examine some potential miscues by the offense. This post may unintentionally come off as a Brian Lindgren apologist post. In review of the game, I had figured his mistakes in play calling with be glaringly obvious and dumbfounding upon further scrutiny. However -- honestly, he installs some clever, advanced concepts, and exactly the schemes that people clamor for in a new OC that reveal themselves upon further study and may be missed the first time around. So what am I talking about specifically? Power / Sweep Read Goal Line Play Call There was some uproar about the jet sweet call to Don Lee during a goal-to-go series in the 2nd quarter. This was an interesting call but let's review a few plays earlier in the game to gain some context to that particular play. So the offense runs this play which is essentially a read option, but not the typical inside zone where the OT leaves the DE and doubles one of the DTs and drives them out of the play (though we do run that too). Instead, our blocking scheme ALSO pulls a guard and leads the QB through a hole on the inside. At the same time, the RB or motion man comes across the formation and carries out a sweep action (outside run). Here is a good example of us running this play earlier in the game. Notice on this play that Lee comes from the slot to carry out the sweep. At the same time, Nembot doubles by blocking down and leaving the DE unblocked. By this time, Callahan has pulled to the other side of the line but he doesn't trap block the outside like on a normal trap or power, and instead leads Liufau upfield through the alley created by Nembot blocking down and the DE advancing upfield. The key to this play is that the DE must respect the sweep action. That's right, the DE is getting optioned here. If he crashes down, then the read is a give on the sweep, and if like he does here and respects his duties for contain, then the QB keeps and advances upfield. Spoiler This design is especially good because we will also kick out the DE with a trap block at times in other plays that may appear the same at first. So not only does he need to be aware the option but at other times the impending block. Couple that with the quality play of the interior OL and it's understandable why this scheme is effective. Just watch Kelly just turn loose one on one against the DT. The offense used variations of this play (different personnel and formation) with some frequently to gut punch the Ucla defense throughout the game. Here is another instance of the same play run out of a different formation. This play is of particular interest because it is not successful. The reason it is not successful is because there is a miscommunication on the give between Lee and Liufau. Liufau appears to really want to ride the read to sell the fake or try to see where the defender will commit, given that the defender appears to play the initial action well. Lee, perhaps seeing the defender and wanting to run or unsure what the extra time means, grabs the ball from Liufau. Notice Liufau's disappointed reaction after he gives the ball to Lee, here are two angles: Spoiler Spoiler Alright, so there's the context of the play. It's a power / sweep read option but instead of having the trap / kickout block on the DE or edge defender, the scheme options that guy instead. So here is the goal line version of the play. Notice the personnel. It's 2 RB, 2 TE and 1 WR -- 22 personnel grouping which is typically a power running / heavy set group as opposed to the 11 or 10 personnel groups in the play above. Have to appreciate the versatility of this play and Lindgren disguising it through different formations and personnel. Lee is in motion at the snap, moving toward the strength of the formation. The alignment of the formation is designed to create an alley for Lee to run to the outside. Watch how both Frazier and Powell look to seal guys to outside and inside respectively if Lee's path of travel had not been disrupted it's easy to imagine an alley forming between Frazier and Powell. Bobo also has a great block on the edge. Now, divert your attention to the inside of the play. Irwin actually picks up the DE. That means the option man is the OLB in this case. Powell confirms this as he deliberately leaves the OLB to get optioned. He didn't miss a block here, this is by design. Elsewhere Callahan has pulled and created a seam through the center of the line. There also appears to be a cut back lane on the backside. So what happened? This could have been an automatic give but if that were the case, then I highly doubt the scheme would leave the OLB unblocked, that just spells disaster. Inferring from that assumption (could be wrong), it looks like Liufau misread the play. Maybe this was due to the above play and the problem with the mesh or maybe he just though Lee could get the corner anyway and tried to give it to him sooner. Lee obviously got the hand off but was forced wider due to the OLB. This threw off the block angle by Frazier. Frazier's man forced Lee to slow down slightly and the backside pursuit got him as Lee tried to bend it back. Spoiler Spoiler The failure in this instance appears to be execution and not play call. This play worked well throughout this game in various downs and distances. This particular instance was a crucial failure because the next play ended up being a pick six. Worst Holding Call Ever Gerrard Kough was flagged for holding here. It's too bad gifs don't have sound because Kough dropped the hammer on Jayon Brown on this play. This is an absolute travesty. We did however pick up the first down on a third down a few plays later a QB power with sweep action. Spoiler Another Trick Play Folks have called for Lindgren to open up the playbook, especially in lieu of last year's conservative play calling against Ucla (@BUFFjunkie), particularly at the end of the game. Nearly every drive Lindgren took shots to the endzone or deep throws down the field, and in some series more than one. To further aid that effort Lindgren also called some trick plays; a WR pass, double reverse flea flicker and this which I have not seen anyone mention yet on the board. Spoiler Did you catch it? Odd to see four OL blocking right. Watch the 5th OL (Lisella?) lined up on the line at the top of the screen. Irwin lined up at OT but released into a pattern. Ucla did a nice job communicating and picking up Irwin out of the odd formation. Not trying to bag on Liufau here but the protection was actually pretty good, he did not need to roll out of the pocket. Not for nothing, but the offensive staff tried to manufacture points this game. Of course, we could have tried to pound it more in certain situations, definitely would cosign that but at the same time, the play calling gave the offense enough opportunities to win the game and we just didn't execute. These plays happen to highlight a few mistakes by Liufau but he was generally at least adequate for most of the game.