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Recruiting athletes

ThrowFar60

Red Shirt
2 Year Member
Probably a little easier to do in the 4-3 than the 3-4, but what position do you see us recruiting athletes for in the future?

TCU probably does this the best that I notice (due to proximity I imagine). However they’ve had their fair share of All-Americans in the past 10 years or so that they’ll recruit as 2* Running Backs in Texas who have decent size (6’2) and place them on the rush end spot. Tommy Blake and Jerry Hughes come to mind first.

Would OLB be the best spot for these types of guys?
 

Cisco

Recruit
5 Year Member
There is a lot of spread in the Big Ten now, but you really have to have packages to mix and match for the opponent. Even in the West, Nebraska, Minnesota, Northwestern, and Illinois can all be classified as spread. And Purdue has a bit of a mix and stresses defenses with their passing game.

In the East you have Ohio State, Indiana, and Maryland. Penn State certainly has spread elements to their offense too.
 
Probably a little easier to do in the 4-3 than the 3-4, but what position do you see us recruiting athletes for in the future?

TCU probably does this the best that I notice (due to proximity I imagine). However they’ve had their fair share of All-Americans in the past 10 years or so that they’ll recruit as 2* Running Backs in Texas who have decent size (6’2) and place them on the rush end spot. Tommy Blake and Jerry Hughes come to mind first.

Would OLB be the best spot for these types of guys?
Cam Taylor is a good example of this sort of athlete, and I think that we'll be able to pull more like that in the future. The 3-4 is not that much different from the 4-3 in that you can take players who are slightly too slow for one position (Safety, for example) and beef him up to play a hybrid OLB/Safety/Nickleback kind of position. I think that we're going to see more hybrid OLB/Rush End kinds of guys, too, and that would be another place where you could make great use of guys who aren't a perfect fit for either position otherwise. A good coaching staff with a good working relationship with a solid Strength & Conditioning staff can come up with all sorts of ways of moving guys like that around. Patterson at TCU was/is a genius at using the best players available and adapting his defense to fit their strengths. With the exceptions of D-linemen and Cornerbacks, I think that Chinander will be able to do something similar with his defense in the future.
 

ShortSideOption

All American
10 Year Member
I think that strategy is effective in the big 12 with all the spread offenses but not so much in the big 10.
I'd agree. I don't have a problem grabbing an athlete or two per class that you have a vision of moving elsewhere or trying somewhere. But at some point you have to get some guys that are used to playing OLB and DE.

I will say Cam Taylor is at a position (CB) that a lot of times there are high schools that take their best player and put him to QB, but that won't be his best spot in college. So that makes sense. The closer you get to the lines, the more difficult things can become.
 

djlhuskerfan

Junior Varsity
10 Year Member
I'd agree. I don't have a problem grabbing an athlete or two per class that you have a vision of moving elsewhere or trying somewhere. But at some point you have to get some guys that are used to playing OLB and DE.

I will say Cam Taylor is at a position (CB) that a lot of times there are high schools that take their best player and put him to QB, but that won't be his best spot in college. So that makes sense. The closer you get to the lines, the more difficult things can become.
Back in the 90s we got away with guys like Stewart, Dumas, E Johnson etc. moving down from safety to linebackers because the dline and ILBs were pretty much able to control the game. Our d-line is pretty solid this year but not to the point where they can control the game. Different type game today especially in the Big 10. I really dont remember any team back in 90s or very early 2000s just come out and try to smack us in the mouth until 2001 Colorado game. Seemed like that game changed us forever. Exposed a formula that has been exploited. OLB have to be able to hold up against the power run game and the speed game to the outside, plus being able to rush passer and play coverage. Those guys are very hard to find
 

ShortSideOption

All American
10 Year Member
Back in the 90s we got away with guys like Stewart, Dumas, E Johnson etc. moving down from safety to linebackers because the dline and ILBs were pretty much able to control the game. Our d-line is pretty solid this year but not to the point where they can control the game. Different type game today especially in the Big 10. I really dont remember any team back in 90s or very early 2000s just come out and try to smack us in the mouth until 2001 Colorado game. Seemed like that game changed us forever. Exposed a formula that has been exploited. OLB have to be able to hold up against the power run game and the speed game to the outside, plus being able to rush passer and play coverage. Those guys are very hard to find
Meh.... that Colorado game was one adjustment away from us winning. When they motioned their WR across the formation, it left a gap unaccounted for on our defense. With how good our coaches were during that massive run, that is a massive "oh poop" moment when you look back at the film.
 
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