Friday, September 24, 2010

Texas Game Officiating Report

***Disclaimer*** I don't claim to be an expert on officiating. I am merely somebody that actively enjoys officiating football and am pursuing to improve my ability. Reviewing game films of collegiate officials is one way that I can do that.

I noted 17 penalties and also made comments on 4 other items that stuck out to me. I’ll noted everything as “good call, marginal call, bad call.” My scorecard is as follows:

Good call – 15

Marginal Call – 4

Bad Call – 1

Good Calls of Note

- 3:34 1st Quarter (Unnecessary Roughness) – Waddle should’ve been ejected from the game for throwing a punch. He was definitely given the benefit of the doubt. This could be considered a marginal call but in the heat of the moment it’s possible it was seen as a shove instead of a punch.

- 13:52 2nd Quarter (Unnecessary Roughness) – TT #42 steps in and shoves a Texas player to the ground

- 9:58 2nd Quarter (Facemask) – On the punt, DJ Johnson grabs the facemask of the Texas defender and yanks his head violently to get past him and down to the return man.

- 3:17 2nd Quarter (Intentional Grounding) – This was not a screen play. Potts was under duress and Aaron Crawford was serving as a pass blocker. Potts did not throw the ball into an area where Crawford could reasonably make attempt to catch the ball.

- 12:57 3rd Quarter (Running into Kicker) – The Texas player was laying under the leg of the punter and didn’t make direct contact with his leg after the kick. The punter fell over the Texas player when bringing his leg back down.

- :55 3rd Quarter (Offensive Holding) – Could have been called as block in the back. Penalty was announced as #63 (who had a questionable takedown of Bird) but #64 came in and pushed Bird in the back while he was engaged with #63 and that lead to him falling down.

- 14:23 4th Quarter (Unnecessary Roughness) – Will Ford walks into the backside of a play where players are standing around and shoves a Texas player to the ground.

Marginal Calls/Non-Calls of Note

- 12:50 4th Quarter (Taunting) – Ford makes a hit (likely not on a defenseless receiver) and then stands over him and does something. Not enough information to make a determination if this was a good/bad call.

- 9:50 4th Quarter (Offensive Pass Int) – Leong was serving as a downfield blocker on this play instead of a receiver. He continued to block his defender after the pass was thrown and one could reasonably assume that the defensive player could make a play on the ball (a key element in pass interference) that was thrown in their vicinity. A reverse endzone angle would be very helpful for seeing if this was a good/bad call.

- No time recorded 4th Quarter – Block in the back by #4 was missed on Bird as he tried to tackle the punt returner. I only mark it was marginal because the return man went out of bounds within a second of Bird being hit in the back and at the same yard line. As such, I can understand why it wasn’t flagged.

- 3:44 4th Quarter – The Texas defender made a great play on the ball but he might have been playing “through the back” of Leong which would result in DPI. I would need a better TV angle to determine if this was a good/bad call.

Bad Calls of Note

- 5:01 2nd Quarter – You know exactly what non-call I’m referring to here. The H (who can’t see the drop) rules a catch by Mike Davis. However, the U crashes in on the play and is signaling no catch and pointing at the ground to properly “sell the call” by saying the ball hit the turf. Without any further explanation or discussion the catch is granted and Texas gets a first down.

This play was screwed up by the R for granting the first down despite the U strongly selling “no catch,” the replay booth for not taking a second look (by the way when was the last time a TV game has ZERO replays), and the Tech coaching staff for not challenging the play.

Charting on Texas...

I know this won’t be earth shattering news to anybody reading this blog but there is simply no good way to spin Texas Tech’s offensive performance vs Texas.

Consider these stats:

- 5 of 14 (35.7%) on passes thrown beyond 5 yards downfield.

- 2.8 yards/play gained.

- Only 2 of 16 run plays ever got outside the tackle box..

- Only 4 balls were thrown beyond 15 yards. The only one caught was for a 15 yard touchdown by Lyle Leong Jr .

Conclusions I reached about the Tech offense from charting the game:

- Potts strongly favors the right side of the field. 20 of 38 passes were thrown to his right and 30 of 38 were thrown over the middle or to his right.

- He was 6 of 8 for 30 yards on throws to his left. However 4 of those completions were on WR screen passes thrown under 5 yards downfield.

After looking at the breakdown of play calls, I must say that Greg Davis did an excellent job managing Garrett Gilbert in this game.

I say that because:

- Gilbert was very balanced between throws to his left (14) and his right (18).

- Gilbert threw 17 of 38 balls (44.7%) more than 5 yards downfield.

- Running plays were also very well balanced with 16 going to the left and 18 to the right. I wonder if this was done in part to keep Bront Bird even more confused at his MLB position.

Despite this great balance, there was a glaring weakness in Gilbert’s performance on Saturday.

He was an atrocious 4 of 18 (22%) on passes thrown to his right. At 41 yards of passing, that works out to an abysmal 2.27 yards/attempt. Gilbert was at 7.64 yards/attempt to the right and 13 yards/attempt over the middle. However, Davis kept letting him throw to his right side as 18 of his 38 passes went that direction.

To contrast, Taylor Potts was between 3.5 and 4.1 yards/attempt to the various parts of the field.

Texas Game Charting Spreadsheet

***note*** The game charting is on 2 separate pages of the same spreadsheet.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Bringing a blog back from the dead...

I started this blog a few years ago because I needed an outlet for all of the thoughts going through my head about Texas Tech football. Life went in a different direction and I found myself unable to write in the way that I wanted to so I stopped writing altogether.

I'm certainly not going to do anything nearly as ambitious as I did in the past. Instead, I'm going to focus on reviewing each game from a purely statistical perspective.

I'm pulling out the names and numbers of the players and simply looking at formations, types of plays, and the yards that they do or don't produce. If you're familiar with the work of Bob Sturm then you've seen him do this for the Cowboys/Jason Garrett in recent seasons.

I will also use my moderate knowledge of the rules of the game to look at each penalty called and give it a thumbs up/thumbs down. I'll try to explain what made a call good/bad and also point out if I see something that could've been officiated in a different way. I don't consider myself an expert in officiating the game. However, it is something that I have a developing love for and hope I can apply my experiences in as unbiased of a way as is possible for a fan that has a built-in bias towards Texas Tech.

To give you a small sampling of is what I have on Tech by formation from Saturday: (for the record, my charting has 1 more play for 7 yards than what the box score shows. I'm assuming this has to do with how they counted a play with a penalty applied to it that I overlooked).

FormationCountYards GainedYds/Play

The formations are:

S0 - 0 RB, 0 TE, 5 WR
S1 - 1 RB, 0 TE, 4 WR
S11 - 1 RB, 1 TE, 3 WR
S2 - 2 RB, 0 TE, 3 WR

**The S2 formation includes the 21 yards lost when the ball was snapped over Potts on the first play from scrimmage for Tech.

In the 9 plays run from the S2 formation you had the following occur:

- Snap over Potts head
- Intentional grounding on Potts
- Sticks sacked for a loss of 10
- Potts' INT over the middle in the 3rd quarter
- Detron on a WR sweep
- Motion used on 4 of 9 plays from this formation

Hopefully I'll get a little better with my html skills and learn how to align tables better as I progress in this endeavor.

I hope you enjoy that sample and I'll be back with my final breakdown of the game in the next day or two as time allows!