We assume that Clayton Tune is the QB on Friday morning in Memphis with Bryson Smith as the back-up. In the first game without D’Eriq King, dos Coogs discuss the QB situation.
What are your impressions of Clayton Tune so far?
Brad Towns – loves pumpkin pie, turkey legs, and more:
So far it’s hard to have any thoughts at all on Tune. He is a true freshman back-up that’s played one meaningful half of college football. After throwing one pass in the 2nd quarter, he started the 3rd quarter up 22 points.
In reality, he’s about to see his first significant action of his career. If I went by the stat sheet then I would be worried. A 47% completion rate doesn’t give me much confidence although his 15.5 yard per completion average is impressive for a back-up.
He completed 4 of his first 5 passes on that opening drive in the 3rd quarter but then just 2 of 10 the rest of the way. It was a blowout so it didn’t matter but the numbers weren’t inspiring.
Ryan Monceaux – loves a good ham:
No QB, maybe in college football history, has come into a situation like Clayton Tune did with King going down and Oliver blowing up within 7 minutes of each other. The two faces of the program left the game in very different, but equally unsettling, ways. Tune was setup for the perfect disaster.
After the half, UH’s veteran OL had 3 penalties in 5 plays to start the opening drive. Most rookie QBs wouldn’t be able to overcome that – and most offensive coordinators would run it up the middle and punt then start fresh the next drive.
But even with the King and Oliver situations, and now his OL melting down, Tune directed a beautiful drive that culminated in a 37-yard TD pass. He looked unfazed by everything happening around him and essentially iced the game with three big throws in that drive.
So I think Tune gave us more than we could have expected.
What are your expectations of Tune and the offense in Memphis?
Monceaux: As soon as I write how impressed I was with him, I’m going to turn around and say we don’t need to build him up too soon.
Let’s not make this another Kyle Postma situation where he wins a game at home for us and he’s lionized as the next big thing before he’s ever been game-planned for or faced a tough road test.
My expectations are for Kendal Briles to show us a non-traditional game plan in Memphis. Tune starts but Bryson Smith gets some snaps, both to run it and throw. We might see both in the backfield running the option or option-passes. We want to give Memphis defenders reason to hesitate and to slow down their attack up-front.
I think you might see Stevenson run the ball some on sweeps – think of his run in the 3rd quarter vs. Rice. We will spread the defense sideline-to-sideline in order to get Patrick Carr some room to run.
All of those concepts are predicated on Tune being efficient, hitting short- and medium-throws, and not turning the ball over. He doesn’t need to play a perfect game but Briles needs to come up with a plan that throws Memphis off and allows skill position guys to carry the load.
My expectations are fairly low. This is a big moment for every player and especially so for a true freshman in his first start and on the road.
I expect Briles to keep things simple for Tune with a lot of safe throws. Fortunately, safe throws are the core of this offense and can break for big plays at any moment. WR screens, throws to the flat, short crossing routes and quick hitters up the seams. We need to widen the field and force Memphis to make plays in space.
UH needs the running game to step up as King was always our biggest threat. Although Tune isn’t going to run for 30+ every time he runs, he can still be effective picking up 4-7 yards. We have to establish that he can move the ball to keep the DE and OLB honest in pursuit.
If we allow Memphis to freely crash on the ball carrier it will be a long day.
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