“We have to take a look at where we are and where we need to be. It’s going to be a lot of work but we need to regroup!” said Associate Head Coach and Offensive Coordinator Brian Smith at Monday’s Nā Koa Coach’s Lunch at The Willows.
Coach Smith went on to say that rather than practice yesterday (Monday), they had the whole team watch the entire Boise State game to see that it was not just one side of the ball hurting the team. They will continue to work together and stay together.
The Rainbow Warriors regressed to committing 10 penalties which Smith attributed to a lack of focus and bad football. One seemingly silly penalty – the delay of game while attempting to punt – was not so silly. Coach Chadhari, Special Teams Coordinator, instructed the punt team that if the personnel count was off to take the delay versus risking a block. In that situation, the number was good, but there was misalignment.
There were some new wrinkles on offense that may have caused procedure penalties. Hawai’i showed some triple option and running plays where the backside tackle, Dejon Allen, was pulling on plays to the right. Smith said not many teams can run that scheme and it was a tribute to Allen’s athleticism that allowed us to do just that.
Further regression was rooted in receivers not making some catches. Smith felt it was a case of not using their hands well…something that was out of character compared to the beginning of the year. Asked about pass routes that are short of the first down marker, Smith said on third down, 40-50% of passing yards comes after the catch. Furthermore, the defense protects the sticks and tries to get on top of you from there.
The bottom line is Boise State played a disciplined game and we did not execute well.
Fresno State is coming off of a bye and their defensive coordinator, new this season, is free to implement some concepts of his own with the head coach released a couple of weeks ago.
Running back Diocemy St. Juste is day to day with a should injury that yanked him from the SDSU game just before kickoff so the other backs did not get enough work in practice before the game. Paul Harris did very well against Boise State and has seen limited field time this season because of pass protection concerns.
A question from the audience….”How does a center get to be an OC since the center does not possess a quarterback’s mind and outlook?” Smith does not believe one has to play a position to coach it. He feels one has to be a good teacher / communicator. Previously while at Hawai’i, Smith spent a lot of time with Mouse Davis learning about the run and shoot. He also spent much time querying players about what they see and how they see things.
After Hawai’i, Smith coached at California Lutheran for a year with Coach Bob Toledo who runs a pro-style offense and set the foundation for the SDSU Aztecs. He then went to Occidental College coaching with former Hawai’i coach Doug Simones, and local coach Darnell Arceneaux.
For the future, the Rainbow Warriors need tackles on both sides of the ball. They have a running back commit and may take another; then it is O linemen and tight ends. Smith recruits the Ventura and San Fernando Valley area. Craig Stutzman and Chris Naeole recruit in Hawai’i.
Written by: Gareth Sakakida