FanPost

Log of King Passes -- Sam Houston (also not a) State

Another beautiful and exciting start to the College Football Season with an Aggie win. Another beautiful offseason of trash talk between Fisher and Saban. Last year Fisher properly prognosticated that we’d "beat his ass". This year Fisher properly assessed "he’s been cheating for longer than I’ve been walking". We look forward to Alabama receiving 20 years of bowl probation next season and a lengthy jail sentence for Nicky, because the NCAA is fair regarding its meting out of recruiting punishments.

Last years’ 8-4 was obviously disappointing, and inconsistent QB play with a ½ a 2nd string QB (now a 3rd string QB on an inferior team) was a leading reason as to why. With only 2 scholarship QB’s on the roster, we had nowhere else to turn other than to ride an oft-injured, yet very resilient Calzada who toughed out every game after Alabama with ½ a body. Although I was disappointed that we were cheated out of a thrilling ACC-clash bowl-game, after watching LSU struggle through its post-championship-bowl-game scrimmage that absolutely no one cared about, I’m glad we didn’t try and field a Bost-led team.

This year, we have a 3-deep QB room and have a preseason top-20 chance of winning the Heisman at the QB position. As I wrote last year after the first game, we were spoiled by 2020 Mond’s consistency and ability to protect the ball. However, we all have spent our hard-earned football-watching capital deserving a better downfield passing threat that we didn’t have in Mond. Will we have it this year, but with the same efficiency that Mond gave us in 2020?

One thing I look forward to the most is our stable of new WR’s and the obvious, yet quiet move of WR coaching on the sidelines. Jimbo was obviously not happy with the performance of Craig’s WRs as he shouldn’t have been. Poor routes, dropped balls, bad separation… Let’s see how we do this year.

Log of passes below and some analysis below that. (As always, I’m not an expert, just going off what I can see from the telecasts with my own layman analysis.) Credit again to Woodlands Aggie for his excellent video compilation in the first half. Stupid weather delay means a lot of the 2nd half wasn’t available and I pieced together what I could.

…and remember, this isn’t nearly as bad as Vandy in 2020…

Pass #

Time of Game (Q/Clock)

Result

Pass Yds

YAC

Target

Read

Coverage

Pressure

# Rush

Comment

1

1st

11:57

INC

27

--

Lane

1

Double, Tight

Med

5

3rd & 8 at TA&M 37. Overthrown into Double Coverage Skinny Post, could have been INT by Safety. Stewart wide open on short cross for first down.

2

1st

9:27

COMP

13

0

Stewart

1

Tight

Heavy

4

1st & 10 at TA&M 34. High Snap, play action to Achane. Good job freezing LB. Roll Left, throw against body. Accurate Throw. Stewart makes excellent grab. Probably doesn't happen last year's receivers.

3

1st

9:04

COMP

15

2

Smith

1

None

Light

4

1st & 10 at TA&M 47. Play action to Achane, froze LB again. Achane needed to be there to block DE. Smith Wide Open. Accurate Throw.


1st

8:00

run

--

-2

King Option

--

--

Heavy

5

2nd & 7 at SHSU 33. 2 RB in backfield, option King keeps. SHSU had 7 in the Box and our LT (Zuhn) totally whiffed. Lane missed the block. No TE and DE covered pitch man perfectly. Well defended, poorly blocked.

4

1st

7:18

INC

17

--

Lane

1

Triple, Tight

Heavy

4

3rd & 9 at SHSU 35. Short, inaccurate throw into triple coverage; had no shot at completion. First Read, had Stewart open short across the middle. Should have been holding against C (whiffed on initial block). King's legs cut out from under him after throw. Missed FG followed.


1st

5:10

run

--

11

King scramble

--

--

Heavy

4

2nd & 9 at TA&M 24. Scramble after Fatheree loses containment. Open field, so good choice. Awkward tackle at end.

5

1st

4:32

INC

5

--

Achane

1

Single, Light

None

4

1st & 10 at TA&M 35. Quick throw. Dropped by Achane. Should have been caught, but he was eying the LB.

6

1st

3:39

TOUCH
DOWN

31

35

Brown

1

Single, Medium

None

4

3rd & 11 at TA&M 34. Probably the best pass of the day. Hit Brown in stride as he ran by defenders. Fast WR's are fun!

7

2nd

13:34

COMP

3

4

Marshall

2

Single, Medium

None

4

1st & 15 at TA&M 16. First time King took a 2nd read. Marshall stiff arms a defender away and dodges a 2nd. Get the ball to this guy a LOT more.

8

2nd

13:11

COMP

0

9

Achane

1

None

Light

4

2nd & 8 at TA&M 23. Easy uncovered swing pass out of the backfield. Easy first down.

9

2nd

12:43

COMP

2

0

Brown

1

None

Heavy

4

1st & 10 at TA&M 32. LG misses assignment, quick rush to King but found safety valve quickly. Good open field tackle.

10

2nd

10:37

INC

37

--

Stewart

1

Double

Heavy

3

3rd & 8 at TA&M 34. A lot of pressure with only 3 guys. OL seems to be dropping back, enclosing the pocket. Looked at Stewart all the way. Almost INT as safety crossed over. A little more touch and it's a TD.

11

2nd

8:55

COMP

21

0

Smith

1

Double, TIGHT

Light

4

1st & 10 at TA&M 35. King drops this between 2 defenders in the only possible spot. I said at the moment, "that wasn't a smart throw". Good catch. Had to be a perfect throw.

12

2nd

8:10

INTER-
CEPTION

47

--

Stewart

1

Double, TIGHT

Light

4

1st & 10 at SHSU 44. Looked at Stewart the whole way and underthrew him by 3-5 yards. This allowed Foster to make up room and get the pick. MAYBE Stewart should have adjusted better to challenge the INT? Not a good throw. Looked like a duck, so probably didn't get what he wanted to on it. Achane open over the middle.

13

2nd

6:44

COMP

6

17

Stewart

2?

None

Heavy

4

2nd & 12 at SHSU 38. Stunting DL hit King's arm as he threw. Stewart was again a safety valve open in the middle. Another stiff arm got 15 extra yards. WR Playmakers are fun!

14

2nd

6:04

INC

33

--

Stewart

1

Double
Tight

None

4

1st & 20 at SHSU 33. Trying to go deep to Stewart at the pylon - not a terrible throw, but CB had better position and kept Stewart off the ball. Slightly off, but well defended. Achane and TE were open over the middle short. Stretching the field is good, but never really took advantage of it.

15

2nd

5:53

COMP

10

0

Marshall

1

TIght

Heavy

4

2nd & 20 at SHSU 33. Left side of OL getting pushed back in King's face. King doesn't get a follow-through motion, high throw, good catch by Marshall. Kid's going to be goooood.

16

2nd

5:09

INC

2

--

Stewart

2

None

Heavy

3

3rd & 10 at SHSU 23. 3-man rush with heavy pressure (WTFIGO). King about to throw wide to Achane, who turns away and heads upfield. King somehow sees this before throwing it, and checks down to an open Stewart across the middle. Throw off-target and fast, Stewart really had no chance.

17

2nd

3:53

INC

7

--

Lane

1

Light

Medium

4

1st & 10 at TA&M 26. Not a terrible throw, maybe a step late. Lane had one foot barely out of bounds.

18

2nd

3:30

INC

7

--

Smith

2

Light

Heavy

4

3rd & 6 at TA&M 30. 4-man rush, #64 (Robinson) whiffed on the block (looks like bad comms with the C). King flushed left, threw against body to Smith, off target.


2nd

2:06

run

--

6

--

--

--

Heavy

4

1st & 10 at TA&M 33. Scramble by King, not a bad choice, got hit hard. Another 4-man rush that we had trouble with. Very concerning.

19

2nd

1:00

TOUCH
DOWN

23

40

Smith

1

Light

None

4

3rd & 6 at TA&M 37. Slot go route, ran past the safeties and corners. Good block by Brown to release him for the TD.

20

3rd

14:50

COMP



Lane





1st & 10 at TA&M 29

21

3rd

12:00

COMP

4

0

Stewart

1

Light

None

4

1st & 10 at SHSU 30 -- Quick sideline out throw to Stewart. Throw High, good catch.

22

3rd

5:55

DEF PI

20

--

Stewart

1

TIght

None

4

1st & 10 at TA&M 20 -- CB hugged Stewart as he tried to run by. 20-yard throw to the sideline, but Stewart had no chance to get it due to PI.

23

3rd

5:30

COMP

9

0

Marshall

1

Tight

None

4

1st & 19 at TA&M 26 -- Throw over the middle to Marshall (who started out to the sideline and cut back in, losing his defender and opening a pass lane).

24

3rd

4:52

COMP

4

3

Stewart

1

Light

LIght

4

2nd & 10 at TA&M 35. Ball thrown low, Stewart catches and makes 3 guys miss. Should have had a late H2H call after he was already down.

25

3rd

4:01

COMP

-1

9

Smith

1

None

None

4

3rd & 2 at TA&M 43 -- Bootleg, quick dumpoff to Smith lined up as the FB in an I-formation.

26

3rd

3:32

INTER-
CEPTION

18

--

K. Alexander
(SHSU)

1

TIght

Medium

4

1st & 10 at SHSU 49 -- Probably the worst throw of the day. Targeting Smith, but was right to the CB. Had an underneath route to Marshall available, but forced it up. Terrible throw. Terrible read.

27

4th

14:55

COMP

3

6

Stewart

2

Light

Heavy

4

3rd & 5 at TA&M 16. Zuhn loses man again, DE in King's face as he throws. Can't follow through again. Stewart is dynamic after he catches the ball.


4th

14:30

run

--

9

King RPO





1st & 10 at TA&M 25. RPO Keeper by King. Good read, decent yardage.

28

4th

13:48

COMP

8

0

Lane

1

None

None

4

2nd & 1 at TA&M 34. Quick pitch and catch to sideline. This was the first pass on a 2nd and short all game.

29

4th

12:34

COMP

15

0

Marshall

2

Light

None

4

2nd & 12 at TA&M 40. Looked to Achane, freezing LB, threw back to Marshall over the middle. Marshall channeled his inner Chapman and slid down as soon as he caught it. Throw was slightly low, but could have found more room to run.

30

4th

12:05

INC

5

--

Smith

1

Light

None

5

1st & 10 at SHSU 45, Smith drops ball as the checkdown over the middle. Stewart wide open on the left sideline (missed him).

31

4th

11:30

COMP

5

8

Smith

1

Light

None

4

1st & 20 at TA&M 45. Quick out to Smith from the slot. Throw was beind him, so Smith had to turn to catch, slowing him down a little.

32

4th

11:10

TOUCH-
DOWN

28

15

Smith

2

None

None

4

2nd & 8 at SHSU 43. Nice Crossing route on the right pulled the CB away and no one covered Smith. Throw was slightly behind him again, but Smith was fast enough to pause and still score.

Compared to last year's opening game against Kent State, I think it's a similar, if not slightly better game. It had about the same number of INTs and questionable throws, but a lot more downfield action and a lot fewer drops. However, I could almost copy the analysis from last years' opener here as well about the QB and OL positions (which isn't what any of us were hoping for).

Here are some things that jump out.

1. Six different targets for King -€” I know Moose, Preston, Johnson, and Thomas all had targets, but that was after Max came in. Really surprised to see Lane ahead of Moose on the depth chart, but I saw that Moose had a lot of drops during the Spring game(?). Smith (our best receiver last year) and Stewart were each targeted 9 times. Marshall targeted 4 times for 4 completions was also special.

2. No sacks... I guess. There were a lot of heavy rushes. SHSU did a good job mixing up rushing schemes, similar to what Elko did a lot. They almost always rushed just 4, but they came from different locations. I know people have been talking about a lot of stunts and twists, but I don't really see a lot of that. I do see a lot of misdirection regarding which of the DL's and LB's are coming in. Either way...

3. ...our OL didn't perform great. I mean, they didn't give up a sack, but the pocket was "enclosed" all day and night. The guards seemed to be letting the ends come up-field a lot, containing King in the pocket. The left side of the line (esp. Zuhn [and Wykoff] seemed to have the most trouble). I didn't spend the time looking at every play to analyze who did what, but those are the misses that stuck out. King had his arm motion limited on follow-through at least 3 times (which were all completions) that could lead to more INTs in the future.

Look at the down and distance on almost every pass play. Outside the 1&10s, there were a lot of long-yardage situations. The run game was almost completely absent, and King did well enough to support the team. In the past, the run game carried the team. It's nice to know that the passing game can carry us if necessary. I think we'll figure out the run game once the OL gels and we get some injured guys back.

SHSU defense success in "Heavy" pressure to King:

  • 3-man rush :: 2 - 2 (this is really weird and reminiscent of Arky last year)
  • 4-man rush :: 5 -€” 29
  • 5-man rush :: 1 -€” 2

4. WR drops -€” there were a couple of drops (I counted Smith with one and Achane with another), but this is MUCH improved compared to last year. Part of that success was the lack of hypersonic missiles being thrown within 3 yards, part was due to the quality of the WR's, and I hope a lot from the new WR coaching.

5. WR routes -€” WR's were open more than I've seen before, even with SHSU 7 and 8-man DB sets. The TD to Smith in the 4th was a beautiful downfield crossing route where the CB's lost awareness of the slot WR and Smith was open. The pass was slightly underthrown, but it didn't matter. Even on the INT's, there were players open, but King was going for the home-run balls. A little more discipline, and those go away.

6. WR quality -€” we have the ability to get the ball into playmakers' hands and let them do anything they want with the ball. Stewart and Marshall already look like veterans. Smith is still Smith. Stewart after the catch is really, really special.

7. TE absence -€” we didn't have a single TE catch or target from King. Very un-Fisher-like. But with the WR weapons we have, I don't care. Just another bullet in the clip to use later.

8. Let's talk about the INTs. King had 2 picks and could have had at least 3 more (Passes 1, 4, 10). At least this game he didn't pay for every mistake. Both the INT's and the near-INTs had underneath receivers open that would have been smarter plays. I hope he can fix this.

a. The first pick was a ball that didn't leave his hand right. It was a duck. He had Stewart for a TD, but the ball fluttered and held up enough for BJ Foster to grab it, perform a little dance in the end zone, and lose 10 yards for his team (b/c he was trying to show us up). Stewart was there, and I actually liked the read, but the pass just wasn't executed well.

b. The second INT was just horrible. Nothing redeeming about it. A throw that should never have been made. I don't know how you critique it, other than "never do that again".

OK, so a lot of good here. WR's look a lot different and we didn't even touch the TE's yet. King was overall pretty accurate, even without the velocity/arm strength we're used to seeing from Calzada.

And a lot to be concerned about (namely the OL and a few of King's decisions). After listening to the post-game presser, JImbo said they knew there were problems in the 1st half, but intentionally didn't change/correct until the 2nd half. Even Ainais said "No disrespect to those other guys, but we were just trying to drill," They played this game as a scrimmage, so take it for what it's worth.

Overall, I'd give King a C+. Some passes he probably forced, but with a little patience and the tools he has, he can easily get better and more reliable. There were 15 passes for 10 yards or more. With Mond, we were lucky to have 2 or 3. Yes, he was probably forcing some of those, and the underneath routes were open (which is why you stretch the field) -- so there is a lot of low-hanging fruit for improvement and enough tape to show that we're not afraid to go deep. If we can get the ball into our playmakers' hands (Stewart, Brown, Marshall, Smith, Achane, etc.), even short, we'll be fine.

On the other hand, if his head game doesn't get better, there are... other options.

And if Mr. Behrens is a prophet, King will be playing DB in a few games and get an INT to offset his past TD's.

https://twitter.com/rcb05/status/156622261819316633

FanPosts are user-submitted, and are not always representative of GBH editorial/staff or any of our opinions. Please don't post spam or self-promotion, because that's not very good bull. Thanks!