10 Things I Learned Vs. Wyoming

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Rock bottom? I don’t know. Tough to say with another game right around the corner. And were we to lose to the likes of Duke at home? Perish the thought …

But it sure feels like what rock bottom must feel like. You could see that on the faces of the players as they walked to the buses after the final whistle – and I hurt for them, knowing what they had put into the preparation for this game.

In some ways, I hope this is rock bottom, and that things start to look up after next week’s game. But first, we have to look back at what went wrong this past Saturday.

Mikell Simpson and UVa’s “new” offense didn’t show up in Wyoming.

1. A concern realized. When I drafted my 10 Things preview, I had no trouble deciding on my number one concern: whether the new offense would “click.” One week down and I am still waiting for a click. A small click. Any click.

Simply put, the offense was a disaster on Saturday. Yes, quarterback play was a big part of that, and I will get to that issue in just a moment. But what about the scheme? What about the system? What about the play-calling?

Watching the game develop, it was hard to determine what Mike Groh and the UVa offensive braintrust were trying to accomplish. To be fair, there certainly were some play calls that were poorly executed on the field – no doubt about that – and that makes it much tougher to fairly evaluate the quality of the play-calling.

On the second series, for example, I did not like the reverse call. I almost never like running the reverse that early in the game unless it is ridiculously evident from film study that it will work – and when all you have to go on is film from the prior year’s defense, how can you really know? – and I did not feel that the play was set up well. Despite those concerns, however, the reverse to Mikell Simpson early in the first quarter might have worked if it was executed well. After all, when a reverse fails, it usually is because