NorCalNick: Considering the loss of Cameron Jordan and Derrick Hill and the recruitment of so much young talent on the line, this year arguably could be viewed as a transition year for the line, with expectations concurrently lowered.
Kodiak: Guyton quietly had a really solid year at end. I thought Tipoti made some strides this year, too, and I'm excited to have him back as a senior. With another year in the weight room with Coach Blasquez as well as additional time to refine his pad level, it'll be interesting to see if "Tiny" Moala can push Tipoti/Payne to earn himself more time.
Avinash: Pendergast used a 2-5-4? Kodiak, I remember 2-4-5 in 2010, but I don't think I ever saw 5 linebackers on the field.
Actually, instead of more linebackers, we ended up using many less. This year I saw a lot more four man fronts with our defensive line corps, particularly near the end of the season.. When Wilkerson and McCain got hurt we put Owusu/Gutyon/Jalil rotating in at DE spots, then Tipoti/Moala/Coleman/Payne as our DTs. It didn't work amazingly, but the Cal run D improved from average to solid.
The fact that we can be multiple in our D-line formations shows that Tosh has found and developed almost every player he has and molded them into one of the strongest and most consistent units in college football. Owusu and Guyton have minimized the loss of Cam, Tipoti the loss of Hill. Jalil has impressed. Deandre Coleman and Gabe King are probably our most heralded recruits of the bunch, and they're not even playing that much!
Kodiak: He used the 2-4-5 more often.
One of the things that probably annoyed people about Gregory was his inflexible scheme. It was either 3-4 one year or 4-3 the next year. I didn't mind it (defense always kept us in games), but it seems like a refreshing change of pace to have a DC who changes up the way his defense . It probably helps our better players reach their potential faster, although it also might confuse college guys who aren't quite as ready to adapt and adjust.
HydroTech: I suppose there is some benefit to just having one scheme over multiple schemes. With one scheme, your players don't need to learn as much and can focus on doing that one thing really well. But, on the other hand, just having one scheme gives your opponents less to prepare for. To wit, many opposing coaches have admitted that Cal's multiple formation offense is very hard to prepare for.
LeonPowe: I think people who know a lot more about football then me have all contributed - even Twist, but I have a question. With the recent lack of deep success on o-line recruiting combined with the over abundence of bodies on the defensive side . . .is there any talk or chance of someone pulling a Langston Walker?
TwistNHook: Looking at this position at the start of the year,there was definite excitement:
There was hope that Tosh could really coach up a team losing one of the best DLinemen in the nation (Cameron Jordan). There was hope that young players like Gabe King and Tiny could step up to the plate.
Do people feel that the DL met the expectations set for it at the start of the year?
HydroTech: I do feel like the DL has met their expectations. For the most part, they've done a good job stopping runs, and playing their gaps. I guess I would prefer to see more sacks out of them, but I think sacks can be a little harder for the DL to come by in a 3-4 defense.
Avinash: I believe Cheadle was a converted D-linemen. But it's not typical. You have to learn different techniques, and it usually takes at least a year to get it all down pat.
I don't think you'll see anyone switch up unless it's the only way they can make the field. We'll see. Players grow and develop.
OhioBear: I was worried about the D-line coming into the season. I thought we'd really miss Cameron Jordan's production. And I thought that guys like Tiny Moala and Mustafa Jalil, though talented, would have growing pains coming in and playing as true freshmen. But in the end, I think I underestimated the talent of the rest of the group.
What did you think about the Cal DLinemen in 2011?
TOTAL DOMINATION! (60 votes)
They played really well, but I was hoping for more (111 votes)
Was looking for more consistency out of them (34 votes)
205 total votes