With Cal seeming to get worse by the week due to injuries, performance and execution, does it still make sense for the Bears to keep an up-tempo offense the rest of the season?
Berkelium97: Absolutely. After Tony Franklin's experience at Auburn in 2008, I'm sure he will entertain no thoughts of handicapping his offense to make up for the team's deficiencies on defense.
Norcalnick: If 2013 is in fact a lost year (and I think most fans would argue that it is) then a fast tempo seems like the best decision. Our offensive players need as many reps as possible to get better, so it seems like we should run the offense our coaches want to run to achieve success in the future. And if the defense gives up even more points, well, so what? Lost season. You could even argue that having to face more possessions and more plays might be helpful in getting more reps for younger players on defense, even if it's a horrible trial by fire.
The only caveat is if we actually reach the point where we have to play players both ways. If Chris Harper and/or Bryce Treggs have to do that, it's worth considering slowing things down if only to protect them from exposure to injuries. I honestly don't know the right way to approach this potential eventuality because it's so foreign. This entire season is madness.
Leland Wong: I imagine slowing the offense would help the defense catch their breath and, with so many young and inexperienced players, get longer chats with the coaches about how to improve their play. But is it worth it for the offense to change one of the tenets of our offensive philosophy? I'm not sure... The whole offense is supposed to be predicated on beating opponents with rapid flawless execution of simple concepts. Will our offense become too easy to stop without the up-tempo component? I'm not sure if the tempo has had an appreciable benefit to our offense yet. I can't recall many instances where we were able to catch the opponents off-guard or with the wrong personnel group due to our pacing. (Insert Northwestern joke here.)
atomsareenough: Of course it does! I'm not even sure I understand why it wouldn't, unless you're implicitly endorsing the Nick Saban Hypothesis or something. Anyway, our offense is our offense. We need the reps, we need the game experience, and if we didn't run the number of plays we do, our results so far would have been worse than they have been so far. As some folks have rightly noted, we're not the most efficient team in the country right now and it's been taking us a lot of plays and a lot of yards to be productive on offense, so I can't see how cutting down on that by slowing everything down would possibly help. We need every advantage we can get. Now, if that ends up giving our defense more possessions as well... Heck, those guys need the reps too, right? Inexperienced players like Cam Walker, Joel Willis, Adrian Lee, Hardy Nickerson, Michael Barton, Jacobi Hunter, etc... can use all the experience they can get at this point. I think we need to stick with the game plan and coach up the players we've got.
TwistNHook: Why not? What do we have to lose? Besides every game left on the schedule? Bottom line is that if we are just viewing this as an extended practice for next season (and beyond), then let's practice perfect. Perfect practice makes perfect! If we try other tactics, like the single wing or the half wing, then will we be improving for next year? I would say "
Sam Fielder: Absolutely yes. It helps our woeful O-line out somewhat, it gives Goff, Harper, Treggs, and everyone else the chance to get reps in the offense that they are going to run the rest of their collegiate careers, and it isn't like our O is built to have long time consuming drives as it is. Any way you look at it, I just don't think it makes any sense to go away from what you have done, are doing, and plan to do in the future.