The Woeful TCU Offense: 5 Quick Fixes That Could Provide An Offensive Spark

Or not, I mean, what in the world do I really know, but I am going to provide my thoughts because watching this year’s offense has been nothing short of excruciating. So here are five quick ideas that I think could help boost the offense from excruciating to just about anything better than that.

  1. ZACH EVANS. Just 10 touches that’s all I am asking for, you don’t have to hand him the ball every time but at least let us see what the kid has. We know from high school he has big-play ability, we know he is a monster in space so why not when the offense has struggled so much not at least give him a chance to go out and do something. Obviously, the O-line struggles don’t help the case for running the ball more, but I know for a fact we can find at least some ways to get Evans in space. Swing passes, screens, maybe even line up in the damn I-Formation and run student body right or left, I don’t care what you do but when we have the highest-ranked offensive recruit in TCU history you have to at least attempt to incorporate him into what by all standards has been a terrible offense.
  2. Get Back To The Air Raid Basics: You might as well call this section to hell with the play-action, which might sound counter-intuitive but I just rewatched the OU game, and every time we attempted a play-action pass Duggan had a D-Lineman in his face immediately after the fake.

We barely seem to have time to complete a simple two-step catch in throw; there is almost no way we ever have time on the play-action pass, especially with a non-existent running game. The play-action pass also isn’t a part of the air raid offense ethos, which in my opinion, we need to get back to. One of the air raid’s biggest benefits is neutralizing the defensive line without superior offensive line play. Obviously, the air raid has evolved and incorporated new techniques and concepts, but I’d personally love to see TCU go back to the basics and attempt to bring the offense back to the core strategies of Mike Leach. If Sonny and Meach need a refresher, I found this beautiful Leach throwback teaching video featuring Art Briles(00:51)(who still sucks but objectively is good at coaching offense), Dana Holgerson(12:57), and Sonny Dykes(14:57) when they were all on the same staff. If you ever doubt how successful the Air Raid has been in D1 college football, just think about the offensive juggernauts created by those three disciples alone.

Honestly I just put this video in because it’s so retro and in my opinion rather hilarious.

I mean, come on, look at these early 2000’s swagger hounds who wouldn’t want to run their offense! Also, if you peeped the video, Mike Leach’s opening monologue was about as inspirational as a monotone emotionless speech can get.

3. Go For It On 4th and Short at Mid Field: This one is directly for ole Gar-bear(Side Note: I’m not sure if anyone else calls Gary by this nickname or just my group of friends, but either way, I think it should be more commonly used, I will have to go out and find some meme of Gary’s head on a bear to make the image complete), I mean we are supposed to have an elite defense, so why in the world wouldn’t you attempt a couple of 4th and shorts to change momentum. At this point in time, we need to be a team that takes risks to win games. We sure as hell aren’t beating teams on talent alone, so why in the world wouldn’t we at least attempt to take calculated risks and maybe swing the game in our favor. It just feels like we are a team that used to take risks but now simply refuses to even attempt to do anything out of the norm.

4. Throw Quick Passes, To Open Up QJ on The Deep Ball: This one seems fairly obvious but I feel like we just haven’t been doing it all year, we need to open up the deep ball and since we have a nonexistent running game, short passes are the only way to do it. Slants, screens, stop routes, and outs all need a bigger place in our offense. In my opinion, it is a simple equation, the O-Line stinks, yet we have talented skill players, so the best way to utilize our skill players is on plays that only require the O-Line to perform for the minimum amount of time. All this EQUALS THE SHORT PASS GAME. Plain and simple, if we can commit to the short pass I think it opens up the entire rest of the offense to succeed. The short pass game in the Air Raid has the same conceptual effect as the run in a traditional offense it forces Safeties to play closer to the line of scrimmage and allows you to open vertical routes across the board. I am down for throwing the ball 50 times a game if that what it takes to finally see our skill players in space.

5. Get Gary and Jerry out of Meachum and Cumbies Ear: The only thing Jerry seems to have brought to the table this year is an addiction to the Jet sweep, and Gary screaming at the offense about slowing down after three and outs clearly isn’t having the effect he desires. Our best offensive years have come with Cumbie and Meachum running the show, so maybe Gary should simply get out of the way. It feels like they have free will on playcalling until they make one mistake, and then you can see a constant flow of Gary screaming at Meach on the sideline quickly followed by Jerry to tell him to run the Jet Sweep some more. This is obviously a lot of conjecture on my part. Still, the offense feels like it is being hampered by the wills of a defensive coach that hates his own offenses success and a Big Ten coaches redemption tour to prove Minnesota didn’t suck as bad as we all know it did.

To finish this off, I am taking you back in the world winds of time to when our offense used to be good with these highlights from the 2014 Peach bowl. This was Meach and Cumbie at their bests and hopefully, we can find a way to get back to that point.

If you’ve made it this far then I am impressed at your sheer ability to withstand the rambling of a frustrated fan and former coach. hopefully, things look better this weekend against Baylor because I simply do not know if I’ll be able to stand losing to the sh@#$y Baylor Bears two years in a row.

For more TCU rants and college football hot takes, check out our podcast, new episode drops this Friday.

-The Beer Bottle QBs

Insta: @thebeerbottleqbs

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