Farewell Air Raid

Watching the TicketCity Bowl and remembering the reports from last week regarding Tommy Tuberville stating Tech will be running more next year, I got to thinking..

Is that really a bad thing? I don’t necessarily think so.

Like most people, I thoroughly enjoyed Mike Leach and the Air Raid offense. The 2008 season was phenomenal – one that’ll be remembered. How did that season end? Losses in two of the last three games: a 65-21 shellacking at Oklahoma and a 47-34 loss to Ole Miss at the Cotton Bowl. Still a great season though.

But what else was there?

Seasons full of mediocracy and usually extremely poor defense. In order for Tech to seriously become a competitor, three things are needed:

  1. One trick pony on offense is not sustainable. I don’t think Tech necessarily has to be 50/50 balanced; however, we need to be able to run the ball. Tuberville knows this with his SEC background. Until today’s TicketCity Bowl, Taylor Potts had the longest run from scrimmage. Yes, our quarterback had the longest run from scrimmage.. that’s pathetic.
  2. We need a defense. Ruffin did great things in his all-too-brief tenure, but that’s about it. We’re in the bottom few this year in defense and dead last in pass defense.
  3. The team needs discipline, and Tuberville has done a great job of preaching that this year. Penalties (as a general rule) were out of control under Leach. Also, while it was fun waiting all of the 4th and n to go gambles, there is nothing wrong with kicking a field goal!

I’m still not happy with how things played out with Leach; Kent Hance and Gerald Myers should have been fired for that. Although, I said it before and I’ll say it again – Mike Leach wasn’t the coach to lead this team to the next tier of play.

If you look at the last ten years of BCS bowl games, you’ll see that the bulk of teams had solid defenses and an offense that relied on both passing and running. Sure, there may have been an emphasis on one over the other, but both were a big enough threat for opposing defenses.

The jury is (should be) still open on Tommy Tuberville. I’m anxious to see how the next few years will go.. it’ll definitely be interesting.