I Like It For The Jokes January 7, 2013
An offensive coordinator whose last name is a unit of measurement? Does it get any better than that? The jokes are limitless.
Next fall – and it will only be next fall because Illinois only hangs on to offensive coordinators for one season because we don’t know how to build a football program – will be nearly limitless in the number of possible jokes. Our new offensive coordinator’s name is a short unit of measurement.
GOOD GOD THIS OFFENSE CAN’T EVEN MOVE THE FOOTBALL TWO CUBITS AND A BARLEYCORN.
I should back up for those of you who are confused. Co-OC Chris Beatty was let go. Co-OC Billy Gonzales was moved to just WR coach. And reports say that we’re hiring former Western Michigan head coach Bill Cubit as our offensive coordinator.
If you’re still confused, a cubit is a very old (as in biblical-old) unit of measurement. It’s generally 18-20″ – the length from the elbow to the end of the middle finger. Holy crap. The middle finger. More jokes!
WHAT’S A CUBIT AGAIN? THAT’S RIGHT – IT’S THE LENGTH FROM MY ELBOW TO MY MIDDLE FINGER, BILL.
I really don’t understand how that works. Say someone is supposed to build a table 2 cubits high. What if that person is Meyers Leonard? Does that table need barstools? Better yet, what if that person is Fred Sykes? Everyone sits on the ground?
(That was the best joke in this post. The nine of you who got it are boarding your roflcopters.)
So I love the Cubit hire for the jokes. Pretty much limitless next fall. But that might be the only thing I like about the hire.
Don’t get me wrong – I’m a big fan of getting an experienced coordinator. Cubit was the offensive coordinator at Missouri and Rutgers and Stanford before getting the Western Michigan job. As we talked about last summer, we were going into the season with two offensive coordinators who had never called a single play before. And the one who ended up calling the plays was a high school coach only six years ago. Their lack of experienced showed last season, so replacing them with a 59 year-old former head coach who has done nothing but coach offense his whole life is a good thing.
But a pass happy coach? That has me scratching my head. I mean, sure, I’d love to return to the Mike White days (or even the Ron Turner offensive days – just not the Ron Turner defensive days). Our best teams in the last 30 years have generally been defined by a high-powered passing attack (Eason, Trudeau, George, Kittner). But has anyone bothered to look at the roster?
We have a run-first senior QB. We just recruited a run-first high school QB (one of the top high school QB’s in the country). I know that some people hate run-first QB’s, but I love them. Get a line that can block the scheme and it’s nearly impossible to stop if your QB is athletic enough. I watched Ohio State and Braxton Miller last year and dreamed of what this offense could be under Aaron Bailey if we can get the line figured out.
And now we hire a coordinator who has built most of his teams around a stand-9-yards-deep-and-sling-it-around QB? Um, we don’t have any 9-yards-deep-and-sling-it-around QB’s. The closest thing we have is Reilly O’Toole, but he didn’t arrive with that reputation (he doesn’t have that kind of arm and his hitch limits him from getting it out quickly). O’Toole arrived as a game manager. He can make enough throws, he won’t make mistakes, he can engineer drives. That’s not Alex Carder or Tim Hiller, the last two QB’s that Cubit had at Western Michigan. They were both “won’t make a play with their feet but can stand back there and get the ball out quickly” guys.
Which means if that’s the offense Cubit wants to run, we’re probably three years away from having a QB ready to run it. It would have to be someone in the 2014 class, and they won’t be ready until 2015 or 2016. Would Cubit (or Beckman) still be around by then? More than likely not.
Now, I’m making a big assumption here – I’m assuming that Cubit won’t be flexible and shape his offense around a read-option QB. If he has an Aaron Bailey (seriously, people, he’s a better runner and athlete than Juice or Nate), he’d be crazy not to use him that way. It would be insane to take Aaron Bailey’s feet and plant them 9 yards deep.
And I guess I’m also assuming that Bailey can’t be that pocket QB. He has the arm strength. A much better arm than Scheelhaase or O’Toole. It’s just that he ran the triple option in high school and only threw it eight times per game. Maybe Cubit is just that good at coaching quarterbacks and can turn Bailey (and O’Toole, and even Scheelhaase) into efficient passers. If Mick McCall can continue to do that with nobody recruits at Northwestern, maybe Cubit can do that for us.
But I’m an Illinois football fan. Nobody ever does that for us. We simply find ways to screw everything up. Which is why I can’t see anything here besides “running QB’s and a pocket-passing OC”. Nothing good ever happens for us. Well, except for jokes.
I KNOW NOW WHY HIS NAME IS BILL CUBIT. NEED A YARD ON THIRD AND ONE? GET A CUBIT.
Don’t worry – I’ll have time to work on those before next fall.