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Virginia Film Review: First Quarter

Louisville was able to hold serve in the first quarter.

NCAA Football: Louisville at Virginia Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

I made some changes to the format of the film review. I decided to do it by quarter and to not split the offense and defense. I think this will help me not dwell on the same issues over and over but even if I do, they will at least be spread out instead of being in the same post. Hopefully I’ll get this tweaked to the point that I’m happy with it, but the feedback was great and I’ll just work through it as the season goes on.

LITERALLY THE FIRST PLAY OF THE GAME

On the first play of the game Micky Crum completely blew his assignment on a simple block on a guy that is right in front of him. This lack of focus just can’t happen right off the bat. This play likely goes for four or five yards if he just kicks his guy out or blocks down. Dae Williams would have the space to make either option work out for a positive play.

UOFL BALL, THIRD AND FOUR

Louisville got Malik Cunningham in third and manageable like they needed to do. The play call was good and the blocking held up well enough. Jaylen Smith just doesn’t look the ball in. This play summed up the offense on the day.

VIRGINIA BALL, 2ND AND 10

This play gives a good example of what UVA wanted to accomplish with all of the motion they used. Keep your eye on Nick Okeke. He’s lined up across from the left tackle.

What happens is that all of the motion and crosses confuse him for just long enough that the window opens for the throw. Simple stuff from UVA but they’re taking advantage of the youth of the defense.

UVA BALL, 3RD AND 4

I won’t get into every coverage issue because I would be writing forever. This one stood out early because I couldn’t figure out who was responsible for the guy that caught the ball. Cornelius Sturghill sits on the outside route while Chandler Jones would normally be responsible for that guy with Sturghill sinking with the deeper route. Whoever is wrong here, it’s a blown coverage early on that they have not fixed after four weeks.

As for the targeting call, Khane Pass has to know better than to drop his head like he did. Use the sideline and just get the guy out of bounds.

UVA BALL, 2ND AND GOAL

Louiville does a good job here of getting after the quarterback after a blown blocking assignment. Tabarius Peterson doesn’t get blocked initially and gets into the backfield to force Bryce Perkins out of the pocket. Amonte Caban shows great speed down the line to close him down and Dee Smith is there to secure the tackle. Really good team play here.

UOFL BALL, 3RD AND 2

This play is a failure by the offensive line to move anyone. Nathan Scheler and Cole Bentley get stoned (on a double team) and Mechi Becton is too slow out of his stance and gets beat to the spot. Jeremy Smith has nowhere to go and UVA’s second level guys get an easy tackle for loss.

UOFL BALL, 3RD AND 4

This was a frustrating play call because UofL got to third and medium again but instead of looking to get the ball to a receiver or tight end on a short route, they threw the ball backwards to the slowest offensive player on the field. The call just doesn’t make any sense.

This play turned from a third and four play into a third and thirteen play because they threw the ball backwards.

UVA BALL, 1ST AND 10

I love plays like this. Tabarius Peterson makes this play by using good technique. He gets “skinny” to split the double team and pushes his blocker back into the ball carrier. On similar plays this season some of the other guys up front have tried to take on the block and they’ve been moved out of the hole. This is how this play should be defended every time.

UOFL BALL, 1ST AND 10

Bobby Petrino has repeatedly said that he wants to find ways to get explosive plays in the passing game. I strongly believe that his way of doing that is throwing the ball down the field on first down. He did it with Lamar Jackson and he’s doing it now even with his freshman quarterback.

UVA brings an all out blitz here. You can see the safeties creep up to replace the two blitzers. Malik gets uncomfortable and he doesn’t really have the time to step up and make the throw by the time the routes develop. To me, this was a good opportunity to try to run the football. Dae Williams got a nice gain on his second carry of the game and they just bailed on it the rest of the way.

UOFL BALL, 3RD AND 8

Sometimes the little things are good to point out. Malik drops back here and sees that his first two options aren’t open quickly. He’s decisive in getting the ball out to Jeremy Smith in time for him to make a move in space. Smith does well here to get up the field while also going back against the grain. UVA overruns it and they get a first down. These short plays is how they can move the ball. It worked pretty well in this first quarter.