How and what did Minny's OLine do to dominate the hawks running the ball?

uihawk82

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I will rewatch the game and focus on both Olines vs DLInes but do some of you have the answer to this question?

The main thing I saw was MInny's Oline just smash/push to one direction, maybe get a trap type block, and Big Mo with his hesitation and vision would just see a crease he could explode into.
 

Dargo

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Jun 13, 2020
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More physical, they dominated the line of scrimmage. Looked to me like Mo had a lot of yardage on cutbacks as we were overrunning everything.
 
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ShonnDeereGreene

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I think a lot had to do with how decisive and slippery Ibrahim runs. I thought he’d find a lot of small seams at the early second level (right at the LB level) that led to some of his mid to longer runs.

Maybe our DL allowed the OL to get onto our LBs more than usual and didn’t let our LBs play “clean” tho?
 
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ghostOfHomer777

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I will rewatch the game and focus on both Olines vs DLInes but do some of you have the answer to this question?

The main thing I saw was MInny's Oline just smash/push to one direction, maybe get a trap type block, and Big Mo with his hesitation and vision would just see a crease he could explode into.
A number of things ...
  • Iowa always will try to defend the run with as few hats in the box as possible.
  • The Gophers had pretty wide splits ... and featuring an RPO game where the QB can run the ball too ... that means that the D has to defend an extra gap.
  • The Hawkeye front 7 had trouble squeezing down the gaps ... hence Mo's patient running allowed him to essentially always find a hole. It's not like Iowa's play was too bad ... the Gophers younger backs didn't have the same skill/patience to find the hole ... and they didn't have the same success.
  • I was a little disappointed by Iowa's DE play ... the DEs didn't do as good of a job as usual of setting a hard edge. Our DEs often got caught in the wash.
  • Iowa's aggressive D was flowing to the direction of the play REALLY hard ... and Mo completely gashed us with the cutback.
  • There PROBABLY was plenty of holding going on ... but credit to the Gopher O-linemen ... I mostly saw their hands on the inside ... so it wasn't terribly egregious (at least from my first-pass watching).
  • I could be wrong ... but I think that Iowa was mostly flashing their safety in order to take away the pass-option of the RPO. Presumably, the hope was for the front-7 to clean up against the run. The problem was that we likely needed more hats in the box if we truly wanted to squash the run.
Conventional wisdom is that you try to force a young QB to beat you with his arm. However, the problem with that logic in this case is that the read for the crosser in the RPO-game is so brain-dead easy ... that if you leave it available ... that Gopher O will eat you alive with it. I think that it was a wise move to make those "easy throws" harder. However, it came at the cost of getting gashed against the run.

My bet is that neither Phil or Kirk thought that we'd get gashed that bad. It's all about trade-offs. Your willing to give up some of those gains. But they definitely didn't want us to give up as many long runs as we did.
 

slindian

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I think a lot had to do with how decisive and slippery Ibrahim runs. I thought he’d find a lot of small seams at the early second level (right at the LB level) that led to some of his mid to longer runs.

Maybe our DL allowed the OL to get onto our LBs more than usual and didn’t let our LBs play “clean” tho?
the officials didnt call any holding penalties on either team. that helped our line give petras time to throw and the minn line to open holes for their running backs.
 

hknation

HR All-American
Dec 21, 2001
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It helps that Mo I. is a foot shorter than the o-linemen & can hide behind them. Much the same as Michigan's Corum.
Also, per the radio guys minny on many plays brought in another o-linemen.
Lastly, Mo is good.
 
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JStandefer

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I don’t know how Minnesota lost so many OL starters from last year and now are so good this year. it seems Iowa can’t produce average line play year in and year out lately
 
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hawkeyekid

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Dec 2, 2001
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Ibrahim didn't waste any time or movements. He hit the hold quickly which resulted in positive yards or made really good decision when cutting back which resulted in some longer plays.

Minnesota coaches also did a great job (until the end of the game) of taking what Iowa would give them without getting greedy.
 
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uihawk82

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A number of things ...
  • Iowa always will try to defend the run with as few hats in the box as possible.
  • The Gophers had pretty wide splits ... and featuring an RPO game where the QB can run the ball too ... that means that the D has to defend an extra gap.
  • The Hawkeye front 7 had trouble squeezing down the gaps ... hence Mo's patient running allowed him to essentially always find a hole. It's not like Iowa's play was too bad ... the Gophers younger backs didn't have the same skill/patience to find the hole ... and they didn't have the same success.
  • I was a little disappointed by Iowa's DE play ... the DEs didn't do as good of a job as usual of setting a hard edge. Our DEs often got caught in the wash.
  • Iowa's aggressive D was flowing to the direction of the play REALLY hard ... and Mo completely gashed us with the cutback.
  • There PROBABLY was plenty of holding going on ... but credit to the Gopher O-linemen ... I mostly saw their hands on the inside ... so it wasn't terribly egregious (at least from my first-pass watching).
  • I could be wrong ... but I think that Iowa was mostly flashing their safety in order to take away the pass-option of the RPO. Presumably, the hope was for the front-7 to clean up against the run. The problem was that we likely needed more hats in the box if we truly wanted to squash the run.
Conventional wisdom is that you try to force a young QB to beat you with his arm. However, the problem with that logic in this case is that the read for the crosser in the RPO-game is so brain-dead easy ... that if you leave it available ... that Gopher O will eat you alive with it. I think that it was a wise move to make those "easy throws" harder. However, it came at the cost of getting gashed against the run.

My bet is that neither Phil or Kirk thought that we'd get gashed that bad. It's all about trade-offs. Your willing to give up some of those gains. But they definitely didn't want us to give up as many long runs as we did.
Very good analysis. I am going to watch closer on a replay but I could see a lot of our DLinemen getting totally turned and not maintaining a good, square pad angle. Minny's linemen are big and probably very athletic. I also thought there were more times the hawk Dee just needed to take a run blitz chance and put the lbkrs closer and into certain gaps. Maybe they did that sometimes and those were some of Mo's worse runs.
 

uihawk82

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Ibrahim didn't waste any time or movements. He hit the hold quickly which resulted in positive yards or made really good decision when cutting back which resulted in some longer plays.

Minnesota coaches also did a great job (until the end of the game) of taking what Iowa would give them without getting greedy.
But many times Mo would be gliding sideways and once he saw a gap he is very quick to accelerate into it. He showed a lot of patience per the radio guys.
 

uihawk82

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I don’t know how Minnesota lost so many OL starters from last year and now are so good this year. it seems Iowa can’t produce average line play year in and year out lately
Dolph and Eddie P were mentioning that Minny got two grad transfers from Mich and Notre Dame who were starting so there is that aspect of reloading and I will say no more.
 
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Hawk fan in Minn

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I don’t know how Minnesota lost so many OL starters from last year and now are so good this year. it seems Iowa can’t produce average line play year in and year out lately
THey graduate a bunch of super seniors on the line last year and they had more waiting behind them to start this year. This where the Covid year hurt Iowa. We don’t have many super seniors on either side of the ball
 

katman15

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I think a lot had to do with how decisive and slippery Ibrahim runs. I thought he’d find a lot of small seams at the early second level (right at the LB level) that led to some of his mid to longer runs.

Maybe our DL allowed the OL to get onto our LBs more than usual and didn’t let our LBs play “clean” tho?
Exactly. LB were taken out of a lot of plays….
 
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Birky

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Nov 23, 2001
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I don’t know how Minnesota lost so many OL starters from last year and now are so good this year. it seems Iowa can’t produce average line play year in and year out lately
Because they went to the portal. They have two senior OL that were playing at ND and Michigan last year. They start four seniors.

Had Iowa done that, they’d be a minimum of 9-2 right now.
 

BBHawk

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Oct 31, 2001
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Iowa City
I'll point out that Minny gained most of their yards between the 20s. They only scored 10 pts, only 4 drives over 40 yards. Iowa's offense and special teams kept field position for most of the game, only giving Minny the ball once over the 30 yard line. That was a total team effort for the Iowa win.
 

ghostOfHomer777

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May 20, 2014
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Exactly. LB were taken out of a lot of plays….
As Kirk and Phil mentioned going into the game - both Wisconsin and Minnesota make you have to play off blocks. I was surprised how often I saw Campbell get caught in the wash. He definitely was not able to play downhill "clean."

Today was a game where we were definitely missing having Jacobs.
 

sober_teacher

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Mar 26, 2007
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I thought the biggest factor was Ibrahim's total comfort with that style of rushing - and as a 6th year senior he has plenty of experience/patience...as another poster mentioned, the younger RBs didn't have the same success as he did.

Where Minny got most of their rushing yards was in those cutback lanes that Mo was patient enough to wait for. Tackling wasn't stellar at times either.