Troy’s defense prepares to stop optional army attack – The Troy Messenger

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Troy defense prepares to stop optional army attack

Posted at 4:19 p.m. on Monday, November 7, 2022

Troy Trojans head football coach and defensive coordinator Shiel Wood spoke to the media on Monday and discussed the challenges of stopping the Black Knights’ one-time option rushing attack. army.

Sumrall also announced the team’s weekly winners on the heels of last Saturday’s win over Louisiana on Monday. Running back Kimani Vidal was named Offensive Player of the Game, while safety Craig Slocum Jr. was Defensive Player of the Game and defensive back Keyshawn Swanson was named Special Teams Player of the Game. Wide receiver Robert Bruce was named Scout Offensive Player of the Week, while defensive end Fabian Rogosch won Scout Defensive Player of the Week and wide receiver Rondell Cole won Team Player of the Week. special scouts.

Troy linebacker Carlton Martial also won Sun Belt Conference Defensive Player of the Week for the second time this season.

Carlton Martial (2) is nominated for another award. (Photo courtesy of Troy University Athletics)

This week’s John Johnson/Nathan Harris Service Award went to offensive lineman Jake Andrews and linebacker Jordan Stringer won the Corey McCullers Spirit Award.

Sumrall also gave an injury update ahead of Army Week. Receiver RaJae’ Johnson and defensive end TJ Jackson — who were both nicked against Louisiana — are healthy and will be available against Army, while receiver Jabre Barber, linebacker Jayden McDonald and defensive tackle Luis Medina will be absent again this week.

Troy gave up 203 rushing yards against Louisiana last week, only the third time Troy has given up more than 100 rushing yards this season and the first time since Sept. 17 that a team has exceeded the bar of the century against the Trojan defense.

Even so, Troy’s defense only gave up 14 total yards in the fourth quarter against Louisiana as Troy made his comeback.

“The most important thing was to get the defense right,” Wood said of Troy’s second-half adjustments. “The biggest adjustments were just calming our guys down and making sure they were doing their job and they knew how to do their job consistently.

“A lot of times in football if you have 10 guys doing their job and one guy on a rep isn’t doing his job, if they attack that area you potentially lose a few yards or else you wouldn’t give up. I think we sometimes made mistakes which were revealed, but as the game went on our guys calmed down.

This notion of “doing your job” consistently every play is a huge factor when playing against a “triple option” style of attack, which is rare in modern college football. Army ranks second nationwide in rushing offense, averaging 302 yards per game rushing. The Black Knights have also spread the ball with three players totaling over 300 yards rushing this season and two others with over 200 yards. The Army also scored 26 rushing touchdowns.

“Eye discipline and lines of sight are key to limiting explosive plays while taking advantage of the football and knowing the leverage you need to have on the ball carrier while tackling the football,” said Sumrall about trying to defend the option. “Everyone doing their job again and again is also essential. All it takes is one breakdown for there to be explosive play. There are a lot of challenges in what they do.

Wood is very familiar with the offense option himself, having served the previous two seasons as a safety coach and defensive coordinator in the Army. He was also on staff at Wofford and Georgia Tech, both of which staged optional offenses during this time. Troy’s defensive line coach Eric McDaniel was also Army’s defensive line coach last season.

“It’s effective because they know what they’re doing and have been doing it for a long time,” Wood said. “The coaches who train there have been in this pattern for a long time. They are very well trained, have great attention to detail and they play very hard.

“Training-wise, these guys have been doing this for so long that they’ve seen a lot of different looks and they have tweaks they can make in-game or even during a ride. If you give things they didn’t expect, they can adapt well and even perform plays they may not have practiced during the week.

KJ Robertson and the Trojan defense will have their hands full with Army’s rushing attack this Saturday. (Photo/Thomas Graning)

Having Wood and McDaniel in the squad – along with their knowledge of attacking – will be a huge help in preparing the Trojans.

“It’s a huge advantage to have both Shiel Wood and Eric McDaniel on our team,” Sumrall said. “We have a very good knowledge and understand the different layers and nuances of this offense with these guys. They do a tremendous job of adjusting and adapting and are very creative and well trained in the Army. Both (McDaniel and Wood) have done a great job on our staff and we are grateful to have them.

Wood also said another key issue in setting up an offense as “the option” is being able to make the defense look good enough in practice.

“It’s a ploy you don’t see often. There aren’t many teams running a traditional 3-back attack anymore,” he said. “The preparation is twofold. You need to make sure that as a staff you are on the same page knowing what you want to do in the game and how you need to line up and train certain adjustments and play passing responsibilities.

“Obviously being able to teach that to your players who don’t see this week and being able to manufacture a look in training where you have a scout team is a big thing. As much as you try to training your defensive players on what you are going to do in the game and how to do it, you also need to do a great job training your scout team to be able to make the defense look pretty good. It’s a great challenge on many different fronts.

Troy’s defense will have the opportunity to slow down the powerful running offense from the Army this Saturday on national television, as the game will be televised on the NFL Network. While kickoff is scheduled for 2:30 p.m., there will be a number of pre-game events starting at 2 p.m. in honor of Veterans Day.

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