I think it’s important to give Eli Drinkwitz some credit for doing something that’s really tough for a lot of guys to do. He is going to give up his duties as the primary play caller and bring in another offensive mind who can really challenge some of what the team’s processes are. That isn’t an easy thing to do.
These coaches have reached the upper echelon of their industry by being successful at almost every stop they’ve been at, and for coaches, particularly the ones that are on the offensive side of the ball, you have some sort of ego. There’s a lot of ego you have to have to get to the point that Eli Drinkwitz is at now. So, for a guy who is labeled as an offensive coach, to be able to put his ego aside and bring someone else in to help an offense that badly needs it deserves to be credited.
So, for actually making the hire, I give him credit. Where I give Eli even more credit is this— to go out and find someone who profiles as a coach on the rise and as a genuinely good offensive coach.
Similarities/difference in scheme
When you look at some of the things that Kirby Moore did at Fresno State this season, you can see a lot of the same concepts and ideas that Missouri’s used previously, and that will probably continue. This was never going to be a complete scheme overhaul. You’ll still see inside zone. You’ll still see curl/flat combinations. You’ll still see all of the motions and eye candy.
Now, it’s not all the same... There will be certain tweaks and additions.
For example, there are certain route combinations you can see Fresno St. run that aren’t usually - if ever - run by Missouri. Like this one below:
Boise State has a split safety look and is playing in what looks to be a cover two zone. Fresno counters with a corner-out concept to try and break the zone. A better throw there and that’s a touchdown. That corner-out combination though is one that you just didn’t really see at all at Missouri.
Another example that really stuck out to me were the formations used in a lot of short yardage situations. There were several examples of Fresno St. lining up under center throughout the season. Here, they are knocking on the front door to score and instead of them getting in a formation based in shotgun, they get under center and run a nicely blocked power sweep out of the I-formation.
For a team like Missouri, who in 2022 struggled heavily in converting short yardage situations, this is a nice counter to have. I’ve never understood calling plays out of shotgun in those situations because you should never want to move yourself further away from the marker.
I like the hire. It represents a step in the right direction and Moore comes highly-rated and reviewed by just about everyone who has come into contact with him. This offense needed a fresh set of eyes and for someone to come in and bring a different approach. He’s got his work cut out for him making the jump to the SEC level and not from just a coaching perspective, but a recruiting one too. If Moore can get up to speed quickly, this hire may end up being the start of a breakthrough season.