Last Tuesday, the University of Illinois hired offensive coordinator Mike Schultz from TCU.
Schultz recently completed his 11th season directing the Horned Frogs' multiple offense. He served as both offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach for the past two seasons after coaching the running backs for his first nine years at TCU.
Rick Trickett will not be Illinois' offensive coordinator and won't get offensive coordinator money.
This is self explanatory. Let's move on.
Does Schultz run a system conducive to hiring Rick Trickett?
I'm not sure. TCU runs both spread and power I. They really subscribe to the "formation variation theory of offense." I really do not care how they use their receivers. That's irrelevant to the question of offensive line coaching.
TCU's runningbacks don't appear to be zone type runners. They weigh in at 233, 231, and 199lbs, respectively. I can't find the link right now, but those guys don't appear to be 1C runners (Jermaine Thomas), as Trickett's blocking scheme requires.
Additionally, a look into TCU's offensive line could shed some light on this situation. Their offensive line looks like this:
LT 70 Marshall Newhouse | 6-3, 328, Sr., 3V
RT 61 Marcus Cannon | 6-6, 352, Jr., 2V
LT 60 Preston Phillips | 6-6, 297, Sr., 2V
RG 65 Giles Montgomery | 6-5, 300, Sr., 3V
C 75 Blake Schlueter | 6-3, 288, Sr., 3V
Their backups are of similar size (adjusted for their lack of experience)
TCU's offensive line weighs a combined 1570lbs
Our offensive line is the youngest in the nation. I have given them added weight to reflect what they would weigh as Seniors, since that is what TCU has:
LT 67 Andrew Datko | 6-6, 305
RT 77 Zebrie Sanders | 6-5, 305
LG 62 Rodney Hudson | 6-2, 295
RG 79 David Spurlock | 6-5, 300
C 60 Ryan McMahon | 6-3, 290
I project that FSU's offensive line will weigh 1495lbs as seniors, ideally. Don't take my word for it, ask FSU's strength coach, coach Stroud.
TCU's offensive line weighs 5% more than what I project our line to weigh at the same or similar experience level.
Is five percent significant? I'm not sure. Try this: 7 players in the TCU two-deep chart for the offensive line weigh 305lbs or more. Trickett really doesn't want guys who are more than 305lbs, though he would take guys who are freakish athletes at that size.
Illinois could be another Jenny Craig project
Keeping with the size theme, here is a look at what Illinois will have coming back: (ages adjusted to reflect matriculation):
LT 68 Xavier Fulton | 6-5, 300, SR
66 Randall Hunt | 6-6, 311, SR
70 Corey Lewis | 6-6, 278, SO
RT 71 Jeff Allen | 6-4, 317, SO
66 Randall Hunt | 6-6, 311, SR
LG 66 Randall Hunt | 6-6, 311, SR
73 Jack Cornell | 6-5, 321, SO
RG 52 Jon Asamoah | 6-5, 309, SR
79 Craig Wilson | 6-5, 317, SO
C 60 Ryan McDonald | 6-5, 296, SR
Starting OLine projected (assumes NO offseason growth): 1533lbs, which is a big, but not huge college line. Does Trickett want to go through another ordeal of trimming the fat (literally), retraining veteran linemen, then taking the time to get his own guys in place?
Did Schultz recruit those huge linemen, or did he let his OLine coach do his own thing and then work around the line's preferred blocking method?
I don't know.
Apparently Illinois is looking for a recruiter, to replace the departed Mike Locksley, who took the job at New Mexico State.
Trickett is a bad recruiter. That is not intended as a knock on the man, but he is not regarded as a good recruiter. If Illinois needs their offensive line coach to be a recruiter, then Rick Trickett should not be their man.
Trickett's son, Clint Trickett, is the Senior QB for North Florida Christian School. I seriously doubt his wife will want to see this family on the move again.
This is something that I haven't seen discussed. Trickett is currently paid very well for an offensive line coach. I can't remember exactly how much (if you know, send it to me), but it is a considerable amount for an offensive line coach.
I had worried that Illinois would make Trickett a "Co-Offensive Coordinator" and that they would be able to pay him more under that title (similar to how FSU has about twelve assistant head coaches). Hiring Schultz means that they can't pay Trickett huge money.
Key Question: Just how much is Illinois willing to pay an offensive line coach?
Ron Zook currently makes 1.5 Million. I believe that Illinois would seriously usurp their payscale to lure Trickett.
It is no secret that this coaching staff is way disfunctional under coach Bobby Bowden. TomahawkNation writer Fsued has chronicled how the black hole of leadership at the top has screwed up our structure.
Trickett is a former Marine. The lax discipline and complete lack of cross-coach accountability on this staff drives him nuts.
I don't know anything about the organizational dynamics of Illinois, but I don't think it could be much stranger or worse than ours.
I do not see Trickett leaving this year. TK will talk with him, attempt to explain why we haven't kept the promises that Dave Hart made him, and everything will be fine. The bigger issue seems to be the 2010 season. Trickett can leave for big dollars, his son will no longer be playing high school football, and he may be sick of this administration.