PDA

View Full Version : Lancer fans - Kyle Walters doing much more with significantly less



BIG BLUE
2007-10-18, 04:42
Kyle Walters doing much more with significantly less

GREG LAYSON

If last Saturday's football game between the Guelph Gryphons and Windsor Lancers did anything, aside from putting the Gryphons in the playoffs, it illustrated the polar gap Guelph head coach Kyle Walters has already put between himself and an 11-year veteran coach in the OUA, Mike Morencie.

Walters also narrowed the gap between his program and powerhouse Western.

Guelph's dominating 36-10 win put the Gryphons in the post-season and left the Lancers on the outside looking in, despite starting the season with high hopes and 2006 Hec Crighton winner in running back Daryl Stephenson.

After 10 seasons and just four playoff appearances, this was to be Windsor's year. It was finally coming together in the Rose City.

Mighty Western, which Guelph beat earlier this season, needs to win its final game just to make the playoffs.

Windsor used to cry foul about not having the facilities to compete with the likes of Western when it came to blue chip recruits. The Lancers also used to say there were no scholarship dollars at their disposal and, as a result, good local players were flooding across the border to NCAA schools. And true, they lost Herman defensive back O.J. Atogwe and Belle River centre Brett Romberg to Stanford and the University of Miami, respectively. But truth be told, they both were above and beyond the talent in the OUA. Now they both play for the St. Louis Rams.

Windsor's other excuse used to be the lack of additional paid coaching, so they upped the ante and brought in paid assistants, including first-year offensive co-ordinator Scott Fawcett, whose unimaginative and conservative play-calling scored the Lancers a paltry field goal Saturday. Windsor's other score came on an interception return with the score already 36-3.

Besides the play-calling -- Guelph ran clever crossing routs, a reverse and threw to players out of the backfield Saturday -- Walters could have easily run down the same grocery list of excuses Windsor has used for years and made case as to why or how Guelph could fail on the football field this season and beyond.

Instead, Walters is making it work under circumstances similar to those of Windsor while Morencie is wallowing in losing seasons despite the bones and advantages thrown his way. One game shy of 11 seasons, the Lancers are 26-60-1 under Morencie.

By contrast, in just two seasons at Guelph, Walters is 6-8-0 with a playoff berth and has landed 37 of 40 recruits he and has staff identified early. Rookie receivers Zach Stacey (Burlington) and Jed Gardner (Niagara Falls) have both taken turns at being a leading pass-catcher in games this season. First-year defensive back Sebastian Howard (Niagara Falls) is leading the country with six interceptions and 202 return yards. Walters also pried London-born starting defensive end Grant MacDonald (London) away from Western, even though the player's family had Mustang seasons tickets for a decade. Second-year tailback Nick Fitzgibbon (Puslinch) is better than he was a year ago when he was named the OUA's rookie of the year. He is two touchdowns shy of breaking Guelph's single-season mark of 11.

Walters got all these players -- and so many more -- to commit to Guelph despite the program being a middle-of-the-pack team for much of its history. They're here despite the school being located a little off the beaten path in a farming and agricultural community. Guelph doesn't have new facilities such as Western's TD Waterhouse Stadium, which is always hailed as a potential home to a CFL franchise, or University of Windsor Stadium, which hosted the Canadian Track and Field Championships and Pan-Am Junior Games. For the record, Guelph's Alumni Stadium doesn't have working lights and its dank, second-floor weight room can be mistaken for a warehouse with some weights on the floor. And Guelph high school football certainly hasn't displayed the talent and provincial prominence Windsor has recently. Since 1995, Belle River, Essex, Villanova, Herman and Sandwich have been local and provincial powerhouses. Since the inception of the OFSAA Bowl Series, those teams have contended for or been to an OFSAA Bowl game. Sandwich won three straight at one point. And the Essex Ravens of the OVFL are three-time Western Conference champs and won the league title in 2002.

Oh, it's true; there still remains a gap between the top and bottom, young and old, in the OUA. But the gap is quickly closing. Or widening, depending on where you stand.

Greg Layson is a Guelph Mercury reporter. His column appears Wednesdays. Phone: 519-823-6062. E-mail: glayson@guelphmercury.com.

BB:cool:

flogman
2007-10-18, 05:50
Well...Greg Layson has a point, but it's a lazy effort on his part. Makes me wonder who he spoke to in the preparation of this column.

To describe the Lancers offence as "unimaginative and conservative" lacks veracity. It may have appreared to be that way but the playbook is far from conservative. It is, in fact, far too deep and complex than is necessary (the damn thing is football's version of War & Peace - Crime & Punishment might be a better example, in the Lancers case)

Referencing Romberg & Atogwe is easy...but that disregards the great number of other young players who have gone to NCAA schools in recent years from this area - J.P. Bekasiak (Ti-cats draft pick - Toledo) / Mike Gyetvai (starting LG Mich St.) / Tang Bacheyie (starting safety Kansas St.) / D.J. Owcher (Bowling Green grad) / Thomas Whitfield (Syracuse grad)...it's a considerable list. Though I agree that UWindsor was a limited option for any of those kids out of high school.

To call Essex and Villanova local high school powerhouses is way over the top. Essex never really has been and Villanova has had 1 really good year. He would have been better off putting Holy Names in that category (they've produced some great players)

But, like I noted, he does have a point, but in his zeal to frame Walters and his success in a positive light...he has done a disservice to his audience by not letting all the facts get in the way of a good story idea.

justfacts
2007-10-18, 05:58
Well...Greg Layson has a point, but it's a lazy effort on his part. Makes me wonder who he spoke to in the preparation of this column.

To describe the Lancers offence as "unimaginative and conservative" lacks veracity. It may have appreared to be that way but the playbook is far from conservative. It is, in fact, far too deep and complex than is necessary (the damn thing is football's version of War & Peace - Crime & Punishment might be a better example, in the Lancers case)

Referencing Romberg & Atogwe is easy...but that disregards the great number of other young players who have gone to NCAA schools in recent years from this area - J.P. Bekasiak (Ti-cats draft pick - Toledo) / Mike Gyetvai (starting LG Mich St.) / Tang Bacheyie (starting safety Kansas St.) / D.J. Owcher (Bowling Green grad) / Thomas Whitfield (Syracuse grad)...it's a considerable list. Though I agree that UWindsor was a limited option for any of those kids out of high school.

To call Essex and Villanova local high school powerhouses is way over the top. Essex never really has been and Villanova has had 1 really good year. He would have been better off putting Holy Names in that category (they've produced some great players)

But, like I noted, he does have a point, but in his zeal to frame Walters and his success in a positive light...he has done a disservice to his audience by not letting all the facts get in the way of a good story idea.

Flogman you have so many facts than what are they. Trying to defend Coach Morencie and the boys won't get your son anymore playing time you should have realized that by now. Take off your rose coloured glasses and really take a look. they should call you fogman.

BIG BLUE
2007-10-18, 06:13
Well...Greg Layson has a point, but it's a lazy effort on his part. Makes me wonder who he spoke to in the preparation of this column.

But, like I noted, he does have a point, but in his zeal to frame Walters and his success in a positive light...he has done a disservice to his audience by not letting all the facts get in the way of a good story idea.

here's the thing flogs... this is a reporter who works for the guelph mercury. why would he do extensive research on the lancers coaches and program? he made some good points using some very well known examples. a few things aren't exactly correct but his general comments are pretty dead on and again... pretty well known.

the obvious question is... why don't jim parker or other windsor star reporters ever do a piece like this? why is this type of article coming from guelph and not windsor?

BB:cool:

la Tuque
2007-10-18, 06:18
Flogman you have so many facts than what are they. Trying to defend Coach Morencie and the boys won't get your son anymore playing time you should have realized that by now. Take off your rose coloured glasses and really take a look. they should call you fogman.
What has this got to do with Flogman's kid? He, like the rest of the Lancers "Boys", is giving it all he's got for the team.

I know Flogman personally, his kid & his mom. They have the Lancers at heart and, not unlike me, they're going through a difficult time in view of the team's poor performance this year.

I prefer Flogman's attitude of working on the positive rather selling the team for dead.

BIG BLUE
2007-10-18, 06:30
What has this got to do with Flogman's kid? He, like the rest of the Lancers "Boys", is giving it all he's got for the team.

I know Flogman personally, his kid & his mom. They have the Lancers at heart and, not unlike me, they're going through a difficult time in view of the team's poor performance this year.

I prefer Flogman's attitude of working on the positive rather selling the team for dead.

you're right la tuque... i'm sure when 'justfacts' re-reads this thread he'll agree that bringing up 'flogman's' son wasn't cool. this has nothing to do with him or any of the players who are suffering through this season. they're trying and in many cases playing through injuries too. for that they can hold their heads up high.

GO LANCERS!

BB:cool:

Fawkes
2007-10-18, 06:47
Generally it was a good story and agree that his comments generally reflect reality. And, being a Guelph story, I understand his objective was to put Guelph in a positive light. But I question his overall grasp of the OUA.


Walters also narrowed the gap between his program and powerhouse Western.


Clearly Western is not a powerhouse this season. If you are going to compare yourself to Western, many teams have not only narrowed the gap but have blown right through it.


Mighty Western, which Guelph beat earlier this season, needs to win its final game just to make the playoffs.

Here he contradicts himself in the same sentance. If Western is mighty, how is it that they are fighting for their playoff lives?

I would rather have seen him use Ottawa or Laurier as the "gap" reference. But if he had done that, the gap would not be so narrow.

flogman
2007-10-18, 07:42
My point in the original post was not to defend the Lancers or for anyone to recieve more playing time - though I am at a loss to determine how I could accomplish that through a post on a chat -

My point is that there is some very lazy, uninspired "journalism" being foisted upon the public - and only because it appears in a mainstream publication, is being given instant credibility.

Just because it's been printed doesn't mean A - that it's true (which isn't the case here by any means) or B - that it's an honest portrayal of the situation

We have to view reporters and columnists more critically and I would just like to make the point that we deserve not only more coverage of the CIS but since and industrious coverage of the CIS.

and columnists should know that since their material is included on internet editions of their newspapers that they write for more than just their local audience.

I agree with Big Blue, to a point, on his query about Jim Parker, though he's not a columnist....why not Bob Duff or even Gord Henderson addressing the issue with a critical eye.

I view what Layson did as home town promotional fluff - we deserve more real journalism

Guelph LB
2007-10-18, 08:46
Fawkes I think what he is refering to when it comes to Western is that Western is usually a powerhouse alongside the usuals of Mac, Laurier and Ottawa. He's attempting to show that things are changing; not just for Guelph but for programs everywhere. I do agree that it would have been better to compare Guelph to Laurier or Ottawa, but then his story would be along the lines of Guelph "Narrowly being defeated by (Laurier, Ottawa)" and that kind of puts the negative in a story meant to be positive for the Guelph program.

Faces
2007-10-19, 17:29
the obvious question is... why don't jim parker or other windsor star reporters ever do a piece like this? why is this type of article coming from guelph and not windsor? BB:cool:

Amen. The honest answer to that question though is that Jim Parker is buddy-buddy with Morencie ... have seen them chewing the fat in Mertz's office many times.

Bob Duff used to be unusually critical of the Windsor Lancer football program ... I remember him writing a particularly harsh and distasteful article about the team a number of years ago. I was on the team at the time and took it personally, so even though I now see the necessity of people pointing out the deficiencies of the program and not constantly sugar-coating things, I still don't know if I want a guy primarily known for handicapping horse-races being critical of my program.

Regardless of if it is Duff or Parker, I wish they'd go after who the real culprits are .... the coaches and the athletic admin (I'm thinking more JM in the past) as opposed to the players. Seems like the Star reporters don't ever really think twice about telling everyone who missed that tackle, but it's few and far between to find an ill word spoken of the only constants (coaches/admin) in this losing program.

I don't know why they don't go after these guys at least a little ... it's not like it's pro football and these coaches are going to significantly deny them access ... hell, if Mertz doesn't talk to the Star he doesn't talk to any paper other than the Lance. One of my theories is that these guys aren't really football guys, they're just general sports guys (at best); perhaps they can't tell that these coaches are not at CIS par.