As longtime members of this community will remember, this site has a long history with Karl Dorrell. No need to rehash the details, but suffice it to say that if Karl Dorrell had not been a spectacular disaster as UCLA's head football coach -- an outcome obvious to many even before he was signed on the dotted line by Dan Guerrero -- there might not be a Bruins Nation blog today.
Since leaving UCLA, Dorrell has bounced around the coaching ranks and it seemed as if he would spend the rest of his career in spots where he could do little harm, as a position coach for this or that NFL also-ran But then he was hired by Derek Mason, the new Vanderbilt head coach as part of the regime that has taken over for James Franklin, now the head man at Penn State. Mason, inexplicably, hired Dorrell to be his offensive coordinator.
In Vanderbilt's opener last night, the were blown out by the Temple Owls. Temple, by the way, finished 2-10 last year. The final score ws 37-7. The Commodores only score came on special teams; that is to say, Dorrell's offense managed to put up zero points on Temple. This Philadelphia media account notes that Vanderbilt's offense turned the ball over seven times.
Not surprisingly, Vanderbilt's fans are not pleased. I don't personally know many Vanderbilt fans, but I get the feeling that they are a reasonable bunch. They understand the play in the SEC and that Vanderbilt is not a traditional football juggernaut like Alabama, Auburn, LSU, Tennessee or Florida. They aren't Georgia or South Carolina. But that's okay. Under Franklin they did well, won games and competed. They did not get blown out by teams like Temple. (I'm actually not going through the scores of their games from the past few seasons, please don't let me know about the time they did get blown out, it wouldn't change my point.)
But with Karl Dorrell designing their offense and calling their plays, they won't even be able to compete. And Vanderbilt fans are smart, too, They know that Dorrell's West Coast offense simply doesn't work in the college ranks. (We had one season where it sort of worked; of course, it works better when Maurice Jones-Drew is carrying the ball.)
Check this post from a Vanderbilt Scout message board. It reads like a Bruins Nation post from 2007. Quoting:
He is an NFL guy. He runs an NFL offense. Very conservative. Not a lot of motion. Not a lot of spread. Not a lot of misdirection. Not getting your QBs out of the pocket on the move with the option to run. Requires very accurate pocket passers. Requires A LOT of timing between QBs and WRs... something not suited for college kids who are only allowed X amount of hours a week being coached up. Or you need elite talent who when they do make mistakes can easily overcome that by just being more talented than their opponents... which is something that will always be tough for us as long as we are in the SEC. UCLA fans kept complaining how it took their players years to learn his offense only to finally grasp it by the time they were graduating. And that was with players recruited to run that kind of offense! Which ours arent. Maybe 3 years from now we will have those players... but 3 years is a long time away... and we aren't going to be loading up with good recruits at this rate. And odds are we're never going to be recruiting well enough to compete straight up against other SEC teams.
The writer even goes on to link to this 2007 post from our Editor Emeritus, Nestor.
Vanderbilt fans, I don't know what else to say but we feel your pain. They say Karl Dorrell is a nice guy. The problem is, the world's full of nice guys, that's why there isn't much demand for them. Good luck -- you're going to need it.