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Published: Thursday, 11/13/2008

The End Zone: UT's offense truly revived

BY MAUREEN FULTON
BLADE SPORTS WRITER

The Toledo offense went missing in late September and the search was called off several weeks ago. With everything that s been happening around the program lately, I ll take the time now to mention that the offense might have returned.

The Rockets have averaged 27 points in their last two games. The run game still isn t as strong as it was in September, but it s getting better and quarterback Aaron Opelt is coming off one of his best games, accounting for all four touchdowns against Akron.

If the offense is truly revived, it s good news for UT for several reasons. One, it could lead to the Rockets avoiding double-digit losses and a winless season at the Glass Bowl in 2008. Two, better offensive play in the final three games could save the reputation of first-year coordinator Chris Hedden.

Hedden has been one of the best assistant coaches UT has had this decade, drastically improving the play of the tight ends and wide receivers in the years he took over those positions. He s one who deserves a spot on the new UT coach s staff despite a bumpy year directing the offense.

Three, if the offense performs at the level of earlier in the year, it will make clear that UT s offensive system is not what plagues this team. A coaching hire who brings in an improved defensive philosophy and more discipline should be the priority.



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