The Nation is restless.
Four straight losses by the Saskatchewan Roughriders has every one across the CFL wondering, why?
Call it an exercise in curiousity. After a handful of tweets requesting the media ask the ‘tough questions’, I asked on Twitter 'what is the one question you would ask Corey Chamblin after the team’s fourth loss?'.
The responses began pouring in. Some had a sense of humour, some were rude, some were fair and mirrored the questions asked to Chamblin as the teams tries to figure out what is ailing them and how to fix it.
There was a common theme.
Scoring 12 points wasn’t good enough in the eyes of anybody, especially the head coach, who has done as much as possible in a short week to turn the tide of his team.
Before facing those ‘tough questions’ by the media gathered at Mosaic Stadium, Chamblin joked he’d been in the bunker as he looks for answers to his own questions, which are definitely tougher than anything the media or the fans could likely ask.
But Chamblin did touch on some of the fans burning questions like how to combat the negativity after four straight losses.
“Well there’s definitely going to be some frustration. But the one thing about frustration is you have to get to the point to where you get out of the frustration mode and look at yourself and see what can I do better and move from frustration to growth. That’s what this team has to do right now.”
A common theme was: What changes are going to be made.
“You have to look at it from the top down. Of course on a daily basis I look at myself and look at the schemes that we’re running. I have to look at the way we coach. I have to look at the players and the way we execute. We’ve done a good job over the last couple of days to look at the things we have to get better at. Going forward there will be things that will be changed in all those areas.”
Chamblin also came to the defence of his quarterback, who is the first on any team, anywhere in the football, universe to draw the ire when a team scores 12 points.
“Well he’s definitely part of it because he’s the quarterback. But (Offensive Coordinator) George Cortez, the whole crew. It’s not just one guy. There’s a lot of things we could be doing better. Offensively right now is in the spotlight because of the 12 points and I have enough offensive knowledge and I know we have enough offensive players to be able to get more than 12 points.”
Again, Chamblin brought up the fact they’ll make the changes necessary to fix what ails them.
Oh, then came the blitz. Yes, the Riders quarterback would likely be playing much better if, as TSN’s Glen Suitor pointed out this week on our daily radio show, that Durant was hit, hurried or sacked on 15 of the teams 18 plays in the first half against Montreal.
And fans, like the media were curious how were they going to slow down the opposition.
“You stop it in a number of different ways. One of course is we need to have more run game to stop the blitz. Other things are just making sure we’re getting the ball out, catching the ball, and making those reads and doing things like that. When you get into a passing mode, then they tee off.”
The common theme talking to the head coach was change. Changes need to be made and will be made. Already this week you will see a new lineup despite only one practice for the Riders on the short week.
But we’ll leave you with this thought on the theory of change for the sake of change, from the head coach.
“You don’t make changes to make change. You make the correct changes. We have to make sure we are making the right changes to get this team going in the right direction.”
Friday night will be the first look at the changes and adjustments Chamblin and his assistants came up with in the bunker.
Will they work is now the most important question to be answered.
Jamie Nye bleeds green and is the Roughrider insider for News Talk 980 CJME Regina and News Talk 650 CKOM Saskatoon. All of his Rider coverage can be found at www.GreenZoneFootball.com and you can follow him on Twitter @JamieNye.