The Eyes Have It: Mock Focuses On Looking Off WRs

A significant part of the reason why QB <B>Chance Mock's </B>pass efficiency rating is No. 3 nationally (36 of 63, 7 TDs and no INT) is not just because of a certain 6-4 wideout but also because of something that goes virtually undetected to all except those irksome DBs: the QB's eyes. This week, Mock wants to get even better at looking off receivers. The result can mean the difference between a completion and a pick, and, as some Orangebloods are painfully aware, between wining and losing.

"I don’t think my eyes were good last week (against Rice)," Mock said, a relatively harsh assessment since he was a perfect 8-of-8 for 159 yards and two TDs.

"I don’t think I used my eyes enough to move people," he added. "I did a good job with that against Arkansas but I got a little lackadaisical against Rice. I need to work on that this week because, against a team like Tulane that has a really good defense, those little things help. That can be the difference between completing a pass or not. One of the worst things you can do as a quarterback is drop back looking at the guy you’re going to throw it to."

Tell us about it. Or, tell us about that 59-yard scoring pass to RB Cedric Benson late in the second half. Mock was given much of the credit for looking off the safety, leaving an undersized cornerback in single coverage against Benson.

"We motioned him out and that lets you know two things," Mock said. "That lets you know what coverage they’re in depending on who takes him and how they adjust. Number two, you've got a running back out there that sometimes ends up unaccounted for."

Although Benson was still trying to convince Mock that he was going to be "wide open," the junior was by no means the primary receiver on the play.

"The way we work our verticals is we go to the middle of the field and, depending on the safeties, out to the deep and then down to the back," Mock said. "In that case, the back was the tight end. He was the under guy."

Rather than crediting his "eyes," Mock gave props to SE Roy Williams. D-backs are so conscious of Williams that they "suck up on Roy because he’s so afraid and that leaves (Benson) wide open. He was my second read."

Benson, of course, is the most "wide open" man in college football -- or at least from his perspective. DBs tend to look at the RB as an under-coverage safety valve rather than a go-the-distance receiving threat.

"I usually am open," Benson said Tuesday. "No need to lie about it."

A markedly upbeat Benson spoke excitedly of his 130 yards on 18 carries performance but also gave credit where credit is due.

"It felt good to finally get the ball like I always wanted to and, most important, to see the guys up front work as hard as they did" Benson said. "They played awesome. I can’t say enough about them. They started it off for me and I just took it and ran with it."

For Mock, continuing to work on his reads tops this week’s agenda for steady maturation. Better than an 8-for-8 performance? Mock is counting on it. You can see it in his eyes.

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