Category Archives: Strategery And Mechanics

Thinking outside the box

And there’s more good stuff here about how South Carolina’s run defense may fare against Todd Gurley tomorrow.  In particular, check this out:

The Gamecocks averaged at least 6.8 defenders in the box each year from 2011 to 2013. This year, having faced the pass-heavy offenses of Texas A&M and East Carolina, they average 6.1 defenders in the box, second-fewest in the SEC.

South Carolina has keyed on Gurley, who has faced an average of 7.0 defenders in the box in their two meetings. If the Gamecocks are to avoid falling to 0-2 in the SEC, they will probably need to key in on Gurley again and not let him get to the second level unimpeded.

I’m guessing we’re not going to see that many I-formation sets from Bobo early on.  Single back sets, with three receivers and a tight end, will force Carolina’s defense to spread out.  If Ward chooses not to take that bait, I think Bobo will take his chances with Mason looking for Bennett and Conley being covered by those green defensive backs with little or no safety help.

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Filed under 'Cock Envy, Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

“If they throw a screen, you have to retrace.”

Some pretty good stuff here about how Alabama is adapting on defense to avoid being nibbled to death with opponents’ quick passing games.

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Filed under Strategery And Mechanics

Not so fast, my friend.

You could see this one coming a mile away.

But being fast is not as important as being right.

That’s the word this week from Florida coach Will Muschamp and offensive coordinator Kurt Roper coming off the 65-0 opening-day win over Eastern Michigan in which the offense was not really all that fast getting lined up and firing off plays.

Execution takes priority over speed in the Gators’ new spread, uptempo offense.

“My ideal is to no-huddle, we’re quick tempo, we’re at the ball, we can play fast whenever we need to play fast,” Roper said Tuesday. “I’ve never been one to really harp on tempo. It’s all about execution, staying on the field and those things.”

“I think we can change tempo based on the game situation and how we want to go about things. That never really presented itself,” Muschamp said. “We felt pretty comfortable in the rhythm we were in.

Boom isn’t a no-huddle, break neck guy.  He’s a defensive guy who wants the pace of a game to favor his defense.  So while he may hire an offensive coordinator who utters devotion to tempo, that’s not the same thing as sticking with a high paced offensive attack game in and game out.  And I’ve seen nothing from him in his stint at Gainesville to suggest he won’t hesitate to have Roper tone it down to a level he’s more comfortable with.

That kind of approach worked so well at Auburn, where it cost two successive head coaches their jobs.  Of course, maybe Muschamp wouldn’t know about that, since he’s never coached at Aub… oh, wait.

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Filed under Gators, Gators..., Strategery And Mechanics

It’s the little things that make him so good.

I got a chuckle out of this:

The defensive linemen worked a scoop-and-score drill where they had to pick up a football on the ground and run towards the opposite end of the practice field. An overeager Josh Dawson false started on the drill, but defensive line coach Tracy Rocker didn’t seem to notice. Rocker’s point of emphasis during the drill was to make sure that the players “go to the right end zone.”

Now that’s a plan.  Would you want to be the guy who has to walk back to the sidelines and face Rocker if you ran the wrong way on a fumble recovery?

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Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

“We just need to do what it takes to win.”

For all of Gus Malzahn’s offseason blathering about balance, it sounds like balanced means whatever works.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

But I will say, from what little I’ve seen of Auburn’s offense this season, that Nick Marshall doesn’t look any more polished as a passer than he did last year.  Johnson, his backup, is far better at throwing.  So what does Gus do if he runs into a defense that actually has success slowing Auburn’s running game down?

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Filed under Auburn's Cast of Thousands, Strategery And Mechanics

Monday morning buffet

Get you a plate and dig in.

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Filed under Big 12 Football, Big Ten Football, Georgia Football, Look For The Union Label, Pac-12 Football, SEC Football, Strategery And Mechanics, The Body Is A Temple, The Evil Genius

“We built our team to beat LSU and power football teams like Georgia.”

Nick Saban discusses his change of approach in building his defense in the HUNH era, and it sounds awfully familiar.

“So when we played Texas A&M, we still had too many big slow guys out there that were good players in a certain type of game.”

Alabama’s recruiting strategy has shifted to finding more athletic defensive linemen who are capable of staying on the field for extended amounts of time. He listed Jonathan Allen, Dalvin Tomlinson and D.J. Pettway as recent examples.

The desire for more athleticism at outside linebacker, which traditionally plays at defensive end when Alabama goes to nickel or dime, is also apparent. Among the examples Saban listed at that position were Xzavier Dickson, Denzel Devall, Tim Williams and freshman Rashaan Evans.

“We need a guy or two like that so when we do play the LSUs of the world, we can really pound you on the line of scrimmage and hold up, but we need a lot of those other guys and that’s changing the recruiting,” Saban said. “You have to have more athletic linebackers who can play in space. You can’t match personnel all the time. You sometimes have got to play a nickel linebacker and you wish you could put six defensive backs in but you can’t get them in the game, and if you get them in the game, you can’t get them out.”

If you think of Todd Grantham as old Saban and Jeremy Pruitt as new Saban, doesn’t that sound like what we’re watching evolve in Athens?

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Filed under Nick Saban Rules, Strategery And Mechanics