Gary Danielson thinks so.
… Danielson, 57, also recently made a comment to a newspaper in his native city (Detroit) that should enrage Michigan followers and warm those in these parts who are reveling in the 2-4 start at the Big House by former WVU Coach Rich Rodriguez, who took his spread to Ann Arbor.
“What I said, and it was before the season, was that I think the spread has peaked, like the wishbone did in the mid-70s,” Danielson said by phone Tuesday. “I predict that Michigan will be the last of the top major programs running only the spread…”
To which MGoBlog’s Brian Cook tosses back a pretty good *Oh, Snap!* response.
The always-incorrect Gary Danielson:
“I said it before the season — and I was out there by myself — I think we’ve seen the spread has peaked, like the wishbone did in the mid-70s,” Danielson said Thursday.
The top ten teams in total offense so far, spread teams in bold:
- Texas Tech
- Louisiana Lafayette
- Nevada (pistol variety)
- Oklahoma State
- Penn State
Might want to cancel the funeral.
Semantics? Maybe somewhat (the term “spread” is broadly used these days, no doubt), but it also sounds like Danielson backtracks a little bit on his statement when he says this:
“Instead of teams going more to it, I think you’ll see teams going to it as part of an offense. The top schools can get the best talent. For them, there’s no need to do it … I love it as a part of my package, not as the only package.”
There’s actually a decent point in there, in that almost every team out there incorporates some spread components into its offense these days. I also think Danielson makes a good point about Rodriguez’ use of the spread at West Virginia.
“What has West Virginia gotten, maybe three of the top 150 players in the last five years?” Danielson figured. “When you’re in that situation, I can see it, because you need to keep people off balance, and the spread can do that…”
But I think he misses in comparing the situation at Auburn with that at Michigan.
Danielson said Auburn’s move to the spread “just didn’t fit the mindset there. To (Coach) Tommy Tuberville’s credit, he properly cut it out quickly.”
The mindset at Michigan is similar.
Danielson’s opinion is that Rodriguez’s introduction of the no-huddle spread at Michigan “was just too much of a culture shock. I’m not saying Rich won’t succeed there.
“What I’m saying is that he shouldn’t put all of his eggs in the spread basket. He doesn’t need that. Michigan can get the players so he doesn’t need to do that…”
The mindset at Auburn is that of the coaching staff and I think Danielson is correct in pointing out that Franklin was a bad fit from the start in that regard. But whose “culture shock” at Michigan is he referring to? Surely not that of the coaches there; Rodriguez believes in his system, obviously. And he was brought in to install it. Certainly both schools have suffered this season from not having the personnel to run the spread properly, but it seems to me that that’s as far as the similarities go.