Friday, December 23, 2011

Put Some Shine on Your Boots! Bootleg passes that is !

The last five years we have been predominantly a run oriented ttight end heavy 1st and 2nd down run heavy offense. Bootlegs and PAP have always been key for us to bring balance and to keep folks honest. We have been boot heavy to the point that D coordinators would squeeze us off hard to the TE side rolling down and leaving the defense with no optin but to squeeze the dragger from the backside with the FS. I am sure many of you have encountered this problem especially if you are TE and field heavy offensively and or even balanced spread field heavy. Out of the gun our basic balanced TE boot looks like the cuts above.

So there you have it. Our bootlegs were getting squeezed off and one of our responses or answers was the deep shot. Make it look the same as boot as much as possible. Max it by keeping th TE in if you need to along with the RB and look deep first. You just might catch it! Other variations might include check releasing the RB. I will follow up ;ater with some ideas for PAP out of out TE Trips package later,

Merry Christmas and Happy NewYear!


Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Under Center: Why gun Spread teams do it?

Observing the evolution of modern gun spread football the past few years and in the effort to improve our own offense(brother we do need some help there!)  I have noticed that besides the standard gun snap to initiate the offensive play that many very successful coordinators(I don't believe I have to mention names here to you astute readers) are utilizing an under center approach.  I have also noticed that though the plays they run under center are limited that they do seem to have a high succes rate.  So the question for you gurus is:
1.  Why get under center if you are predominantly a gun team?
2.  What is your package?  WARNING!(IAM NOT talking about simply a short yardage goal line package either.)
    I will start by saying that I see advantage to getting under center as follows.
A.  Ball gets in QB's hands faster and with a quick release the quick game is flourishing at WARP speed.  Seeing Brady dice up the Jets last week reaffirmed this for me.
B.  Gain leverage on rollouts and boots.  Namely weakside rollout single receiver outs or comebacks and the deep crossers on the boots with an occasional pull up shot home run.
C.  Tempo changer to run a sneak or an old school belly zone.  These plays just hit quicker even when the D knows they are coming.  Seem to have high success rate in fast tempo transition.
THOUGHTS? COMMENTS?  THANKS FOR READING!Shoot me an email at if you wish to talk further.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

TECHNOLOGY....Its my friend

This fall will be my 15th year to coach football.  I have had a good run here in Denison and professionally I have come a long way.  I would have to say that technology is the #1 factor in me improving as a ball coach.  However, that is sort of a trick answer.  Here are some of the technology tools I am talking about in no particular order.
2. DVD duplicator
4. blogspot
5. camtasia
6. snapit
7. webinars
List could go on and on.  The reason I say its a trick answer is this.  All of those technological tools lead back to relationships with people.  Having the ability to communicate with other coaches ANYWHERE and having the ability to functionally exchange thoughts and ideas have changed me as a coach.
     Greg Wright came to Denison in the fall of 2007.  He brought with him about 10 dvds that he let me watch.  Among them was the Gus Malzahn coaches choice set.  This was right about the time Gus had left the HS ranks and went to Arkansas as the OC.  I asked Greg where he got them at and he told me that he got them from a guy in Wisconsin.  He told me that he traded a couple of things he had and sent him some game cut ups and before he knew it he had dvds laying around all over the place.  Relationships....
     I then became a member on  My member handle is bigballsincowtown.  I couldn't tell you why.  I tried a couple of normal names and they were already taken, so there it is.  Here is where I met Brophy.  As you all know, my man Brophy is as sharp as they come in this business.  His knowledge level about the game is on another level.  Reading his posts on (and later this blog) have made me a better offensive coach.  Seeing things thru the eyes of a defender, specifically Cajun eyes that will hold nothing back, helps me daily strive to get to his level.  Relationships....
     So from Texas to Wisconsin and on to Louisiana, I became hooked.  It was like swapping baseball cards when I was a kid.  The Gus stuff got me going and carried me up to close to 200 dvds.  Then I hit another gold mine.  My boss had 6 hours of Rich Rodriguez talking ball to his former staff, when Rich Rod was at Clemson.  This was the spring after his offense took of with Woody Dantlzer as his qb.  It started with the beginnings and took off from there.  I transferred those from vhs to dvd, put em on, and they took off like firecrackers on the 4th of July.  Relationships....
     I still swap, but not like I did.  I am at 1200 dvds now and I am always looking to add to my collection.  If you are interested, lets start building a relationship and get on the Brophsters level!!!  The quest for knowledge in any profession is what its about.

Saturday, February 5, 2011


Searching on youtube this evening on the backside of a North Texas smowmegeddon and I found this guy that has some very good stuff.  Tons of college games from this past season and they are broken down o-d minus all the mumbo jumbo between plays.  It ain't coach cuts, but its good stuff.  Search NFLMocksGameFilm or here is the link

Sunday, January 16, 2011


     The stock answer for controlling outside linebackers in the spread offense is having the ability to run the bubble. The purpose of this article is to give alternatives to a spread offense that doesn’t want to run the bubble. For starters I will discuss why our offense chooses not to major in bubbles as our “hanger/flat area defender” controller. It comes down to a what-do-you-want-to-do argument. Our base philosophy is to be multiple with 4 wide sets with a mix of T.E. sets using the same personnel grouping. To make it as easy as possible for our full-time receivers, we keep the on/off the L.O.S. alignments the same. It doesn’t matter if it is a T.E. set or not, all they need to know to get properly aligned is how many eligible receivers are on their side of the ball.      We are shotgun 100% of the time. It doesn’t matter whether we are on the 1 yard line coming out or going in, or taking a knee. We do not want to spend practice time with a center/QB exchange. With our base alignments of our slots, you can see that one of them will be on the L.O.S. and one will be off. We tried to have them run the bubble route the same (from on/off the L.O.S.) but the throwing angle was different for the QB. Doesn’t seem that drastic, but you try it. We then had the slots off the L.O.S. run a typical J-step, crossover run route. The guys on the L.O.S. did the “crawfish” route backing away from the QB towards the sideline angling slightly away from the ball. These changes were not what we were looking for either.

Bottom line……

We could dabble with the bubble and have some moderate success, or control the hangers with other things in our offense that we already practice and run more efficiently. That was an easy choice. Bye-bye bubble.

Option 1 Outside Zone

This has been covered many times by many zone gurus. Rule it up and run it. With or without a T.E., strong or weak, 1 back 2 back no back, fly no fly.

Option 2 Boot

Again covered many times with a gazillion route combinations. Waggle it, naked it, whatever floats your boat, but it will give you some hanger control.

Option 3 Stick

1 back spread, T.E., 21 personnel, swing and an option, or 2 quick outs with a clear by #1.

Meat & Potatoes

The following are our 2 best hanger controllers, a run and a pass.

The run is a “pin & pull” scheme that Appalachian State shared with us in Spring 2007. It is run by many at the collegiate and NFL levels (see youtube of Alex Gibbs). Appalachian State called it truck, so we do too. We can and will run it to any front. App State ran it to a 7 technique (inside shade of the T.E.) and choose counter to a 6 technique (head up on T.E.) or a 9 technique (outside shade on the T.E.). We have ran the counter, but have found we would rather spend our time “tricking up” truck and pulling as many as 3 to the front side. Truck has a “buck sweep” look. I can get technical if needed with the oline techniques. We have also ran it weak away from a T.E. to a 4i technique (inside shade of the offensive tackle) on an open ended side. The #1 reason for us running truck is the advantage we get when defenses try to walk up the hanger to give a “solid” look. More times than not, these OLB are designed and personneled as “space” players. They have limited practice time playing close to the L.O.S. in a true run support role. Advantage offense.

Truck has been our best play (avg. yds per play) since it was put in our offense, whether we were 25-3 combined in 2008-09 with four D1’s on offense (T.E., QB, RB, OT), or 2-8 in 2010.  Check out the cuts and fire away with comments/questions.

Our best pass for flat area defender control is what we call “hole.”  It has a scat feel that works versus any coverage.  We see 1 high 65% of the time, but it has proven effective versus 2 high as well.  The protection is our base quick game protection.  We have ran this play for years but really tightened it up after a visit with the Texas staff consisting of former OC Greg Davis and former WR coach Bobby Kennedy(now @ Colorado).  Hole is a 3 x 1 route (with or w/o a T.E.).  The #1 receiver runs a “must outside release” clear.  The “must outside release” is especially true with a hard cover 2 corner.  He must turn the corner’s eyes or you risk getting a guy hit in the mouth.  The #2 receiver is running an inside-angled-route, finding a “hole” between the hanger and the Mike LB at a depth of 7-8 yds.  We initially ran this route to 5 yards, but found pushing it just a couple of more steps made the Mike LB work vertical a little more creating a bigger hole.  At 5 yds the Mike squatted all over this route.  If the Mike does squat, hug up, or as Texas calls it “match” the  hole route, he should pivot and work flat to the sideline careful not to lose ground from the L.O.S. giving an interception angle to the LB. The #3 receiver runs a shoot route.  His aiming point is hitting the sideline 2-3 yards beyond the L.O.S. flat and fast.  The QB reads the first LB outside the box.  If the LB squats on the hole, he works the shoot right now.  If the LB chases the shoot he looks to the hole route.  The QB also has the option to throw to the single WR on the backside.  We tag this route as either a slant/fade/hitch. Texas runs a 8 yd curl, cut we choose the other options because we do not run a 8 yd curl as a quick and we wanted to keep it consistent with all other quick game concepts for the QB. 
We do have a couple of double moves off the hole route we have done if anyone is interested in seeing those.