The voice of “Thursday Night Football” Paul Alexander provides his weekly installment of “Coach A’s Clinic.”
This week he looks at a wrinkle that has taken high school by storm – the spread offense.
Football is the ultimate “follow the leader” or “copycat” sport. All coaches do is rip each other off. And different styles are en vogue in different eras.
The Wing-T and I formation dominated college and high school football in the 1960s. In the ’70s, the rage was the Wishbone and other triple-option systems. Everybody did it. You get the idea.
Now it’s all about the spread..run from the shotgun. Four receivers….one back things you almost never see include tight ends…fullbacks…and quarterbacks under center.
Like any offense, the spread can be devastating if you have the right personnel. That means you better have a quarterback who can sling it, at least four greyhound receivers who can go get it – a competent running back and a stout offensive line.
Of course if you have all that, you could probably run the single wing and win.
I’ve asked a lot of local coaches why everybody runs the spread. The most frequent answer I get back is
“because the kids like it.” Understand, we have some great spread offense teams in the Coastal Bend.
But what if….how can I put this gently?….What if you’re not very good at that style?
If that’s the case, is the spread still the best way to give your team a chance to win? Why, would you want to throw three incomplete passes, take 25 seconds off the clock and throw your defense right back out there?
Might using a ball-control, run-oriented attack be a better choice?
That’s sometimes the way it looks to me
You know, from here in the peanut gallery.