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Nick Saban Isn’t A Fan Of The No-Huddle

October 4, 2012 · By · Filed Under Football 

The Jaguar offense looks to the sideline for play adjustments against UTSA.

Press-Register beat writer covering the University of Alabama posted an article on Wednesday about Nick Saban’s thoughts on the no-huddle offense.

Alabama defeated Ole Miss 33-14 on Saturday. Ole Miss has a new coach this season in Hugh Freeze who brought the no-huddle spread offense from Arkansas State for the Rebels. Ole Nick Saban isn’t too fond of this style of offense that is spreading around the nation.

“I think that the way people are going no-huddle right now, that at some point in time, we should look at how fast we allow the game to go in terms of player safety. The team gets in the same formation group, you can’t substitute defensive players, you go on a 14-, 16-, 18-play drive and they’re snapping the ball as fast as you can go and you look out there and all your players are walking around and can’t even get lined up. That’s when guys have a much greater chance of getting hurt when they’re not ready to play.

I think that’s something that can be looked at. It’s obviously created a tremendous advantage for the offense when teams are scoring 70 points and we’re averaging 49.5 points a game. With people that do those kinds of things. More and more people are going to do it.

I just think there’s got to be some sense of fairness in terms of asking is this what we want football to be?”

You just try to get your players ready to do it the best way that you can,” Saban said. “I don’t think anybody really ever thought we’d go no-huddle and the coach could control the game from the sidelines and call the plays based on how the defense was lined up. That’s a real advantage for the offense.

You have to adapt on defense, your players have to adapt and it can be stressful in terms of communication and keeping their focus and energy level where it needs to be to play at that pace. It is what it is, so we try to get our players ready to do that.

I think there’s always been good offensive teams in our league. I think people that have really good quarterbacks and skill players and can make plays in the passing game. When they get hot, they certainly can score quickly and make a lot of big plays.

There’s always been teams in our league that can play very well on defense, but some days even good defenses get exposed a little bit, especially when they play a really good offensive team. I’m not surprised by it.

Granted, some people may not like the no-huddle spread offense but it’s an equalizer of sorts for the smaller teams over the bigger teams. Either way, teams get film and have a chance to formulate a game plan to prepare for such teams.

I dislike using the terms upper-level and lower-level teams. But if you look at it, teams like Alabama and others in the “big six” conferences are typically considered upper-level schools. They tend to be able to recruit big linemen and, as coach Jones has pointed out many times, there’s only so many of those big linemen to go around.

I believe one of the reasons that Coach Jones made the move to a no-huddle spread offense was partly because of that. It’s the offense’s potential to run plays back-to-back-to-back that allows the “lower-level” team a way to equalize the playing field somewhat.

Does Nick Saban want to push the Senior Bowl rules into College Football as a whole? Where there’s no blitzing? I think the defense has to cover 2 even.

I don’t see anything wrong with it. Do you?

 

UPDATE: Andrew Gribble posted a follow-up article this morning that had reactions from all over including Hugh Freeze and Urban Meyer. You can read it here.

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