It looks like we got Hoke (sigh) and he will bring coordinator Al Borges with him. Borges runs the gulf coast offense. What does this mean? I saw an old article from an Auburn blog which talks a bit about it:
l Borges had his work cut out for him as did the Tiger offense. I think we can all agree that this is an understatement. But what I want to shed a little light on is what I think of the fit between the Auburn Tigers and the Gulf Coast offense.
My first step is to identify what the Gulf Coast offense is. Although Borges comes to the plains from Indiana, he had a few stops in California spending six years in and offensive coordinator/QB coach role at both UCLA and Cal. The Gulf Coast offense is based on the West Coast offense (sorry for stating the obvious, but someone who reads this may go "ohh, I get it"). If you are this person, you’re welcome.
Bill Walsh, the daddy of the West Coast offense coached for the 49ers in the 80s. Although he was the lone horse running the WCO through most of his career, in the early 90’s many teams started using the scheme with much success.
Let’s go through some of the basic premises of the West Coast offense and see how this will work for our Tigers.
Quick, controlled passes – I’m all for it. Although Borges said he likes to air it out on occasions, I like the idea of quick and controlled passes. With explosive receivers like Courtney Taylor and Ben Obomanu, I think this will work well.
Give the QB and receivers the ability to make reads on the fly – I am a little skeptical about this. After picking up Petrino’s offensive scheme in 2002 and a bastardized version of the same offense in 2003, Jason Campbell and company have got to be good at picking up new offenses. However, the ability to effectively make reads on the fly comes from study and repetition. A great deal of the time these guys have put in since Al came on board has been inside the playbook. With LA Monroe and Miss. State, I think we’ll be able to get some of the repetition we need to be effective against a tougher opponent.
* I bet that you will see the starters in the game a little longer than you would expect in the opener. Don’t think we’re tying to run up the score, we’re learning. Points are like A’s.
Many different formations in order to create a mismatch between an offensive player and a defender – Formation changes can be a great thing as long as the offense stays less confused than the defense. Again, back to the studying aspect of a new offense. I think that the guys will be prepared. I also think that we will see a good deal of formations in the opener this weekend. But know that we’ll be saving some surprises for LSU.
Equal amount of passing and running is used although the passing is thought to set up the run in some cases – I see two main reasons Tubberville brought Borges to the plains. One, to implement a top-notch offense that can take us back to a championship level. Two, get Cadillac and Ronnie Brown in the game at the same time. The little boy in me is reminded of watching Little Train James and Bo Jackson blocking for each other in 83. If it works out that way, that’s great. Either way, with the top running back duo in the country, I think that the Gulf coast offense will use the run to set up the pass.
Utilizes the running back as receivers – Cadillac and Ronnie combined for 13 catches and 100 yards last season. I think they have the hands, but simply weren’t given the opportunity last year. Jake Slaughter has been practicing his catching in the off season. I think that we will see a lot of play action routes that will open these guys up to really eat up some yards.
Count on yardage gained after the catch – Check and Check. Our guys are quick and evasive. I think this will be key.
Accurate and mobile QB that can read and react – I have always said Jason Campbell is a rollout passer. In his freshman year when the offense was devised around Daniel Cobb, and in his two years under the Petrino scheme, Campbell was in put into a drop back passer role. I think that given the opportunity Jason will be a great mobile QB.
Tight ends who can catch better than they can block – Cooper Wallace caught 16 passes for over 200 yards and a touchdown last season. He stepped up in big games catching 4 passes against LSU and 5 against Georgia. I think he will be perfect in this role.
Overall, I think the Gulf Coast offense is going see it’s share of bumps and bruises early on. I’m hoping we steal the "Bend, Don’t break" motto from Penn State’s defense in the first half of the season and go into the Arkansas game at 5 and 1. Once the guys have a few games in the new offense under their belts, I think we’ll see something really special on the plains.
I said these guys had their work cut out for them. The question is, did they do their homework? We'll see on Saturday!
War Damn Eagle
Can we tailor this to Denard? Will there be a huge transition? Is this what SDSU's offense looks like? If anyone can shed light, that would be great.