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MMQB - What Sort of Offense Would You Run?

There are a few ways to beat a defense

Photo by Corey Perrine/Getty Images

Welcome back after the long holiday weekend! We hope everyone had an enjoyable Fourth of July.

MMQB has been pondering the Penn State offense for 2019, and how it will adapt from the mobile-yet-not-super-accurate Trace McSorley to the accurate-yet-not-as-mobile Sean Clifford. Ricky Rahne remains as the offensive coordinator, and so he will have to modify the Joe Moorhead offense to fit a more pro style quarterback. That’s the issue faced across the country by various teams when a new quarterback takes over, one with a different skill set from his predecessor.

That got me thinking about what sort of offense I’d run if I were given the reins, and so MMQB asks: what sort of offense would you run, if you were an offensive coordinator?

There are certainly merits to the various type of offense out there. Off the top of my head, I can think of a few:

  • Pro style
  • Spread
  • Run-pass option (RPO)
  • Wildcat
  • Triple option

These are just a few options, and frankly most coordinators have at least a few plays in their toolbag from each of these overall philosophies.

But if it were me, and I was building an offense from scratch, I’d probably go with the spread more than anything else.

At the college level, you can often get away with iffy play calling if you have superior athletes. Playing teams like Iowa and Michigan State, who want to keep everything between the tackles, and dare you to beat them in “man ball” is just a recipe for disaster. I’d rather have just the QB and RB in the backfield, with the QB playing from either the shotgun or the pistol, and then a slew of receivers to dish the ball to.

While I don’t hate the RPO, as it keeps the defense on its toes, it also puts your offensive line in a bind. They need to more or less “stay home” in case the QB opts to throw the ball - they can’t launch out of their stance and try to grade the road ahead of them, lest they get called for an illegal man downfield penalty. I’d personally switch to more direct run calls, and let the big uglies do their thing.

So what say you, dear reader? What sort of offense would you employ, were you an offensive coordinator at the college level?