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The Magic of the Okie Wishbone

 
 
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 06:34 pm
I'd mentioned this once before, but....

You just gotta see this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fPL1KsFmepk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0AxulqVSWf0&feature=related

The contrast with pro-style football is stark; instead of the offense being outnumbered 11-10 on running plays (the quarterback isn't contributing anything but a turkey imitation), if it's done right the DEFENSE is effectively being outnumbered something like 12 or 13 - 11. Note that when Mildren went to throw the ball there was never more than one defender anywhere near the receiver since you simply couldn't have a zone pass defense when you had to have nine or ten guys right up on the line to have any prayer of stopping that ground game.

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Type: Discussion • Score: 0 • Views: 7,023 • Replies: 21
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Rockhead
 
  2  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 06:39 pm
@gungasnake,
It required very intelligent O-Line play to work correctly...
gungasnake
 
  2  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 06:46 pm
@Rockhead,
Nonetheless the two most powerful football conferences of the day were dominated for over a decade by wishbone teams.

Okies finally forgot how to throw the football and Florida teams started lining up with all 11 guys on the line of scrimmage against them. The Bama version of it which featured an integrated passing game was never disproven. Bryant won two national titles with it and then died and the guy who took over tossed it because he wasn't familiar with it.
Rockhead
 
  2  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 06:51 pm
@gungasnake,
It was an offense built on discipline, and not so much athletics, which is the modern era's backbone.

(speed)
kuvasz
 
  1  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 07:07 pm
better read up on the best offense around.

AUTHOR Black, Al, 1937-
TITLE Modern belly T football [by] A. Allen Black.
PUBLISHER West Nyack, N.Y., Parker Pub. Co. [1972]
DESCRIPTION 229 p. illus. 24 cm.
ISBN 0135879728. OCLC # 287066. LC CONTROL # 79167608.

my high school football coach. in 1970 the team was ranked #2 nationally and scored 499 points in 10 games and ran up over 7000 yards of offense.

al was coaching in the European nfl the last i heard
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 07:17 pm
@Rockhead,
It took TV cameramen two or three years to even figure out how to follow the action that system produced. In 69 and 70 they were constantly following the wrong guy down the field.
0 Replies
 
Foxfyre
 
  2  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 07:22 pm
Darn. I thought we were gonna see Okie without his shirt.
Oh well.
Carry on.
gungasnake
 
  2  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 08:39 pm
@Foxfyre,
You can see why they called it a "wishbone", yes?? The three running backs lined up in a sort of a Y behind the quarterback...
Rockhead
 
  2  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 08:43 pm
@gungasnake,
My nephew won a low level state title last year running a modified wishbone offense.

It's fun to watch...
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 09:07 pm
@Rockhead,
You still have to be able to throw the ball.... The guy who really perfected it was Bear Bryant. Bama figured to pass 15 or 20 times in a game and there was no real way to tell when it was happening. Lining up with ten or eleven guys on the line of scrimmage like the Florida teams did against OU was just an automatic seven points, it put Ozzie Newsome and two other gifted receivers out there with man coverage and pinpoint passing.
0 Replies
 
kuvasz
 
  1  
Reply Tue 30 Sep, 2008 11:52 pm
http://www.pawrsl.com/pfn/wilson_springfield70.htm

al black's team that ran the belly t option just as good as oklahoma's wishbone.

Quote:
In 1970, the Springfield Spartans of Montgomery County fielded an extraordinary gridiron team. The smallish suburban Philadelphia school, with 25 returning lettermen, romped through a ten-game schedule and scored 497 points, an average of nearly 50 per game. The Suburban One League championship race was no contest.

Coach Al Black's masterpiece had experience, speed, intelligence and enthusiasm that translated to a blazing offense and a stifling opportunistic defense. Opponents' mistakes were quickly converted into points. Black summed it all when he said, "Hustle and good execution win games. When you combine them with talent, you can't help but have a great season."

Despite its modest enrollment, Springfield had moved from the less challenging Bux-Mont League, after winning the 1968 crown, into the powerful Suburban One to play many of the biggest schools in the area.

After erasing neighbor Plymouth-Whitemarsh, Black's "Big Blue Brigade" faced Upper Merion in their fourth 1970 game. UM was thought before the season to be Springfield's toughest rival. The Spartans won 58-8. Amazing halfback Paul Melzer shredded the Vikings' defense for 319 yards and four TD's. With guard Bruce Williams leading the way, Melzer was sensational all season and was named to the All-State first unit.

The following week against non-league Lower Moreland, deep Springfield dressed 72 players and Black got all of them into the game, a 48-29 romp. The Spartans led 48-8 at the half. Decisive victories followed over defending champion Abington and hopeful Norristown.

Abington dominated the first quarter, had the Spartans on their heels, and led 3-0. The Spartans quickly got the message and blitzed the Ghosts for 26 points in the second quarter and 21 more in the third. No seniors played in the final period as Springfield won 54-3.

In the finale of this glorious season, long before the playoffs were introduced, Springfield overwhelmed Thanksgiving rival Wissahickon, 55-30. The Spartans scored on dives, sweeps, reverses, and long and short passes. Black also employed "junk" plays, as he called them. A double reverse pass went for 16 yards and a touchdown.

Springfield had gained more than 500 yards in every game. The highest scoring team in the nation, the Spartans were nominated by the Philadelphia Inquirer as the best in the state. A championship game against WPIAL AA champion Mt. Lebanon or New Castle's great team would have been something to behold.

Al Black is a native of Northfield, New Jersey and graduate of Glassboro State, now Rowan. Glassboro had dropped football and Black played in the semi-pro ranks during his college years. He started his career as an assistant at Audubon, NJ. He was head coach at Springfield just five years, moving to Coatesville in 1971. Black coached the Red Raiders for 13 years, winning seven Ches-Mont titles.

An attacking specialist, Black later served as offensive coordinator at Widener, Millersville and Delaware Valley. More recently, he has worked in various levels of professional football in Europe, coaching, holding clinics and consulting. In 2003, his London Olympians won the "Brit Bowl".

The Spartans'1970 record:

55 UPPER MORELAND 20
42 UPPER DUBLIN 27
41 PLYMOUTH-WHITEMARSH 12
58 UPPER MERION 8
48 LOWER MORELAND 29
56 CHELTENHAM 0
46 METHACTON 8
54 ABINGTON 3
42 NORRISTOWN 22
55 WISSAHICKON 30


paul melzer was our third team halfback, who was all state first team and he started only because the first team halfback died in the off season and the second team halfback was injured in the second game. if either one of them had played the team would have scored 70 points/game. and the first teams on offense and defense NEVER played a down in a fourth quarter.
kuvasz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 1 Oct, 2008 12:20 am
btw
Coaching Run-And-Shoot Football (Paperback)
by Al Black (Author)

Quote:
By Edmond E. Seay III (Brussels, Belgium) - See all my reviews

This is the source -- the only text available to most coaches that lays out the (still-)revolutionary Mouse Davis Run and Shoot offense. Since Coach Davis never got around to writing such a book, we should be very glad that Al Black decided to do so.

It's all here -- the pass route packages like Slide, Go, Smash, Switch and Choice, plus the supplemental running game to the single back, and various screens, draws and shovel passes. Coach Black adds his expertise to one of the two major variants of the Run and Shoot still being played with great success -- the Spread Option Run and Shoot -- in the form of some truly devastating play-action passes off of the powerful inside veer fake to the single back.

(The other modern Run and Shoot variation that's achieving success at the high school and college level is the Triple Shoot offense, which combines the Run and Shoot route packages with the fly/jet/speed sweep series, maintaining the Davis philosophy of complexity through simplicity. Coach Black's book does not cover this variation, however.)

It is possible to set up a functioning R&S offense using Coach Black's book alone -- I know several coaches who have done so with great success.

Highly recommended.

Tiger Ellison. Mouse Davis. June Jones. John Jenkins.
These are names we have associated with the Run and Shoot. Love them or hate them, these guys have been a part of the revolution. The Shoot is explained in detail in Coach Black's book. The key to making this offense work is the adjustments and reads made at the line before the snap and after the snap. Coach Black pays special attention to these adjustments and the QB and receiver techniques involved.


Attacking Modern Defenses With Belly Option Football

Authors: Al Black, Bill Manlove
Format: Hardcover
Publication Date: March 1985
Publisher: Prentice Hall Direct
Dimensions: 9.5"H x 6.5"W x 1"D; 1 lbs.
ISBN-10: 0130501883
ISBN-13: 9780130501882
List Price: $27.95

Pro-Style Multiple Defense for High School Football

Author: Al Black
Format: Paperback, 116 pages
Publication Date: January 2000
Publisher: Harding Pr
Dimensions: 9"H x 6"W x 0.5"D; 0.45 lbs.
ISBN-10: 1890450057
ISBN-13: 9781890450052
List Price: $18.00

al black was the most innovative high school football coach in america over the last quarter of the 20th century. our high school playbook ran over 250 pages. anybody who wants to coach football at any level ought to have his books on his library shelves.

i learned about football from a master. the finest compliment i ever received in my life despite being magna cum laude, and validictorian of my university was when after i had won the most valuble player in my county football all star game, was having al black shake my hand and said it was the best played game he ever saw an offensive center play. it was equvalent to an "atta' boy" from richard feynman.
0 Replies
 
talk72000
 
  1  
Reply Mon 6 Oct, 2008 10:07 pm
@Rockhead,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wishbone_formation

Two coaches from the Sooners joined the ranks of the NFL. Coach Chuck Fairbanks http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chuck_Fairbanks went to the Patriots and Barry Switzer http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barry_Switzer to Dallas. neither of them used the wishbone in the NFL even though they were very successful using the wishbone as coaches of the Sooners.

Bud Wilkinson http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bud_Wilkinson was the most successful Sooners coach.
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Wed 12 Nov, 2008 07:49 am
More Mildren highlights

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VOQkA9PUO7g

http://video.google.com/videosearch?q=oklahoma+1971+&www_google_domain=www.google.com&hl=en&emb=0&aq=f#q=oklahoma%201971%20&www_google_domain=www.google.com&hl=en&emb=0&aq=f&start=20
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Wed 12 Nov, 2008 08:42 am
@Rockhead,
Quote:
It was an offense built on discipline, and not so much athletics, which is the modern era's backbone.


You might want to watch the thing I just posted from the 71 OU/SC game and listen to what the announcer is saying, i.e. that Southern Cal had the athletes but the Okies had the team (or the system). One thing you notice about the 71 season is that the closest thing Okies had to a super running back that year was Greg Pruitt, i.e. that Mildren was doing it all with good to very good, but not great runners.
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Wed 12 Nov, 2008 10:26 am
Try that again......

http://tinyurl.com/5uq6gw

That should be the OU/SC game from 71 and not OU/colorado or OU/OSU.
0 Replies
 
gungasnake
 
  1  
Reply Fri 14 Nov, 2008 09:47 am
The Alabama conception of the wishbone with an integrated passing game. When the tide threw from the wishbone formation it did not look like a desperation act or something unnatural; it looked like something they practiced and were good at, and meant to do something like 20 times or thereabouts in a game:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qd6ewUJXS-0

0 Replies
 
lakezurichil
 
  2  
Reply Mon 23 Nov, 2009 09:54 pm
@kuvasz,
Well Melzer wasn't the 3rd team halfback since Springfield ran with 2 backs in the backfield at all times and a wing back. If it wasn't for a severe ankle injury in his Junior year he would have started then. He was by far the fastest player on the field in every game. Also in the first 2 games of the year his running mate was Bob Hultburg until he was hurt in the Upper Dublin game. Melzer lead the team in rushing both of the first 2 games. The team could have scored more than 70 points a game that year if the starters weren't pulled out of the game in the Third Quarter. There was only 1 game in which Melzer played more then 3 quarters and that was against Upper Merion, a game in which he carried the ball 19 times (season high) for 319 yards. Not bad for what you say was a 3rd team running back.
kuvasz
 
  1  
Reply Wed 2 Dec, 2009 06:21 pm
@lakezurichil,
Paul would have been the third "back" Al Black would have generally used had not Bill Buehler died in the Spring of '70 and Hultberg injured his kindney in the Upper Dublin game. Melzer played JV his junior year, and did not earn a varsity letter. Hultberg ran on the varsity, had better hands and natural running ability between the tackles. Bill Buehler, at halfback his sophmore year, led the team in rushing and ran for 465 yards @ 8.8 yards/carry, with Hultberg second at 379 yards in his junior year. Under Al Black the two set backs were interchangable, meaning that either back could be set at half back or fullback depending on the game situation. normally running a standard off tackle 36, hultberg would be the halfback but running the 40 series melzer would be the halfback because of the 47 option plays and its major misdirection play the counter,42. What made Melzer such a threat was that on the 47 option he was gone like lightening once he turned the corner.

and yes Al Black had no love lost with Upper Merion. He ran up the score intentionally since UM had done the same to Springfield the year before at 48-6.

Thank you for recognizing a special team and group of young men. You must have been one of my teammates. It was the finest organization with which I was associated.

#52, class of '72, mvp montgomery county all star game '72.
lakezurichil
 
  2  
Reply Sat 5 Dec, 2009 08:40 pm
@kuvasz,
Well if you were the cass of 72..... You were a Junior when Springfield had its best year. As I recall there was very little talent in the Junior Class other then John Wistch (sorry if i butched last name). Melzer's yards per carry ended up at 12yrd per. He was by far the fastest kid in the school and possibly the league. He ran well on all the running plays, between the tackles up the middle or outside. By the way it was Pete Rambo who ran the counter play that year. I must be getting old because the only Junior that played on that team was John.
 

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