Dana Holgorsen just lit up the Orange Bowl scoreboard for 70 points! BYU fans, you remember when Crowton lit up Tulane for 70 don't ya?? Okay, Okay, Holgorsen and Crowton comparisons are probably bad right out of the gate, but what makes Holgo's offense so explosive and dynamic?? What things can BYU take away from Holgo's stuff to improve our own offense?
Holgorsen often talks about the key to success in his offense is less about scheme and more about how they practice. He also says his offense is simple enough that it can be explained in three days.
During spring ball and training camps Holgo will "install" his offense every three days. On the fourth day, he simply starts over and installs it again for the next three days ( I know, I know, it sounds exactly like something out of Bronco Mendenhall's B.S. book). For some reason, I don't think the 2011 BYU offense could be explained and installed in 3 days. But, that is just a guess. Maybe I say that because we (BYU), at the beginning of the year, could hardly get out of the huddle and snap the ball before the play clock ran dead. Or it could be that backs and quarterbacks were going the wrong directions on play action pass plays (yes, I'm talking to you Juice Quezada). It just seems like the offense needs more simplifying. And I believe implementing some of Holgo's great offensive principles could do wonders for the Y's offense. Sometimes I relate complexity with knowledge and performance. Like, if an offense doesn't have audibles, check with me's, backside tags, hot routes, and all of them combined, it will be too vanilla to stop and will never be successful. However, Holgo and his "Air Raid" attack has help me understand better. No one in Holgo's offense plays more than one position. He believes repetition and position mastery (there are those Bronco words again) are more important than moving players around at the expense of position mastery. One of Holgorsen's assistants at WVU explained it like this:
"Wes Welker at Texas Tech caught over 100 balls two years in a row and he played ‘H," Dawson said. Michael Crabtree caught over 100 (at Texas Tech) and he play ‘Z.’ I had two receivers back to back that caught over 100 and that played ‘X.’ Then I had a guy catch 119 that played ‘Y.’ "It just depends on where that guy lines up," Dawson continued. "The ball finds the play makers. Regardless of where you line them up. The ball finds the play makers. That is just the way it works out."
Another great thing Holgorsen uses is "packaged plays", the combination of run, screen and quick pass plays all in one . The always great, Chris Brown from Smart Football explains this very well. Also, here is a "chalk talk" of Holgo explaining this same concept.
Don't get me wrong West Virginia and BYU both had their fair share of hiccups and mistakes this year on the offensive end. However, how both teams ended their seasons offensively was complete opposite of each other. BYU seemed to have only 2 or 3 decent offensive possessions, while Geno Smith for WVU had 7 TDs (6 Pass, 1 Rush). WVU looked like they knew what their assignments were on every play, pass protection was flawless, and play changes and game plan were great. While BYU was opposite of that. It seemed Tulsa's defense was giving them trouble all day.
Maybe this is just me and my high expectations for an "explosive" BYU offense. But maybe we were oversold on Doman just a little bit?? Whatever the case, one day, I hope the BYU offense can be as entertaining as that Orange Bowl WVU offense someday. (TDP - Dana Holgorsen Offense and What Brandon Doman Can Learn)