The FishDuck Minute #9: Oregon’s Best No-Huddle Plays of 2010-2011

USC 10 TD1


Oregon is well known for the Hurry Up, No Huddle Offense and the following plays are well known as touchdowns, but for different reasons than I credit.  Rarely would any analyst look at the play before the touchdown to explain the six points, and I would assert that the major element in all three is the sparse time between plays, which gives us a tremendous advantage.  Let’s take a look at my favorites of 2010-2011 and why….


We run a typical Inside Zone Read on first down (Above) for about a four-yard gain against USC in 2010.  There is only 17 seconds between the beginning of the first down and the beginning of the second down and that includes the time of the play itself!


USC is NOT ready (Above) and not lined up correctly for second down and just like that…LaMichael is gone!


At the snap the USC defense (Above) recognizes that we’re running an Outside Zone Read to their left, so the red arrows show us how the Trojans are moving outside to cut off the perimeter, so much that they over-react outside.  We see Nick Cody (The Yellow Arrow) make a block on their Defensive Tackle and then their LB to give LaMichael a superb running lane for the touchdown!  All this set up by the rapid No-Huddle!


Against Stanford this year we try to make the first down on 3rd and ten, (Above) as Darron Thomas passes to Tuinei and we come up two yards short and Chip quickly goes for the touchdown on 4th down.


Look how Stanford is moving around and not ready for the play as the ball is being snapped on 4th down!  They are not lined up right and are trying to get their defense set as we begin!


It’s evident (Above) that Stanford was ready for a Triple Option outside, but was not prepared for a simple Inside Zone Read to our weakside.  That is a big hole created by our Offensive Line!


LaMichael James celebrates the easy touchdown with a primal scream shared by the thousands of Oregon fans at the game.  We love it!


It’s first down again with an Inside Zone Read that is stuffed (Above) by the Trojans for a short gain in 2010 again.  I’m not picking on USC or saying that these are the only No-Huddle plays, but simply that they are my favorites.  We only go 22 seconds between starting the first and second play (including the time of the play on first down) and thus far USC has contained LaMichael to only 65 yards rushing as the Trojans are committed to stopping him.


The play starts out like an Inside Zone Read again and look how there are EIGHT USC defenders (Above) with the red lines on them in the box within a few yards of the LOS, while we’re running a Play-action pass sending four receivers vertical against three Trojan defensive backs!


The Trojans have so focused upon stopping LMJ, that after an Inside Zone Read play with another forming—they instinctively lean inside, which is the brief moment needed for a WR, Tuinei, to get wide open over the middle.  That’s a touchdown baby!

You could say that in the first example it was the superb blocking, or in this last play it was the play-action pass execution or the play call itself.  But the additional component that brings success to each play is the No Huddle, which brings confusion, or at best a standard defense against a well blocked play.  It puts the defense at such a disadvantage that good blocking or a good fake in the play action pass can yield above-average results from our typical Spread Offense plays.


As an avid Oregon fan these are my favorites and I welcome yours as well in The FishBowl Forum at!

Oh how we love to learn about our beloved Ducks!

Charles Fischer  (FishDuck)



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Charles Fischer

Charles Fischer

Charles Fischer has been an intense fan of the Ducks for thirty years and has written reports on football boards for over a dozen years. Known as “FishDuck” on those boards, he is acknowledged for providing intense detail in his scrimmage reports and in his Xs and Os play analyses. He and his wife Lois, a daughter, Christine, and their dog (Abbie) reside in Eugene, Oregon, where he has been a financial advisor for 30 years serving clients in seven different states. He does not profess to be a coach or analyst, but simply a “hack” that enjoys sharing what he has learned and invites others to correct or add to this body of Oregon Football! See More...

  • SeanG

    Mr. Fishduck: Excellent post. I wanted to add two more great “no huddle” plays. They’re both short yardage goal line plays, as one of yours is above. I think the Ducks really over-achieve at the goal line due to their relentless speed. Think about other teams without a steamroller RB: how successful are they at short-yardage? Not nearly as successful as the Ducks, who challenge the big uglies to get up off the ground, get set, and stave off a goal-line push in less than 7 seconds. Tough assignment.

    Exhibit 1: LMJ scores in the 4th Quarter vs. Arizona, 2010:

    First, LMJ powers to the 2-foot line. Then, watch the clock. The ref takes the ball at 12:26ish, the next snap is at 12:20. Six seconds. I don’t care who you are, getting re-set that fast to stop a goal line power surge is next to impossible.

    Exhibit 2: LMJ scores in the 2nd Quarter vs. Stanford, 2010:

    Again, LMJ carries to the 5, and is still on his back with 11:30. Then the Ducks snap it too fast even for the camera; but LMJ is crossing the goal line at 11:19. And that’s against Stanford, one of the better-disciplined defenses in the land.

    • fishduck

       SeanG…. I am very appreciative of your feedback because I intend to do a new Tutorial about the No-Huddle aspect of the Oregon Offense.  It always helps when someone assists the research!

      If you know others or would like to help with other film study…contact me up above and THANKS.

  • I recently analyzed “every snap” analysis done by on Michigan’s game vs Alabama and Air Force. The math works out that while the time of possession was over 24 minutes, our actual offensive time in play was a bit over 10 minutes. 14 minutes of game time was spent huddling, snapping, inflicting penalties on ourselves. I wonder what Oregon’s “every snap” analysis vs time of possession is? Here’s an example of the Air Force “every snap” of offense – – with 10 minutes of offense we were still able to pull out the game, suprising as it may seem.

  • By the way, Oregon’s offense and practice regime is HUGELY impressive, especially from a psychological perspective of “burning in” plays into muscle memory. Any videos of these practices would be nice to see… If only to encourage Michigan to do the same :)