Oregon’s Innovative “Cross-Buck” and “Tiny TE” Passing Strategies

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...

  • kixxs1199

    Hope Chip has some answers to throw Stanford off and make up for our banged up D-line.

  • voicejg

    FishDuck, you are appreciated. You enhance our enjoyment of Duck football! Thank you. Just wish PAC-12 Network were available in Waldport. (It is–but only on DISH) Don’t tell me it has to be Directv;s fault (or Charter’s). Some of us with a UO education know that Duck AD/PAC-12 could apply pressure on network to work it out; i.e. I don’t necessarily buy the propaganda that it’s always the fans’ providers that are to be blamed/pressured. I know UO AD wants fans’ support. How about giving some support to us? – Jeff Geiger

    • fishduck

      Sorry Jeff,….It is a mess–as I know the AD does NOT want fans shut out.

    • bassett

      I here ya Jeff. I live in Lincoln City and same story here. At the time I emailed the PAC-12 even DISH wasn’t an option. There reply was that I should drop my cable carrier and go with one that carries the network. I proceeded to tell them that I live in an area where Dish, DirectTv, and Charter are the only option. I find it hard to believe that it is all the cable carriers fault with coming to an agreement when there was nobody even in my area to carry it. Sorry for the off topic Fishduck, but it is upsetting. I always enjoy your way of explaining the naunces of the offense we don’t always see.

  • Chris

    Fantastic post – thanks, Charles!

  • Kleptolia

    I like the tiny te formation. I know this is easy to say after the fact, but I have been thinking since last year that Oregon needs to have a counter to the typical spread. If expansion is a strategy, contraction must also be an option.
    The neat thing here is that the Ducks like to spread the defense out and run. Why not contract the defense and pass? Putting a receiver at the te position allows the mesh to pull in the linebackers, while the te/receiver attacks the green that has been created on the edges. Imagine a couple of flare routes, followed by a double move route out of this formation. If the safety bites on the play action, the sidelines are owned by the receiver coming from the te spot. It’s a good strategy for some power running and some frightening play action passes. I think that this type of dual nature to the Duck’s offense is what sets Chip Kelley apart from the rest of the college football pack. I am sad that I couldn’t see the Cal game live. I love it when new formations are presented.
    One question: was this formation used in the first half, or the second half?

    • fishduck

      Those are great comments and ones to make us ponder his next moves. They ran the Tiny TE formation in both halves and the pass to Murphy was early in the game in fact.

  • Vince

    How about if (with more of a 21 or 11 personnel) you trot both the Y (Lyerla) and the Z (Addison?) to the right, then as the defense has their corner line up wide, you have the Z go tight and the Y go split. That way, before the defense can adjust, you have a 6-5, 238 pound tight end on a small corner and a quick little 5-10 receiver on a slow, lumbering linebacker. You could open a lot of holes in the defense with that.

  • kleptolia

    One more comment from me on this:
    Does anybody else think it would be neat if Chip lined up the offense in a traditional wishbone backfield, with Lyerla and DAT lined up on either side of Mariota (or Bennet, for that matter), and Barner at tailback, and the wideouts lined up tight where the TEs would normally be?
    The Tiny TE formation discussed in this article is nearly the same thing, but not quite.
    I feel like the formation that I am thinking of would be useful in short yardage situations and against cover zero defenses like Cal used. I don’t know, though. I’m just thinking out loud.

  • Kicker

    I really appreciate the insight you bring to the game. You present a fresh, intelligent view of how the Ducks play the game. It is so nice to read comments by someone who truly understands football. I recently retired after coaching high school football for the past 35 years and reading your reports reminds me of being in a coaching staff meeting, breaking down game film and preparing for the next opponent. Keep up the great work!