The Spread-Option offense is a mix-up of a hundred years of football knowledge and tactics, a combination of the antiquated Triple-Option employed by Navy and Notre Dame, the run-heavy offenses of Vince Lombardi and Woody Hayes (Ohio State), and the Run and Shoot variations of Harvey N. “Rusty” Russell, Glenn “Tiger” Ellison, and Darrell “Mouse” Davis (Portland State).
Since then, these offensive schemes have been expanded, mutated, and refined, resulting in new expansions such as the Air Raid, Pistol, and Wildcat formations that continue to see varying degrees of success.
But Oregon and Ohio State, who face off today in the College Football Playoff National Championship game, represent the best examples of a perfectly executed systems by dedicated personnel. And win or lose, this title game will show the nation that these teams are more than just speed and flash.
The outcome of this game will show the nation what dedicated programs can accomplish. The framework cemented by both Oregon’s Mark Helfrich and Ohio State’s Urban Meyer aren’t flashy recruiting gimmicks or football “monkey shines”; West Coast offensive shell games with no substance. These universities have supported new ideas, practiced philosophies and expanded the one-dimensional X’s and O’s into legitimate cultures, driven and galvanized by the right personnel.
Former Oregon coach Chip Kelly remains a proponent of finding the right personnel, the right players, in order to create and realize an identity.
“What do you want to be? That is the great thing about football. You can be anything you want. You can be a spread team, I-formation team, power team, wing-T team, option team, or wishbone team. You can be anything you want, but you have to define it,” Kelly told a clinic.
Today, Oregon is defined as non-traditional, unorthodox, stylish, dedicated, focused, and cutting edge. Win or lose, these Oregon Ducks have proudly honored their identity, their school, and their fans. Go Ducks!
Top photo by John Sperry
Jordan is a lifelong Duck fan currently living in San Diego. Jordan graduated from The Evergreen State College in Olympia, Washington, after serving a prestigious fellowship with the Washington State House of Representatives. Upon graduation, he worked as an English language teaching assistant for the Spanish Ministry of Education’s Ambassadorial Program in Monforte de Lemos, Spain. Jordan has worked as a journalist, writer, and editor in Oregon, Washington, Montana, and California, covering a wide range of topics, including sports, local politics, and crime. He is VERY excited to be writing about his beloved Oregon Ducks.
FishDuck Going to Articles on Monday and Tuesday Only…
Our off-season schedule begins, and we move from publishing articles seven days a week to Mondays and Tuesdays only. Same great group of writers, and we will have an article on other days on occasion.
The Our Beloved Ducks Forum (OBD) is where we we discuss the article above and many more topics, as it is so much easier in a message board format over there. At the free OBD forum we will be posting Oregon Sports article links, the daily Press Releases from the Athletic Department and the news coming out every day.
Our 33 rules at the free OBD Forum can be summarized to this: 1) be polite and respectful, 2) do not tell anyone what to think, feel or write, and 3) no reference of any kind to politics. Easy-peasy!
OBD Forum members….we got your back. No Trolls Allowed!