Crowdsourcing the Texas Longhorns: An Offseason BC Project

USA TODAY Sports

Welp, it's finally here. The Offseason.

From the moment the final gun sounded in the National Championship game -- or more precisely, the moment that Alabama fired a cattle gun into Notre Dame's forehead Anton Chighurh-style in the first quarter -- another college football season was gone. And while I urge everyone to support jc25's outstanding work in covering the Longhorn basketball beat, for some folks basketball provides cold comfort as a football substitute (and Barnes' current squad may provide colder comfort than most). So that leaves us facing nearly eight months - eight long, bleak months - with The Offseason's dreary dirge a-droning in our ears.

So let's change the beat.

I propose that we get up to something fun by spending some time this offseason designing the optimal offense and defense for the 2013 Longhorns. Here are some of the things we'll be tackling:

  • Determining a core strategy on each side of the ball based on team goals, the strengths/weaknesses of our most relevant conference foes and what our players bring to the table
  • Some Techniques and Terminology primers to get everyone on the same page with respect to what's meant by different blocking schemes, route concepts and coverage principles
  • Reviews of some of CFB's best on both sides of the ball, and how what their mens do could with what our mens can do
  • Installing a base on each side of the ball - a couple of base fronts/coverages on defense and a few ‘bread and butter' runs and passes on offense
  • Adding to, tinkering with and expanding the new ‘playbook' under Major Applewhite until we either get bored or kick off
  • Top Ten Slant/Stunt/Random Gap Blitz Play Calls of the Manny Diaz Era!

Before we get started or while we're going along, throw out any suggestions on plays/teams/schemes/concepts you'd like to see covered or questions you'd like to see answered. Like any specialized field, football has developed its own jargon over the years - and, like most specialized fields, that jargon is at least equally adept at providing a convenient shorthand for the initiated and baffling everyone else. I'll try to keep things as plain English as possible, but if terms like MOFC, force player, fold block or robber draw a "Buhhhh?" from you, don't hesitate to ask - a couple of years ago, I didn't know what most of those meant either. Or if you find yourself nodding along to a LonghornScott post but really have no fucking clue what he's actually saying, this workshop is for you!

There are a ton of great X-and-O resources popping up online, but finding them and putting together a comprehensive understanding of a particular scheme still requires a good degree of detective work. I'll try to share as many of those sources as I'm familiar with, and if you know of some others please share with the class.

I doubt Manny and Major will be dropping by to draw on our insights, but our high tech analytics can confirm IP addresses from Bellmont read the site regularly.

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