Does USC Need To Speed Up Its Offense?

OREGON

Does it take too long for USC to call plays? That is a question worth asking when you look at teams like Oregon, Oklahoma State and Texas Tech. I bring this up because USC’s scored 14 points or less in 30 of its past 31 quarters.

And the Trojans rank 120th in plays per minute. USC is only one of seven teams nationally to average less than 2 plays per minute. UCLA averages 2.9 plays per minute and Oregon averages 3.2 plays per minute.

USC ranks 16th in the country in time of possession, but only one of the top 14 teams in time of possession are in the AP Top 25. Meanwhile, seven of the top 14 teams in plays per minute are in the top 25.

Now it is worth noting Alabama ranks 118th in plays per minute. But Nick Saban is so good, it probably doesn’t matter what he does. Here’s the four slowest teams per NCAA stats:

LEAST PLAYS PER MINUTE
1. Texas State, 1.83
2. Florida, 1.88
3. Miami Ohio, 1.93
4. USC, 1.95
Photo courtesy of the The Oregonian
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  • Paul Hackett

    SC ran the 2nd fewest plays of PAC 12 teams Sat, only Stanford had fewer but they played a wishbone team. Kiffin needs to be fired, the Utah State game loss will only fuel the FIRE KIFFIN chants

    • TrojanFan

      Paul, does your mother approve of you acting like a 8====D

      • Paul Hackett

        Is that what you suck ?

  • Cheap seats

    “Now it is worth noting Alabama ranks 118th in plays per minute. But Nick Saban is so good, it probably doesn’t matter what he does.”

    Stick to trolling, Wolf. You might as well said, “lets look at the back to back national champs numbers…oh sh-t never mind!”

  • Helen

    … or is it that Nick Saban is so good because he doesn’t rush the offense? Who’s winning NCs – Alabama or Oregon/Oklahoma State/Texas Tech?

    So let me get this straight Scottie – you’re saying USC should follow what Oregon does? Isn’t that what you fictitiously wrote about Kiffin?

    • Trojan Hoarse

      You are 100% correct, Helen…..Kiffin is a notorious “copy cat” in Scotties book…. early morning practices, changes in uniforms, improvements to the university athletic facilities, etc……just like Oregon!

      • Paul Hackett

        Look it’s Larry of the 3 Stooges, where’s Moe and Curley ?

        • Trojan Hoarse

          So why did you change your comment to me, LAM?……You have been EXPOSED!!!!!!

        • Trojan Hoarse

          You are unequivocally a COWARD!!!!

          • Paul Hackett

            Larry !

          • Trojan Hoarse

            HAHAHAHA!!!!……. What a LOSER you are!!!!!

          • TrojanFan

            Bucket hired this guy to help him with his dirty work, pathetic

          • Trojan Hoarse

            LAM!

        • TrojanFan

          Hey Paul, have you ever tried the new breakfast platter?

        • TrojanFan

          Hey Paul, the halitosis is killing us!

          The voice might of changed, but the breath still smells the same!

          • Paul Hackett

            Curley !

          • TrojanFan

            Did you get one caught between the teeth?

      • gotroy22

        Helen is 100% incorrrect.

        • Trojan Hoarse

          Alabama’s not winning NC’s?….You think that USC should follow every little thing that Oregon does?…. Put down the crack pipe, dude….seriously…

          • gotroy22

            Dude, even Saban has implemented the no huddle offense. You would know that if you followed college football instead of stalking Scott Wolf.

          • Trojan Hoarse

            Thanks for the EXCELLENT advice……..your words have inspired me…..

    • TrojanFan

      YOU GO GIRL!!!

    • gotroy22

      Nick Saban doesn’t rush the offense? Did you actually watch the Alabama-Texas A&M game? If you did, you would have remembered that Alabama’s first touchdown was using the up tempo offense.

      • Helen

        Fools are tricked into believing anything when they base their conclusions on a sample size of one. When you base your conclusion on a larger sample size as the original article did then you would rightly conclude that Nick Saban does NOT rush the offense.

        • gotroy22

          SEC Instant Replay: Alabama’s wily Saban goes no-huddle to overtake Aggies
          By Ron Higgins
          Memphis Commercial Appeal
          Posted September 14, 2013 at 8:04 p.m., updated September 14, 2013 at 8:16 p.m.

          Alabama football coach Nick Saban … had quarterback A.J. McCarron crank the no-huddle to change the tempo and extinguish the Aggies’ momentum.

          It worked. Alabama went 75 and 80 yards on TD drives that consumed just 2:23 and 1:32, jump-starting the Tide on a 35-point run, and they never trailed again in a 49-42 shootout in College Station.”
          -You really are a brainless rah rah.

          • Trojan Hoarse

            Nice research and sharing of factoids, but you have COMPLETELY ignored the context of Helen’s statement as it relates to Wolf’s specific blog post….Alabama are STILL 118th in plays per minute…..Yes, Saban’s strategy worked, although I doubt that it would sustainable for a full game, let alone an entire season……Plus Texas A&M’s defense was just AWFUL in that game……

          • gotroy22

            Alabama scored TWO TOUCHDOWNS using the no huddle and you still won’t admit defeat. Why can’t you understand that Kiffin is a dinosaur sticking to an offense from the 1970s?

          • Trojan Hoarse

            I’m not defending Kiffin… I never have….If you can show exactly where I have done so in this string, I will immediately delete my account….

    • Ted

      the problem is nobody is mistaking Kiffin for Saben…though southern cal has better athlects especially at skilled positions! including QB

  • Brian

    C’mon Wolf, you can do better than this.

    • Trojan Hoarse

      Sadly, he cannot………

      • gotroy22

        Sadly you rah rahs can not.

        • Trojan Hoarse

          You are the BEST, Go F yourself Troy 22… simply the BEST!…. you know it ALL… you really need to stop claiming to be a USC fan and quit hiding behind the anti-Rah-Rah crap….you’re an IDIOT for defending Wolf!!!

  • B.Miller

    IS it going to help USC win games.. IF not So the FCUK what.. your reporting is irrelevant..

  • Cheap seats

    I just realized this whole blog is code to Bucket..

    Bucket needs to SPEED UP his offense with Wolf. Currently, he’s at one play per minute…

    But it’s ok — Bucket likes playing “from behind”..

    • TrojanFan

      Bucket enjoys giving wolfman the knuckle shuffle up and down the piss pump….ouch!

      • Trojan Hoarse

        Bucket has his hand raised…. I believe that he has a question for you…..Bucket: “Is “shortcoming” one word or two?”……

    • https://www.facebook.com/charles.bucket.3 Charlie Bucket

      c’mon Cheaps, if your idea of stepping up your game to is emulate the resident Reetard, maybe you aren’t cut out for the wolfman’s blog!!

      Helen is showing all you Dummies UP!!

      get it TOGETHER!!

      do you want your 4th grade kid saying: “ugh, isn’t Dad supposed to be more witty than the dumbest buzz-headed turrds in my class??”

      • Trojan Hoarse

        And your “game” consists of ripping off old jokes from dead people……You would have made Milton Berle proud…….

        • TrojanFan

          The guy is terminal. I told him a revolver is a quick way to end it.

      • TrojanFan

        Go hit the pipe again.

      • Cheap seats

        There you are! The highlight of this blog!

        • https://www.facebook.com/charles.bucket.3 Charlie Bucket

          REALLY??

          i take it back, Helen can’t carry your jockstrap!!

          • Trojan Hoarse

            Whatever happened to Violet?……

  • Independent_George

    Why is this an issue, Scott? Kiffin has expressed numerous times that he is slowing down play calling to limit the number of plays but his his team and the other team runs, in order to limit injuries. The idea is increased the number of plays equals increase injuries. I have not iodea whether dta backs that up, but that has been the conventional wisdom for years. As for Lane, well, wisdom is a stretcvh but conventional fits him to a tee.

    The question is not if USC taking too long. Of course it is taking too long. It is taking long by design. The questions are 1.) whehter the premise of preventing injuries is true and 2.) whether it helps or hurts USC.

    • Trojan Hoarse

      Good points, IG…. one would also intuitively think that TOP should be factored into the equation, as well, but Oregon debunked that theory as Tennessee held onto the ball for 34 minutes to 26 minutes for Oregon…..Virginia out-possessed Oregon 39 minutes to 21…..and in week #1, Nichols State out-possessed them 40 minutes to 20…….

    • Paul Hackett

      Do you really believe what you just wrote ? Kiffin is slow because he’s got FIFTY THOUSAND FREAKING PLAYS ON HIS MENU !! But he only uses three, so why the slowdown ? Maybe because he’s just dimwitted?

      • Independent_George

        Kiffin has said numerous times, at numerous MMQB meetings at Cardinal and Gold, that he is “slowing” down play calling because of thE effect sanctions. Dan Weber acknolwedges this and frequently questions whether it is effective or neccesary.

        The slow developing plays? That is a scheme issue, but that is not what Scott posted.

        You can take Kiffin’s word on this and have a discussion on the efficacy of this. Maybe it is wrong and it is another example of Kiffin overthinking.

        Or you can assume he has been lying and SCREAM that the play calling is slow because HE IS A DIMWITT GRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!

        Oh I forgot, this is Wolf’s Blog. FIRE KIFFIN HE IS DESTROYING USC FOOTBALL FIRE HADEN FIRE NIKIAS FIRE THE FACULTY THE BOARD OF TRUSTESS THE STUDENTS THE ENTIRE UNIVERSITY! AAARRGGGGGGHHH!!!!!!!!

        • Trojan Hoarse

          Careful, George…..using words such as developing, acknowledges university and efficacy exceed 3 syllables, so this may be beyond his level of comprehension…..dumb it down, dude…..

        • marvgoux1

          You really believe Kiffin’s lame excuse that he can’t run a hurry up offense because he is limited to 75 scholarshio players?????

          • Independent_George

            Never said I beleived it. I said that is his “reason.” Only way to tell is when USC is back to 85 scholies, but he won’t be coaching then, so whether or not Kiffin is lying is a moot point.

    • Ben Factor

      Fair enough on both questions.

      Fewer injuries are certainly a plus. They have added value to USC, which has fewer players.

      The question of hurry-up offenses and injuries was raised by both Saban AND Kiffin before the season. It would be nice to see some data in place of speculation. You raised the same question in your comment.

      I have commented several times that Stanford and the SF 49ers have developed some conditioning programs that greatly lowered injury rates. I have yet to hear Kiffin say a word about that subject, despite his perpetual complaints about injuries and the short roster.

      As is true of fewer injuries, the effective use of a higher percentage of players on the roster is certainly a plus (morale, less fatigue, preparation for inevitable injuries, etc.). Use of a higher percentage of players has added value to USC, which has fewer players. It would help if more young, inexperienced players could contribute on the field. That would seem to imply an offensive system that is easy to learn, and requires less experience to make fast and correct decisions.
      That would not be Kiffin’s current offense.

      An offense that scores points consistently and efficiently is certainly a plus. Would USC’s offense score points more consistently/efficiently if it were easier to learn and permitted more younger players to contribute? Would it score points more consistently/efficiently if it ran more plays per minute? These are also questions that you implied.

      Another aspect of a team’s offensive effectiveness is the ability enhance the performance of the team’s defense. A rested defense is supposedly a more effective defense. If I had to guess, that is why Alabama runs fewer offensive plays per minute than many teams. Alabama seems to be built around defensive effectiveness, and I surmise that Saban favors an offensive style that supports the defense. In 2013, one might make the same argument about USC.

      I do think that Scott has hit on a question that merits more thought. I don’t think he’s analyzed it very deeply. Unfortunately, I suspect that neither has Kiffin.

      There is some symbolism in Kiffin calling plays from the sidelines, at ground level. His mind does not naturally seek the god’s eye view from the press box, where you can take in the entire offense and defense, and reflect more calmly about what is really happening, and what to do about it.

      You referred to Kiffin as conventional. I think that’s right. I don’t believe that he thinks outside the box, and it is unlikely that he will be labeled an innovator. Besides being conventional, I think he is inflexible and insular. Not surprising. Those three qualities often go together, and mutually reinforce one another.

  • TrojanConquest

    If you want to play this style, then recruit OLinemen like at Alabama or Stanford.

  • steveg

    Like if they are ahead, why play fast, if behind they better speed it up, which they can when needed. Wolf discovered a totally useless stat and tried to make something of it. He did, a huge turd.

    • Trojan Hoarse

      A huge turd, indeed… and the cadre are busy wiping up behind him……..

      • TrojanFan

        Sounds like a job for betomas. You does quality work, no turd is too big

    • marvgoux1

      Why are you Sunshine Pumpers defending Kiffin’s inability to keep up with modern football?

      • steveg

        Did I miss something? Did I accidentally say something nice about Kiffin?

        • Trojan Hoarse

          USC haters, like Goo-Goo Ga-Ga, never miss an opportunity to hate, even if it doesn’t relate to your specific post or the current blog topic…..

      • TrojanFan

        You sound like a broken record, pathetic! Start your own blog for “haters only”

        • Trojan Hoarse

          Right after he wipes Marv’s Goo off of his chin……

  • Trojan Hoarse

    Oregon has this going for them…

    2013 OVERALL FBS RANKINGS

    PASSING YARDS 316.7 18th Overall

    RUSHING YARDS 355.3 4th Overall

    POINTS FOR 61.3 2nd Overall

    POINTS AGAINST 9.0 4th Overall

  • Ted

    I dont think southern cal needs to speed up its offense, it needs to be more efficient, because the Defense in my estimation is good but not excellent as most of you seem to think.

    Call it 5-2 (or really it’s is just a 3-4) gap control defense. It relies on at least 5 to 7 players on each down to plug the lanes. This type of defense is designed to stop the standard run from a pro set and because Southern Cal athletes are incredibly athletic and able to keep up with 90 percent of the zone read run offenses. How ever top 10 percent of the zone read offenses ala Oregon, ASU, UCLA with a capable will have success against this scheme. It leaves DB’s one on one with no safety or 1 safety help. What I am saying is that offense needs to get way better because Defense will eventually give up more points against better teams.

    Southern Cal no doubt has the best athletes in the Pac-12 on defense and OFFENSE!! (youtube Wittek highlights from high school) To bad it has the worst coach.

    ….

    • Cheap seats

      Regardless if its 5-2, 3-4, 4-3, or even 4-6, Chip Kelly knew that the Deion Sanders wanna-bees (like Robey last year) do NOT like to tackle.

      Especially in Oregon’s spread offense, the WRs block just like linemen. Your DBs better like tackling or they will run up the score.

      The other advantage? LESS PENALTIES called. It’s not like they commit less, they aren’t called because the 50+ year old refs are barely keeping up with spotting the ball.