Bobby Petrino Doesn’t Give a F**k What You Call His Offense

by DRod70 on August 7, 2009

Written by BakervsCarrr

It is apparently written somewhere that every new (or regurgitated) football formation, philosophy, or scheme must have a clever nickname. Spurrier turned the Run’ n’ Shoot into the Fun’ n’ Gun into the Cock n’ Fire. Missouri, on the arm of Chase Daniel, has risen to pseudo-prominence with their Video Game Offense. Penn State touts their HD Offense.

Houston Nutt, in his fourth iteration of Gus Malzahn’s Wildcat package, has gone 16-bit, dubbing it the Super Rebel.
So what about the Hogs? Apparently the FCC has expressed concerns over Kirk Herbstreit referring to the potent Razorback attack as Bobby Petrino’s Jedi Mindfuck, because it instead has been named Showtime. Really? Showtime? Is that the best we could come up with?

I mean, it does have some great original programming, and more nudity than HBO, but I always thought Showtime was something you convinced your buddy to subscribe to so you could watch Jermain Taylor ruin a perfectly good beer buzz. Needless to say, we can do better. We have to do better. And I, gentle reader, am here to help. Here are some possible alternative names ready to be trotted out for the inevitable segment on ESPN College Gameday, powered by The Home Depot, and filmed live outside of Ben Hill Griffith Stadium in Gainesville, Florida on the morning of October 17.

The Yippie-Ki-Yay Offense
Although John McClane and Bobby Petrino may not seem to have much in common at first glance, a closer look reveals just how many similarities they share. Misunderstood and maligned hardass arrives as a Christmastime miracle to a large group of people held hostage by a madman with money on the brain and trouble with the English language.

On the surface, Petrino, like McClane, may seem to lack substance. He is characterized as a job-hopper with a flashy offense that he shops to every prospective john on every big-market corner. Pass, pass, pass. Shoot-out football. Big plays, big mistakes. In other words, what the SEC chews up and spits out. In reality, Petrino’s offense isn’t long on finesse and short on substance. The P-word that Petrino’s offense is predicated on is not pass, no matter what everyone else says. And it’s not motherfucking pussy. That would be the word that special teams is predicated on.

No, the P-word most important to the Razorback offense is pressure. It strives to balance both finesse and physicality in a mixture of big running backs, quick running backs, speedy receivers, a hardworking, intelligent set of down linemen, and above all, an accurate and quick-thinking leader at quarterback. With all of those elements in place, it forces the defense to play perfectly, or risk giving up a game changing big play from anywhere on the field. And it doesn’t take much of a mistake.

Just as a slight misstep began Hans Gruber’s freefall from the top of Nakatomi Plaza, one false move can spell disaster when Petrino’s offense is clicking. Do not call the wrong coverage against Arkansas. Do not insert the wrong personnel. Do not make the wrong adjustment to a formation change. If you do, Bobby Petrino will capitalize on it. Mercilessly. We have a head coach now. Ho. Ho. Ho.

The Requiem for a Dream aka Speed Kills Offense
Although the effect won’t be quite as creepy as what happens to Jared Leto’s mom, dead is still dead. Replace the eerie score of the movie with the cacophony of noise that can only accompany an SEC player in his home stadium with nothing but green in front of him and nothing to worry about behind him. Razorback fans are used to speed. Darren McFadden and Felix Jones were fast. Matt Jones was fast. If only the same could be said of the brain of their coach.

This year, instead of seeing players forced to rely on their speed to make plays, the Razorbacks will use their speed as much more. It will be a weapon, not a safety net. It will also be a threat, for there is speed everywhere.

The Razorbacks should have one of the best receiving corps in the conference, and also one of the fastest. Sophomores Joe Adams and Jarius Wright provide speed returning from last year, and incoming freshman Cobi Hamilton is such a scorcher he will factor in as well. Getting behind defenses is what these three will live for, and will keep the middle of the field soft and pliable for tight end D.J. Williams.

With excellent hands and great speed for a tight end, Williams provides a match up nightmare for defenses. Williams salivates over getting one-on-one with a linebacker, which the pressure the Hogs speedy receivers put on opposing secondaries will frequently dictate. When he gets this, Williams makes defenses pay. He was a big play option as a tight end last season, and will be again this year.

The Hogs have a stable of running backs with varying degrees of speed. Remember the vicious attacking refrigerator that came after Sara in the movie? Well, that’s newly eligible Broderick Green, the transfer from USC. He may not be that fast for a running back, but he’s pretty fast for a fucking refrigerator. Which is what he will be in short-yardage situations. For more conventional speed, the Hogs have incoming freshman Ronnie Wingo, a Missouri high school track star.

Knile Davis, another freshman, also has impressive speed. Then there is Dennis Johnson, who showed off his wheels in a critical kickoff return for a touchdown against Tulsa last year. And we haven’t even gotten to preseason SEC First-Team Michael Smith, the twitchy little guy who runs like he is on speed.

Speed. Everywhere. So much speed, in so many positions, it is nearly impossible to effectively defend. Which of course goes back to the pressure theme from Yippie-Ki-Yay. About the only skill position at which the Hogs don’t boast a lot of speed is quarterback. Probable starter Ryan Mallett is slow. Not Jared Lorenzen slow. Maybe Chris Leak slow. But he throws a football fast.

I only lied about being a thief: The Ocean’s Eleven Offense
For a liar and a thief, Danny Ocean wasn’t such a bad guy, after all. He got the girl. He got the money. He got Terry Benedict. How? Simple. 11 individuals working as one unit to achieve a common goal. What made Ocean’s heist successful was the preparation that went into it, and the precision with which it was carried out. Two more P-words that a Petrino offense hinges on.

It has been said that the transition from Houston Nutt to Bobby Petrino was akin to going from romper room to military academy. It is easy to listen to that statement and focus on the jab toward Nutt, but do not undervalue the portion regarding Petrino. If the devil is in the details, then maybe Falcons fans weren’t so wrong about Petrino in the end. Preparation. Precision.

In his first season as coach of the Razorbacks, Petrino raised eyebrows with seemingly outrageous numbers of plays run in his scrimmages. Without overly extending practice times, Petrino and staff would manage to work two or more full games worth of plays into a scrimmage. Petrino doesn’t worry about cutting down on wasted minutes during practice. There are no minutes left to waste. It’s quite possible, however, that he is consumed by a desire to eliminate wasted seconds. There is Type-B. There is Type-A. And then there is Bobby Petrino.

Replacing a staff that supposedly did not even have a DVD player in their athletic complex, the current coaching staff take every advantage of technology. And we’re not talking about Twitter, although there was a facebook update from Coach Petrino recently. Petrino and his staff take preparation to an extreme during game week. Plays are scripted not only for the opening series, but for various down-and-distance scenarios that may be faced throughout the game.

Research on trends, tells, and tendencies are disseminated to players. Players study thick binders full worth of information, are quizzed, graded, praised and berated, and basically do everything they can to know their opponent inside and out. Run to the tree and turn around, this ain’t. As Rusty Ryan says, it’s slightly more complicated than that.

At the end of the day, it doesn’t really matter that Showtime isn’t the greatest name for the Razorback offense. The Hogs will score points at Ludicrous Speed regardless of what we call the offense. Ryan Mallett will break at least one receiver’s finger regardless of what we call the offense. And Bobby Petrino will know more football than anyone he is on a field with, regardless of what we call the offense. Yes, Showtime strictly as a name, is more Bob Ross than Jackson Pollock. But, really, what’s in a name?

Chuck Norris isn’t that great of a name, either. Or, is it?


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