Kingsbury: “Stop recruiting these beasts up front and we won’t run as many plays”

NCAA Football: Sam Houston State at Texas A&M

Nick Saban made some news last year in his complaints about the no-huddle, up-tempo offense, and Bret Bielema said he had his back earlier this year. Saban referenced how it would lead to more injuries as players are playing more plays each game.

Kliff Kingsbury recently chimed in on the subject to the Associated Press.

“I would have to see some scientific or statistical information showing an increase in injuries, because to me right now it’s just talk,” Kingsbury told The Associated Press in an interview at a Manhattan hotel. “You want me to play slower, well, OK, you need to get smaller, less strong defensive linemen. To me, it’s asking to do that.

“Stop recruiting these beasts up front and we won’t run as many plays.”

Kingsbury is right of course. Saban doesn’t like the no-huddle offense because it’s run in response to his dominant defenses. The fast tempo offense was riding high in 2012. It played a role in the Aggies knocking off the Tide, and it also was a primary factor for teams like Clemson against LSU in the Chick-fil-A Bowl.

Personally, I love the mix of styles from Kingsbury to Saban as it makes college football even more interesting.



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  • I agree with the author. One of my favorite things about college football is the diversity of schemes. You see fast-paced aerial attacks like Texas A&M; ground-based spreads like Tebow-era Florida; I-formation ground-and-pound teams like Wisconsin; pro-style powers like Stanford, etc. It’s fun to watch. So-called “gimmick” offenses can help a team with less talent compete with the big boys.

  • Maybe Coach Saban and Coach Miles need to review film of the last few Carolina/Clempsin games for a few ideas of how to deal with the no huddle/up tempo offenses of opposing teams… Just don’t let them have the ball… simple as that… A big, fast, angry defense that gets you the ball quickly and a ball control offense that keeps the other team’s offense off the field is the kryptonite to the problem… Ask Mr. Tajihy how much fun he’s had playing football with Melvin Ingram, DJ Swearinger and JD Clowney, among others, the last couple of years…

  • As an Ole Miss fan, it pains me to say this: When Saban has an opinion on football issues, I tend to agree with him…..almost always. However, on this subject, I couldn’t disagree more. He is using player safety as a chicken-shit, catch-all excuse for why he doesn’t like up-tempo offenses. On the surface, using “player safety” when voicing a football-related concern always sounds good, but, in this case, it’s only a misdirection excuse for something Saban is legitimately concerned about. Being the head coach of the most dominant team in college football (& the architect of a defense that has had more success than any team in stopping up-tempo offenses), this really comes off as a little petty/pathetic.

  • Funny how one coach says one thing and another who is just starting runs his mouth. I give TT three years and Kingsbury will be back at Texas A&M.

  • I don’t necessarily think Saban minds playing up-tempo teams as much as we think. I think he and Kirby Smart as confident as anyone that they can design a defensive strategy that will prevail. But I do think that he’s worried about more and more teams shifting to the up-tempo offense. If it continues, Saban will have to change the type of defensive players that he recruits, because strength will no longer be as relevant as speed. I’ve said this before, and I’ll say it again, Saban isn’t waiting around for any NCAA legislation on the matter, and I’m sure they have a pretty good gameplan for Mr. Football come October. The real health risk will be in the coming years when Alabama’s RBs are bigger and faster than other teams’ LB corps. We might even see a glimpse this year with Fowler and Henry.

  • Physical exhaustion and injuries are positively correlated. On this one however, I have to wonder, which is a bigger threat to player safety: Alabama’s defense or anyone’s offense? Kirk Cousins, Colt McCoy, anyone have an answer?

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