The Norman Transcript


July 23, 2013

Is there any room left for defense in the Big 12?



First, the other side.

“Take the top 50 defenses in the country and how many of them are going to … keep you under 350 or 300 yards a game and keep you under 16 points?” Gundy asked. “I’ll bet not very many of them.”

The Poke coach said defenses have made some strides, but also for good.

“I don’t think we’re going to go back to defenses dominating games … You may have a really good defense and give up on average 25 points a game in this league,” he said.

Weis doesn’t see a whole lot changing without the way college football is officiated changing. Because not only is it all the new-fangled offenses that have sprung up since Mike Leach and Hal Mumme made Kentucky relevant for the first and only time way back when in the SEC, but how those offenses have matched groundbreaking schemes with groundbreaking tempo.

“Do they slow down the tempo of offense when you can snap the ball?” Weis said. “Do they have a referee stand over the ball until the defense is ready. I think if they do that, it will slow down the pace of scoring.”

Leach came to OU from Kentucky before leaving Norman for Lubbock, where his first quarterback was Kingsbury, whose stratospheric rise in the coaching profession has him running the Red Raiders at the ripe old age of 33.

Kingsbury believes we must alter the way we think about defense.

“We have to change our image of your great defense,” he said. “With teams running 80 or 90 plays, you’re going to (give up) yards, it’s just the nature of the game.

“You’ve got to be good at turning people over and holding them to field goals in the red zone. But for people to think you’re going to hold people to 230 yards and nine points a game playing against these great offenses every week, that’s just not reality.”

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