The spread offense’s proliferation over the past decade has transformed the college landscape. Most dramatically, the SEC has embraced it and transformed itself from a smash-mouth, run-first league into a place where dynamic offenses are the norm. The hiring of Urban Meyer at Florida was met with many pundits boldly claiming the spread would never work in the SEC. Now, the spread is run by the majority of teams in the conference. We’re on the verge of the second SEC spread QB Heisman winner in four years. Across the country, Oregon and Chip Kelly have taken the spread to another level this season. Seemingly every national title contender runs some version of the spread.
That brings me to my point. There are many versions of the spread. Meyer’s offenses have always been built around running QBs and the option. But Texas Tech and Mike Leach rose to prominence with spreads built around the pass. Hawaii has been chuking it around in the spread for years. Recently, Oklahoma and many of the rest of the Big 12 have implemented spread passing attacks. So I ask the basic question, why didn’t Meyer tweak his offense in the offseason and go with a more pass-heavy version of the spread? You keep many of the same tennants about getting as many skilled, speedy players in the game, creating space and letting them attack the defense one on one. The problem is Meyer wants a physical football team that dominates at the point of attack. The pass-heavy spreads are not that. But you can’t have it both ways. You can’t use a passing QB and be successful without the passing version of the spread.
So with Florida at 4-3 and on pace for its worst season in over 20 years, what can be done? Was the bye week long enough for significant changes? And was Meyer willing to make those changes? Are he and Addazio even capable of running a spread passing attack? We’ll find out on Saturday, when the Gators face the red-hot Bulldogs in Jacksonville. Incidently, Vegas doesn’t think so… Georgia is a 3-pt favorite.
Here’s the latest Bourbon Meyer Top 25 Poll:
3. Boise State
5. Michigan State
10. Ohio State
16. Florida State
17. Oklahoma State
19. South Carolina
21. Virginia Tech