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Washington Post: The highly successful high school coach who never punts ...


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#1 BSLChrisStoner

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 08:30 AM

Washington Post: The highly successful high school coach who never punts has another radical idea

http://www.washingto...r-radical-idea/



#2 tennOsfan

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 10:13 AM

I'd be interested in knowing what quality kids he has compared to his competition.  Just because he has a winning record doesn't mean his radical ideas are the cause.  There's wide disparities in different programs' quality, aside from the ability of the head coach.

 

And backwards passes have a high risk of becoming turnovers.  You're expecting a receiver who has just caught the ball to pause and carefully lateral the ball, knowing that at any moment he's going to have his clock cleaned.

 

The man is insane.


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#3 tennOsfan

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 10:20 AM

I did a quick search and found the school's webpage.  It's a private school in Little Rock, meaning they have a higher socio-economic student-athlete than their competition.  Multiple state championships in many sports, including football where they have three.  Two of those titles came before this "genius" took over.



#4 RShack

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 03:07 PM

Washington Post: The highly successful high school coach who never punts has another radical idea

http://www.washingto...r-radical-idea/

 

"Essentially, Kelley’s offense will run the option – after a completed pass down the field."

 

Oh, boy... and why not?


 "The only change is that baseball has turned Paige from a second-class citizen to a second-class immortal." - Satchel Paige


#5 RShack

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 03:14 PM

Two of those titles came before this "genius" took over.

 

The article says he won 2 of them...


 "The only change is that baseball has turned Paige from a second-class citizen to a second-class immortal." - Satchel Paige


#6 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 03:31 PM

I think there has been some analytics released on going for it on 4th down (at any level). It basically indicated that coaches might be better served by doing it more frequently and in more unconventional situations. I've personally always been an advocate of going for it more frequently in 4th-and-Goal situations....even if unsuccessful, the typical outcome would still be having the opponent pinned inside the 10.

 

But I can't see a strategy of never punting being sustainably successful unless, as tennOsfan suggests, you almost always have a huge talent mismatch in your favor....which is much more common at the HS level.



#7 RShack

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Posted 17 August 2015 - 03:36 PM

I think there has been some analytics released on going for it on 4th down (at any level). It basically indicated that coaches might be better served by doing it more frequently and in more unconventional situations. I've personally always been an advocate of going for it more frequently in 4th-and-Goal situations....even if unsuccessful, the typical outcome would still be having the opponent pinned inside the 10.

 

But I can't see a strategy of never punting being sustainably successful unless, as tennOsfan suggests, you almost always have a huge talent mismatch in your favor....which is much more common at the HS level.

 

I understand almost everything the guy is saying... but not punting when it's 4th and 15 from your own 3 yard line?  I don't understand that...


 "The only change is that baseball has turned Paige from a second-class citizen to a second-class immortal." - Satchel Paige


#8 tennOsfan

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Posted 18 August 2015 - 12:55 PM

I think the article says he'd been to two title games.  Not won two.



#9 Matt_P

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Posted 18 August 2015 - 01:02 PM

I understand almost everything the guy is saying... but not punting when it's 4th and 15 from your own 3 yard line?  I don't understand that...

 

I seem to remember most analysis saying that teams should punt less often but not never and that your situation is one that would qualify. I got the impression that teams shouldn't punt on something like a 4th and 4 between the 30s.



#10 RShack

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Posted 18 August 2015 - 01:42 PM

I think the article says he'd been to two title games.  Not won two.

 

Ooops... brain damage....


 "The only change is that baseball has turned Paige from a second-class citizen to a second-class immortal." - Satchel Paige


#11 Mike in STL

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Posted 19 August 2015 - 11:06 AM

Saw this on Real Sports the other day. And I know stats, and football strategy are a hot topic here. There is a high school football coach in Arkansas that never punts, and always onside kicks. He's gone through a ton of statistical analysis of his teams to know the odds of a team scoring against them from different parts of the field.

 

When he is facing fourth down at his own five yard line, if they don't advance the ball and turnover on downs, the opposition scores 95% of the time. If he punts from his own five, the opposition takes over at the 35-40 yard line, and still scores 72% of the time. He views it as a 50-50 chance that he will convert the fourth down, which to him, is worth going for it. 

 

A 50% chance of keeping ball and hopefully eventually scoring, versus a 72%, or 95% of them scoring.

 

As far as onside kicks, they practice 11 different styles to keep teams guessing. He figured out the difference in where they receive an onside kick, around the 50, and where a team returns a true kickoff to is on average just a 14 yard difference. So if the opposition gets the ball, it's as if they returned a true kickoff then got a first down. No big deal, still 50 yards to go. If they get the ball back, it's as if the opposition commits a turnover, which is one of the most deciding factors in the end result of game at times. In one game against a top team they scored 28 points in three minutes by recovering four straight onside kicks. 

 

He must be doing something right because he has won three state championships in 11 years. Columbia University interviewed him, but didn't hire him. And now the report is from the story that some NFL teams, not sure who, are seeking his intellect to approach the game more statistically. 

 

Interesting for sure. At the high school level, I pretty much agree with it. At the NFL level, not at all, and I hope the Ravens aren't one of those teams. Here's why. 

 

First. A lot of the experts point to the "league average" as reasons to say, always go for it on 4th and 1. That is hardly relevant. It's about what YOU do. Not the rest of the league. This coach analyzes his team for his odds, which is what you should do. If as a team you are 10% converting 4th and 1, and league average is 75%, then you are really bad at it, and shouldn't do it. Just like if the league average was 10%, but you do it at 75%, you absolutely should do it. Its what YOU do. 

 

Second. Never punting in the NFL? In high school, a punter probably nets 35 yards, maybe? I don't remember any fair catches in my high school days because there was little hang time, and the gunners aren't as fast as NFL guys. NFL punters can blast it 60 yards and cause a fair catch. From their own five yard line, they can get it out past mid field where as a high school kid would be giving them the ball around the 35 or worse.

 

Third. Always onside kicking in the NFL? This one is simple. High school kickers can't get touchbacks. Furthermore, they kick from the 40 in high school. From the 35, you give the opposition the ball on your side of the field if you don't recover. Then They have to make maybe 8-10 yards to be in field goal range. In high school, recovering around your 45, or 50, you need to get 20 yards at least to consider field goal. A lot more margin of error, and lower risk for the same high reward. NFL, the risk is much higher.

 

In summary, I don't buy the fact that the odds and stats from a high school team would carry over to the NFL. But in the high school game, seems to be legit. 


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#12 Mackus

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Posted 19 August 2015 - 12:25 PM

In summary, I don't buy the fact that the odds and stats from a high school team would carry over to the NFL. But in the high school game, seems to be legit. 

 

I don't think that's being proposed as a fact, or even a hypothesis really.



#13 Nigel Tufnel

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Posted 19 August 2015 - 12:49 PM

In summary, I don't buy the fact that the odds and stats from a high school team would carry over to the NFL. But in the high school game, seems to be legit. 

 

I just watched this episode, too (there was also a separate feature on ex-Raven Ma'ake Kemoeatu donating a kidney to his brother, Chris, who also played in the NFL).  Yeah, I think the differences in kicking ability between high school and the NFL would have a pretty significant impact on strategy.  Still, in the Real Sports piece, the Scorecasting guy said that between the 40 yard lines, NFL teams should generally always go for it on 4th and 8 or less, which seemed kind of surprising to me.


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#14 RShack

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Posted 19 August 2015 - 07:43 PM

In summary, I don't buy the fact that the odds and stats from a high school team would carry over to the NFL. But in the high school game, seems to be legit. 

 

That's not why an NFL team would want him... not to adopt his HS-based conclusions... the idea is to adopt his methodology for reaching conclusions and apply it to NFL team data...


 "The only change is that baseball has turned Paige from a second-class citizen to a second-class immortal." - Satchel Paige


#15 BSLMikeLowe

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Posted 20 August 2015 - 12:08 AM

I just watched this episode, too (there was also a separate feature on ex-Raven Ma'ake Kemoeatu donating a kidney to his brother, Chris, who also played in the NFL).  Yeah, I think the differences in kicking ability between high school and the NFL would have a pretty significant impact on strategy.  Still, in the Real Sports piece, the Scorecasting guy said that between the 40 yard lines, NFL teams should generally always go for it on 4th and 8 or less, which seemed kind of surprising to me.

 

Just curious, what did they say about 4th-and-Goal situations in the Real Sports piece (I don't get HBO)? Like I said above, I think coaches settle for the 3 points way too often.



#16 RShack

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Posted 20 August 2015 - 05:16 AM

Just curious, what did they say about 4th-and-Goal situations in the Real Sports piece (I don't get HBO)? Like I said above, I think coaches settle for the 3 points way too often.

 

You'd like Paul Johnson... I know I do...


 "The only change is that baseball has turned Paige from a second-class citizen to a second-class immortal." - Satchel Paige





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