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SEC Stats: Who Feels The Need For Speed?

mrsec stat analysis newHurry-up.  Up-tempo.  No-huddle.

Whatever hyphenated term you use to describe it, fast-paced — there’s another one — offenses are the thing in college football these days.  Offensive-minded leaders like Gus Malzahn, Hugh Freeze and Kevin Sumlin in the SEC believe playing fast gives their teams an advantage by wearing out their foes and keeping them confused.

Defensive-minded coaches like Nick Saban and Bret Bielema are quick to speak of how injury risks increase right along with the total number of plays run in a ballgame.  Whether or not players are more likely to be injured when they’re tired or not is debatable, but simple logic suggest a game with 140 plays is less dangerous than a game that features 160 snaps.

The battle over up-tempo attacks will likely drone on until some defensive guru out there cooks up a plan to defend them.  And that will happen.  It always does.  Today’s trend is tomorrow’s fad.

Anybody running the Notre Dame box anymore?

For now, though, those schools that can run a hurry-up offense effectively do hold the advantage.  So which SEC units have the advantage at the one-quarter pole of the new season?  The table below will show you.  We’ve simply divided each team’s total seconds of possession this year by their total number of offensive snaps.  The fastest offenses are on top:

 

Need For Speed (Seconds of Possession per Offensive Snap)

  School   Secs/Poss   Off. Snaps   Secs/Snap
  Texas A&M   4635   224   20.69
  Ole Miss   5045   238   21.19
  Missouri   3710   159   23.33
  Kentucky   4777   202   23.64
  Auburn   4876   205   23.78
  Vanderbilt   4969   188   26.43
  S. Carolina   5501   207   26.57
  Tennessee   5518   204   27.04
  Georgia   4040   146   27.67
  LSU   5288   189   27.97
  Miss. State   6443   225   28.63
  Arkansas   6502   211   30.81
  Alabama   3947   128   30.83
  Florida   4688   147   31.89

 

What stands out?  Gus Malzahn’s Auburn squad ranks just fifth overall in this measure.  Malzahn is viewed by many — along with Philadelphia Eagles coach Chip Kelly — as being the father of the up-tempo attack.  Expect to see Auburn speed things up the more comfortable quarterback Nick Marshall becomes in the starter’s role.

Texas A&M has Johnny Manziel running its fast break, but Ole Miss’ speed could cause Alabama some problems in two weeks.  They had a little success against the top-ranked Tide last year and — so far — the Rebels are running their offense with more precision and fewer mistakes this season.

Missouri and Kentucky appear to be upping the tempo in an attempt to make up for what could be (in Missouri’s case) and what is (in Kentucky’s) a talent gap.

Toward the bottom of the conference, the power running teams of Arkansas, Alabama and Florida use more than 30 seconds between plays.  Is it any wonder why Bielema and Saban have been so outspoken regarding hurry-up offenses?

We’ll continue to track this one throughout the season.

 


3 comments
yerboyfloyd
yerboyfloyd

Rather than squaling about it Bielema and Saban need to sack up and stop it.   If they do it'll go away.

rebsrule
rebsrule

I would like to see last several years numbers to see some trends.

tbear57
tbear57

Always hated the hurry-up when ttech ran it against TAMU. Agreed with Buddy Ryan about the "chuck and duck".  Told my brother (a tech grad) to line up and play football like a man. I kinda like it now. I suppose it's all a matter of perspective.

Trackbacks

  1. […] issue of pace that I explored in July in another week or so, but I’m delighted to find that John Pennington’s already done the heavy lifting.  Here’s how the SEC shapes up through Week […]

  2. […] Miss currently ranks fourth in the SEC in total offense (490 yards per game) and second in the league in terms of seconds-per-offensive-snap.  Freeze believes his hurry-up offense is a big reason for the Rebels’ offensive totals and […]

  3. […] (FCS), Navy, and Bowling Green respectively.  Both Indiana and Missouri run up-tempo schemes (the Tigers are the third-fastest offense in the SEC behind Texas A&M and Ole Miss this […]

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