Integrating Linemen with Backfield on Pass Defense

will give you our terminology of the swing linebacker defense we use at Oregon State University. This defense is an even defense that has a lot of the same principles of the odd monster or rover defenses that are used in all areas of the United States. We stunt all the time either up front or in our secondary. We chose the even defense with our swing linebacker over the other alignments because we feel it is a little more flexible to all of the different offensive sets that we meet during the year. Although we chose this alignment, we do not feel in any way that an alignment is as important as aggressiveness and execution. We try to get our personnel in the best position to meet the different offensive sets and then execute, responsibility and fly to the ball. Never pile on — pile up.


Diagram 1

that we will only rotate one way — to be determined by the three man and the direction of the ball. In normal play with flow away from the three man, the seven or eight man away from the three man is the forcing element on flow toward him. The alignment for the seven and eight man is one-and-a-half yards outside of the end man — keys the near back and ball — on flow toward him, get upfield and force the passer to pull up and throw quick. The six man lines up on the outside shoulder of the tackle force inside out. One and two men line up inside eye of the guards. Check for counter, and draw then rush — six man — step across and get as deep as the ball and trail. Seven men rotate slow, checking for counter or reverse, then rotate back as deep as he can get. Four man — cover the hook away from the three man. Three man rotate back through the middle ready to settle and play the tight end on a delay pass. Diagram 3: Flow away from three man.

Diagram 3

Dee Andros Head Coach Oregon State University Corvallis, Ore.
We also use an Omaha stunt to the short side about 50 percent of the time. It is a switch of assignment between our six and eight men. Diagram 4: Omaha Stunt — flow from the three man. The rest are the same as Cover I.

Diagram 2

Diagrams 1 and 2 above will give you an example of our defensive numbering system and then how our swing linebacker will go to strength by counting linemen or backs within one yard of the line of scrimmage from the offensive guards out. Or we will send him to the wide side of the field or to our opponent’s tendencies. It is very important to our team defense that every man know where our three man lines up. We teach our defense toward or away from our three man. Coverages We have five basic coverages that we use in our defensive scheme. Basically in a normal situation we are in Cover I most of the time because we feel that we get a better force both ways on flow with our defensive alignment. Cover I tells the secondary

Diagram 4

Eight Man: Drive for the outside hip of the end man on the line, closing the offtackle hole and reacting to the ball. Six Man: Will hand shiver the end man and shuffle out and become force contain man.

• AFCA Summer Manual — 2000 •

Flow Toward the Three Man When the flow is toward our three man, our secondary will not rotate, but play the three deep zone — on flow toward the three man, he must get upfield and become the force contain man. With flow toward the three man — the seven man will drop off and cover the flat. Five man will close to the inside and react to the ball. Diagram 5: Flow toward three man.

Diagram 5

Seven and Eight Men: Will drive hard over the outside hip of end man on line of scrimmage. Help close the off-tackle hole and react to the ball. Give us a reckless rush. Five and Six Men: Toward the three man. Line up three feet off the ball — on the snap of the ball go through the head of tight end with inside shoulder and move to the flat. Five and six man away from the three man. Hand shiver the man in your area and shuffle out while reading the play — when ball goes away, back out and rotate to 1/3 of the field. On straight dropback passes, we become a four man rush with the three, five, seven and eight men dropping off and playing the short zones. Diagram 8: Dropback pass. Cover I.

Two Man: Shoot the gap to his inside. One, Three, Five and Seven Man: Their play is same as Cover I. Cover III Rush: We like to use this against teams that use the dropback pass a lot. From this, our secondary defenders cover their respective 1/3 regardless of the flow of the quarterback. We have several calls in which we use to give the offense a different picture in putting pressure on the passer. One of the calls is Cover III rush — seven and eight. With this call we are giving up the flats. Diagram 10: Cover III rush seven and eight. Secondary cover their 1/3 of the field.

Diagram 10

Diagram 8
One and Two Man: Normal play inside —six man becomes the trail man. Four man plays the hook area to side of flow. Three man becomes the force contain man. To the strong side we have a switch stunt, which is an exchange of assignments between the three and seven man. Diagram 6: Switch stunt. Flow toward three man. Cover I.

Diagram 6

Seven Man: Will become the force contain man, and the three man will drop off and cover in the flat. Against teams that like to screen a lot we like to use the Double Omaha, which we feel we get better force, and get our five and six men to screen area quicker. Diagram 7: Flow toward three man. Double Omaha stunt. Cover I.

If we have an Omaha or Double Omaha called, we go ahead and execute the stunts on a dropback pass. Cover II is the same rotation for the secondary as Cover I with the switch or responsibilities of the two, four, six and eight men. This is a change up for the short side, which gives us an excellent inside and outside force. Diagram 9: Cover II — Flow away from the three man. Secondary rotation same as Cover I.

When we are using this defense and with the different calls, we are giving the offense the flats or the hook area — but feel it is sound because of the change up of the different areas we are leaving open — our three and four call — run the linebackers through. With this call we are leaving the hook area open. Diagram 11: Cover III rush three and four. Three man cheat in before the snap

Diagram 11

Diagram 9

Diagram 7
Eight Man: On the snap of the ball, drop steps to the inside and if ball is getting off the line — drops back to hook area, if ball stays on line, get quarterback. Six Man: Hand shiver the tackle and move upfield to force contain ball. Four Man: On flow runs throw between the guard and tackle.

We have the combination calls four and seven which is an end and linebacker rushing — or we might have any of the individuals call of the three-four-seven, or eight men to rush. Also the Double Omaha, which was explained earlier in the speech, is an excellent stunt from this set. Cover IV: Our man-to-man coverage, with a six-man rush and our safety is freed up to play the ball. We feel we can play a split receiver tougher and get help from our safety out of this defense. Cover V calls tells the three deep to

• AFCA Summer Manual — 2000 •

rotate to the side of flow. With this rotation, we have used a different alignment with our line and linebackers — which we call a split-six alignment. Diagram 12: Cover IV man-to-man. Safety freed up.

Dee Andros at a Glance
Experience: Assistant Coach, University of Oklahoma, 1950-52; Assistant Coach, University of Kansas, 1953; Assistant Coach, Texas Tech University, 1954-55; Assistant Coach, University of Nebraska, 1956; Assistant Coach, University of California, 195759; Assistant Coach, University of Illinois, 1960-61; Head Coach, University of Idaho, 1962-64 (11-16-1); Head Coach, Oregon State University, 1965-75 (51-64-1) Career Head Coaching Record: 62-80-2 AFCA District Coach of the Year Awards: 1967 Notes: Led the Beavers to four second-place finishes during his tenure at Oregon State ... None of those teams participated in bowl games due to a Pac-10 rule that permitted only the conference champion to appear in post season play at that time ... His 1967 team recorded road wins at Purdue and UCLAwhen both schools were ranked No. 2 in the country and beat No. 1-ranked USC at home as well, handing the Trojans their only loss in what turned out to be a national championship season ... Served as director of athletics at Oregon State from 1976-1985.

Diagram 12

Diagram 13: Cover V. Split.

Diagram 13

Diagram 14

Diagram 15

Our alignment for the one and two man is like the alignment used by Notre Dame inside people. They are split, aiming in at the rib of the offensive guard and closing in on the snap and reacting to flow. The alignment for the five, six, seven and eight man is the same as our normal defense. Three and four men line up according to the splits of the offensive guards and react on the flow of the ball. We also use our Cover III with this alignment with the same types of stunt. Diagram 14: Cover III — In Stunt. Diagram 15: Cover III — Out Stunt.

An out stunt (Diagram 15) is with our one and two men going through the gap between tackle and guard with our linebackers going through the gaps between the center and guards. We feel with these coverages and our stunts that we are sound, plus it gives us a number of changes to throw at our opponents.

Again, I want to thank you gentlemen for being such a very fine audience and I appreciate the opportunity of speaking to you. I think this is a great honor any time a coach is asked to speak to a bunch of his cohorts and I hope that I have given you something today that might help you in what you’re trying to install in your defensive plans.

Don’t Predict Game Winners
The AFCA Ethics Committee reminds members that predicting game winners is a violation of the AFCA Code of Ethics. Many times, this occurs on coaches’ shows or at the request of the news media. In addition to providing an expert’s opinion to gamblers and others, selecting game winners also creates bad feelings among fellow coaches. Requests to pick winners of football games can be deflected with a simple, “Our AFCA Code of Ethics does not allow us to predict game winners.” • AFCA Summer Manual — 2000 •

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