Defending the HUNH, part 2

Ironically,’s Jon Solomon and yours truly both posted articles yesterday about how to defend the hurry-up-no-huddle (HUNH) offense.  (His is here and mine is here.)

Not so ironically, we come at things a bit differently.

Here’s the gist of my take:

To defend this, defenses will have to change their pace as well…But for the defenses to really keep up – and truly run a “tempo defense” – the defensive players on the field are going to have to adjust quicker and be ready to play quicker…So, if the officials aid in the offense’s hurried up pace, we’ll need players that can make defensive calls much quicker.

Ole Nick and I kind of think the same way:

To combat the no-huddle, “you have to adjust your system so there’s not a lot of terminology, that you have quick calls that can get in the game quickly, players can get lined up, get focused on what they need to do to execute,” Saban said. “I think that last year just about everybody went no-huddle against us. I think we actually got better as the year went on in defending it.”

On the other hand, Solomon goes off on this tangent:

Instead, Auburn and Oregon created a revolution by playing for the national championship that season. Up-tempo offenses are redefining college football entering the 2013 season. They’re creating the need for versatile defenders to keep pace, keeping officials on their toes, and even raising ethical questions about faking injuries.

Versatile defenders, good officiating and fake injuries.  Say what?

I don’t disagree that these are all elements that come into play against the HUNH.  But as I mentioned yesterday, and as coach Saban affirmed in the statement above, it’s still football.  As more teams use this type of offense, players will get used to it and coaches will adjust.  If six teams in the country use the offense, it’s an oddity; if a third of your schedule uses it, you adjust.