Josh Kendall

August 13, 2014

Kendall's Morning Meeting: What is a 'Pop Rocket'?

An SEC Network promotional video offers an interesting glimpse into play calling in the SEC.

Josh Kendall

News and views about Gamecocks football

The SEC Network, as you may have seen, is rolling out the promotions in a big way with the launch now less than 24 hours away.
    One of the most interesting is on YouTube below. It’s called SEC Playbook and it’s an assortment of some of the league’s head coaches calling out plays. Take a listen to some of these.
   

From Texas A&M’s Kevin Sumlin: “Ace Flip 311 Pop Rocket.”
    OK, not too complicated.
    LSU’s Les Miles: “Stem Right 246 Alert Zone.”
    You’ve really gotta hear Les say it to get the full impact as you know.
    Tennessee’s Butch Jones: “Right Tap 72 Hank Y Hook All Go.”
    Now it’s getting a little wordy, right?
    And then comes Steve Spurrier: “Slot Right Fake Draw Pattern 7.”
    Of all the coaches and all the calls shown, it’s the most basic wording by far. It’s the only one of the plays where a layman might think, “Yeah, I got that. Slot receiver is on the right side of the formation, fake the handoff, everybody run Pattern 7 from their spot.” (In the interest of full disclosure, I don’t know if that’s what it means or not.) Spurrier even gives the camera his little, “It’s not that complicated” head tilt at the end. This is classic Spurrier, the man who talks about “ball plays” and this guy going over here and that guy going over there. It’s also just the way he talks to his team privately, or at least in was last week when he allowed reporters to sit in on a film study session for 15 minutes.
    As offenses have gotten more and more complex, Spurrier has resisted the urge to make it all sound like rocket science. Which is a welcome relief from whatever a “Pop Rocket” is.

    Around the SEC:

    Everyone is talking about quarterback Jeff Driskel, but running back Matt Jones can be the biggest difference-maker for the Gators’ offense if he can return to full speed. Jones never recovered last year from a viral infection that kept him out of practice and laid up for almost the entire preseason.
    This year, he’s back, he says.
    “I never really felt confident in my game last year,” Jones told the Gainesville Sun. “It was just so much to overcome what I went through. It was a mental thing and I never got over it, but now I’m definitely over it.”

    We’re officially on countdown clock to find out who will be Texas A&M’s starting quarterback Aug. 28 against South Carolina.
    “We’re going to find out this week who is going to be the starter, but I know whoever starts I have full faith in them,” center Mike Matthews told The Dallas Morning News on Tuesday.
    Place your bets now. Sophomore Kenny Hill or freshman Kyle Allen? Put me down for Allen.

    Vanderbilt’s starting quarterback battle still includes three players, but it’s a little hard to get as fired up about the Commodores’ decision.

    This is a Wisconsin update. Yes, I know this is “Around the SEC,” but hear me out. The Badgers open the season against LSU and have a quarterback competition of their own going on. One of their quarterbacks is South Carolina transfer Tanner McEvoy, and he’s right in the mix in the race.




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