Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The Point Method-Part I

I'm going to write some short excerpts on coaching the little understood triple option mesh, known as the point method, or the "no mesh, mesh".  Very little is out there on this technique, and I want to try and establish a basis for teaching this very beneficial method of reading the mesh in the triple option run game.  My first piece is simply on the nuisances of the technique, what I know about it, and how to get started teaching it.  I plan to provide some step by step resources as well as some online resources to help the old "ride-n-decide" coaches out there convert over. 

First, where did the point method come from?  Well, to know this you need to know a little triple option football history.  The initial mesh that was taught for years (and taught to me) was the famous "ride-n-decide" which I will abbreviate RD for writing purposes.  RD was utilized by teaching the option QB to reach the ball back as far as he could putting the ball in the bell of the FB and "riding" the FB into the line of scrimmage (LOS).  I will not knock this technique as it has been around for years, and has several merits which I'll allude to later in my writings.  In my research, the only credit I find for the point method, is Carson-Newman College.  Carson-Newman, for as long as I can remember, has been a split-back-veer (SBV) team.  According to Internet research, Carson-Newman came up with a new mesh technique called the "no mesh, mesh".  Basically they did not mesh with the FB at all on the triple option.  This, at the time, was a new way of thinking, and many thought it would revolutionize triple option football.  There are some that will argue that Tony DeMeo was the first one to utilize this technique, and he may very well have been, however, he did not officially "tag" the concept, as did Carson-Newman.  Despite the claims to who started this thing, the "no mesh, mesh" or Point Method as it was later named by triple option coaches, was a new way of thinking in the triple option world. 

So, let's look at the two techniques from a business standpoint...pro's and con's.  Here is a look at the pro's and con's of each method:

  1. Very deceptive, defense has a difficult time discerning between give and pull.
  2. Tons of information on footwork, how to teach, and videos
    1. Still in use by Georgia Tech and the Naval Academy (ease of access to information on how to teach)
  1. Prone to fumbles
  2. Confusing to FB as whether or not he's getting the ball or the ball is being pulled
  3. More difficult to teach
  4. QB more prone to "belly" off of the mesh due to steps not attacking the LOS.
Point Method

  1. Easy to teach, very simple reads and reactions
  2. Easy for the FB to learn, no guessing as to whether it's a keep or pull.
  3. Less chance for fumbles.
  1. Not as deceptive as RD.
  2. Playaction not as effective
  3. Easier for the defense to read

Now that those have been established, I will end this excerpt by stating, I chose the Point Method because of Pro #3.  I know this point is argumentative, but it's the whole reason the point method was devised...to reduce the amount of turnovers in the mesh.  I'm big on not beating yourself, and turnovers are the number one way to kill yourself offensively.  I felt the Point Method gave us a better chance at securing the football, even if it was not as deceptive as RD.

In my next post, I will go over the reads and how to effectively teach the Point Method to your triple option QB.