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photo 2By Paul Cornwell, Head Coach, Ayden-Grifton High School (NC)

Coach Cornwell has messed the effiecincy and productivity of his traditional Wing-T attack with contemporary spread formations resulting in a potent set of plays.

By Paul Cornwell

Head Coach

Ayden-Grifton High School (NC)


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Editor's Note:  Coach Cornwell is entering his 9th year as a head coach.  His record during that time is 80-29 with his teams winning 5 conference championships.  His 2011 squad finished the year as Regional Champions and State Runner-up.  Coach Cornwell has been named regional Coach of the Year three times ('08, '10, and '11) and state Coach of the Year runner-up in 2011.  


Ayden-Grifton High School is a small rural school in eastern North Carolina and we have been running the wing-T for about 20 years.  We have ran primarily with 2 wings and a fullback with a TE and one SE.  We have had our share of success over the years just running the base plays from under center and occasionally running a few plays from the gun just to make people spend a day preparing for it.  3 years ago I knew that I had a young QB that was a very good runner so I wanted to find a way to get him more involved in our offense.  I started researching online and looked at several different offensive schemes.  The main thing I was looking for was a way to spread out my opponent, utilize my QB more, and not change our identity on offense. After a long search, I found Coach Pat Murphy of Montana and he was very gracious to share with me what he was doing out of the gun while maintaining the integrity of the wing-t.  Like most coaches, I needed to make sure that I could find something that we could hang our hat on.  From under center we have always hung our hat on the buck sweep, fullback trap and the waggle.  We decided we would build off of the same concept form the gun.  We installed the Sweep, Cross and Bubble as our base package.  The beauty of this package is that all three plays look exactly the same.

Base Formation

Our Base Formation in the Shot gun Wing-T is very similar to the 100 formation in the base wing-T except we have replaced a running back with a receiver.  We still have a wing back and a TE to the strong side but the QB is in the place of the Full back and we have two receivers away from the TE.  We use Compass directions for the names of our formations.  Our base formations are East (Figure 1) and West.  West is the same as East just flipped to the other side.  We also use North and South.  North (Shown in Figure 2) is just like East except the Z receiver is lined up on the same side of the TE to give us a TE trips look.  We do this if we want to move the CB out away from the formation.  South would be the opposite of North.  



Play #1:  Sweep

The sweep from the gun is pretty much the same play as the buck sweep from under center.  We are still pulling two guards and sealing down with play side tackle, TE and Wing.  We line the QB back at 5 yards off the ball and the HB at 4.5.  We have a TE and wing to the strong side and twins away.  The QB hands the ball off to the HB who follows the blocks of the guards.  The QB will boot away faking the waggle after he hands off and the twin receivers show the bubble screen. Sweep Rules

  • WB blocks down with the TE
  • TE blocks on to down C gap
  • Strong Tackle Blocks down B gap
  • Strong Guard pulls and kicks the first defender outside the TE – If there is a threat to the A gap he will make a solid call and block down play side A gap
  • Center blocks on to the backside A gap
  • Quick Guard will pull and read the Strong guards block and lead the HB into the hole
  • Quick Tackle will cut off the backside B gap

What you’re missing…

X&O Labs Insiders members will gain full access to the entire clinic report on Coach Cornwell's Spread T Play Package including:

  • Additional coaching points and game film of the base play of the package, the sweep.

  • How Coach Cornwell uses the Sweep to set up complementary plays within his Spread T package.

  • How the Cross Play produces big plays when combined with the sweep action.

  • How adding a Bubble to the concept can freeze multiple defenders and open up running lanes

  • Coaching points and game film for the Cross and Bubble concepts.

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