By Andrew Hofer
Head Football Coach
Polo Community High School (Polo, Illinois)
Over the last ten years, the amount of spread offenses seen in game of football has surged. This has lead to a change in defensive strategy and philosophy from head coaches and defensive coordinators all over the nation. To combat these changes in defensive schematics, offenses seem to be going back to their roots: The wing-t formation.
This formation and the series’ that accompany them are mainstays amongst football programs nationwide. Even offensive gurus at the collegiate and professional levels tend to have at least some roots from the series’ associated with the wing-t.
Defending Wing-T Concepts:
At Polo High School, we generally have smaller players on our roster because of our small enrollment. Due that reason and our personnel, we are a 3 man front team that rotates the amount of guys we have in the box depending on the personnel and style of the teams we are facing. In the end, our base is a 3-5 with Cover 3 over the top or a 3-4 while playing quarters over the top.
To combat the wing-t, our program had to make some changes to better challenge all compliments of the series that come with these two formations. Typically, there are two main series’ that we see from these styles of teams: the Buck Sweep series and the Belly series.
As a head coach, the Buck Sweep offensive series out of the wing-t is probably my favorite offensive series in all football. The problem with that notion is that many head coaches and offensive coordinators around the country agree. This is a series that can put some serious stress on a defense because, out of the wing-t, it can cause you fits in multiple areas.
Here are a few keys to slowing down the buck sweep:
Key 1: Attack the C gap to the TE Side - Typically, most wing-t teams have a strong blocking TE that can help pin the DE inside, in turn, allowing the pulling guards freedom of movement. This gives the HB a chance to make an L-cut up the alley and gash the defense. To attack the C-Gap, we want to slant our 3 man front toward the TE side of the wing-t. This counters that advantage and constricts the gap they are trying to create.