A closer look: Spread option

Arizona's offense has changed dramatically with the hiring of Rich Rodriguez. Read on for a closer look at the offense and how the players fit.

Arizona's current offense may be domianted by passing, but it will change dramatically with Rich Rodriguez as the head coach. The Wildcats will implement a running spread offense that Rodriguez helped create and perfect. In order to understand this offense, we need to look at the personnel first and then move on from there.

From now on, Arizona's quarterback will have to be able to run the ball, which nearly automatically eliminates Tom Savage from the equation. While Savage has talent and may give it a go, the reality of his situation is that he will likely need to move on.

That leaves Matt Scott as the guaranteed starter, which could make the transition to Rodriguez's offense much easier considering that he absolutely has the talent to run the offense. In fact, you can make an argument that Scott is as dangerous, if not more dangerous, than Pat White and Denard Robinson because he is definitely the better thrower, which allows for more success in this offense.

In addition, Arizona will have plenty of talent in the backfield. Ka'Deem Carey should be ecstatic, because this offense will allow him to have plenty of opportunities in the open field, where he has excelled this season. It is not out of the question to think that Carey will run for 1,000 yards next season as Rodriguez simply runs the type of offense that will allow him to do that.

In addition, the run-oriented spread offense will be a major opportunity for Daniel Jenkins and Jared Baker, who also excel in the open field. Jenkins has shown that he is good at following his blockers, which is an absolute must in this offense. On the other hand, a power back like Greg Nwoko may not see as many carries, because he is unable to match the speed of the others.

One of the smoothest transition on the offensive side of the ball may be with the receivers, as the current offense already asks them to block plenty. In Rodriguez's offense, the receivers will see plenty of blocking action in addition to the actual passing game.

In addition, receivers will often be used on end arounds, so a speedy receiver like Garic Wharton can see his playing time and success increase dramatically. Patrick Onwuasor is another player that can break out next season, as he has all of the physical tools to be effective in numerous ways.

In terms of the offensive line, Arizona is in good shape here as well. The UA offensive line is a bit undersized, which is not necessarily a problem here because they will be asked to get up field quickly. That's not to mention that the unit is young and it will allow Rodriguez to come in and gel a unit that will be together for the next few years.

As far as the offense itself goes, it deals with isolating the defense in the open field out of the shotgun formation. The offense will use double or triple option plays in which the quarterback can go from a simple hand off, pitch, keep it, or throw a bubble screen. While it may sound simple, the fact that there are so many options is often what throws the defense off.

Arizona will recruit quarterbacks that are able to make quick reads based on defensive personnel and those reads will be made in less than a second.

Speed will likely be the name of the game and the face of the Arizona offense we know now will change dramatically.


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