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HPOTD 3/28: <I>Butch Davis 101</I>

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HPOTD: 3/28: Butch Davis 101

By ProfessorDawg - The Watercooler

Here is what I think I know about the Butch Davis philosophy of winning football. I welcome additions and/or corrections until we have him figured out.

Rule #1: Run the football. This may seem like an odd rule, since we were totally unable to do it with any degree of success last year. But Butch Davis believes that running the football keeps the other team's offense off of the field. You can't score if you don't have the ball. It also rests your defense, so that they can make big plays late in the game. Finally, it opens up the passing game. Run first, pass second.

Rule #2: Stop the run. In order to have success, you have to stop teams from doing what Butch Davis would like to do with his offense (see rule #1). Again, this may seem odd, since we had no more success accomplishing this last year than we did accomplishing rule #1. A big reason for our lack of success was our MLB. Butch is quoted as having said that he never had a team without a dominant MLB. That is not by coincidence, that is by design. And by design he will have a new MLB as soon as he can make it happen.

Rule #3: Defense wins football games. Now this makes sense. Butch has paid far more attention to strengthening the defense than he has the offense since he arrived on the scene. We had a pretty good defense last year, and it will be dramatically improved this year with with the additions at DE, SS, and hopefully MLB. Watch for another DT in the draft.

Rule #4: Pass short, run long. Butch had very moderate success with this one. He drafted Quincy Morgan specifically to make this work; and by the same token this has to be his major complaint with KJ. The idea is, once again, ball control. He would like Tim Couch to complete 65% of his passes or better by throwing short, and letting the receivers run for big gains when they can. It goes hand in hand with Rule #1. QM may still be the answer to that part of the puzzle. He certainly showed some flashes in that regard a few times last year. Tim Couch is PERFECTLY designed for that philosophy, which is why Butch loves him so much.

Rule #5: The player is more important than the position. That is, don't draft for need so much as drafting for talent. That explains the Gerrard Warren draft pick last year, and why it will be so difficult to guess who the Browns are going to take in the draft. Butch will see who drops, and take the highest rated player. If it's a RB, so be it. But if it a DT, he would do the same thing thiis year he did last year. Another example of this rule is what Butch did for Jamir Miller. Prior coaches made Miller play to their defensive scheme. Butch built his defensive scheme around Jamir Miller's pass rushing talent. The result is Pro Bowl history.

Rule #6. Attack, attack, attack: Butch doesn't want a "read and react" defense. He wants to take it to the other team and wreak havoc before they get a chance to get into their rythm. Same on offense, he wants to ram the ball down the opponents throats. None of this "finess stuff" for Butch. Attack, attack, attack! "Finess" and "read and react" are for losers.

There you have it. My six rules of Butch Davis football as taught in my introductory class, Butch Davis 101. Let's see if some of you more knowledgeable posters can take this initial work, and make something meaningful out of it. By the time we are all finished, we should know Butch Davis better than he knows himself!

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