Through two games of the 2018 college football season, we've seen a new wrinkle in the Gophers offensive game plan and it's worked nearly to perfection. It's dead in the NFL, but "The Wildcat" formatio is alive and well in college and on campus at the University of Minnesota.
Through two games, wide receiver Seth Green has run 13 times for 42 yards, four of those carries went for touchdowns. It's proven to be a successful option for the team and according to P.J. Fleck on KFAN this afternoon, it's not going anywhere.
"It's a dimension that we really wanted to have this year," Fleck said during the P.J. Fleck Show on KFAN. "We're going to be very creative out of it. We're going to continue to develop it as the year goes on. It gives us another dimension in the running game, it gives us a plus one."
Assessing the success of the wildcat so far, P.J. was then asked about one of the tactics that the team is using by leaving quarterback Zach Annexstad on the field, only lining him up wide as a wide receiver.
Here's why they choose to leave Annexstad on the field rather than bring out an extra wide receiver to line up wide.
"#17, Seth Green, he's a wide receiver," Fleck explained. "He plays wide receiver. With the personnel grouping that runs in on the field, it's a normal personnel grouping. The defense is going to be a normal defense call. It's a lot harder to call a defense and then make the adjustment to wildcat than just say okay, here comes #17. #5's off the field, here's the special defensive plays we have for wildcat and they call it, that way they don't have to check. When you have to check plays on defense, there's all new fits , there's all new gap responsibilities, there's all new coverages. There's 11 guys that all have to get that message and you hope that one of them doesn't get that message. That's why we leave #5 out there."
An interesting explanation that would then appear to give the Gophers an advantage even more so as they begin to insert other elements and pass out of the formation.
According to Coach Fleck, "It's going to be a part of what we do. "