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Ideas From Inside the Tulsa Formation

This article was originally posted on Direct Snap Football.

Adam asked me a couple of months ago to write few words about the Tulsa Box, and I am committed to that, but I thought I would take you on a little detour for a few moments and give you a little background on my “drug” habit. I have been following the Single Wing since the winter of 1995 when I was coaching at the local middle school in my hometown. Once discovered, I spent more time tinkering and drawing plays, formations, and entertained just about every crazy idea that popped into my skull.

I mostly blame my mother-in-law for the obsession because it was during the spring when she told me that she had located John Aldrich’s book, The Single Wing and the Spinning Fullback at a high school in York, PA of all places. I kept the book on inter-library loan for weeks and it didn’t take me long to create and install a brief version complete with simplistic blocking rules, and a couple of formations. The results were nothing short of remarkable. My kids played extremely well and they loved the Single Wing!

The end result of my initial work was being offered a job at the varsity level with a new incoming head coach. He was the freshman coach and we scrimmaged each other on a few occasions. Our kids battled each other and I tried to stick it to him every chance I got. He took my aggression in good stride and approached me about my methods, my results, and convinced me that I would make a good varsity coach. He was wrong! I was awful because his system was not sound, I was too outspoken about the Single Wing, and because I couldn’t keep my big mouth shut; we endured a beating that season. My undermining was a big reason why we finished 0–10. In our last game we dressed 28 kids against one of the best teams in the mid-state and were shellacked 72–0, including a sophomore girl kicking the last 5 PATs. We needed binoculars to see the opposing 20-yard line. To this day, I remember the feeling of embarrassment as we crossed the field to shake hands. I was dying inside because the program I loved and had played for as a kid, was crumbling, and I couldn’t stop it. Continue reading Ideas From Inside the Tulsa Formation