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Thread: Gene Stallings, Alabama Football, and passing/rushing efficiency

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    -RTB ADMINISTRATOR HALL OF FAME MEMBER TerryP's Avatar
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    Default Gene Stallings, Alabama Football, and passing/rushing efficiency

    Gene Stallings, Alabama Football, and passing/rushing efficiency

    by Chase Stuart on June 27, 2012

    Gene Stallings coached in the NFL in the late ’80s, in between the Jim Hanifan and Joe Bugel eras of Cardinals football. He was the man who led the team as the franchise relocated from St. Louis to Phoenix. He coached under Tom Landry for over a decade in Dallas. But Gene Stallings will always be remembered for working under Bear Bryant and for embodying what it meant to coach Alabama football.

    Stallings played on Bryant’s famous Junction Boys team at Texas A&M, and coached under Bryant when the Crimson Tide won national championships in ’61 and ’64. After his failed stint in the NFL, Stallings returned to Alabama, this time as the head coach. His crowning achievement was winning the 1992 national championship, capping a 13-0 season.


    So why the background on Stallings today? One of the fun things about owning a website is seeing where your traffic comes from. I noticed a bunch of hits were coming from RollBamaRoll.com. So I went to the site to see what was driving the traffic (as it turns out, a random link to this passer rating article) and I found this great quote by Stallings on another page:


    Everyone keeps talking about our game with Miami [in the 1993 Sugar Bowl]. The reason we won against Miami is this: We had the ball 15 minutes more than they did. We ran the ball for 275 yards against Miami. They ran the ball for less than 50 yards. When the game was over, we won. After a game, it may not look good. The alumni may be asking why we are not entertaining them. Let me assure you that our job is to win football games. You win football games by running the ball, stopping the run and being on the plus side of giveaway-takeaways.


    I think every coach1 at every level has, at some point, uttered a phrase to essentially the same effect. It is quintessential Alabama football, but it could have just as easily come out of the mouth of Greasy Neale or Bill Cowher or Vince Lombardi. Of course, whenever I read a quote like that, two immediate questions come to mind. Is it true? And how can I determine if it’s true?

    Stallings’ statement is undeniably true in the sense that outrushing your opponent and winning the turnover battle are highly correlated with winning. But as readers of my passer rating article know, such correlation says nothing about which way the causation arrow, if any, points. Take a step back and re-read his quote: It is only a step removed from saying “You win football games by outscoring the other team.” 2 In fact, what exactly is Stallings saying besides “You win football games by playing better than the other team?” What is left out in his statement?

    Footballperspective.com has the rest of the article:

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    -RTB ADMINISTRATOR HALL OF FAME MEMBER TerryP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crimson Crazy View Post
    This writer is "one step removed" from making any sense whatsoever...

    When you control the ball on the ground you control the clock. You beat passing and Spread Offenses by keeping the ball moving on the ground and out of their offenses's hands. You run the ball when you play a bad rushing defense and you pass when you run into a good rushing defense.

    It's not as complicated as some people want to make it sound, and it really doesn't matter which way the causation arrow is pointing...
    Some of the simplest things can be overlooked by some of the better football minds.

    I recall a segment on Finebaum quite a few years ago when the spread offense was just rearing its head on the college football scene. You might remember these as well, they featured Coach Stallings and Pat Dye. I hadn't thought of their exchange until this morning reading your post.

    I don't recall the game, I want to say it may have been one with Florida when Meyer took over, but the gist of of what Dye was saying was the spread option was an offense that was impossible for a defense to defend. Stallings made the point that Dye was making more of this "new offense" than it deserved.

    He said, "the biggest key is disrupting what the QB is doing after the snap. Take away his rhythm and you'll grind the offense to a halt. It isn't about tackling/sacking the QB, but getting him outside of his comfort zone."

    I remember thinking to myself that it seemed to be a very simplistic way to discuss defending this spread-option attack. But, the following Saturday evening I had to go back to what he had said because as it turned out he was spot on.

    What was he talking about then that corresponds with what you've just mentioned?

    Basic, fundamental football.

    Today we're enjoying one of the best era's of Bama football in my lifetime. We see teams that can't handle our approach which is nothing more than basic, fundamental football.

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    RTB MEMBER HEISMAN Crimson&WhiteGecko's Avatar
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    Simplicity is the heart of genius.

    However, just b/c it is simple to understand doesn't make it simple to accomplish. To me, this is the rub that CNS has brought back to 'Bama. Being physical, relentless, single-minded, consistently reliable (on the field or off the field), are easy concepts but MOST shy away. I realize CNS defense is complicated BUT if our guys cannot do the simple things well ALL the time then when it comes to championship football, we will fall short. Just ask any UGA fan.

    If you do the same thing you've always done you'll get the same results you've always gotten.

  4. The Following User Says Thank You to Crimson&WhiteGecko For This Useful Post:

    TerryP (07-12-2012)

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    STAFF HALL OF FAME MEMBER psychojoe's Avatar
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    After years of statistical analysis I have found the most important statistic. If team A is better than team B in points allowed, team A will win 100% of the time.
    The most important single central fact about a free market is that no exchange takes place unless both parties benefit.

    Milton Friedman


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    -RTB ADMINISTRATOR HALL OF FAME MEMBER TerryP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by psychojoe View Post
    After years of statistical analysis I have found the most important statistic. If team A is better than team B in points allowed, team A will win 100% of the time.
    Link?

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    STAFF HALL OF FAME MEMBER bamafan4ever's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TerryP View Post
    Link?
    I think he means on any given game day....

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    -RTB ADMINISTRATOR HALL OF FAME MEMBER TerryP's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bamafan4ever View Post
    I think he means on any given game day....
    I still want a link to this supposed "statistical analysis." I don't care if he is a math major in college at UA and he got there on academic excellence. It's BS until I see a link!

































    Missed the sarcasm, did ya Greg?

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    STAFF HALL OF FAME MEMBER psychojoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TerryP View Post
    Link?
    Its a proprietary secret.
    The most important single central fact about a free market is that no exchange takes place unless both parties benefit.

    Milton Friedman


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    STAFF ALL-AMERICAN Bo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TerryP View Post
    Link?
    Here ya go
    If a team doesn't think tough, practice tough, and live tough, how the hell are they gonna play tough on Saturday?

    Paul W. Bryant

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    STAFF HALL OF FAME MEMBER bamafan4ever's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TerryP View Post
    Missed the sarcasm, did ya Greg?
    :dispirited:......of course.

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