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Malzahn, Bielema square off

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07:16 AM ET 07.18 | Before ever squaring off in an SEC game, Gus Malzahn and Bret Bielema are already squared off in a hot philosophical debate. Bielema re-ignited the argument at SEC spring meetings by proposing rule changes that would slow down no-huddle aoffenses in an effort to promote player safety, a view first presented by Alabama's Nick Saban last season. Malzahn, the mastermind behind the hurry-up, no-huddle offense, finds it hard to believe that any increase in pace correlates with an increase in player injuries. "When I first heard that, to be honest with you, I thought it was a joke," Malzahn said. "As far as healthy or safety issues, that's like saying the defense shouldn't blitz after a first down because they're a little fatigued."

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Bret Bielema, Icon Sports Bret Bielema, Icon Sports
July 18, 2013  07:34 AM ET

"Football is coming." Ned Stark

July 18, 2013  08:24 AM ET

A simple fact - More often you get hit the more often you will get hurt. No I don't recommend any rule changes but everyone needs to realize that football is a "contact sport" and unfortunately injuries are going to occur.

One way to look at this is compare teams like Bama and Oregon. Bama runs approximately 65 plays per game and Ducks run approximately 85 plays per game. That equates to the Ducks playing 4 extra games a year or another full season in the players college career. Those extra hits will take a toll on the players NFL career, especially the lineman's and RB's career. There is a reason why those guys have a typically short career in the NFL.

July 18, 2013  08:24 AM ET

But, but, but if Nick Saban believes it, it MUST be true.

July 18, 2013  08:33 AM ET

If you think about it, this is Aubie vs Bammer at it's core, since Nicky did the first moaning/groaning/whining about hurry-ups. BB is just coat-tail-riding Nicky.

July 18, 2013  08:34 AM ET
QUOTE(#2):

A simple fact - More often you get hit the more often you will get hurt. No I don't recommend any rule changes but everyone needs to realize that football is a "contact sport" and unfortunately injuries are going to occur.One way to look at this is compare teams like Bama and Oregon. Bama runs approximately 65 plays per game and Ducks run approximately 85 plays per game. That equates to the Ducks playing 4 extra games a year or another full season in the players college career. Those extra hits will take a toll on the players NFL career, especially the lineman's and RB's career. There is a reason why those guys have a typically short career in the NFL.

It's football, if they want to get hit less they should take up needlepoint.

Hell Gerald Ford played center on Michigan four years wearing a leather helmet and he became President of the United States.............I find this thought process as specious as pitch counts in baseball...........

July 18, 2013  08:40 AM ET

I'm glad this ahole is no longer in the B1G! Couldn't stand him at Wisconsin, and he seems to be a perfect fit at Arkansas.


HD---that is a unique way to look at that data...the "extra" plays can add up, but it isn't the same players getting hit. The Ducks utilize many players, and their offense spreads the "D" out, which means most of the hits are not straight up, and most hits will be 1 or 2 defensemen.

Comment #7 has been removed
July 18, 2013  09:11 AM ET
QUOTE(#2):

A simple fact - More often you get hit the more often you will get hurt. No I don't recommend any rule changes but everyone needs to realize that football is a "contact sport" and unfortunately injuries are going to occur.One way to look at this is compare teams like Bama and Oregon. Bama runs approximately 65 plays per game and Ducks run approximately 85 plays per game. That equates to the Ducks playing 4 extra games a year or another full season in the players college career. Those extra hits will take a toll on the players NFL career, especially the lineman's and RB's career. There is a reason why those guys have a typically short career in the NFL.

Well said. I was going to post something similar. These offenses say they have a target # of plays they want to get per game. Something like 80 - 85+. If you're playing more plays, how could that not be a situation where more injuries occur?

July 18, 2013  09:12 AM ET
QUOTE(#3):

But, but, but if Nick Saban believes it, it MUST be true.

If Coach Saban says it, usually it is pretty smart to listen.

Comment #10 has been removed
July 18, 2013  09:18 AM ET

If you heard the actual press conferences, you know that the reporter that asked the question, who was from the auburn-opelika area, kind of worded it to get a rise out of Beilema.

The answer malzahn gave was "I thought it was a joke when I first heard about it."

The question phrased to Bielema was "auburn coach gus malzahn called the idea it caused more injuries a "joke"'. What do you think about that?"

July 18, 2013  09:20 AM ET
QUOTE(#10):

because speculation isn't fact. until there is evidence there is nothing to support the claim even if on the surface it appears to make sense. Its like your mother saying don't go outside without clothes on a cold day or you will catch a cold. Seems to make sense but facts have proven thats nothing more than a wives tale. So is the claim the offenses cause more injury.

But, you can't really call it an old wives tale, either, until there are studies. An old wives tale is something that was previously thought to be true, like what you said, and has proven to be not so. Not something that has not been proven one way or the other.

July 18, 2013  09:25 AM ET
QUOTE(#9):

If Coach Saban says it, usually it is pretty smart to listen.

You didn't bite hard enough on my bait. Try again please.

;-)

July 18, 2013  09:26 AM ET

If these coaches really cared about player safety they would teach more fundamental tackling ... stuff like that. Helmet-to-helmet hits, helmet-to-knee hits, blowing a player up so to speak in lieu of fundamental tackling ... I don't see a focus on player safety in CFB from the product that the coaches put on the field.

Player safety is just a smokescreen for a few coaches whose defensive systems struggle with hurry-up offenses. Get some faster LBs and DTs if you want to counter a hurry-up offense.

July 18, 2013  09:27 AM ET
QUOTE(#11):

If you heard the actual press conferences, you know that the reporter that asked the question, who was from the auburn-opelika area, kind of worded it to get a rise out of Beilema.The answer malzahn gave was "I thought it was a joke when I first heard about it."The question phrased to Bielema was "auburn coach gus malzahn called the idea it caused more injuries a "joke"'. What do you think about that?"

Straight up. The "square off" was manufactured by the media present.

Comment #16 has been removed
Comment #17 has been removed
July 18, 2013  09:31 AM ET
QUOTE(#17):

Is complaining about HUNH any different then LUS fans complaining about the bridge schedule

Yes because it's the high-profile coaches doing the complaining.

July 18, 2013  09:35 AM ET

Bielema did review injury stats as relates to the increased # of plays and the inability to make substitutions as a result of hurry up offenses. He did express an opinion principally in agreement with Saban's call for slowing down the pace of play to allow for substitutions.

Then, in "the big room," media hacks baited Malzahn, who stated he first thought it was a joke.

Later, in "the big room," media hacks excerpted Malzahn's comments to bait Bielema, fully aware of his expressed concern for potential increased injuries to players.

 
July 18, 2013  09:35 AM ET

"proposing rule changes that would slow down no-huddle offenses in an effort to promote player safety"?? How will slowing down no huddle offenses, "promote player safety"?? If a coach is really worried about player safety, how about getting their players in game shape. Let's face it, some of these coaches fear the "no huddle offense", because it will tire out their defense.

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