You may not realize it, but Art Kaufman’s defensive at Cincinnati last year quietly ranked in the top ten nationally in total defense (#9), and top top 15 nationally in scoring defense (#14). During the course of the seasoned defensive coach’s carrer, Kaufman has led the charge of some intimidating defenses at Ole Miss, East Carolina, North Carolina, and Texas Tech (among other stops).
After practice yesterday, Kaufman was asked how players have adapted to his scheme in his first year on campus and he shared some insight into how he goes about installing his defense.
“We’ve got to know WHAT we’re doing, and then we’ve got to learn HOW to do it.” Kaufman explained, noting that getting the basics in during spring ball helped a lot, and the players retained a lot of that knowledge over the summer.
“If we know what we’re doing and can write it down and talk through it and get lined up, then we can progress into how we do it…and that’s the key. But if you don’t know what you’re doing, then you can’t work on how to do the rest of it better.”
“That’s the whole key for us. Know WHAT to do, then learn HOW to do it. So now when we’re ten days out from out first opponent, we’ve got that stuff there and we’re still learning a little bit of how to do it but we’re focused now on the opponent so we can study our opponents.”