One of the most memorable takeaways I got after reading Mike Leach’s Swing Your Sword a number of years ago was how he defines balance in an offense, and yesterday at his press conference he shared some more on that topic and why the traditional idea of balanced offenses is wrong.
Inspired by the Wishbone, which he gave a ton of love at that presser yesterday, Leach sees a ton of similarities in that offense and the Air Raid, most notably that balance comes from having a number of players touching the ball and contributing to the offensive production, and not being 50% run and 50% pass.
After beating Utah over the weekend with zero yards rushing, balance was a popular topic, so Leach laid out his beliefs.
“I want all of the positions to touch it. There’s nothing balanced about 50% run, 50% pass…that’s just 50% stupid.”
“Now, what is balanced is when you have five skill positions and all five of them are contributing to the offensive effort in a somewhat equal fashion, and that is balanced. But this notion that if you had it off to this one guy 50% of the time and then you throw it to a combination of these two guys the other 50% of the time, that you’re really balanced then you probably pat yourself on the back and tell yourself that, and people have been doing that for decades. Well, you’re delusional.”
For what it’s worth, this isn’t the first time a Mike Leach coached team has had what most coaches would view as a poor day rushing the ball, yet still managed a win. Back in 2016, Wazzu finished the game with -52 yards rushing and still beat the Sun Devils.
Hear Leach’s full thoughts on offensive balance and his affinity for the wishbone in the clip.