Before joining Charlie Strong’s Texas squad, Jay Norvell served as the co-offensive coordinator and wide receivers coach at Oklahoma from 2008-2014, meaning that he obviously spent quite a bit of time traveling south to the state of Texas to recruit. During that time, Norvell got to know Jeff Traylor (who now coaches with Norvell at Texas, handling the tight ends and special teams) who served as the head coach at Gilmer HS (TX) and won a few state titles before coming to Austin.
Norvell shared an interesting story with Horns247 about one of his interactions while he was visiting Traylor at a Gilmer practice one year where he noticed an interesting way that Traylor had tagged his offensive plays.
“He’d stand there and signal – I love watching high school coaches how they run practice, the offense signals then the defense signals and you can kind of pick up some things – I see the offensive coordinator signaling, and all of a sudden he’s running this play and it’s called ‘Andy’,” Norvell said.
Norvell continued: “Then he’s running another play called ‘Aunt Bee.’ Then he’s running another play called ‘Barney.’ Then he’s got another one called ‘Ernest T.’ I’m like, ‘Holy Moses. You guys are running the Andy Griffith offense in Gilmer, Texas.’”
Norvell went on to share that Traylor also had play calls that were named after characters from the hit TV series Sanford and Son and the movie Rocky.
“That boy is so country it’s not even funny,” Norvell shared. “He’s got great ideas and he’s a good football guy, you don’t win three state championships without really knowing something about football.”
While it’s highly doubtful that kids these days have seen (or even heard of) the Andy Griffith Show, or Sanford and Son, credit Traylor for finding a creative way to make the play calls relatable for his team. You could easily do the same thing for your guys with characters from classic quotable hits like Anchorman or Step Brothers, or a blockbuster like Transformers and you’d probably be surprised at how well they retain that information / scheme / play.