Editors Note: Thanks to Brandon Rink of orangeandwhite.com for reminding me that I had this data available and suggesting that I share it.
Chad Morris is known for his creativity. Over the last 43 games we’ve seen a myriad of funky formations (tackles split out?), inventive plays and idiosyncrasies from Clemson’s offensive coordinator. Morris has been unconventional, nonconforming and unapologetic as the yards and points accumulated. Pedal to the metal. “Foot on the gas”, as Morris says.
What Morris hasn’t been is creative on 3rd and 4th and very short.
In the Morris era the Tigers have run the ball 96.3% of the time on 3rd and 1 and 93.1% of the time on 4th and 1 (goal to go included in both). Everyone knows what’s coming, as did Florida State last Saturday in overtime. Adam Humphries crossing behind Deshaun Watson at the snap? Pfffft. No FSU defender paid attention, because it’s 4th and 1 and Clemson’s running up the middle.
I have no problem with the shotgun formation. You do what you do best and put your players in the best position to achieve success.
Running up the middle is not what Clemson does best.
Especially when everyone knows what’s coming.
The irony is is that in those 43 games and 110 opportunities Clemson has passed the ball 5 times and been successful each time.