Above you see the potential 3-4 defense that UCLA might run in the upcoming football season, the whole thing is predicated on having a large nose tackle and tweener defensive tackles that will clog up the gaps in the line, while having speedy line backers to increase the coverage of the field in both pass and run situations. Or at least, that is what is stated on Wikipedia. Now let’s compare 3-4 defensive scheme with last years Joe Tresey’s 4-wtf-0-2 defensive formation.
First, every thing in Joe’s defensive formation is depended on a 45 yd cushion given to the wide receivers by the corner-backs so that the secondary will have ample opportunity to recover just in case one of them happen to bite on a move. Up front, the defensive line is your traditional 4-3 formation but with the exception that one of the defensive ends needs to secretly line up on the offensive backfield to get to the QB as early as possible after the snap. Also, this type of lining up by the defensive line gives the DE the opportunity to to become temporary buddies with the offensive side thereby getting facebook friends like access to the offensive huddle to overhear the offensive plays being called (this is where Joe’s ‘poking’ technique comes into play in handling the offensive line).
Now traditionally, you would normally have the linebackers supporting the defensive line with safeties lined up right behind the them, but not in Joe’s defensive scheme. In a brilliant strategic move, all three linebacker line up side by side about 30yds away from the scrimmage with two of them essentially running a crossing pattern creating a pick for each other against each other… FUCKEN BRILLANT! The third linebacker is just as essential to the whole formation and is required to face the opposing offensive coordinator and stay there with his hand out to his side in what is known as ‘i dunno LOL’ defensive stand to imitate a ferocious carnivore, thereby creating fear into the hearts of opposing coaching staff up in the booth. Marvelous… Simply marvelous.
Now where are the safeties in this whole scheme you might ask? Well they are the most important part of the whole formation my friends. Free safety being true to it’s title must line up in the middle of the field and run around in a fast repetitive circle like he is just finishing his p90x cardio workout, while his partner the strong safety, does a facing the sideline diagonal zig zag blitz to no one in particular to create a confusion to the quarterback who might be trying to guess the coverage. But the whole scheme, the whole genius 4-wtf-0-2 defensive formation is anchored on the 12th man in the formation, the position known as Spiderman. Spiderman is the anchor that gels the whole defense together, with his job being to cover 50 yds side to side while also covering 100 yd vertically. He basically needs to do whatever a spider can, spin the runningback any size, catch interception just like he flies. LOOK OUT! Here comes the Spiderman in the 4-wtf-0-2 formation! BAM! KA-POW! BOOM!
Say what you will but I for one will be very sad to see Joe Tresey’s defensive scheme disappear from the rosebowl.