PITTSBURGH (93-7 The Fan) – Former West Virginia head football coach Rich Rodriguez pioneered the read-option offense that the San Francisco 49ers will run in Super Bowl XLVII.
Rodriguez joins Sportsradio 93-7 The Fan’s Troy Clardy to discuss how the read-option became all the rage in college football, and its quick spread to the NFL.
“I think the age of the spread [offense] is here to stay,” Rodriguez says. “If you get a guy like a [49ers’ QB Colin] Kaepernick or an RG3, they’re going to be faster than those defensive linemen and most of those linebackers. You don’t have to major in it, but you can certainly use it as part of your offense.”
Rodriguez, now the head coach at Arizona, goes back to the beginnings of the read-option offense that he created at Glenville State College in 1990.
“The reason why we enjoyed it is because it has option principles, but you can do it out of the shotgun,” he explains. “That makes it a little safer on the quarterback, and you can have great balance out of the shotgun.”
With those concepts now being used by a new wave of NFL quarterbacks, Rodriguez reacts to the number of teams that are now starting to use that offensive scheme.
“I think there’s been a hesitation to do it in the NFL because they pay the quarterback all that money and you don’t want him to get hurt. The truth is that they get hurt just much if they’re standing in the pocket.
“Everybody says, ‘to prepare for the NFL you need to come to a pro-style West Coast offense.’ Well, the more NFL games I see, it looks like the shotgun offense is the new pro-style,” he added.