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KT2000
07-13-2006, 10:23 AM
I'm starting to hear more and more about this scheme, and wondered if any of you run, coach or have seen anyone in high school and/or college using this alignment. I know West Virginia uses this defense.

This scheme is still relatively rare right now on the college level according to articles I've read.

Its strength lies in the flexibility to combat both ground-oriented and spread oriented teams with the following personell:

3 DLs, 3 LBs and 5 DBs

The general front is a 3-3 Stack. The three LBs line up directly over the DL, and that's why it's call a Stack. The nose tackle almost always lines up directly over the center except for a special front variation. The stack concept is from the old school, and mixed with the 5 DB deployment of the new. I guess you could call it the defensive equivalent to the Spread Option on offense...mixing past with present to form an innovative scheme.

Base alignment vs. the standard I formation:

http://www.americanfootballmonthly.com/Subaccess/Magazine/2004/feb/images/HU-01.jpg

Personally, I really like the scheme given the pressure you can apply on offenses with the disguise the stack gives you in addition to the added speed and playmaking ability of an extra defensive back. Extremely flexible and a break from the more traditional alignments on defense.

Two of the five DBs will be strong safeties (DB-LB hybrid types). In this scheme, they're usually referred to as Rovers/Gators/Bandits. I think this really lends to the aggressive and deceptive qualities of the defense because the Rovers can be easily used as blitzers, and also in pass coverage.

It's also fairly easy to morph from the 3-3-5 into another front without having to make personell changes.

Of course, you need a very active and effective DL to maximize the potential of any 3 DL front otherwise you open yourself up to problems in the ground game specifically. Those leaks can turn into cascades because you put too much pressure on the rest of the defense. Any good defense (run or pass) starts up front with strong DL play.

I'm a fan of attack oriented, physical defenses and that's why this scheme appeals to me. 40 Canes is another favorite of mine; made famous by the Miami Hurricanes of course. 4-3 front with physical Cover 2 Man secondary coverage.

I could envision the 3-3-5 becoming part of the high school answer to defending the more wide open offenses we see each season. At the HS level, you can face everything from the Wing T to the various Spread forms so it's obviously very important to employ a more flexible scheme on defense. It's very tough to find a true DE, and I think that's also a contributing factor to more teams moving to a 3 DL set up in addition to the need for more speed on the field to combat modern day talent.

jtk1519
07-13-2006, 10:54 AM
There was an article in the DMN a while back talking about the 3-3 stack and how popular it's getting at the high school level. It's really the defensive answer to the spread offense. It's all about speed.

I like the flexibility of the defense since you can drop 5 DBs back into coverage or basically play a 3-5 defense by moving the "weak" and "strong" side safeties to the LOS. I would however think that such a defense could be susceptible to being "over-powered". To combat this, I understand that some teams (W. Virginia I believe) play with 3 MLBs, one "free" safety and then the "weak" and "strong" side safeties which are really DB/LB tweeners. They can serve as safeties in pass coverage or basically OLBs in running situations. That, or they can use 3 MLBs a conventional "free" and "strong" safety and a "rover" that will play up on the line making what is really a 3-4.

DeSoto used to run a 3-3 and I think they still do. I believe North Garland, Austin Lanier and Victoria Memorial run it as well. I believe there are quite a few Metroplex area teams running this defense since the spread offense is so widely used in that part of the state.

RocklandDragon
07-13-2006, 11:12 AM
This type of defense might suit Lubbock High well. Lubbock High does have a good amount of speed in the secondary. However, Lubbock High does not have much size in the trenches and the primary attacks from Monterey, Tascosa and Central are the ground game. Coronado uses a spread attack and Lubbock High can use this to their advantage. Amarillo High uses more of a balanced attack. Lubbock High may have to rely on stunts to beat the lineman to the gaps. As long as the coaches teach them how to wrap up the opposing player, Lubbock High can have a decent defense and stay in games this year.

:D

KT2000
07-13-2006, 11:37 AM
I would however think that such a defense could be susceptible to being "over-powered". To combat this, I understand that some teams (W. Virginia I believe) play with 3 MLBs, one "free" safety and then the "weak" and "strong" side safeties which are really DB/LB tweeners. They can serve as safeties in pass coverage or basically OLBs in running situations. That, or they can use 3 MLBs a conventional "free" and "strong" safety and a "rover" that will play up on the line making what is really a 3-4.


I'd use the base 3-3-5 personell of Mike, Sam and Will backers and keep the two SS (Rovers) to use as extra run supporters/blitzers or in coverage to aid the two corners and the free safety. This way, even against spread formations you can still hold at least a six man front against 5 OL without having to alter the stack. However, the overpower risk you alluded to is definitely there especially without a strong presence at NT.

TEXREB
07-13-2006, 11:47 AM
I have seen teams that run this defense that are successful and those that were not very successful. I think it depends on the personnel and coaching. Need 3 DL that gets after it and speed everywhere helps too.

jtk1519
07-13-2006, 03:17 PM
Coach Campbell at Victoria Memorial puts out some books and videos on the subject of 3-3. I believe he plays with an 8 man front. The advantage is that you can really limit the short passes, slants, screens, etc. Bad thing is if the offense lines up 4 or 5 wide and sends everybody deep, you only have one guy deep and that will put a lot of pressure on the corners.

pack4life
07-13-2006, 10:16 PM
i don't understand how this D would stop an excellent running team.

jtk1519
07-13-2006, 10:27 PM
i don't understand how this D would stop an excellent running team.

It would work very well against an option team, but your defense would have to play very disciplined, assignment football.

I do think this defense would have problems against a straight power running team do to the undersized defense.

KT2000
07-13-2006, 11:19 PM
It's a blitz friendly look player wise, and that helps vs. both the run and the pass. Also, the stack can be very confusing for OLs because of the stunt possibilities you have when aligning players that way. It'd be all about beating the blockers to the ball with speed. Lots of ways to disguise with the stack front. And as I mentioned earlier, you obviously need an extra forceful and aggressive DL to make it happen.

dragonsdaddy
07-14-2006, 11:02 AM
until as much emphasis, both in terms of personnel and coaching, is placed on defending the spread as there is on the best spread team on running the spread, scheming will fail. the best athletes defending a team like slc(where most of the best athletes are on offense) will necessarily be on defense. they will have to be smarter and better prepared and rerereactive, as the real-time play-changing has the offense at a big advantage. short of reading the oc's mail, i don't haver an answer for that. it is hard for hsers to hide their coverages asd well as the pros do due to lack of practice time.

Xfballphenome05
07-14-2006, 10:35 PM
laredo united ran a version of this with the tackles playing more on the inside of the tackles than headup on them.with this defense the middle linebacker is set up to make alot of plays,because the front 5 are occupied on blocking the players lined up in front of them to get a good clean block on the backer..in my opinion this is also a defense that a cover 3 can be ran to perfection,with decent rush on the quarterback.

Mad Hatter
07-14-2006, 10:43 PM
Couldnt u also shift out of the 3-3-5 down into a 4-2-5 at the last second to through off the Qb's read before snap.

kickslide
07-14-2006, 10:53 PM
It's a blitz friendly look player wise, and that helps vs. both the run and the pass. Also, the stack can be very confusing for OLs because of the stunt possibilities you have when aligning players that way. It'd be all about beating the blockers to the ball with speed. Lots of ways to disguise with the stack front. And as I mentioned earlier, you obviously need an extra forceful and aggressive DL to make it happen.


It is true the stack can be very difficult for the OL. There is endless possibilities of blitzes from any of the three inside LB's as well as outside LB's. Teams that run the stack have excellent speed, and they are constantly on the move, such as showing the backers and then bailing out or showing one gap and blitzing another. The OL must constantly communicate with one another or they will have serious problems. You will see more and more HS teams going to the stack, like offenses running the spread b/c that is the trend or the fad. I even saw Memphis with DC Joe Lee Dunn run a defense that only used 2 DL, 5 LB, and 4 DB. How long before that is the next fad?

dragonsdaddy
07-24-2006, 12:20 PM
i can see a day, and maybe it is already happening when teams only have 2 true dl men. the de's are stand up, and can be used in pass coverages while lbs and safeties blitz almost every play. they would be hard-pressed against a trinity type offense, but then again every one else is too. in reality, until someone hires away the dc from a spread hot team, and dedicates the athletes to defense, the spread will continue to flourish. maybe someone needs to hire dodge-like offensive minds to develop defenses. no one knows better what has worked against the spread than dodge et al.

Panther63
07-24-2006, 04:31 PM
The old 29 teams would have their 2 techniques play down and stand their 9 techs.leaving them with only 2 down lineman.

FeeltheHaka
07-28-2006, 01:37 AM
Trinity sometimes uses this formation

leanderdad
09-07-2006, 11:39 AM
I'm starting to hear more and more about this scheme, and wondered if any of you run, coach or have seen anyone in high school and/or college using this alignment. I know West Virginia uses this defense.

This scheme is still relatively rare right now on the college level according to articles I've read.

Its strength lies in the flexibility to combat both ground-oriented and spread oriented teams with the following personell:

3 DLs, 3 LBs and 5 DBs

The general front is a 3-3 Stack. The three LBs line up directly over the DL, and that's why it's call a Stack. The nose tackle almost always lines up directly over the center except for a special front variation. The stack concept is from the old school, and mixed with the 5 DB deployment of the new. I guess you could call it the defensive equivalent to the Spread Option on offense...mixing past with present to form an innovative scheme.

Base alignment vs. the standard I formation:

http://www.americanfootballmonthly.com/Subaccess/Magazine/2004/feb/images/HU-01.jpg

Personally, I really like the scheme given the pressure you can apply on offenses with the disguise the stack gives you in addition to the added speed and playmaking ability of an extra defensive back. Extremely flexible and a break from the more traditional alignments on defense.

Two of the five DBs will be strong safeties (DB-LB hybrid types). In this scheme, they're usually referred to as Rovers/Gators/Bandits. I think this really lends to the aggressive and deceptive qualities of the defense because the Rovers can be easily used as blitzers, and also in pass coverage.

It's also fairly easy to morph from the 3-3-5 into another front without having to make personell changes.

Of course, you need a very active and effective DL to maximize the potential of any 3 DL front otherwise you open yourself up to problems in the ground game specifically. Those leaks can turn into cascades because you put too much pressure on the rest of the defense. Any good defense (run or pass) starts up front with strong DL play.

I'm a fan of attack oriented, physical defenses and that's why this scheme appeals to me. 40 Canes is another favorite of mine; made famous by the Miami Hurricanes of course. 4-3 front with physical Cover 2 Man secondary coverage.

I could envision the 3-3-5 becoming part of the high school answer to defending the more wide open offenses we see each season. At the HS level, you can face everything from the Wing T to the various Spread forms so it's obviously very important to employ a more flexible scheme on defense. It's very tough to find a true DE, and I think that's also a contributing factor to more teams moving to a 3 DL set up in addition to the need for more speed on the field to combat modern day talent.
Leander uses this defense. They have 3 down linemen, 3 lbs, 2 corners 2 - 8 techs and safety.This is a very agressive defense and your people have got to wrap up and tackle. They swarm to the ball.

DiamondJ2
09-07-2006, 05:35 PM
Judson had difficulty against Leander's 3-3-5. blocking assignments were hard to read., though I believe that base blocking that the Rockets use to run would have allowed the TB & FB to gain significant yardage. The defense is tough on sweeps and outside toss plays. If it is taught well and recieved by the players, that defense is to be respected.

Judson ran a variation of it when they defeated #1 nationally ranked Holmes in the late 80's, but it wasn't called that way back when.

LeanderLions3033
09-10-2006, 04:44 PM
Like stated before, this is what Leander runs. The 3 down lineman, 3 linebackers, 2 corners, 1 FS (basically a centerfielder), and 2 rovers (basically saftey/lb hybrids, usually these are your safties that are sure tacklers with above average coverage skills). We've ran it the past 3 years and have been pretty successful against "good running teams".

G-Man
10-02-2006, 10:41 AM
It's a blitz friendly look player wise, and that helps vs. both the run and the pass. Also, the stack can be very confusing for OLs because of the stunt possibilities you have when aligning players that way. It'd be all about beating the blockers to the ball with speed. Lots of ways to disguise with the stack front. And as I mentioned earlier, you obviously need an extra forceful and aggressive DL to make it happen.

Absolutely correct that it is blitz friendly. People that play 3-3 dont sit in it they move constantly. Also good if you have undersized but really quick linemen. Gives misdirection (pulling) a hard time but straight zone blocking will take care of the movements and blitzes. Many people that use the 4-2-5 as base D also use the 3-3 as their blitz D changeup. Gets the kids moving especially if the D is getting beat at the line.;)

G-Man
10-02-2006, 10:43 AM
Couldnt u also shift out of the 3-3-5 down into a 4-2-5 at the last second to through off the Qb's read before snap.

Yes, you can stem from the 3-3 into the 4-2. Little bit more difficult to go the other way though. Thats why many teams pair the 3-3 and 4-2.

TTUmatador8
11-29-2006, 07:02 PM
Does anyone want to go into detail on what the assaignments each position would have against the triple and/or load option.

Leander 6136
11-30-2006, 09:33 PM
Does anyone want to go into detail on what the assaignments each position would have against the triple and/or load option.
Against the triple option the d-line and mike LB take the inside option, the sam or will take the qb, and the 8-techs take the pitch man leaving the secondary free to cover. If there is no tight end sometimes the ends take the qb and the sam or will take the pitch man, it really depends on the offensive formation.

bowiedawgs01
05-27-2010, 09:55 AM
How many teams have adopted this defense in the last 3 years since this thread?

I know Austin Bowie has been running it for a few years now. I believe Coach Penland learned it from Bowie and took it to Hutto a couple years ago. Now he's at McNeil, and may take it there as well. Bowie learned it from Leander.

Our 3 DL this year will be about: LDE 6'2 215, NT 6'1 240, RDE 6'7 220
The 3 LB will be about: 6'1 220, 6'1 200 and 6'2 210

Those are all eye-ballin' it. I'm decent at height guesses, but not great at weight. I'm trying to be conservative there. I'm not sure who the Rover and Bandit will be.

These guys have been in this system their entire HS career, so I'm anxious to see how well they will perform as seniors. I think our coaches will bring more pressure this year. We open up with a very good ground attack @ Pflugerville. Anderson will run a Wing-T at us. Leander and Westlake will both run very well this year. All good rushing attacks to see this D go up against.