published Monday, October 15th, 2012

Mocs slow tempo on offense

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga offense mostly huddled and took its time during Saturday's 31-10 win at Furman. While the defense kept forcing three-and-outs, the offense was seldom in a hurry to get to the line of scrimmage.

That wasn't the plan at the start of the season, when the Mocs were trying to play as fast as possible, but it's the right plan for now, offensive coordinator Marcus Satterfield said.

"It's far from where we originally thought we'd be, just trying to play fast, but like [Notre Dame coach] Brian Kelly said in an article the other day, he had too many speeding tickets from going fast," Satterfield said. "We slowed things down some, eliminated some of our speeding tickets and at least focused on the communication."

Because the Mocs (3-3, 2-1 Southern Conference) are lining up in so many different formations and putting quarterbacks Jacob Huesman and Terrell Robinson in a variety of positions, huddling actually helps the Mocs hide what they're doing.

Before, when UTC wasn't huddling, the players often lined up and then looked over to the sideline for the play. That allowed defenses to adjust, something they can't do as well because they have to wait for UTC to break the huddle.

"Defensively, what we'll do against no-huddle teams is we'll see what formation they're in and make calls accordingly," Mocs coach Russ Huesman said. "When you huddle, you really can't do that. You have to send in a defense; you can't let them break the huddle and then call a defense, so I think that's helped us, too."

Huesman said he wasn't a fan of the no-huddle system -- in which teams "go to the line of scrimmage, bark out some things and then look over -- that to me is not what this offense should look like."

For the most part, Huesman and Satterfield liked the look of UTC's offense against the Paladins. The Mocs had 369 yards and 20 first downs, and Robinson and Jacob Huesman put on an impressive show. They combined for 345 yards of offense and Jacob hit Robinson for touchdowns of 38 and 14 yards.

"It was a lot of fun, and there was a point in the third quarter where we really got it rolling," Jacob said. "That's a great feeling, when everything we were doing was working."

It was working in a smooth, methodical fashion that allowed the Mocs to move the ball and keep the clock running.

Extra points

The Mocs have held three teams (Glenville State, The Citadel and Furman) to 10 points or less in the same season for the first time since 1998. ... Furman was 2-for-13 on third down, and half of the Paladins' 12 drives were three-and-outs.

about John Frierson...

John Frierson is in his seventh year at the Times Free Press and seventh year covering University of Tennessee at Chattanooga athletics. The bulk of his time is spent covering Mocs football, but he also writes about women’s basketball and the big-picture issues and news involving the athletic department. A native of Athens, Ga., John grew up a few hundred yards from the University of Georgia campus. Instead of becoming a Bulldog he attended Ole ...

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