Will the Wild Turkey Work for the Virginia Tech Hokies?
Flashy, somewhat gimmicky, offenses are taking over college football. The spread offense is represented in almost every BCS conference, and it has changed the face of the game.
Unlike the National Football League, athletes like a Usain Bolt can work well in college football systems. Baylor's Robert Griffin is a prime example.
Extremely athletic quarterbacks with a run first, throw second mentality has worked for a lot of schools, and, let's face it, it's fun to watch.
The Wild Turkey is the same as the Wildcat offense, and is very new to Virginia Tech. Offensive coordinator Bryan Stinespring debuted the offense last year, primarily in goal line situations, to try and give a stagnate offense a spark.
Once Greg Boone was running the Wild Turkey with a fair amount of success, Stinespring began using it at different times throughout the game.
Boone, who was a quarterback in high school, also tried throwing a pass out of the formation but failed to connect.
Stinespring wants to use the offense again this season, and he wants to use it on a more regular basis.
Having an athletic quarterback in Tyrod Taylor gives the Hokies the ability to use his athleticism in a different way. Taylor will likely line up at wide receiver some this year, while Boone, incoming tight end/wide receiver Logan Thomas, Darren Evans or Ryan Williams are taking snaps out of the formation.
Whether or not this formation will work is one of the biggest questions facing the Hokies heading into the 2009 season. Tech won't exactly be able to test drive the formation on an inferior opponent, as they face Alabama in the first week of the season.
The Wild Turkey is a way to keep a defense on their heels. If the offense is moving up and down the field running their standard offense, Tech may not want to bother risking a turnover in a non-standard formation.
A lot of things could go wrong out of this formation, but there are also a lot of benefits. The Hokies are very athletic football team, which sets them up well for success out of the Wild Turkey formation.
Will it work? It did last year, but Tech became predictable out of the set. Boone carried 21 times for 76 yards and a score, and he was the only player to take snaps out of the formation.
If the Hokies use multiple players behind center, and do more than just run the ball, then this once stagnate offense could become lethal.
However, Stinespring is a conservative play caller, which means one thing is for certain. The Hokies will not run the Wild Turkey, against anyone, until Stinespring is 100% sure his offense can run it to perfection.
Practice opens August 5 for the Hokies, giving them exactly one month to perfect the offense for their September 5 showdown against Alabama in the Georgia Dome.
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