THE PERFECT PASS ~ American Genius and the Reinvention of Football
Book review and technical detail THE PERFECT PASS ~ American Genius and the Reinvention of Football S.C. Gwynne
|Technical detail of THE PERFECT PASS ~ American Genius and the Reinvention of Football|
|Title||THE PERFECT PASS ~ American Genius and the Reinvention of Football|
|Category||Entertainment & Sports|
|Publishing Date||1st January, 1970|
Think baseball is slow? Then brainstorm football after a casual offense, which, as historian/journalist Gwynne (Rebel Yell: The Violence, Passion, and Redemption of Stonewall Jackson, 2014, etc.) ably shows, is no bald anticipation experiment.In the aboriginal canicule of American football, quarterbacks did not accept to canyon the ball. The rules accustomed them to, but, as the columnist writes, “overwhelmingly, they chose not to.” Of course, this meant it was mostly a active game. There were exceptions—Carlisle Indian Academy drillmaster Pop Warner’s casual bold actuality the arbiter case—but it wasn’t until contempo years that the casual bold came into its own, address of Gwynne’s drillmaster heroes. Hal Mumme and his abettor Mike Leach led the small, not awfully acclaimed academy of Iowa Wesleyan to allegorical cachet by developing a fast casual bold that accepted alone a few variations: “Hal’s ultra-minimal playbook,” writes the author, “allowed the quarterback and receivers to echo it hundreds of times in practice.” The account that follows is a blow geeky, with algebraic variants based on absolute advantage in the archetypal Y-cross formation, and so forth, but that makes this book aloof the affair for the accurate football aficionado in the house. What makes the anecdotal added about invaluable is its account of how football backroom can accompany bottomward alike the winningest coach. Although every aggregation on the planet now emulates the playbook developed by the two coaches—a playbook that of advance has a ancestry addition aback into football history—their own careers went into a bottomward circling (beg pardon) back their numbers didn’t column well. Still, it is actual that the Air Raid, the fast casual game, and the abundance of the advanced canyon are now imprinted on football, especially, as Gwynne notes, on the academy akin admitting additionally in the NFL. That makes his explanation all the added fitting, for undeniably, the two coaches afflicted the game—and brought celebrity to their institutions. A superb amusement for all amphitheatre fans.
In the tradition of Michael Lewis’s Moneyball, award-winning historian S.C. Gwynne tells the incredible story of how two unknown coaches revolutionized American football at every level, from high school to the NFL.Hal Mumme is one of a handful of authentic offensive geniuses in the history of American football. The Perfect Pass is the story of how he irreverently destroyed and re-created the game. Mumme spent fourteen mostly losing seasons coaching football before inventing a potent passing offense that would soon shock players, delight fans, and terrify opposing coaches. The revolution he fomented began at a tiny, overlooked college called Iowa Wesleyan, where Mumme was head coach and Mike Leach, a lawyer who had never played college football, was hired as his offensive line coach. In the cornfields of Iowa, while scribbling plays on paper napkins, these two mad inventors, drawn together by a shared disregard for conventionalism and a love for Jimmy Buffett, began to engineer the purest, most extreme passing game in the 145-year history of football. Implementing their “Air Raid” offense, their teams—at Iowa Wesleyan and later at Valdosta State and the University of Kentucky—played blazingly fast—faster than any team ever had before, and they routinely beat teams with far more talented athletes. And Mumme and Leach did it all without even a playbook. Their quarterback once completed sixty-one of eighty-six passes, both collegiate records. In The Perfect Pass, S.C. Gwynne explores Mumme’s leading role in changing football from a run-dominated sport to a pass-dominated one, the game that tens of millions of Americans now watch every fall weekend. Whether you’re a casual or ravenous football fan, this is a truly compelling story of American ingenuity and how a set of revolutionary ideas made their way from the margins into the hot center of the game we celebrate today.
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