LETTERS FROM COACHES...
THEY WERE RUNNING THE WILDCAT - MY WILDCAT -
BEFORE THE DOLPHINS EVER THOUGHT OF IT...
*********** Running the Coach Wyatt version of the WILDCAT since 1999 after attending your clinic & reading the article in Scholastic Coach Magazine. I have dabbled in it a couple of times since 1999. In 1999, we ran it the last game of the year after we lost both our quarterbacks to injury but were able to effectively pass from it. We have dabbled in it a little bit (as time permits....) throughout the years and ran it for a couple of series this past season as an adjustment to our opponents game plan.
Dave Kilborn, Physical Education Teacher/Head Football Coach, Gorham High School, Gorham, Maine
*********** Coach, We ran various version of YOUR Wildcat at Cheyenne MS in Edmond, OK during the 05-06 seasons. It was a great addition to our system and proved very hard for defenses to handle. Good to know that someone is finally recognizing where this all started.
Gabe McCown, Piedmont, Oklahoma
*********** Our middle school football team Trailblazers Academy, Stamford, CT has been running your wildcat offense as part of our regular playbook for 6 years now. As you know it is a great weapon and the defenses we play against have a very difficult time finding the ball. We use it regularly as part of our 2 point conversion package. We run 2 Wedge, 88 Power, 88 Power Bootleg and 47 Crisscross out of it. We have video tape of it from our game last Saturday.
Craig Baker, Trailblazers Academy, Stamford, Connecticut
*********** I "discovered" the Wildcat offense from your Scholastic Coach article when I was evaluating offenses to run as a new youth coach. I ended up purchasing your DW materials, but was always intrigued with your Wildcat. One year at the pee wee level, I only had 16 kids and no real back-up QB. We installed your Wildcat formation as a back-up in case our QB ever got hurt. We worked on it in practice every week, but never had to use it in a game....When I was looking at offenses, I spent a lot of time getting ahold of and reading old books about old-fashioned offenses and now have quite a collection. I have never seen the Wildcat offense or formation mentioned any other place other than your article in Scholastic Coach and on your website.
Rick Davis, Duxbury Youth Football, Duxbury, Massachusetts
*********** I remember vividly running the Wildcat...against Camas and Ilwaco (1997). I have run it in camps and practice... frequently... This year, we ran a lot of single wing that has a lot of the same principles (as you know). One of our teachers at the HS is a huge Dolphin fan... I told him about the origination of the 'Wildcat' and he believed it. Amazing what a copy-cat league the NFL is... all you need is a little validity and it makes it OK for everyone to run it...
John Lambert, LaCenter HS, La Center, Washington
*********** We run the Wyatt Double Wing offense, and have for 4 seasons now. We learned it directly from you, first at the Nike "Coach of the Year Clinic", and then in clinics and practice sessions held with our team and coaches. We specifically learned the "Wildcat" direct snap package from you during practice one day when you took our center aside and taught him how to snap the ball correctly, and then ran our offensive group through a number of plays out of the "Wildcat" formation. You even provided me with a DVD of one of your Clinics (from another part of the country) where you taught this other team the "Wildcat" package.
DJ Millay, Vancouver Christian HS, Vancouver, Washington
*********** In 2 games last season we were forced to use it due to having our starting QB go down with an ankle injury.
In several situations this year we ran it as we felt comfortable putting the ball into the hands of our best athlete to start the play, giving the defense a whole different look while maintaining commonality in blocking schemes and assignments for the rest of the offensive starters.
We love Wildcat, and you can bet your next paycheck we #1) Knew who was the originator of it and #2) Will run it again next season and for years to come as well. Coach Wyatt is a guru, and in my mind one of the most innovative offensive minds in the game of football.
Brad Knight, Clarinda Academy, Clarinda, Iowa
We have run the wildcat a bit at Knappa over the past three years. It has come in very handy in JV games when we need to "make" a QB quickly because our regulars are limited by quarters, injury, etc. We heard about it through your playbook and web site. This year we even put it in at halftime of a JV game and the kids came out and moved the ball effectively and won the game using it. If you have more questions, feel free to contact me.
*********** Coach - We have been using the Wildcat formation for about five years now. We started using it right after you came out here to Chicago and introduced it to my team way back then (those kids are now seniors in high school) and have always had success running the formation. The Queen of Martyrs Wildcats KNOW who really introduced the “WILDCAT” formation.
Best, Bill Murphy, Head Coach, Queen of Martyrs Wildcats, Chicago
*********** Hey Coach, I have been running the Wildcat since 2006 season, this year I ran it the most I have ever. I even posted some video on youtube last year on it.
Kevin Rivas, Montebello Indians Youth Football, Montebello, California
*********** Hi Coach,
Back in 2000 and 2001 I was the head coach for the Sudbury MA Pop Warner Warriors “A” team, made up of 7th and 8th grade boys. We started corresponding after I found your website online and purchased some of your DW material, in addition to attending your Providence RI clinic. For the 2001 season I remember asking you for some advice as to what I could do in case my starting QB went down and you suggested that I look at an article that was published in the December 1998 issue of Scholastic Coach and Athletic Director entitled “Wildcatting It” with the Double Wing.
We introduced it to our kids in practice after the 3rd game of the season (we were 2-1) “just in case” and sure enough in the middle of the season our QB suffered a season ending broken collarbone. We called our kids together and ran Wildcat the rest of the game and season. We won that game and eventually finished 6-2 that year with our second loss the result of a 70 yd Hail Mary catch and run (we were up by 2 points at the time!). The 5-10 minutes per practice that we spent repping Wildcat certainly paid off as the transition to it was seamless. It successfully got us through the second half of the game when we lost our QB and we ran it better and better as the season progressed.
“Wildcat” was the perfect answer to our situation, and to tell the truth had I continued to coach it would’ve been our base offensive set going forward. The kids loved it, I loved it, and my assistants loved it because once we understood how to run the formation there were uncountable ways in which we could attack the defense without a lot of tweaking. We called it “Warrior” because we were the Sudbury Warriors, but in my mind the formation is known as “Wildcat” from your article/website.
It Takes A Set,
Lou Orlando, Sudbury, Massachusetts
*********** Hugh, As you know, I have used the Wildcat in various forms over the past several seasons. I learned about your Wildcat formation by reading the article in SCHOLASTIC COACH magazine for which you have a link on your website. Thanks for your contributions to the NFL!
Coach Greg Koenig
Beloit High School
*********** Hello Coach
Great job on your team this year. The town is thrilled I'm sure, and the kids so proud.
I heard the saga regarding your "Wildcat" offense referred to on the TV during the Miami highlights several weeks ago. I almost fell out of my barstool....I knew!!!!!!
I was running your Wildcat in 2001 with a very undersized "B" team with great success. The parents had never seen anything like that before. Its deception, misdirection and power was overpowering towns with the pick of 200 kids, and here I was showing them up with the first 22 kids that came out and didn't know what a football was.
I've had referees ask me how long it took to teach them that....At the High School level I've had other refs blow their whistle while the runner was 20 yards downfield and still on his feet. Other coaches have asked me after games where I came up with "that Goofy"
offense. I wanted to tell them....but just couldn't. They found out eventually anyway.
Your name and that offense is very well known in the Bill George League.
Coach John Urbaniak, Hanover Park, Illinois
*********** Dear Coach Wyatt,
I took note in your NEWS section of the impending Wildcat article. I recall using the Wildcat in September of 2005 and sending you an email which you published in your NEWS section back then.
I had to look back in my notes from past years and found the first mention of it in April of 2001. My notes clearly indicate “Coach Wyatt” and list the URL of your website. Although I didn’t use it that year with the 5th & 6th graders I was coaching, it did come into use with a 3rd & 4th grade team in 2005 as mentioned above.
I had to look back at my email to see why we used it in 2005 (inexperienced QBs on short notice). However, I CLEARLY remember the opposing coaches and league administrators had a fit because the ball wasn’t always cleanly snapped. It sometime rolled back or dribbled to the QB. They called it a planned fumble or loose ball and said I was trying to “trick” the defense. The league administrators told me that we weren’t teaching the kids anything and they weren’t learning how to play “real” football. Maybe they would think twice now that it’s in vogue.
Thanks for your help.
Ladd Vander Laan, Grandville, Michigan
I have used the true Wildcat to some degree for the last 5 years at the middle school and JV levels. Of course, I learned it from you. I find it an interesting compliment to the DW offense and is especially handy when you have limited options at QB. This past season we showed it to our team when the NFL version became suddenly popular to show them the true Wildcat. As it is said, this group now knows the "rest of the story".
Lee Griesemer, Oviedo Knights, Chuluota, Florida
*********** Coach Wyatt,
I have been running the double wing from Wildcat since 2004. I found out about this offense from you. I emailed you about problems I was having with the direct snap and you suggested Wildcat formation.
Since I coach 7 and 8 year olds, I have found this to be a very effective way to eliminate exchange problems. Sometimes their hands are just too small for the direct snap.
Some coaches think the "shotgun" snap is harder to teach than the direct snap. Nonsense.
Using the instructions on your website, I only have to work with the centers one day to get this in. The direct snap takes hundreds of reps.
"Keep your tail down"
Dennis Cook, Hidden Valley Pee Wee Titans, Roanoke, Virginia
*********** During our second season of running the Double Wing we decided to look into running Coach Wyatt's Wildcat. It was simple to line up in. Our fullback took a step to the right and our quarterback lined up side by side with him. They both crouched down like they were fielding a ground ball and center just made a soft, low and blind snap.
We really got some use out of it in the Super Bowl, as our sophomore fullback had a monster game and was named MVP. Back to back state championships. What a season.
When the next season came around we figured we would run some Wildcat. We never imagined how important it would become for us. During the second game of the season our center took a cheap shot to the knee. He was injured and we did not have a center with his ability on the roster. It was time to put the Wildcat in and try and get by without him. We found the biggest backup available and after a couple of practice snaps we were ready to roll
Jeff Cziska, Southeastern Tech, South Easton, Massachusetts