San Diego State head coach Rocky Long told Tod Leonard of the San Diego Union-Tribune that he’s considering not punting or kicking on fourth downs in 2012. Instead, Long is considering going for it on fourth downs inside an opponent’s 50-yard line in order to try and pick up a new set of downs every time.
Kevin Kelley, the head coach of Pulaski Academy in Little Rock, Arkansas has developed the strategy over the years. He claims punting is an offensive failure, and is essentially a voluntary turnover.
Long summed it up this way:
“It makes sense. Additional plays would allow you to score a lot more points. It also puts a whole lot of pressure on the defense.”
“It’s a day-to-day theory. I haven’t decided because we’re getting a feel for it out here. I just read about this guy, and I don’t know if I can do that because everybody in the world is going to say this is not Football 101, right?”
On Saturday night during a scrimmage, the Aztecs converted just one of five attempts on fourth down. But the strategy has worked for Kelley and Pulaski Academy. He has posted a 104-19 record and won three state titles over the past nine years.
While we’re not sure if Long and the Aztecs will actually go through with the strategy, the fact that the head coach of a major college football program is considering it is pretty amazing. It would be interesting to see, so we’re kind of rooting for it.