Take a moment before you read this article to go get a glass of water, use the bathroom and tell your children you love them.
Well in the time it took you to do that, Baylor has already ran five offensive plays and scored a touchdown.
Florida State, on the other hand, has only ran one play and it resulted in a loss of three yards.
The metaphor is crude, but it displays the point that Florida State is playing slow football. In fact, FSU is ranked 113th in the country in pace, or average amount of plays per game. They average 66.4 plays per game, which is only faster than 15 other teams in the country.
Some notable teams playing faster football than Florida State are UCLA (who is playing with a true freshman quarterback), Kansas State (who is on their 5th string QB), and Stanford (who usually plays with three or four extra offensive linemen on the field). A surprising name ahead of them is Alabama, who ranks 40th in the country in plays per game. Even Nick Saban, who has actively protested against the emergence of the Hurry-Up No-Huddle trend, has learned the value of playing faster football. Whether this is from Lane Kiffin’s presence or not is yet to be determined, but maybe Fisher will eventually learn the value of playing faster like Saban has.
Over the years, Jimbo Fisher has run one of the slowest offenses in college football. They ranked 111th in pace in 2011, 80th in 2012, 88th in 2013, and 87th in 2014. However, one factor that balances this out is that Florida State is one of the best offenses in the country in yards per play and they currently rank 19th in the country with 6.3 yards per play. The lowest Jimbo’s offenses have ranked in yards per play is 60th in 2011 with 5.3 yards per play and the peak was obviously in 2013, when FSU was best in the country with 7.5 yards per play.
There are benefits to playing faster football. You run more plays, you wear down your opponents and there is a better chance for pure athleticism to be showcased from your talented players. Running a slower offense means that there are less opportunities for his highly ranked skill players to make an impact and less opportunities for Dalvin Cook to get touches on the ball. On the flip side, if Everett Golson doesn’t know the playbook that well, there are risks to running at a faster pace as well. Plays could be read wrong and there is a higher chance for turnovers.
All in all, there are pros and cons to running at a faster tempo but Jimbo could certainly improve on the 113th ranked pace that they’re running at right now. Even Kansas, a team with no wins, is playing faster football.