New Colorado State offensive coordinator Dave Baldwin knows the playbook he will give his players will be rather diverse. What plays out of it the Rams will actually run, well, that’s anybody’s guess at this stage.
Baldwin, who was mentored by the late Jack Elway, said spring ball will supply many of the answers the new staff seeks heading into the 2012 season. And spring practice, which begins March 21, will be all about the basics.
“Our (staff) meetings have gone on about you go back to basics, because the game doesn’t change,” Baldwin said on Tuesday, when Jim McElwain announced his entire staff, sans a defensive coordinator. “That’s what Coach Elway taught me best. Fundamentals never change. Teach the fundamentals, and the icing on the cake is the extra things you do. How do you get in the huddle? You’ve got to get in the huddle the right way. What’s the tempo from the huddle to the line of scrimmage? You’ve got to teach the cadence. The personnel groupings, what are they called? What are the formations called? Now we’ll get into what our run game and our pass game will be.”
He said his playbook has everything from no backs to two backs, two tights to four tights and can run everything in between and beyond. He said the key for the staff is not to force an identity on to the Rams, but to have them dictate it to the coaches.
“It will never be about me,” Baldwin said. “It will always be about the players, because they’re the No. 1 thing in this program. If we can convince them, and that’s what they’re buying into in the weight room … Because they have talent here. We’re excited, and if we can convince them that this is their program and this is how it’s done within the system, we have a great chance.”
He did note the Rams will be without two tackles and a tight end in the spring, which may slow down the process, but he said it’s important for all to gain an understanding of the new system so they are set to go in the fall.
Baldwin has been many places and had success with different means. He said they will seek balance in what will be a pro-style offense, but the bottom line will always be foremost in the equation.
“We’d like to be as balanced as possible, but where is your best talent and what’s the best way for us to win the football game” he said.