Follow-up on Flexible Formations

I had a few questions last night. They were “How would you…” type questions. The first dealt with diamond pistol formations. What we did was create 2 more surfaces. In these surfaces we did not use a number for the adjuster. They are simply 3 back formations. I will cover how we tie in personnel in another post. Here are our diamond formations surfaces:


I also mentioned another surface. This one puts the tight end or h-back in the b-gap, one yard off of the offensive line. I included a picture of the surface and then a couple examples.


In the example, I also moved the back out of Pistol. We do that by adding a 1 or 0 as the second digit. The second digit always speaks to the running back. He is labeled “S” for us because we call him the speed back. We use the letter “J” to represent “Jacket”. He is our Jacket receiver named after our nickname, Yellow Jackets.


Learn more about this formation system and how we use the structure to create an offense from the Pistol in my iBook. 101+ Pro Style Pistol Offense Plays provides concepts that can be utilized in any offense, not just the pistol. The interactive multimedia book contains 229 pieces of dynamic content and a total of 30 minutes of game film. I have received some great feedback from coaches who adapted all or some of those ideas in 2013. I was able to consult with several high schools around the country who were interested in this offense implemented this system. If you are interested in consultation on the Pistol, please email me Get 101+ PRO STYLE PISTOL OFFENSE PLAYS for your iPad or Mac from the iBookstore.


4 thoughts on “Follow-up on Flexible Formations

  1. Coach, love the material and have been adapting my own schemes to your streamlined version. The main question I have less to do with the formations and more to do with how do you call this from the sideline in a more uptempo, no huddle offense?

    • We are no huddle as well. It cut our signals down drastically. Before there would have been a separate signal for every formation. Now we have a total of 12 surface signals(which really only matter for X, Y & Z) and the numbers 0-9 which only matter for the “J” and “S”.

  2. I have a couple of questions but First. I just found your site and I love how informative it is. I am excited to tell my O.C, about this.

    Two Questions:

    1. How many formations do you typically run in a game specifically when you were coaching in high school? I

    2. With all the formations that you have …how much motion do you incorporate?…. again more toward the high school level. I believe in shifting and motioning but I am concerned about the use of too much vocabulary and it obviously slows down the pace. Do you have built in motions for the particular plays? If so, what percentage of plays do you tend to run with motion as opposed to getting the play off with tempo?

    • 1. Typically 5-7 in the game plan with 3-4 getting heavy use.

      2. The beauty of the formation system is that it doesn’t contain much vocabulary, nor does it need a large set of symbols. We do use shifts and motions. It doesn’t slow down tempo a ton. We can still get plays off quickly. Te percentage we use is dependent on the reason we are using it. If we want to change strength or shift gaps we may use it more. If that’s important in the game plan we will use it less.

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