New look on offense
New look on offense
Football: Owls offense showing changes
By Marcus Nelson
Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Sunday, April 03, 2005
BOCA RATON ? When Florida Atlantic takes the field with someone other than quarterback Jared Allen under center, it may look a bit strange.
After all, Allen started nearly every game since the program's inception.
But when FAU's offense gets going, things really are going to appear out of whack.
While the Owls aren't about to abandon their pro-style offense, it appears after three days of spring practice that there could be some adjustments.
"There are a few things we have changed," coach Howard Schnellenberger said. "We've had 47 games up to this point and there comes a time when you need to revise your playbook."
Quarterbacks coach Gary Nord, a former head coach at UTEP, is FAU's new offensive coordinator and is a big reason the Owls are looking different from last season.
After the off-season retirement of Larry Seiple, the only offensive coordinator the Owls have known, the logical choice to take control of the offense was Nord, who shares Schnellenberger's offensive philosophy.
However, because of the change in coordinators and a personnel overhaul, Schnellenberger acknowledged the Owls' offense will take on a different look this season.
The biggest reason for the adjustment is the agility of quarterback Danny Embick, a Dwyer graduate and transfer from West Virginia who will be a senior this fall.
Embick is much more mobile than Allen, which has Schnellenberger contemplating tweaks to the plays the Owls have run in the past.
"If we were to accentuate our play-action and naked bootlegs and quick screens, we could give some high-falutin' teams some problems," Schnellenberger said. "To just drop back and stay there is the hardest thing in the world."
Embick is looking forward to being asked to do more than Allen, a classic drop-back quarterback.
"With coach Nord coming in, we are going to have a little bit more of my skills incorporated into the offense," Embick said. "We may move it around a little bit and even though we will still use the pro style, we may see more new things."
New look on offense
By Ted Hutton
Posted April 3 2005
BOCA RATON? Rains had softened the practice fields Saturday, but the hits were frequent and hard as Florida Atlantic players were in full pads for the first time this spring.
"They all look very game and willing and it looks like they are having fun," coach Howard Schnellenberger said, "I'm encouraged."
The practice completed FAU's first week of spring drills, and Schnellenberger said he has been pleased by what he has seen in his young team that returns just seven starters from last season.
"The linebackers are quicker and more decisive than I thought they would be. We're going to be vastly improved at running back," Schnellenberger said. "We might even be improved at quarterback."
That last assessment was a surprise, because the Owls are replacing Jared Allen, a four-year starter who could be drafted later this month.
Danny Embick, who will be a senior, was backup to Allen the past two seasons and should be the starter. McKinson Souverain, who redshirted last year, is No. 2, and Sean Clayton, a transfer from Michigan State, who will be a sophomore, is also in the mix.
Embick played in all 12 games last year and threw for 641 yards and four touchdowns, with five interceptions.
The 6-foot-1, 210 pound Embick is shorter than the 6-3 Allen, but a better scrambler. Souverain (6-0, 173) is the fastest player on the team. Given that combination of small stature and elusiveness, offensive coordinator Gary Nord said the Owls will probably use the shotgun formation more.
"We can run our entire offense out of the gun since it's basically the same, with the same kind of blocking schemes," Nord said.
"I'm still learning," said Souverain, who is from Delray Beach and played at Atlantic. "Me and Danny aren't so tall, so it's nice to be in the shotgun sometimes."