I had the honor to be able to ask Darrin Hicks, Offensive Coordinator of the Delta State University Statesmen a few questions.
Under Coach Hick leaderships, Delta State went 8 and 0 in conference to become the 2007 Gulf South Conference Champions. The Statesmen’s overall record heading into the NCAA playoff was 9 & 1. Making it into the second round, DSU ended the season with a 10 & 2 record.
Coach Hicks guided DSU the offense to the Gulf South Conference top in Total Offense, with 469.8 yards per game. Delta State’s "Gulf Coast Offense" generated 5638 total yards for the year, which put them in the top 10 in Total Yardage Division II, for 2007.
Coach Darrin Hicks: First let me say that I love your site and read it almost daily. It is my number one source for keeping up with the single wing football. You are to be complimented for putting together such a great site.
Single-Wing Sentinel: Thanks for the comment and thanks for your time.
SWS: What Single-Wing properties does your offense have?
DH: This is the first year that I have used the "Beast" or "Yale" formation and really expanded our use of the QB running game. Our QB actually led our offense in rushing. The Beast/Yale formation accounted for 10 touchdowns for us this season and numerous big first downs. We probably ran the formation [Beast/Yale] 3 to 5 times a game and scored 10 touchdowns this season in this formation alone. So for us it was a big part of our game and our number one short yardage to Goalline package.
We also used the QB in our running game a large amount this season utilizing some unbalanced formations and leading with our superback -- power type schemes QB Power/QB Lead/QB Counter.
SWS: Where did you learn of the single-wing?
DH: Most of my single wing study has been online in the many forums, including your site, and throughout my travels in the coaching profession.
SWS: How has the Single-Wing properties helped the offense at DSU?
DH: Being a lack of a better term spread option/pass guy that has not employed a true tight end, the single wing properties have given us a unique advantage in allowing us to put together a fantastic short yardage/goalline package that teams have to prepare for. We are quite blessed with tremendous talent at the QB position and our inside receivers have even aligned as the QB in the Beast/Yale package. The single wing is responsible for about 25% of our total touchdowns for the season.
SWS: Why do you think the Single-Wing is making its way back into the collegiate ranks?
DH: The flexibility of it and the tremendous amount of space manipulation that it presents to a defense. It is not something people see week in and week out and it will continue to make is presence known throughout college football. We are expanding our package already for next season and beyond.
SWS: What does a "Hybrid Single-Wing" do for a team?
DH: Like I said it accounted for about 25% of our touchdowns and forced defensive coordinators to prepare for yet another thing in our overall package. It really grew from what I thought would be a couple plays this year to a package unto itself. I am completely sold.
SWS: What advice would you give a coach that may be considering running the single-wing of adding a Single-Wing package?
DH: I would tell them to study it and add the appropriate elements to their respective systems unless a wholesale change is in order for them. The results speak for themselves and the offense has stood the test of time.
I want to thank Coach Hicks for his time, and to wish he and the Statemen great success in the years to come!