Head coach Chip Kelly, leading the UCLA Bruins for six seasons now, has seen the team’s journey marked by ups and downs. However, with each passing year, the Bruins have been steadily heating up, setting the stage for what could be a defining year in 2023 within the college football landscape.
At the heart of this potential breakthrough is the Bruins’ offense, a domain where UCLA is poised to emerge as a formidable force. Under Kelly’s ingenious guidance, the team’s offensive performance has transformed from lackluster to awe-inspiring in a remarkably short span. While the initial adjustment period was not without its challenges, the commitment of key players to master Kelly’s playbook played a crucial role in the unit’s improvement, ultimately turning it into a seamlessly functioning entity.
The upcoming season introduces a cohort of fresh talents to the scene. Recognizing the complexity of his offensive strategy, Kelly actively encourages players to voice their queries, fostering an environment of continuous improvement. He emphasizes that the effectiveness of playbook translation hinges on individual learning preferences, an approach that highlights his dedication to optimizing player performance.
Chip Kelly’s distinct approach to running the option offense has yielded commendable results. Despite the rarity of this old-school offensive style in modern football, it has thrived under Kelly’s leadership. Notably, the previous season witnessed innovative misdirection tactics that greatly benefited players like Dorian Thompson-Robinson and Zach Charbonnet.
As the new season dawns, the absence of Thompson-Robinson and Charbonnet prompts speculation about the direction Kelly’s offensive strategy will take. The question lingers whether he will adhere to his established tactics or introduce fresh elements to the mix.
“I think each individual coach tries to really dig deep on the learning style that’s most conducive to that player. Then try to spend time with them during that part of it. A lot of it comes back friom the feedback from players and the players comfotable enough to share with you what they do know and what they don’t know. Sometimes if you’re a new kid, you just nod your head and say ‘I got it’ because I don’t want coach know that I don’t have it because it might affect me on the depth chart. That’s not what we’re looking for. We want to make sure that our coaches are transporting the knowldge to our players because it’s what our players know not coaches becuase coaches aren’t playing.”
Understanding that full comprehension won’t materialize overnight, Kelly maintains an accommodating stance. He acknowledges the significance of players posing questions as they strive to unlock the offense’s full potential. Enthusiasts await with bated breath, eager to witness the evolution of this dynamic offense as the 2023 season unfolds.