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Film Study: Sean Gleeson’s Buck Sweep and How OSU Uses it to Free Chuba

Former offensive coordinator Sean Gleeson brough the Buck Sweep from Princeton to Stillwater.



Continuing with my film looks into specific OSU plays from last season, I’m going to take a look at another running play. Last week it was Outside Zone, and this week it’s going to be the Buck Sweep.

The Buck Sweep is something we didn’t really see from Oklahoma State until offensive coordinator Sean Gleeson arrived from Princeton last year.

This play consists of both the back-side and play-side guard pulling to attack the edge of the defense. This is similar to Power, but the point of attack is now set to the perimeter. See the image below for the basics.


The Buck Sweep looks to exploit a numbers advantage on the perimeter and give the ball carrier an outside running lane. If you can get someone with Cowboy running back Chuba Hubbard’s speed around the corner with two lead blockers, the odds are probably going to be in your favor. And, OSU did just that in the season opener against Oregon State.

Early in the first quarter the Cowboys got the Buck Sweep going. In the play below, you’ll see Oklahoma State use the Buck Sweep to get a huge gain on first down. Gleeson has the offense lined up with trips to the top of the screen and a “nub” tight end to the bottom of the screen.

This offensive formation causes the Beaver defense to bring extra defenders to the top of the screen to account for the three receivers. With the Cowboys planning to pull two linemen around the outside, they believe they will have a numbers advantage around the edge to the bottom of the screen.

As quarterback Spencer Sanders takes the snap, the two guards pull and the rest of the offensive line, including the Cowboy Back, down block to create a wall for Hubbard. The two pulling linemen land blocks on outside defenders, and Hubbard only has one man to beat in the open field. If Hubbard doesn’t trip, this play likely goes for six. See the clip below for further details.

In the next video you’ll see Gleeson’s Princeton offense execute a very similar play.

However, this play isn’t just a Gleeson speciality. Other coaches such as Chip Kelly, Chad Morris, Guz Malzahn and Scott Frost have utilized it in their game plans as well. You can see Malzahn’s Auburn offense run it in the below video.

Although Gleeson is gone and the keys to the offense have been handed over to Kasey Dunn, I have a feeling we will see the Buck Sweep next season due to the success it had it times in 2019.

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