Links on new Defensive Coordinator Clancy Pendergast

[Update 7/19/2013: Apparently the “Bears with Fangs” website has moved due to some account changes.  They lost their domain name and needed to get a new one. I have updated the links accordingly.]

I ran across a few articles on USC’s new Defensive Coordinator: Clancy Pendergast.  These posts were written by the Cal blog “Bears with Fangs” back before this last season started, when Coach Pendergast was still with the Golden Bears.  They are well written and explain a lot of good information, which is why I wanted to pass them along.  They are best read in order.

Meet the Cal Defense:
This first article is a good overview to defense.  It does a brief introduction to gaps and strength of field based on offensive formation.  It then goes into the differences between a typical 3-4 and a 3-4 Under, which is Pendergast’s front of choice.  It also discusses some of Pendergast’s defensive philosophies.
Direct link URL:

Cal’s 3-4: Coverage and the Run Game:
This article discusses what is involved in stopping a run play (can be applied in many systems, not just Pendergast’s).  It goes into some examples of how these run stopping techniques and concepts were applied in Cal’s games.
Direct link URL:

Cal’s Defense: Coverage and the Pass Defense:
This article discusses how to identify five basic coverages that Pendergast utilizes: Man Free, Cover 2 Man, Cover 2, Cover 3, and Cover 8.  It talks about the responsibilities of various players in these coverage types as well as a great explanation of leverage.
Direct link URL:

I hope you enjoy reading the posts and that they help extend your knowledge of defense and of USC football under Coach Pendergast.  I look forward to seeing him in action.


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