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The hiring of Bob Shoop, and the advantage of having an analyst in college football

A hire that will come in handy throughout the year, Manny Diaz did a great job bringing Bob Shoop to Miami.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: NOV 17 Arkansas at Mississippi State Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

One thing that I pride myself on as a football writer, and as a fan of college football in itself, I’m a huge admirer of coach Nick Saban.

When Manny Diaz first took the job as Miami’s head coach at the end of 2018, I took a deep dive into what creates a winning culture in a football program, and who’s been the best at it. That initial curiosity has led me to now having read every article and book I could find on coach Saban, and what he’s done to become the greatest head coach in the history of college football.

Obviously I could go on for days, months and years on the greatness of coach Saban, but one thing that has really intrigued me on him and his system, is how he has brought analysts on to his coaching staff, and the role that they have.

Some of them have been former head coaches, who Saban brings to Tuscaloosa, not just to hopefully resurrect their careers, but also add further insight on how Alabama can continue to win. Some of these Bama analysts include Major Applewhite, Billy Napier, Dan Werner, Steve Sarkisian, and many, many more.

For the last two years, I’ve been pleading for Miami and coach Diaz to bring in an analyst, someone who has experience, and can further help the Canes staff in preparation, and any other assistance. Now obviously, Diaz and UM doesn’t have the Alabama budget that Saban does, therefore simply can’t afford to bring in 10-12 former college and NFL head coaches as analysts.

I was just asking for one, and Miami finally did it, as they announced the hiring of Bob Shoop, who will serve as an analyst for Manny Diaz and the Canes.

Shoop has more than 25 years experience of coaching college football, with notable stops at Mississippi State, Tennessee, Penn State, and most recently, at Michigan. Shoop is a two-time Broyles Award finalist, given to the top assistant in college football.

Shoop’s 2018 Mississippi State defense allowed just 12 touchdowns all season long, and in 2014 while at Penn State, he was named Defensive Coordinator of the Year by 247 Sports.

To make it short, he has the experience, and the accolades, and I for one, couldn’t be more excited that he’s coming to Miami.

So what will he do at UM? What does an analyst do in college football, and why are they so valuable?

If you look at how coach Saban has used his analysts, they serve as an extra tool, an added advantage throughout the season, so the Crimson Tide can play to their top ability on Saturdays. The great head coaches aren’t stubborn (well, not all the time), and in coach Saban’s case, he continues to bring in guys with different football philosophies, tactics, schemes and methods, to stay one step ahead of his opponents.

Simply put, if you want to be the best, surround yourself with the best, and coach Saban is the best example for that.

With Shoop, for starters, his experience cannot be underestimated, and will be huge for Manny Diaz and Miami in their preparation, which in my opinion, is one of the glaring problems within the UM program.

Since he became head coach at UM, we’ve seen numerous occasions where the Hurricanes were not prepared for big games, or after bye weeks, or even against far less superior teams (FIU cough cough). Whether it’s not being ready schematically. physically or mentally, there’s been an obvious misfire in preparation with the Hurricanes.

Shoop will be an extra eye on the practice field for Miami, maybe giving coach Diaz another way of looking at the development of his players, who should play more on Saturday and who shouldn’t, who should start and who shouldn’t. What schemes are working, what schemes could be used more, and simply what isn’t working at all on defense.

While coach Diaz has run a successful defense at Miami in the past, in no way can it hurt bringing in a guy like Shoop who’s been a DC at three power 5 programs, and has been coaching for 32 years. All that experience, will come in handy when Miami is preparing for UNC, or FSU, and yes, Alabama.

Bill Walsh said it best, “If we are all thinking alike, no one is thinking.” Miami is not going to take that next step as a program if everyone is thinking like Manny Diaz, not brining any new ideas to the table.

There’s a fantastic book that goes into how coach Saban has built Alabama into a dynasty, called “4th and Goal Every Day” by Phil Savage. I recommend it to all football fans, it’s incredible.

Anyways, throughout the book, Savage talks about coach Saban’s analysts, and the role they play, and there’s a good quote that explains it. “You know all those analysts Alabama has hired the last five years? Believe me, they are there for a reason, and they are given specific tasks to help win games.”

“The edge might come from watching an extra tape of a game. There might be additional study on an opponent’s third-down reel. Going beyond the minimum started with Bill (Belichick), and Nick applied it to the defense.”

So relating this Shoop, that is a huge reason why coach Diaz is bringing him to Miami. He’ll come in handy when he picks up a tip on defending against Sam Howell in the redzone, or what Michigan State may try on offense on 3rd down while studying film.

Like I said, his experience cannot be understated, and it will come in handy.