This spread coach is taking over a wing T team, and here’s how he’s installing his offense

By Katelyn Lemen | Posted 5/23/2017

Brian Lane is ready to spread his wings as the new Clover High School (S.C.) football coach.

With former Clover head coach Chad Smith resigning in December to take a job at his alma mater, Lane was the overwhelming choice to replace him, according to the Herald.

Lane joins Clover after acting as the head coach at traditional power Byrnes. There he won 24 games and made it to two Upper State championship games in his first two years. Prior to that, he was the head coach at Woodruff.

There’s no hiding that Lane is an advocate for spread offense, which is quite different from the offense that Clover has run in the past.

The team is transitioning from a Wing-T offense that they’ve used since the 1990s to a pass-heavy spread offense that Lane has employed at both Woodruff and Byrnes.

It’s also been the philosophy for nearby Northwestern High School (Rock Hill, S.C.), a participant in the upcoming USA Football 7on7 hosted in partnership with the Carolina Panthers, and owner of numerous state offensive records thanks to a potent Air Raid scheme.

Going from one end of the offensive spectrum to the other is no easy task. Here’s what Lane is stressing this spring to ease the transition:

  • Improving throwing and catching. It sounds simple, but Lane is working to make sure his quarterbacks and pass-catchers get enough reps to start to feel comfortable. “That’s just what it is. Those guys haven’t been used to throwing and catching, but we do it every day,” he told The Herald.
  • Generating excitement. Lane believes that kids can get excited about a more pass-friendly offense, since that’s the style of football they play casually with friends. He’s hoping to use that to his advantage to create momentum heading into the season and attract players. “What do you do when you’re at home, outside in the backyard? You throw it back and forth. You don’t hand the ball off with your dad, your uncle, your cousin. You’re running the bomb!” he told the Herald shortly after his hire.
  • Focusing on film. Just like the team needs reps on the field passing and catching, Lane recognizes it also needs time to study the offense on film. He’s been hosting video sessions this spring and has been filming practices so players can see themselves in action and assess their performance.


In total, Lane is attempting a college-like approach to rebuilding a program and establishing roots for an entirely new offensive system.

“I mimic how colleges prepare their kids. It wouldn’t matter if they had been spread all along,” he said.  “That’s just how I practice.”

Stephen Spiewak contributed to this report.