The Triple Shoot Offense from Yesterday to Today

The Triple Shoot Offense started out as a pass-happy offense at Hofstra University (NY) in an attempt to compete versus scholarship schools during our Division III to I-AA transition. We were able to put up some gaudy numbers (42 ppg and 405 ypg passing) and a rather impressive winning percentage. At Emporia State University (KS) we realized that putting up the big numbers was not that big of a deal, what was more important was winning games. In order to do so, we researched and developed an explosive running game (Belly Series) to compliment the pass attack. The results speak for themselves, as we led the competitive MIAA in Rushing, Passing and scoring during the same season and were able to get our Superback to rush for nearly 2,000 yards or more three years in a row (Brian Shay broke Johnny Bailey’s all-time collegiate rushing record in this offense). Not only were our players able to achieve this in a team-oriented setting but our two inside receivers (Pobolish & Vito combined with Shay to garner over 15,000 yards during their careers together, the NCAA doesn’t keep records like that but we have yet to see career production like that in college football).

After making a go of it at the small college ranks, we tested the concept at the Division I level at the University of Wyoming. In a single season, we were able to go from last to first in total offense in the Mountain West Conference versus conference opponents. As my good friend Tony DeMeo (University of Charleston, WV Head Coach) said, “You put the Ferrari in the garage after that year.” I got out of running this offense for 3 years as I spent some quality time with Mike Leach (Texas Tech University).

After the stint with the Red Raiders, I took the head coaching position at Texas State University to once again coach this system. In a single season, we were able to go from one of the worst offenses in the Southland Conference to a single season finish of #1 in total offense and were ranked #7 in the nation with this balanced attack.

For the next 4 years I went into private business to develop regional football magazines. During this time, I also spent time reflecting on my career and the Triple Shoot Offense while consulting with coaches from high school to the professional ranks. On one visit to see my friend Hal Mumme, he made a statement that I should at least start to clinic the offense again and see if it would inspire me to coach again, I did and it worked.

When I got back into coaching at my alma mater (Capital University), we installed the Triple Shoot Offense for a season and then I departed to coach professional football in the CFL with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. As fate would happen, I took over the offense toward the last part of the season and installed portions of the TSO. Even though it was during the later part of the season, that installation went fairly well. In fact versus the BC Lions, the CFL version of the Belly Series exploded for a club rushing record as our Superback Fred Reid had a career game.

Here are some highlights of that historic game, check out some of the motions I was able to develop….

I am excited to coach the offense again, but this time at the high school level in North Carolina. The interesting part of that story, is that when my wife and I were vacationing in Asheville, a high school job opened up in the mountains and I just couldn’t pass up. This opportunity to enjoy the area, be with my children and get back to the roots of coaching the best game in the world to receptive young men is a dream come true. I am proud to be the head football coach of the Enka Jets and I look forward to this opportunity. For an insider’s perspective to what we are doing in our program; check out: Enka Jets Football!

Thanks for giving me the honor to clarify some areas of the Triple Shoot Offense. Good luck this season and if you want to reach me, please feel free to contact me at


Manny Matsakis