An offense can be finished only by scrimmage work. As early as the men are able to stand it, about one-quarter of each day's work ought to be devoted to scrimmage practice. The first two weeks of formation and signal drills are sufficient to put the men into condition for the rough wear of scrimmage. In completing an offense the coach must not only give every man on the team a thorough preliminary drill in offensive tactics, but, if he hopes for a strong, varied attack, he must allow each man a thorough trial in carrying the ball during actual scrimmages.
No rules can be laid down for building up an offense. The attack will never be alike in any two years, unless the very same men compose the team. The peculiarities of the men will determine how the attack should be arranged. Games cannot be won without a strong, consistent offense, yet the time devoted to its development will be comparatively little in some years, while in others it will remain the all-important problem up to the very end of the season. It is poor policy to interrupt the work of two scrimmaging elevens solely to correct individual faults. Remember these lessons and impress them upon the football candidate at some other time.
Too often the time devoted to defense during a season is all too short. Frequently teams do not have a full second eleven on the gridiron and in many colleges there is never a complete reserve team at any time during the year. But, even without stopping the rushes of an offensive eleven, much can be learned in drills at tackling, charging and breaking through. When a full quota is not available, these drills can be made quite thorough by the use of smaller opposing squads, corresponding very nearly to the squad of four formations. A special defensive drill for kicks, punts and blocking place kicks should occupy at least a quarter of each day's practice. In the defensive instruction, as on offense, the faults of the individuals, in nearly all instances, are best corrected in private, either after the practice or early next day.