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FAMU legendary coach Billy Joe celebrates the 20th anniversary of record-breaking season (689 hits)

It's commonplace in today's college football scene to see offensive looks with receivers set up all over the field.

Play formations show wide-open looks with receivers positioned near the sideline and running backs taking direct snaps in the shotgun.

However, in the mid-late 1990s, these formations were viewed as unorthodox.

Some schools still ran the option and wishbone - especially in short yardage or goal-to-go situations.

At Florida A&M, it didn't matter if it was third and two or third and 22, the Rattlers were going to air it out. The opposition knew it and there was nothing they could do to stop it.

The genius behind this revolutionary style of play was Billy Joe.

Coach Joe was an offensive wizard. He also proved to be a witty wordsmith. Joe created the phrase Gulf Coast Offense.


FAMU turned Bragg Memorial Stadium and every visiting venue into a 7-on-7 clinic. The 1998 squad led Division I-AA (now FSC) in scoring (49.6 points per game), passing (5,893/535.7 yards per game) and total offense (4,407/400.6 yards per game).

They won the MEAC and the black college football national championship.

In postseason play, FAMU clinched a 27-17 first-round victory over Troy State at home. Despite having a higher ranking, the Rattlers hit the road for their second-round match against Western Illinois. FAMU rallied late but came up short in a 24-21 defeat. They finished the season at 11-2. The team's lone regular-season setback came in Wk. 1 loss to Hampton (21-14).

Continued: https://www.tallahassee.com/story/sports/college/famu/2018/09/23/famu-honors-billy-joes-famed-gulf-coast-offense/1378527002/
Posted By: Elly Moss
Monday, September 24th 2018 at 7:14PM
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Tuesday, March 12th 2019 at 7:39AM
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