Learn how to run Oklahoma State’s best running plays

Coach Jason McEdnoo Teaches Oklahoma State’s Top Running Play

The outside zone has become a staple run in many offenses and that’s true for the Oklahoma State Cowboys.

Oklahoma State Cowboy Backs Coach McEndoo is a big believer in the outside zone and his position certainly plays a big part in the success of the play.  The “cowboy back” is a hybrid position of tight end and fullback type players who will capture the edge and insert into different gaps to effectively block the outside zone play. The position allows the Cowboys to align in multiple formations to stress the defense as well.

The Cowboys have made an investment in the outside zone scheme because it allows them to distort a defense while being creative in their attack. Over a 3-year period the two variations, outside zone and search, have netted the Cowboys 1,726 yards with nearly a 5-yard average every time they call it.

Coach explains the importance of the scheme and its success in their offense here

Source: Oklahoma State You Want To The Outside Zone Course

The success of the scheme starts with a sound teaching progression.  Coach McEndoo believes that in order to be good at something, they need to understand everything about their jobs.  That means that everything that they do is taught in a progression.  He explains that here.

Source: Oklahoma State You Want To The Outside Zone Course

1 Back Variation

Coach McEndoo’s favorite way to run it is through 11 personnel.  It allows for the play to be run to the open side or to the tight end side.  Also, it is a play that is very versatile against multiple fronts.  He goes over the basics in this video:

Source: Oklahoma State You Want To The Outside Zone Course

Modern defenses love to use the 4i defensive lineman.  For many schemes, the 4i can cause some issues. In this example, Coach McEndoo illustrates how the play works against a 4i with plus-ed linebackers.

Source: Oklahoma State You Want To The Outside Zone Course

2 Back Variation

Two back offenses have made a comeback as a way to attack spread defenses. As Coach McEndoo stated, it’s a versatile play, and it fits into a two-back personnel as well.They call the two-back version “Search.”  It allows them to run the play even without that ideal long-frame Tight End type.  He gives an overview here:

Source: Oklahoma State You Want To The Outside Zone Course

Two back sets give an advantage in having a player who can add a gap anywhere across the line by inserting into the blocking scheme there. In addition, being able to insert a fullback on the outside zone creates advantages for the offensive line combos.  Here’s an example of the fullback inserting on the “Search” play:

Source: Oklahoma State You Want To The Outside Zone Course

Coach McEndoo did a thorough job putting his talk together whichcontinues to benefit Lauren’s First and Goal Foundation.  He covers all the coaching points and illustrates the play against most of the fronts you will see.  There’s certainly a lot to learn from Coach McEndoo.


Learn the best way to run A Running-Back-By-Committee Scheme.


After 27 years of coaching at both the collegiate and high school level, Keith Grabowski took on a new role in helping advance and grow the game of football. One of the most prolific writers on scheme, technique, and program building (American Football Monthly, AFCA Insider, X&O Labs and USA Football), Grabowski also hosts a daily podcast, "Coach and Coordinator" on which he interviews the most knowledgeable head coaches, coordinators, and position coaches from professional, college, and high school football.


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