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Wasted Practice Keeps Wishbone Secret


Spring practice in ’71 was business as usual.

Coach Bryant was looking to turn the tide after less-than-stellar seasons.

But the wishbone offense that would propel him to another round of success at Alabama was still months away.

Texas coach Darrell Royal and assistant Emory Bellard—the creator of the wishbone—spent time in the summer teaching the Bama coaches this new offensive scheme.

Alabama adopted and practiced the wishbone in secret. So much so, that the team “wasted a day of practice running the old offense,” according to Johnny Musso, when a team of reporters visited the Tide’s practice in August.


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