The Art of Winning Football Games

The Art of Winning Football Games Ver. 1.0.0

The Top Gun National Troubleshooter, Retired

http://thephilosopheronpolitics.wordpress.com/tag/football/

11/8/2015

Copyright 2015

Introduction

Football in the USA is over a century old and there have developed many theories on how to win the game.  We think we have made much improvements to the game like helmets, shoulder pads, griddle pads, thigh pads etc.  Rules like not targeting the ball possessor with a helmet to helmet attack or low hits or illegal blocks.  We moved the kickoff up the field to reduce the number of full speed head-on collisions with the special team’s players.  We moved the extra point further back from the end-zone to make the game more interesting.  Yet, this writer thinks that unpadded Rugby players have fewer injuries and concussions than footballs padded up players.  The mentality is that “I am padded up so I can hit them has hard as I can without injuring myself”.

Game Strategy

Game strategy has advanced beyond anyone’s dreams decades ago.  It is amazing how an offensive can get a receiver open in the end-zone with members from the offensive team coordinating their moves.  But what this writer has observed is that winning the game comes down to the two second pass, one one-thousand, two-one-thousand, throw the ball.  If a quarterback can do this one hundred percent of their passes, they will have a greater than ninety percent chance of winning the game.  If they throw fifty percent two second passes and fifty percent three second passes the probability will decrease to about a fifty percent chance of winning of the game.  If the quarterback is throwing four second passes, he will spend a lot of time being sacked.  After three seconds the quarterback must either throw the ball or start running or scrambling.  Several four second passes will decrease the probability to less than ten percent for winning the game.

Q.E.D.

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Basketball and the Tree Point Shot

Basketball and the Tree Point Shot Ver. 1.0.1

The Top Gun National Troubleshooter, Retired

“The Gun”

http://thephilosopheronpolitics.wordpress.com/tag/basketball/

6/8/2015

Introduction

The Golden State Warriors are in the final playoffs for the championship.  This is the first time in forty years the Warriors have made it to the finals when they performed a four-game sweep.  The Warriors made it this far with superb Three-Point shooting from their guards one of which is Steph Curry the MVP of the League.  The Warriors missed their chance to make a four game sweep over the Cavaliers mostly because Mr. Curry was having and Off-Night.  His off-night was made up for somewhat by his teammate guard Mr. Klay Thompson but it was not enough to make up for Mr. Curry’s Off-Night.

One of the First Out-Side Shooters

I was a Three-Point shooter myself in high school when we only got two-points for the basket, which made it difficult to even get the ball to make the shot.  During one game my fellow guard and neighbor that I grew up with were playing against a team that was using a Zone-Defense.  When the defensive guard moved off me to guard against him, he gave me the ball and I turned and shot the “Two-Point” shot from “Three-Point” range.  We performed this tactic three times in a row for three shots and six points.  There was a shout from the opposing coach “Shut him down!!!” The next time I got the ball the defensive guard almost took my head off with a hay-maker swing and the other guard came over to double-team me.  Today, fifty-five years later I could have handled this situation as I had developed the required moves during my pick-up ball years at the local health club.

Shut Him Down!

This is exactly what happened to Mr. Curry, the Cavilers were on him like white-on-rice and his timing of his shots was way off.  They “Shut him down!!”  His guard partner Mr. Thompson, did a little better but they were really into “Shutting Down” the Three-Point shot.  All the Three-point shots appeared to be hurried shots.

The Workaround

Here is how I learned to handle this “Shut him down” tactic.  And when Mr. Curry is “On his game” his shot looks similar to the one I developed but not quite the same arc of the shot. I am 5’-8” tall so learning how to manage the big guys took some time.  Here was my solution and the simple physics about the shot.  The shot should be made from a solid and reproducible foundation. My opposition noted that “When he puts that left foot out he is going to shoot”.   That’s right; I put both feet tangent to the Three-Point arc so the basket was always straight ahead.  They knew when I was going to shoot and they would fly into the air to block the shot.  The next tactic I learned was to shoot with a very high arc that would go over their out-reached hands.  Since the basket was always straight ahead and always at the same distance, at the chosen spots to shoot the shot, all that was necessary was to put the ball up at the same launch angle high enough to clear the out-reached hands, I did not have to see the basket, I only needed to put the ball on the establish arc to the basket.  This is really simple physics and is used in artillery firing all the time.  Determine the correct arc to the target and put the ball on that arc.

The High Arc Shot

There is an additional benefit to this “High Arc” shot.  From the perspective of the ball the basket is bigger.  This again is simple physics.  With a high arc the ball is almost coming straight down at the basket.  A ball with a “Low Arc” will see more rim than empty space and the shot must be precise or it will hit the rim and bounce back into the court.  When the ball is coming straight down at the basket and nicks the rim, its momentum will carry the ball through the basket.  As a result of this downward momentum, there are larger error bars on this “High-Arcing” ball that will allow it to go through the basket.  Therefore, the shot does not have to be as precise as the ball shot on a “Low Arc”. The “High Arc” will go over the out-reached arms and hands of the defensive player, you do not have to see the basket and the ball will have a higher percentage of going through the basket.  I earned the reputation at this health club as “The Gun”.

Q.E.D.

The String-Bat Model

The String-Bat Model ver. 1.1.1

By: Jack E Johnston

March 31, 2012

Copyright 2012
http://thephilosopheronpolitics.wordpress.com/tag/power-hitting/

Introduction

In the latter half of the 1970s, I developed the “String-Bat Model” for hitting softballs.  My team had me batting in the clean-up position; I was their big hitter.  The String-Bat Model is equally applicable to baseballs.

The String-Bat Model is very simple.  What can be done to a string to hit a ball?  Any bending moment will only bend the string.  The only motion available is to pull on the string.  Thus the “String-Bat” is put in motion by rotating the hips and when the bat is at belt level or level, pull on the end of the String-Bat toward center field and make contact with the ball.  Skill comes in learning how fast to rotate the hips to start the String-Bat in motion.  Too fast of a start of the rotation, and the String-Bat will pass the point where the end of the bat can be pulled to center field, and the bat will un-cock the wrists and the swing will fail to develop full velocity.  The hips must be rotated with a constantly increasing acceleration so that when the String-Bat reaches level, the hands can pull the end of the bat towards center field.  Too slow a rotation, and the ball will pass before the swing develops.  It is best to start with a slow rotation and gradually increase the speed coordinated with the pull to center field. As a feedback, it should feel like you are pulling on a 25-pound bowling ball.   The belt buckle should end up facing center field.  Anything learned slowly can be produced fast with practice; start slow to develop the coordination, and then slowly increase the speed of performance.

There are three variations for hitting the ball.  1) With the back facing elbow held level (horizontal), a hard hit line drive will result from the String-Bat Model swing.  2) With the rear facing elbow lowered, a deep hit fly ball will result from the String-Bat Model swing. 3)  Aim to put the centerline of the bat at a half inch below the center of the ball with a level or 10-degree. launch angle, and significant rotation will be imparted to the ball, giving it lift to travel 100 feet or so further than if there is no rotation on the ball (Fig 55, ref. 1). Aim a little lower for fastballs than for curveballs.[i]

Stance: The feet are placed at shoulder width and are fixed in place.  It is not recommended to lunge to hit the ball, as the bat is better placed on the ball with no change in the position of the batter relative to the path of the ball.

The physics behind the String-Bat Model is equally simple.  As the centripetal acceleration is increased along the axis of the String-Bat, the velocity at the end of the bat will increase as the square of this increase in acceleration.  Thus, if the acceleration towards center field is doubled, the velocity at the end of the bat will increase by a factor of four.  If the acceleration towards center field is increased by a factor of four, the velocity at the end of the String-Bat will increase by a factor of 16.

The Babe Ruth Power Swing: Point the lead foot toward center field.  Rotate the hips so the belt buckle is facing center field.  Pull on the end of the bat towards center field.  Put the bat on the ball.

QED

[i] Robert G. Watts & A Terry Bahill, “Keep Your EyE on the Ball” The Science and Folklore of Baseball, W.H. Freeman and Company, New York, 1990, Page 147.

Power Golf Swing

 

Power Golf Swing ver. 1.1.3

By: Jack E Johnston

Revised 9/10/2017

 Copyright 2014

https://gadflyblog.com/tag/power-golf/

In days past (younger days) my golf drives were 300 yards plus with a set of garage sale golf clubs.  Power Golf is similar to the String-Bat Model for swinging a baseball bat.  Golf has the advantage that the ball in not moving and it all comes down to timing and form of the golf swing.

Driving and Fairway woods

  1. For Driving, set the ball on the tee, about 1” high, not too low, not so high that the ball goes up too steep to gain distance. For a fairway shot bring the club head back like hitting an iron shot, hit into the ball, (what goes down will go up, basic rule of golf).
  2. Address the ball with the feet shoulder width apart and the ball slightly forward of the middle.   For shorter shaft woods move the ball towards the back foot.
  3. Grip the club with the “Vardon Grip” and the “sweet spot” is behind the ball. Put the club shaft in the first knuckle of the index finger and below the fleshy part of the palm.
  4. Apply second hand with little finger overlapping index finger of first hand. Index and thumb pinching the club with thumb on the top of the shaft. Grip the shaft with the remaining three fingers. This is the strong hand week hand grip (Harry Vardon Grip (1870-1937) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Vardon).
  5. Standing erect bend the knees as if sitting in a chair.
  6. Maneuver the feet until the club “sweet spot” is behind the ball.
  7. Bring the club head back level with the grass behind the ball rotating the hips.
  8. The left arm is straight and the eyes are fixed on the ball.
  9. Keep the heels of the feet on the ground.
  10. Bring the club head to the top of the backswing in the biggest arch that can be developed. The club should come to rest at the top of the backswing and be parallel to the target line and parallel to the ground.
  11. There should be 2/3 of the body weight on the inside of the back foot; keep the heels of the feet on the ground.
  12. Initiate the swing by rotating the hips very slowly and accelerate the rotation slowly as if gravity is pulling the club head down, A fast rotation of the hips is not necessary even detrimental as the club head will pass by the “Belt High” mark and uncock the wrists and it will be impossible to pull the shaft to the target.  The club head should follow the wide arc of the backswing.  The club shaft will come down and be parallel to the ground and belt high.
  13.  Pull on the end of the shaft towards the target (as if pulling on a string connecting the club head to the club grip) there will be felt a huge resistance, to the pull, along the shaft and both feet will feel like they are going to slide backwards (this is the reason the shoes are cleated) and the club head will uncock the wrists as it completes its wide arc.  If the timing is correct it will feel like pulling on a 40 pound bowling ball and the club head will precede the shaft to the ball, the shaft is bent forward; (the head is driving the shaft, not the shaft driving the head).  The brain can slow this high speed action of the club head and the club head arriving at the ball ahead of the shaft can be seen with the naked eye.  It should take all of the strength that can be mustered to pull the club head toward the target.  Keep the eyes fixed on the ball spot until after contact, keep the head down and left arm straight (right handed players) until beyond contact.
  14. Transfer all your weight to the front foot which is planted firmly on the ground.
  15. The heel, of the back foot, comes up and the toe rotates to face the foot at the target.   The belt buckle should be facing the target.
  16. Finish high with the club parallel to the ground and neck high.

 

 

The Physics

The physics behind the “Power Golf Swing” is equally simple.  As the centripetal acceleration is increased along the axis of the “Club Shaft” the velocity at the club head will increase as the square of this increase in acceleration.  Thus if the acceleration towards the target is doubled the velocity at the club head will increase by a factor of four.  If the acceleration towards the target is increased by a factor of four, the velocity at the club head will increase by a factor of sixteen.   Anyone who has swung a Yo-Yo has experienced the effect of centripetal acceleration, as the Yo-Yo is swung pull on the string and the yo-yo accelerates rapidly.  For the religious the sling that killed Goliath can be used, as the sling is put into a circular motion and the tether pulled on, the stone, in the pocket, accelerates to the velocity of a Magnum 357 bullet.

 

 

Irons

The swing is similar to the above, but adjusting the height of the backswing as necessary.  For the five iron position the ball about ½” back of the middle or in alignment with the heal of the back foot.  For longer clubs move the ball toward the front foot.  For shorter irons move the ball toward the back foot.  The nine and wedge iron ball position is even with the instep of the back foot.

  1. Bring the club to the backswing with the chosen height for the shot.
  2. Start the swing by pulling with the left side and hit the ball as if driving it into the ground. A basic principle in golf is that what goes down comes up.  To make the ball rise vertically hit the ball down into the ground.
  3. Finish the swing as above with the club finishing high around the neck , the weight is on the front foot and the back heal comes up the toe rotating to face the target and the belt buckle is facing the target.

In deep grass put the ball further back and swing to hit the ball first.


 

Pitching

  1. Put the ball off the instep of the back foot. Align the wide part of the club to the ball.
  2. Open the stance by moving the front foot away from the target line.  This will allow room for the hands to come through.
  3. Start the back backswing directly in line with the target.
  4. Swing to hit the ball first.
  5. Adjust backswing for distance of shot and swing as though throwing the club head to the target.
  6. On short pitches open up the club head than align the shaft to the large portion of the club head.
  7. Open up the stance to accommodate short distances.
  8. This will generate “The Flop Shot” the ball will stay close to where it lands.

Bunkers around the Green

  1. Open the club face depending on the distance required.
  2. Open the stance depending on the distance required.
  3. Figuratively put a dollar bill under the ball with the ball in the center. The dollar bill represents the divot to take in the sand. Take more or less sand to adjust the distance. The sand will move the ball. Do not hit the ball directly as it will go a long way. Lift the club straight up and come down at the visualized marked spot behind the ball. Follow thru as required by distance. It is not allowable to touch the sand with the club prior to the swing.

 

Long Range Bunkers

Make the preparation for the shot as above, but with a closed stance.  Pick the ball off the sand as distance is the primary objective.

 

Putting

  1. Remove the flag stick from the hole straight up as to not damage the sides of the cup.
  2. Read the green for slop and knap. Plan a path to the hole by sighting the green from different viewpoints.
  3. Stand over the ball with the head directly over the ball.
  4. Visually mark the target (e.g. two or three ball widths to right or left of the hole or even more for steep slopes) visualize the ball going on this path.
  5. A relaxed grip is best with the ball in the center of the club head. Putt the shot with the shoulders as these are large muscles and will give consistent results as the body fatigues.
  6. Follow the ball to the hole with the club head until way past contact.

 

Alternate Putting:

  1. After surveying the green and choosing the path of the ball, put the putter behind the ball.
  2. Squat behind the ball and line up the putter square to the line of travel of the putt.
  3. Holding only a finger on top of the club, take a stance of preference to putt the ball.
  4. Grip the club with the preferred grip without moving the Putter.
  5. Look at the line of the putt to the hole and rotate the shoulders bringing the Putter back the appropriate distance from the ball.
  6. Rotate the shoulders to putt the ball on the line with the correct speed to the hole keeping your eyes on the path of the ball and the hole.

Pick the ball up out of the cup and start over on the next hole.