SI polled the 117 major college teams on whether their offensive plays are called from the coaches' booth or from the sideline. The result was surprisingly close: 65 prefer the booth, 51 the sideline, and one—Minnesota-puts a coordinator in each spot. Here's a sampling of the rationale behind calling plays from on high or on the field.
"It allows you to get the players who carry the plays in on the field at least four or five seconds faster, which is huge."
—Tennessee coordinator Randy Sanders
"It's an advantage because you're right there with the offense all the time. I can get the whole unit together and go over something that needs to be covered. I can talk to the quarterback face-to-face."
—North Carolina State coordinator Marty Galbraith
"I was a backup quarterback for almost nine of the 10 years that I played in the NFL, so I was used to watching the game from the sideline."
—Florida coach Steve Spurrier
"You're removed from most of the emotion; it's more like you're in the office. You see things quicker, but you don't get the immediate feedback [from fellow coaches]. Also, you can't eat a sandwich on the field."
—Stanford coordinator Bill Diedrick
"I started last year on the sideline, but I wasn't comfortable. I like to see the structure of the defense from above, to see the opposition's game plan."
—Colorado coordinator Shawn Watson
"Being in the booth allows me to lay down my play charts in front of me."
—Texas coordinator Greg Davis