Beating the spread

Georgia’s Mark Richt, Georgia Tech’s Paul Johnson and Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly aren’t exactly kindred spirits when it comes to coaching styles. But they all agreed on one thing this offseason.

That trio of schools is part of a growing trend toward the use of 3-4 defenses, which are becoming more in vogue as coaches look for ways to stop — or at least slow down — the spread offenses that have come to dominate the sport.