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Thursday, July 14, 2011
Updated: July 18, 5:54 PM ET
'NCAA Football 12': Tackling 101


NCAA Football 12
Defenders no longer warp in for the tackle in "NCAA 12." Now you need to be in proper position.

Learning the proper technique to tackle is practiced day in and day out at every level of football over the summer. That's because the best coaches know that good tackling can turn an average defense into a great one. In "NCAA Football 12," gamers have many options when bringing down the ball carrier, here are the best ways to lock up your opponent.

Tackle Button: With the new collision system in NCAA Football 12, the tackle does not start until the two players collide. You know have a tackle button that lets your defender lunge at the ball carrier and drag him down. This is the most consistently used tackle but it does take some time to get used to. Gamers used to simply run into the ball carrier to bring him down, but using the new tackle button allows you further range to tackle and wraps up more consistently.

Hit Stick: By using the right stick, gamers have the ability to lay the hit that might land them on Sportscenter. However, a mistimed hit stick may land you on the wrong side of the highlight.

The hit stick is something that should only be used with safeties and linebackers. Cornerbacks simply don't have the hit power worth going for the knockout blow while defensive ends are usually are not running downhill enough to get momentum to drive through the ball.

And whatever you do, avoid the common mistake of going for the hit stick on every play, while at the same time making sure you have backup in case you do whiff on the hit. If you need a turnover late in the game, get ready to unleash it as a well-timed move can jar the ball loose.

Strip Button: The strip button is the least common way to tackle in "NCAA Football 12," but can be a valuable tool to use in the right situation.

If a ball carrier is heading into traffic, press the strip button to try and rip the ball loose. But watch out. Since the running back will break tackles easier when you go for the strip, only use this move if you have backup on the play.

CPU Tackle: The computer is a sure tackler, so one way to bring your opponent down is to let them do the dirty work. If you run your player in the area of the ball carrier but are afraid of a big cut, simply click off the defender and allow the computer to wrap him up. This is a great move when you are one-on-one in the open field. Simply get your player in position and switch to another defender as you watch the computer make the play. Make sure to run your new player towards the play as well, though, just in case the CPU needs help.

Defensive Assist: By holding down the defensive assist button, your player will properly play his assignment like the computer. This is a great way to play man coverage or to follow a shifty running back that catches the ball in space. By holding the button, you can get yourself into good position and then simply make the tackle on your own.

Need more tips? Then make sure to pick up "NCAA Football 12: The Official Player's Guide," now available online and in stores everywhere.

About the Authors -- Zfarls and SGibs are professional gamers and regular attendees at EA Sports events like Madden Community Day and NCAA Community Day. They wrote the official players guide and have already been breaking down "NCAA Football 12" for months.