Daily Archives: December 22, 2007

Justice delayed is justice denied.

Unless counsel has tickets for the BCS title game, of course.

Babcock, whose law office is in Baton Rouge, said lawyers for the plaintiff in the case also have tickets to the game.

“We might disagree on the merits of the case, but everyone was in agreement on this, for sure,” he said during an interview Friday.

That includes West Baton Rouge Parish District Judge Alvin Batiste, who agreed Thursday to postpone the trial but didn’t immediately set a new date. Babcock said he doesn’t know if Batiste is an LSU fan, “but most people around here are.”

(h/t Epic Carnival)

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs, College Football

Do as he says.

Bobo says he was simply following his philosophy as an offensive coach. He believes it’s a simple fact of competing in the Southeastern Conference that the most successful teams are capable both running and passing.

“You’ve got to do what’s best, what gives you the best chance for your football team to win,” Bobo said. “And I think especially in this league, if you look at the tradition of this league, it’s teams that are balanced and can run and throw, especially the last 10 years, (that win).”

So how true is that? I went to the SEC stats site to find out. Unfortunately, the conference only keeps stats going back to the’02 season, so we’ll have to make do with the information from the last six seasons. Here’s the list of the last six conference champs and how they ranked in the SEC in rushing offense and passing offense in the year each won the conference:

  • 2007 LSU: 2nd in rushing; 5th in passing
  • 2006 Florida: 3rd in rushing; 5th in passing
  • 2005 Georgia: 3rd in rushing; 2nd in passing
  • 2004 Auburn: 5th in rushing; 3rd in passing
  • 2003 LSU: 2nd in rushing; 5th in passing
  • 2002 Georgia: 9th in rushing; 3rd in passing

As you can see, only one team finished out of the top half of the conference in either statistical category in that period. That would seem pretty consistent with Bobo’s hypothesis.

But how did the teams these schools faced in the SECCG fare statistically in these two stats? Not quite so consistently, to be honest:

  • 2007 Tennessee: 9th in rushing; 4th in passing
  • 2006 Arkansas: 1st in rushing; 11th in passing
  • 2005 LSU: 4th in rushing; 4th in passing
  • 2004 Tennessee: 3rd in rushing; 4th in passing
  • 2003 Georgia: 10th in rushing; 3rd in passing
  • 2002 Arkansas: 1st in rushing; 12th in passing

Only two of the six runners-up in the SECCG managed to place in the upper half of the conference both running and throwing the football. And, in fact, three of these teams managed poor showings (lowest quarter or worse) in the conference standings in one category – although none of the three were worse than a top three performer in the other category.

As a general proposal, it looks like you can get to Atlanta by either being balanced on offense, or being really good running or throwing the football. But if you want to be the conference champ, it looks like it’s best to follow Bobo’s advice.

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Filed under SEC Football, Stats Geek!, Strategery And Mechanics

The gift that keeps on giving.

Enjoy that drive to Shreveport, ‘Bama fans.

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Filed under Nick Saban Rules

Shot with his own gun.

Smart Football has as good a look at the evolution of the shotgun QB as I’ve seen in a while. Take a couple of minutes to read it.

As an example, here’s a list of things that are downsides to running your QB out of the shotgun. Keep some of them in mind as we head up to the bowl game with an opponent that operates exclusively out of the ‘gun.

Disadvantages of the Shotgun

- The QB has to take his eyes off the pass defense and has to watch the ball into his hands. This effect also somewhat reduces the QB’s ability to see the coverage and read changes (Cover 2 to 1, etc.) until after the snap. This is particularly acute for 3-step passes, where you have to catch and throw almost immediately. The read becomes almost exclusively pre-snap.

- The Shotgun alignment makes some lead-plays more difficult. I also would argue that the “gun-option,” as such, is not completely structurally sound in the way other veer plays are. Some gun teams have tried to develop the veer from the gun. Time will tell whether they are successful. (This requires more discussion than I have space for.)

- It becomes a crutch for the QB and an easy way to avoid improving footwork and play faking. I think this is an underrated problem. Footwork in the gun is (a) easier, because it is less, but is (b) prone to getting very, very sloppy. If there is any knock against “spread gun” QBs who go to the Pros, this one of the few viable ones, but can be simply overcome with good coaching.

- It retards the notion of a power run game and shifts more towards deception based delays, options, or draw type run plays. This is not a bad thing, though true.

- It can amplify your QB’s athletic skills, in either direction. If they are very athletic, it can improve their ability to make plays, but if they are not athletic many traditional QB plays – bootlegs, play action, and certain lead-option type run plays – are almost entirely out of the question.

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Filed under Strategery And Mechanics