Daily Archives: October 20, 2008

You’re killing me, Smalls.

Four hours left to vote, and I’m missing more than a dozen ballots.

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7 Comments

Filed under Mumme Poll

In saying very little, he says a lot.

With all this talk about which conference between the Big XII and the SEC is better, and, more to the point, what the relative offensive and defensive strengths of each conference are, Dennis Dodd asks someone who’s in a unique position to assess that – Texas defensive coordinator Will Muschamp, who last year held the same position at Auburn.

Specifically, Dodd asks Muschamp how his current defense would fare against Alabama.  And Muschamp elects to dodge the question.

“That’s to debate for everybody. I don’t worry about that,” said Muschamp who came to Texas after becoming a  defensive mastermind at LSU and Auburn. “I’m not looking to defend anything. I think it’s too quality of a league.  There’s a different offensive flair in this league. There’s a different quarterback in this league.”

Not much of a response, so Dodd tries again, with the same results.

… Does that make the Big 12 better than the SEC?

“These spread offenses afford for you to score more points,” Muschamp said. “John Wooden said it a long time ago,  ‘Offensively you can have an off night. Defensively, you can never have an off night.’ “

Sixty-six points in two Big 12 games is relative — impressive but we’re still wondering how Muschamp’s D would do against the best in the SEC.

“We don’t play them,” Muschamp said. “We play Oklahoma State next. That’s all I know.”

Methinks he doth protest too little.

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Filed under Big 12 Football, SEC Football

BCS Computers: style points? We don’t need no stinkin’ style points.

By the way, everyone who’s been upset about Georgia’s inability to blow anyone out on the scoreboard this year should check out what the BCS computers, which don’t take margin of victory into account, did for Georgia’s BCS rankings in the first standings.

Personally, I’d settle for one point wins over every remaining opponent this year and take my chances with where the Dawgs would wind up after that.

3 Comments

Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Georgia Football

Should Georgia rethink its offense?

Two bloggers I respect, Brian Grummell and Ryan Ferguson, both argue in this post (Brian) and in the comments (Ryan) that Georgia should “rethink its offense”.  On the one hand, I understand and sympathize somewhat with their position.  The Dawgs, who rank first in the SEC in total offense, have left points on the field in three of the conference games they’ve played to date.

But on the other hand, there’s no real suggestion made about what exactly “rethinking the offense” means.  Is Brian suggesting a new offensive scheme?  I doubt it, but even if he is, it’s both unlikely and impractical that Richt would implement something like that in midseason with his current personnel.

So what we’re left with, as far as I can tell, are two things:  execution and personnel.  With regard to the former, I would certainly agree that there’s significant room for improvement.  This team has struggled with the impact of injuries on the offensive line, at tight end and at fullback.  There have been clear moments when lack of focus have cost points (Green’s drop against Tennessee and Walsh’s two misses against Vandy quickly come to mind).  Georgia also ranks next to last in the conference in turnovers gained, so the offense isn’t getting the same number of short field opportunities that other SEC offenses are getting.

What I mean with regard to personnel are the decisions made about which players to get the ball in the hands of and what sort of playcalling decisions are being made to see that those players are able to maximize their opportunities when they get the ball.  With regard to the first point, I think Ryan is being a bit breezy here when he lists A. J. Green as a reason that Georgia’s offense should be more dynamic than it’s been so far.  I’m not sure anyone at the beginning of the season expected Green to be leading the SEC in receiving yards per game by the middle of his freshman year.  And Green, by his own admission, is still feeling his way around the offense.

That being said, if I had to name some areas that could stand improvement, here’s where I’d go:

  • The disappearing tight end. I mentioned this in passing yesterday, but this is a real puzzler.  I know that Chandler’s been hurt, but I don’t understand why this position is being virtually ignored in the passing game.  Georgia hasn’t completed a pass to a tight end since the Arizona State game.
  • Red zone playcalling. There are no doubt a number of factors in play with this, such as Southerland’s missing the first six games and the offensive line shuffle, but Georgia doesn’t seem as confident in the red zone this year as it was in 2007.  There has been a tendency to become overly (and unsuccessfully) reliant on the fade route – although that seems to have been checked against Vanderbilt.

One other thing.  Georgia isn’t Tulsa or Oklahoma – teams that have structured their offenses to run as many plays in a game as they can.  Richt obviously likes to be able to rely upon the long time consuming drive as a means of control.  So when Brian makes a comment that “yards aren’t points” in dismissing Georgia’s ability to move the ball, he’s not taking into account the fact that Richt sees a drive like the eleven minute epic in the fourth quarter against Tennessee that only resulted in a field goal as being completely successful in what he wanted to accomplish.

I’d be interested in hearing your comments about this.  Where in your opinion has the offense fallen short this year, and how would you fix things?

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UPDATE: Richt gives Chip Towers an explanation for the disappearance of the TE in the passing game.

Asked why no tight ends have caught passes in the last few weeks, CMR said it was a byproduct of pass protection and injuries. Chandler’s out and Bruce Figgins (shoulder) is playing hurt. But mainly they’re using seven-man protections by keeping in a TE and a back and just throwing to three wideouts. He noted that the OL is doing well and there have been no sacks the last two games.

Tradeoffs are a bitch, aren’t they?

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UPDATE #2: This Elkon post is both timely and informative.

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UPDATE #3: Kyle fleshes out the tight end question.

17 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, The Blogosphere

My Mumme Poll ballot, Week 8

TOP FIVE

  • Alabama
  • Florida
  • Oklahoma
  • Penn State
  • Texas

BEST OF THE REST

  • Georgia
  • LSU
  • Ohio State
  • Oklahoma State
  • Southern Cal
  • Texas Tech
  • Utah

THOUGHTS AND COMMENTS:

  • I didn’t have much of a problem with my top five this week.  Indeed, the only struggle I had was with my last pick, but in the end, I still like Utah – although by ever slighter margins – over my other options there.  I’m not convinced the Utes will hold up, but we’ll see.
  • LSU got back in my top twelve with that dominant second half performance against South Carolina.
  • I really wanted to penalize Texas Tech for the stunt Leach pulled at the end of the Texas A&M game, but decided to let the upcoming schedule take care of that instead.
  • No ACC or Big East teams.  Again.  And I’m not really sure when I’ll be voting for one, either.

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Filed under Mumme Poll