Citing Les Miles’ 25-9 record at LSU in games decided by one score, Michael Elkon ponders whether that’s due to sheer luck or something else:
… Rather, LSU’s success in close games speaks to Gary Crowton’s incoherence as a playcaller. There are a lot of good criticisms of Crowton; one of the best is that he doesn’t have a defined style, but instead calls a pastiche of plays that don’t fit together. At the end of a tight game, he’s forced to go away from the grab bag and instead call the plays that work the best. Voila, LSU can move the ball when their backs are against the wall…
… So here’s the modification of my theory. In some instances, a team wins a lot of close games because they are lucky and the small sample size of success in tight games doesn’t tell us anything. In other instances, a team that plays in a lot of close games and wins a high percentage of those games is underutilizing its talent. Thus, it ends up in close games repeatedly and then wins those close games because the coaches stop dicking around in the last five minutes.
Following that reasoning, you could argue that one explanation for Georgia’s recent play in those types of games is that Mike Bobo isn’t as inspired in his late-game playcalling as Gary Crowton. That’s gotta hurt.