Daily Archives: March 24, 2011

League of Fans, my ass

Can a rational human being explain to me why any of us should care in the slightest about a Ralph Nader proposal he calls “necessary” for college sports?  Judging from this, you’d think it’s the most significant pronouncement about the game since Cecil Newton’s sordid tale was condemned.

It’s not like Nader hasn’t whipped out the stoopid before, people.

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66 Comments

Filed under College Football

Figgins strategery

More from Richt on the deployment of Bruce Figgins this season:

“When you have a fullback that can play that position legitimately and tight end legitimately, it gives you some diversity when he’s in the game.” Richt said. “What it does is defenses, they like to know who’s in the game. By personnel, they want to know what’s going on, and if you have guys who can be more than one thing then when that personnel group is in the game, they’re not sure exactly how you’re going to line up, what it’s going to entail. It gives them less of a clue.”

Judging from this quote from Arthur Lynch, it may be that there’s more than lip service being paid to the idea.

… Lynch said the thought crossed his mind to ask to take on an H-back/fullback role like Figgins.

“I think that’s where offense is kind of going right now, that hybrid kind of thing,” Lynch said. “I think that was great for Bruce. He had a great spring last year and expected more and now he’s excited about his role. He obviously did a good job in bowl practice and some games during the year when he did play.”

When I first heard the news about the move, my reaction was that Figgins was being Tripped by the coaches, who really didn’t have a place for him in the offense.  But now I’m starting to think they’ve backed into something which may pay a few dividends this season.  We’ll see.

21 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

Shrinkage on the Plains

It’s not just losing quality like Newton and Fairley that’s got to be of concern to Auburn fans this season.  It’s the sheer attrition that the team faces – somewhere between 35 and 38 players from last season’s roster are now gone.  I don’t care how stellar the incoming recruiting class is, that’s a lot of bodies to have to make up.

Maybe Chizik should consult with Jon Fabris about embracing what lies ahead.  There’s a man who likes a challenge.

13 Comments

Filed under Auburn's Cast of Thousands

Voting with our pocketbooks

Perhaps the purveyors of the hot seat meme ought to take some cold, hard numbers into account.

… Donations to the Georgia athletics program have topped last year’s level despite the Bulldogs’ first losing football season in 14 years.

Contributions to the “Hartman Fund,” the fund-raising vehicle that is tied to football season tickets, stood at $22.94 million as of Monday night with “still a few dribbling in,” according to Dave Muia, the athletics department official who oversees fund-raising and alumni relations.

That total exceeds last year’s contributions of $22.74 million.

Granted, 2009-10 was a brutal stretch, economically speaking.  But it’s not like things have gotten dramatically better lately.  Based on those dollars, I don’t see how you can argue that Richt’s recent performance is turning fans away from the program.

That, in turn, is consistent with the overall story of college football’s popularity, which has proven to be amazingly resilient.

The pro-playoff crowd won’t like hearing this: College football has never been more popular.

For the fourth time in five years, according to numbers released Wednesday by the National Football Foundation, college football set an attendance record. More than 49 million fans turned out to watch games at 639 NCAA schools, an increase of nearly three percent over last year and 26 percent since 1997.

The BCS clearly has its flaws, but even those who advocate a 16-team playoff would have a tough time arguing that it has not increased interest in the regular season and its do-or-die nature.

And for those who rail on supposedly “meaningless” bowl games, take note that the 35 games also set an attendance record by drawing an average of 51,806 fans.

You’ll find more happy news here.

22 Comments

Filed under College Football, Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness

No one wants to be defeated.

Good news, Dawg fans.  The glove is being ditched.

No, not that one. This one.

… After going bare-handed for the regular season in 2010, Murray caused a few waves among fans by donning a glove on his throwing hand for the Liberty Bowl loss to Central Florida.

“I felt good with it heading into the game with the weather and everything,” Murray said. “I used it. But as of right now, we’re just using the hand.”

Ahem… “we’re”?  Who else is using… uh, let’s not go there.

5 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

You get what you pay for.

I came across these quotes from Mark Richt the other day when I was searching for something else on the intertubes:

According to Georgia coach Mark Richt, “The bottom line is, if you don’t win, you are going to get fired” (Eichelberger and Levinson, 2007, p. 1). Richt went on to say that he would recruit more academically prepared players if half his pay was based on academic performance, but that they might not be able to play and he would “get canned because you can’t play on the field”…

He’s honest, that’s for sure.  And with that in mind, take a look at this chart:

Those Tedford bonuses kind of jump out at you, don’t they?  And that’s at Cal Berkeley.  It’s good to see an academic bastion with its priorities in order.

9 Comments

Filed under Academics? Academics., It's Just Bidness

The story of RichRod, in numbers

I saw a few of Michigan’s games from last season, so in a way I shouldn’t be surprised by the story Matt Melton’s Big Ten SDPI numbers tell, but dayum:

First in offense and last in defense… that’s a pretty nifty trick.  And neither was a particularly close call.

I’ve got to think that’s not easy to pull off.  Looking at the numbers he’s posted so far for the Big East and the ACC, the only team that’s approximated Michigan’s performance was Cincinnati, but even there, it was only a next-to-last defensive performance.  The Wolverines managed a last place finish in a league with three more members.  That’s impressive.

The offensive number will get Rodriguez a job soon, but if I were the AD hiring him, I’d sure want to know what he had in mind for his defensive coordinator before I’d sign the contract.

13 Comments

Filed under Big Ten Football, Stats Geek!