Daily Archives: April 19, 2012

Meanwhile, in an alternate universe…

The SECCG would have been a very different affair under Spurrier’s divisional record proposal.

Spurrier’s proposal to go by division record would have changed seven of the 20 SEC Championship Game matchups to date, assuming the SEC had continued to use head-to-head as the first tiebreaker.

Those first two Alabama-Florida games in Birmingham would have been Alabama-Tennessee in 1992 and LSU-Florida in 1993 instead. LSU would have reached the championship game in ’93 with a 3-5 SEC record, in part because undefeated Auburn was ineligible for the postseason.

Georgia, which finished 13-1 in 2002, wouldn’t have won the SEC championship that year because it wouldn’t have reached Atlanta despite finishing a game ahead of the Gators in overall SEC record. Ron Zook’s first team, which finished 8-5, would have gone to Atlanta by virtue of going 5-0 against the East.

There has never been an LSU-Florida SEC Championship Game. If Spurrier’s proposal had been in place all these years, there would have been four, in 1993, 1995, 2006 and 2007. Tim Tebow would have played in the SEC Championship Game his entire career instead of missing one in 2007 when Florida was 5-3 in the SEC, a game behind Tennessee and Georgia.  [Emphasis added.]

That’s just wrong.

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19 Comments

Filed under SEC Football, The Evil Genius

Do NCAA rules work?

Over time, the NCAA has moved away from penalties tied to institutions’ financial interests.

As the Talmudic sage once said, all the rest is commentary.

2 Comments

Filed under The NCAA

Thursday morning buffet

As the working week heads towards another close, here are some things to digest:

  • Michael Elkon hits on where I stand with Tony Barnhart’s pronouncements, namely that’s it’s hard to tell where the reporter ends and the player starts.
  • Boy, did Cal whiff badly on its athletic endowment plans.
  • Here’s some more shit Nick Saban doesn’t have time for.
  • Shakin the Southland expands on its recruiting cycles comparison.  Georgia comes out about as you’d expect – good on quality and a little short on quantity.
  • And here’s a look at how the recruiting services do in terms of success and bias.
  • Spurrier and Tuberville, together.  (I wonder if Tubs responded to Spurrier’s question with the advice he once gave Richt about running the ball in the SEC.  Probably not.)
  • If you’re looking for the odds on making the SECCG, here you go.

22 Comments

Filed under It's Just Bidness, Media Punditry/Foibles, Nick Saban Rules, Recruiting, SEC Football, Tommy Tuberville - Mythical National Champ

How green was our offensive line.

Patrick Garbin sounds the alarm bell over the inexperienced offensive line:

Four years later entering 2012, Georgia’s offensive line is again, in a word, greenvery green (if I could use two words).

The unit returns players with only 31 career starts: Kenarious Gates (12), Chris Burnette (12) and Dallas Lee (7).  Thirty-one starts are remarkably low, so low in fact that entering last season, only 10 percent of all FBS teams(12 of 120) returned less than 34 career offensive line starts.  Notably, of these 12 FBS teams, EIGHT would average less yards per rushing attempt in 2011 than they did the year before (which is what could be expected from a team with an inexperienced offensive line).

Last season, the Bulldogs averaged just under 4.0 yards per rushing attempt, which ranked a lowly 9th in the conference just ahead of the potent ground games of Kentucky (3.5), Ole Miss (3.4), and Tennessee’s (2.8).  So, in keeping with the trend, Georgia’s running game could actually be worse than it was in 2011.  Regardless, the Bulldogs have proven they can win games with their passing attack (if the offensive line isn’t allowing Aaron Murray to be constantly attacked/sacked) and a stout defense.

However, is it a mere coincidence that of last year’s 12 inexperienced-offensive-line FBS teams, only THREE achieved a better record in 2011 than they had in 2010?  Is there some truth in the sayings an offense is only as good as its offensive line and games are won and lost in the trenches?  If so, as was the case in 2008, the 2012 Bulldogs might not be nearly as good as most expect.

Yeah, I’m nervous.  You’d be crazy not to be.  But I wonder if we don’t put a little too much stock into this factor.  First off, as Patrick notes, Georgia under Richt has had some success with green offensive lines (let’s tip our caps again to the ’03 squad, which made it to the SECCG despite giving up a whopping 47 sacks).  And on the flip side, it’s not like the much ballyhooed, heavily experienced lines of ’09 and ’10 lived up to the hype.

I’ve learned to be a little skeptical about relying on this stat ever since this Wall Street Journal piece came out and at season’s end more teams from the inexperienced group finished ranked (including MNC Alabama) than did teams from the experienced group.

So it’s a situation which merits a careful eye – and remember that there’s a good chance a likely starter hasn’t even arrived on campus yet – but one for which it’s premature to throw in the towel already.  Will Friend will get his chance to earn his paycheck.

27 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

For a fat defensive lineman, he don’t sweat much.

Meet Byron Jerideau, now South Carolina’s “best defensive tackle” according to his position coach who really ladles out the praise for his man:

“He still does bonehead things every now and then, but he’s changed his whole body, his whole conditioning,” Lawing said.

“When he first got here, he was in no way, form or fashion ready to play college football. He’s in shape. He can actually perform the things we ask him to perform.”

Don’t sound so surprised, coach.

4 Comments

Filed under 'Cock Envy

A match made in Hog Heaven?

This will never happen in a million years, but, damn, I’d sure love to see it purely for the extra-curricular entertainment value.

According to former Tennessee assistant Doug Matthews on Nashville radio yesterday, Arkansas officials have spoken to his former boss Phillip Fulmer about the vacant head coaching job. He doesn’t know how serious they got, but there have been discussions between them:

“I know Phillip has had conversations with them,” Matthews told the radio show. “And when I say with them, all that is going to take place behind the scenes.

“But everything I’m hearing from Arkansas is the spring game, I think, is this Saturday. ‘Let’s get through spring. Let’s see where we are.’ But I think they’ll either go with a guy that they’ve got on the staff or they’ll bring in someone to be — caretaker’s the wrong word — but bring someone in who has been through it all before.

“If there is a place for Phillip, that will be the place.”

Doughnuts, subpoenas and Spurrier’s catty comments… I’ve missed ‘em all.  Throw in a fan base that knows its way around a FOIA request, and you’ve got a heady brew for blogging.  Unfortunately, it sounds way too good to be true.

5 Comments

Filed under Arkansas Is Kind Of A Big Deal, The Glass is Half Fulmer