This week on I blame Bobo…

Actually, we’re at the point where I think I’m going to have to retire the meme.

Mike Bobo, the play-caller for a Georgia offense that has set school records for points and touchdowns in a season, is among five finalists for the Broyles Award, which goes to the nation’s top assistant coach.

As for Weiszer’s “Bobo has been a frequent target for fan criticism in past seasons” observation, judging from some of the negative reactions to the news I saw on my Twitter feed yesterday, I’d say the past isn’t past just yet.  But you gotta love this nod to Bobo’s god:

“We’re doing a nice job right now,” Bobo said of his offense. “Balance is the No. 1 thing.”

I hope he’s tweaking us with that.  It’s the romantic in me, I suppose.  In any event, congrats.

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105 Comments

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105 responses to “This week on I blame Bobo…

  1. Brandon

    Top 5 finalists eh, I presume the other four are Muckbeast, No One Knows Your a Dawg, Skeptic Dawg, and Tankertoad.

    • Brandon

      P.S. Totally agree the past ain’t the past, we need only lose or fail to get a critical first down and they’ll be right back that was the only real criteria ever required for Bobo bashing. If we gave up 45 points on defense Bobo sucked because we didn’t get 46, if a receiver dropped a third down pass Bobo sucked, on and on and on.

      • Bob

        Amen Brandon. The overwhelming problem with Georgia since 2007 has been defense and special teams. Not even close. But it is the nature of the job as well. So no, things will not change for Bobo (or Richt) if we lose Saturday afternoon.

    • Know One Knows You're a Dawg

      I have no more criticism of Mike Bobo than I do Mark Richt. I don’t blame Bobo. I agree that he is executing Mark Richt’s strategy and thus any criticism of Bobo should actually be placed on Richt. That includes making “balance” the ultimate objective of the offense.

      A few more thoughts:

      *The SECCG is being played on a neutral field. Bama and UGA have similar levels of talent. But Bama is a 7.5 point favorite. The sports book director for the Wynn hotel says at this link ( http://linemakers.sportingnews.com/ncaa-football/2012-11-26/alabama-vs-notre-dame-point-spread-line-georgia-bcs-odds-college-football-odds) that Saban is worth 2.5-3 points for Bama because of his coaching ability. Given the neutral field and the similar talent, what does the line say about the perceived coaching ability of Mark Richt? That it’s worth 4.5-5 points to the opponent?

      * I believe Mark Richt is a pretty good coach who has had several good years. But given UGA’s resources, UGA should consistently be elite. And if we’re not elite, heaven and earth should be moved *with urgency* to make us elite. But it doesn’t ever seem to happen. Should it have taken 30 years for Georgia to again be in position to play for a national championship?

      *This “pretty good is good enough” mentality has existed at Georgia for decades. I don’t see it changing. As a UGA fan/graduate/paying customer, it (obviously) drives me nuts.

      *For a contra opinion arguing that good-but-not-great is fine, here’s Michael Elkon’s column today on the SECCG and the consolations of settling for second best: http://atlanta.sbnation.com/2012/11/27/3696534/georgia-alabama-2012-sec-championship
      To quote:

      “And after 985 words, that brings me to the Georgia-Alabama game. With that lead-in, you can probably see where I’m going with this piece. Mark Richt always struck me as the Lloyd Carr of the SEC: an honorable man who represents the personal virtues held in the highest regard by his school’s fan base, a good recruiter who puts together talented teams, but a coach who has certain limitations in terms of offensive approach and tactical decision-making that leaves him a notch below elite.
      . . .
      Georgia has, by in large, a reasonable fan base. Dawg fans are not noted for outlandish expectations for their coaches, which is to their credit. Under normal circumstances, they would have no problem agreeing with the statement that Mark Richt is a good coach, possibly even a very good coach, but that he is not Nick Saban and as long as Saban is in Tuscaloosa (and the Tide are not on probation), Georgia will tend to have teams that are not as good as those of Alabama. That doesn’t mean that the Tide will always beat the Dawgs, but the odds are generally against it. Sure enough, Bama comes to town as a 7.5-point favorite against Georgia, which translates to about a 29% chance of the Dawgs winning. You don’t need to be Nate Silver to understand those are not good odds.”

      • Rocket Dawg

        Dude please do us all a favor and don’t renew your tickets for next season. With “fans” like you who needs the opposition. We are one game away from the National Championship and two games away from possibly having a Crystal Ball and you are STILL finding things to bitch and moan about.

      • Just curious: how many “consistently elite” programs do you see out there?

        • Know One Knows You're a Dawg

          I should say a program should consistently strive to be elite. And by that I mean not accepting less than elite results from a coach.

          Two of the best examples of this attitude I can think of over the past 20 years are Alabama and Florida. Alabama is a particularly good example. They’ve had almost every sort of scandal you can think of, yet still have won 3 national championships. And with Florida, Zook got canned after 2.5 seasons. Ray Goff got 7 years and it took Michael Adams intervention to fire Donnan after 3 consecutive losses to GT.

          Is there any reason Alabama should have a better football program than Georgia?

          • Well, I’ll start with an easy one. There is no way any administration in Athens is going to commit to spending money on football they way they do in Tuscaloosa. That’s not something you can lay on Richt. You’re not going to get the Process at Georgia, because you’re not going to see Richt managing 146 advisors, or whatever they’re called over there. (Hell, don’t forget that before Grantham, the school wouldn’t hand out multi-year contracts to assistant coaches.)

            As far as the historical picture, if you’re saying Dooley was a poor judge of coaching talent, you’ll get little argument from me. But I don’t see how that’s relevant in the here and now.

            I have to tell you, I don’t see how repeatedly firing coaches is a guaranteed sign of striving for eliteness. Sometimes it’s just an effort to satisfy a frustrated fan base. And there’s little guarantee it works. You cite ‘Bama as an example, but they went through a stretch of a decade without sniffing a national title despite running through, what, four or five coaches?

            Like it or not, as things stand today, Richt’s in a better spot than 117 other D-1 coaches. That strikes me as being pretty elite. So I’m not really sure what you’re advocating at this point. A new head coach? More support from the administration? Public threats to maintain excellence?

            • Know One Knows You're a Dawg

              I understand we’re not getting a new head coach. I am absolutely advocating more support from administration (Why does the UGA AD have such a large nest egg anyway?). I’m also advocating a fan base that holds administrators and coaches to a very high standard. I think ultimately fans get what they demand from a program.

              As you mention, Bama ran through several coaches.They have impatient fans. And look at what it has gotten them.

              • I’m also advocating a fan base that holds administrators and coaches to a very high standard. I think ultimately fans get what they demand from a program.

                Sounds great in the abstract. But practically speaking, how do you do that with this Georgia program?

                • Know One Knows You're a Dawg

                  There is no direct way to do it other than not attending games. But almost all season ticket holders have too much invested to give up their seats in protest. That leaves only indirect methods such as using the media to convey expectations. That can work however. Two weeks of constant criticism of the defense helped finally pulled them out of their funk.

              • Mayor of Dawgtown

                “…Bama ran through several coaches. They have impatient fans. And look at what it got them.” Yeah, 20 years in the wilderness and finally, when their first choice as the next HC turned them down (RichRod), they accidentally made a great hire who took them to the promised land. Most schools that engage in the “coaching carousel” get permanently stuck at the bottom. Are there a few exceptions? Sure, but if you want to see what continually changing coaches gets you just look at Illinois, UK, Colorado, NC State….the list is too big to complete here. Once in a while one of those schools stumbles upon a diamond ( I suggest that is what happened to Bama) but most of the time it goes the other way. Just look at what UT did to itself.

                • Know One Knows You're a Dawg

                  Illinois, UK, Colorado and NC State are nowhere near the class of Georgia and I would hope we would never do anything as stupid as hiring a WAC coach with a losing record.

                  • Dawgfan Will

                    How about an NFL coach with a losing record?

                  • Mayor of Dawgtown

                    Eh, really? Illinois was a big time power in the Big 10 long ago. Colorado won the MNC in ’90. UK was a winner when Bear Bryant coached there. NC State used to be the only ACC team to beat FSU on any sort of a regular basis. What do these teams have in common? They all became “impatient” (your word), got on the coaching carousel and look where it led them. You think it can’t happen to UGA because we’re so gooood? Look at UT and what the Hillbillies did to themselves and then imagine what things would be like if UGA did the same. I agree with Brandon below–you keep wanting to hit on 20 trying to make 21 and most of the time you’ll bust.

          • Macallanlover

            Jeez man. Your last question, if UGA got around 40 mulligans on which recruits to sign.try out, and then which to “cut” do you think we might see some improvement? Would be hard to not have 4 deep studs.

            Or, if Bama had a zero tolerance drug and alcohol policy (and incidents were brought forward) do you think there might actually be suspensions in Tuscaloosa?

            Seeing 125 players in a four year span versus 85 would make a huge difference to ALL programs nationally versus Alabama. How the conference and NCAA doesn’t step up to this is beyond me but I find myself on the side of Florida and the Big Whatever their title/number is this year.

            • Mayor of Dawgtown

              While I agree with you philosophically on this Mac I am afraid that in practice I believe that we should do exactly as Saban does in recruiting. It’s legal and it gives an advantage. If UGA doesn’t do it (oversigning) then we are at a disadvantage. We may be able to overcome that disadvantage but why give other teams an advantage at all?

      • BMan

        I’ve dumped a fair amount of criticism toward Richt and Bobo over the years, but the post above (to No One Knows…) sort of leaves me the feeling of being at a dead end. I won’t put words in yourmouth, but I read your post – or the pasted parts of Elkon’s – and feel like, “so what, if a team doesn’t have Saban, there’s just no use in trying?” Also, to compare Richt to Carr and use as support “certain limitations of offensive approach,” seems like a stretch.

        The balance word that gets thrown around is tricky. Personally, I think a goal of this offense (other than scoring), and the thing that gets labeled as balance, is to be successful enough on first downs so that subsequent down-and-distance is extremely hard for the defense to successfully guess. And it requires a balance of strength: QB, RB and WR, so that defenses don’t get to cheat as much with their safeties. To end this on a light-hearted note, if someone were to ask Bobo whether he prefers missionary or doggie, I’d like to think he’d say, “I’m looking for balance, but either way the other person is screwed.”

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        Your handle certainly fits as the way you talk one would think you are a Tech Nerd or a Gator fan. Guys like you are never satisfied. If the Dawgs win the next 2 games you’ll still bitch about CMR taking too long in winning the crystal. Get lost.

        • Know One Knows You're a Dawg

          My complaint actually goes beyond Richt. It is why has it taken 30 years to again be in position to win a national championship at the end of a season?

          • Rick

            So….fire Jan Kemp?

          • Mayor of Dawgtown

            Actually, UGA was in position to win it in 2002 and 2007, just things didn’t fall our way. See Auburn 2004 and FU 2012. That said, I do agree that there is not the same level of institutional support for the UGA football program as there is at Bama and that needs to be corrected. Maybe the new Prez……

      • Rick

        You declare by fiat that the only explanation for the point spread is coaching differential because we have ‘similar levels of talent’. Alabama is roughly a 7 point favorite or better over everyone (look it up). So following your reasoning there are two options:

        (1) UGA and Bama have more talent (by far) than literally every other team in college football.

        (2) Saban is a better coach (by far) than literally every other coach.

        Even if it’s (2) – which it’s not, because neither is true and your point is vapid – then we would be no better served by getting any other coach in all of college football unless we hire saban himself.

      • Dawgfan Will

        * Your first thought is a perfect example of how obvious it is that you will never be satisfied by anything Richt accomplishes. How many other teams in college football would be MORE that 7-point underdogs to Bama right now? I’m think 98%. And Richt has beaten Saban enough times in the past to prove that he can do it.

        * I am totally mystified by what your definition of “consistently elite” might be.

        * I would say the reluctance by the fanbase to show Richt the door is not because they believe that “pretty good is good enough.” It’s because Richt is (among other things) the 4th winningest active coach. You think one of the other three are going to come a-runnin’ if we fire him?

        * In the context of facing off against Bama for SEC supremacy each year right now, who doesn’t Elkon’s column apply to? No other team has been able to consistently challenge them for the title of best team in the conference.

        • Know One Knows You're a Dawg

          *I’m not arguing Richt can’t beat Saban on Saturday. If he gives his best effort and gets the players to give their best effort, I think it’s a 50-50 game. At least once a year though, we don’t show up for a game.
          *Please see my response to the Senator.
          *Lenny Wilkens is the winningest coach in NBA history. Is he the best?
          *Instead of Bama, why shouldn’t it be UGA that people say no team has been able to consistently challenge for best in the conference?

          • Mayor of Dawgtown

            In the CMR era UGA has been to the SECCG more times than any other SEC team–5 in 12 years. That says something about who consistently challenges for best in the conference.

      • Brandon

        No one knows your a dawg, your 20 ain’t 21 so hit me approach is certainly interesting. I don’t recommend blackjack to you if that’s your attitude, nine times out of ten your restless native act will get you busted or in college football get your program a nice long walk in the wilderness. The current state of the Auburn and Tennessee programs are good examples of how the uber perfect can be the enemy of the good.

        My only criticism of Richt I have ever had is that it took him so long to fire Willie Martinez. I think that is problem Richt will not have in the future, after you have learned to fire your best friend for failure to perform I don’t think Richt will be that slow to get rid of a bad coach again. That aside, Richt is 31-17 against our 4 major rivals (GT, UT, UF, and AU), has one 2 SEC Championships in our very competitive and unparelled conference and gotten us to the championship game of our conference 5 times in 12 years; and currently sports an overall record of 117-39 (.750): MNC’s are a function of being good and lucky both at the same time, for comparison Jim Donnan was 6-14 against those same four rivals and hereis where Richt stacks up against a number of legendary coaches and current top tier college coaches:

        Bobby Bowden, (377-129-4) (.743)
        Bear Bryant, (323-85-17) (.780)
        Lavell Edwards, (257-101-3) (.716)
        Woody Hayes, (238-72-10) (.759)
        Bo Schembechler (234-65-8) (.804)
        Vince Dooley (201-77-10) (.715)

        Steve Spurrier (207-77-2) (.727)
        Nick Saban (157-55-1) (.737)
        Gary Patterson (116-34) (.773)
        Les Miles (113-41) (.734)
        Urban Meyer (116-23) (.835)
        Mack Brown (232-116-1) (.665)

        My point is the odds of an upgrade are very very very low. The key to winning in the SEC is defense, lest we forget.

        • Know One Knows You're a Dawg

          Good points. Richt has rebooted the program since 2009 and done many of the things a new coach would have done. The result has been a strong upward trajectory in the program, much as one would expect from a new, good coach. Richt deserves credit for all of this.

    • So top 5 finalist…

      How come nobody is mentioning Bobo for any of the HC vacancies?

      That said, if the Dawgs win a title, Bobo is forever forgiven for all his foibles.

  2. That Bobo is a real honey!

  3. ChicagoDawg

    Not exactly popular sentiment, but balance is exceedingly important…. unless you want safeties playing at linebacker depth to stop your 10 runs in 10 attempts approach…. or safeties playing 25yds off the LOS on each hash to cover over the top with edge rushers being shot out of a cannon because all you do is pass…. it would be great if the offense was so bad ass that they could be one dimensional whenever they feel the urge, but the fact is GA plays a pro-style, play action offense that requires defenses to play the entire field and respect run and pass — that doesn’t happen without some concerted effort at obtaining some degree of balance…doesn’t mean 50:50 purity, but it does generally require something inside of a 60:40 spread

    • SCDawg

      Balance, to me, doesn’t mean a 50/50 or even a 60/40 split. It means being able to run against a defense defending the pass, and passing against a defense defending the run. Hell, run it 20 times in a row if there are 5 D-backs out there defending the pass. Throw it 20 times in a row if they put 8 in the box play after play. Just take what the defense gives you.

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        ^^This. +1,000.

      • ChicagoDawg

        Of course. However, no defense is going to leave 5 DBs on the field as you run off 20 belly dives in a row for 8yds per carry. The take what the defense gives you is a common theme with Bobo and Richt. Have they blown a series or stalled momentum from time to time of course? Yes, but by an large offensive production has typically not been the problem with program in the Richt/Bobo era. The seasons in which UGA has struggled have almost always been when the defense was below par (i.e. the Willie years).

        • SCDawg

          I do not disagree with that statement at all-third and Willie was tough to endure. What I don’t like to see with “balance” is running the ball simply because the passing game has been working-or vice versa-for the sake of keeping it balanced. I am very pleased with what Bobo has done this year.

          I think a valid criticism of Bobo was him calling too many first and bomb passes, followed by a draw play, then getting us into third and long. Not that I complained too loudly with the first and bomb to Malcolm Mitchell on Saturday, of course…

        • The other Doug

          “However, no defense is going to leave 5 DBs on the field as you run off 20 belly dives in a row for 8yds per carry.”
          Do you consider Tech a defense?

    • You shut up! If you’re going to offer praise you need to mix in at least 40% criticism too.

      Winking emoticon face thing.

  4. heyberto

    I was thinking about the balance thing, and specifically, Mike Leach’s definition of it. I felt like we’ve been seeing that, particularly late in the season. Again, I’m not the best x’s and o’s guy, but I feel like we’ve seen a lot more diversity in the involvement of various offensive positions…. But that’s why I ask the question of whether I’m wrong or not.

    • ChicagoDawg

      Leach has a point to some minor degree in that he, and his forefather Hal Mumme view balance as distribution of the ball to various personnel. However, their attack was/is predominately pass oriented (obviously), which allows a defense to almost always have an extra DB on the field so a to defend the pass. Also, they typically have very little capability to throw over the defense as everything, almost by necessity (because the defense is set up to rush the passer and have a one less LB on the field), is underneath. That, despite Leach’s protestations to the contrary, is not balanced.

    • Krautdawg

      We’ve been able to diversify much more because (a) we have a deep group of reliable receivers and (b) we’ve got a veteran quarterback. That allows us to let coverage dictate where the ball is thrown. The result is that we spread throws to multiple receivers/TEs. But if Bama leaves Rhett McGowan uncovered all night, we’ll keep throwing it to him.

  5. HVL Dawg

    Balance = tailbacks who can bust one for 30 on any given play.

    • Agree. I think the Senator was giving us some “tongue in cheek” when reporting balance from Bobo’s mouth. In reality, I don’t care(nor do some) about balance so long as we are ripping long runs one after another. I don’t want the little bird on his shoulder screaming “balance” if we are stuffing it down their throat with the run.

  6. mwo

    Clearly, Mark Richt has lost control of the Frank Broyles Award.

    • This made me LOL out loud.

      • paul

        The fact that something makes you laugh out loud, out loud makes me laugh out loud. So, laughing about laughing? Is that meta laughing?

        • Rhymerdawg

          Technically, meta means along with or together and sometimes around. So it would not be correct to call it meta laughing if you meant laughing about laughing. The most correct usage in the context would seem to imply the word choice of dia-laughing. Just being a nerdy.

  7. Merk

    Want some fun? Go to ESPN and look at the SEC Championship Poll. Only 1 state has UGA beating Bama. Everyone else is for Bama, with the total at 66% Bama- 34% UGA.

    Looks like ESPN’s meme that we do not belong here is working quite well for them.

    • It is not that they are “for” Alabama. It’s just that they have money on the game and they need that money to buy baby some new shoes.

    • Mayor of Dawgtown

      I for one am absolutely fine with the Dawgrading by ESPN at this point. It means nothing. As long as the Dawgs win they control their own destiny. I actually am looking forward to Holtz and crew having to eat crow on national TV. When UGA beats Bama watch the tune change then.

      • OKDawg

        If UGA wins, the story will be how could a Saban-led team squander such an opportunity? It will point the blame at player execution only and how Bama gave it away. That story has already written itself.

        • The story will be that Bama wasn’t that good. Still wont be surprised to see espn push for Florida in champ game if we win. Hope Pollack hits Palmer with a veggie subway if that happens.

        • Dawgfan Will

          As far as I am concerned, if we beat Bama ESPN can make whatever excuses it wants. We’ll still be playing for a natty.

  8. William H

    I’m guilty of bashing Bobo from time to time. For the most part for not being aggressive enough or not making adjustments when needed (of course this is in the past) . I’ve made the statement that we will never win a NC with him calling the plays before. So now after he went to his coaching classes out west. this past summer it seems that now I might have to eat crow but I’m sure I won’t be eating alone and the table is gonna be full. I hope Bobo makes crow my favorite dish. GO DAWG!!!!!

  9. Bubs

    The Bobo criticism up to this point still boggles the mind.

    Case in point, Thanksgiving day my family and I are discussing UGA football. They talk about the usual good things and then, all of a sudden, the conversation turns to Bobo and how terrible he is. How he is the only thing holding this team back. I was truly shocked. I waited a second to respond then simply asked, “What more do you want?” It’s as if they expect the offense to score TDs every drive.

    No OC can do what the anti-Bobo folks want. Perfection is always the goal, but it will never be achieved by any offense that has, or will, ever play the game.

    • Normaltown Mike

      What irks me is when some clod says: we need play-calling to go back to Coach Rick (sic).

      As if CMR’s patent stretch play and the seven step drop are just waiting to turn Georgia into the next Air Raid Offense.

    • Merk

      Here are some things for you to ponder about Bobo during the Murray years:

      1- They have not had the #1 RB return from the previous year. (In 2011 we actually lost the #1 & 2 backs).(In 2012 we lost the #1 back and #3 back, and in both ’11 & ’12 we started freshman backs). Hell even at FB we have had a different starter each year.

      2-The O-line has not returned more than 3 starters from the previous year. (This was a recruiting issue that is being fixed at least). This year we replaced center and LT, which are far and away the 2 of the most important people on the line.

      Considering those 2 things, most teams Offense would have sucked balls. Instead we brought in 3 Top RBs over the last 2 years and got solid play in ’11 and superb play this year from them.

      The O-line is still hurting us, but Bobo and Murray have both worked well at not letting it stop them (except in the SC game).

      All that and we are not only thriving on O, but in the top in many categories.

      • The Lone Stranger

        Think about if, IF, Murray returns in ’13 with those backs and that seasoned OLine that will return in full. But wait, what, there is still the matter of the SEC and BCS games to tackle first! Good days to be a Dawgs fan.

  10. sniffer

    My beef with Bobo began with what seemed to be an underutilization of AJ Green. We had the best offensive player in the country (my opinion) and often didnt look his direction for what seemed entire quarters and even entire halves. I thought Bobo over thought the thing and outsmarted himself believing the defense would focus on Green, so he went away from our best player. Second guessing him now is pointless. Cudo’s to him and the way he has schemed and game planned this year. Its been a wonder to behold.

  11. Rocket Dawg

    I have defended Bobo for years when the nutbags who obviously don’t know football have ranting and raving about how bad a job he is doing. I don’t care who you are as an OC, if you don’t have a decent offensive line and at least a semblence of a running game you will not be successful. Having a veteran QB who knows the offense inside and out doesn’t hurt either.

    With the proliferation of “Xbox Offensive Coordinators” all of these bozos think that they should score on every play or every drive and quite honestly in some situations a punt is not a bad play.

    Congrats to Mike for getting some long overdue recognition.

    • King Jericho

      The exact reason I’m just fine with a draw play on 3rd and long on our side of the field.

      • mg4life0331

        I totally agree with the both of you. The lack of a decent Oline can keep you from running a bunch of plays. I remember a couple of 3rd and long draw plays on our side of the field against Auburn last year, with Carlton no less and getting a first down or two.

  12. Will Trane

    Xs and Os. Bobo.
    Top 3 OC’s in SEC…Dawgs, A&M, & Gators…in that order.
    Top complainer about Bobo…me. But I will say this, Bobo would be my pick not only in the SEC, but all of D1. Try not to think of the Carolina game. This was and still is a very young, inexperienced offense that spent pretty much one whole month on the road. Has a 3 year starter at QB, but managing him is a full time chore.
    Will Friend. If the Dawgs rush for over 200+, Will Friend will be my pick for top position coach in SEC. Will and the Seven Dwarfs against the Red Elephants. Get it done Will Friend and the O line. Time to make a name for every guy on the Oline. Explosion in unison off the line with outstanding pad level and technique. Want to see a 1980 O line performance. Control the LOS.

  13. charlottedawg

    Happy for Bobo, now go figure out out how to handle the most physical front seven you’ll have faced all year, and for God’s sakes slip Murray a Prozac or something will ya?

    • The Lone Stranger

      I’ve a strong sense that Murray is the player who wins this game Saturday.

    • No slip him three valium on a full stomach. He will look like he’s walking on water. But he can never do that again unless we play ND. then he can never take them again….cause they are habit forming.

  14. Cousin Eddie

    I feel like a freshman kicker who is great but sporatic has led Richt (through Bobo’s playcalling) to be more aggresive in attacking the endzone rather than settling for 3 pts.

    • Bubs

      This cannot be understated. The best thing about this year is, more often than not, our drives have ended in TDs rather than FGs. Play-calling that gets the ball across the goal line as opposed to setting up for the field goal has definitely benefited the O this year.

  15. Rusty

    If College Football stands, Mark Richt’s tenure (along with Bobo) will be looked back upon with fondness by Dawgfans everywhere….As in most things in life, we’ll put the bad memories in a closet and remember the good times, of which there will have been many. Including, I hope
    , this coming Saturday.

  16. Like any coordinator in the SEC, Bobo is going to get his fair share of criticism when things go wrong, and now it certainly appears he is getting credit for a good season. Over the years, some times it seemed entirely justified to me, and other times it was probably unfair. The balance that Gurley and Marshall have given our offense combined with Aaron’s preparation and the WRs’ consistency has really highlighted the soundness and logic of Bobo’s schemes and how effective they are when run properly. Bobo has never tried to cut corners or rely on gimmicks to try to “equalize” talent, and certainly that has created challenges for him.

    I think the fact that he has had to navigate around the OL/RB inconsistency (for whatever reason – S&C failures, injuries to our best OL prospects, RBs cycling through the program due to discipline or leaving earlier than expected) for his virtually entire tenure is a MAJOR extenuating circumstance. That said, at times it certainly has felt to me like he lacked appreciation of the value of possession of the football, particularly when we went long on 3rd and medium or being aggressive in OT of the UF game in 2010. I also generally think that he should have been more prepared with a “cold Aaron” package to help get Aaron back on track when he struggles.

    That said, I think the schemes we deploy are so fundamentally sound and the principles we employ in our offense are ones that typically win championships. I am very skeptical of any spread based offense (in any forms) that lacks an ability to run physically between the tackles or stretch a defense vertically. Bobo un

    Keep in mind that his responsibilities and value to our program go well beyond game day. He is generally regarded as one of our better recruiters, but quite frankly, it would be nice to see him take a more active role in shaping our offensive identity in a similar fashion to Grantham on the defense. For better or worse, we have a pretty good idea of how calm Richt’s demeanor is. I am not suggesting that Bobo try to be something he is not because of Richt, but I will be interested to see if Bobo spearheaded redefining us as a team with physical OL play in the coming years.

    re: balance. I think Bobo’s perspective is not that every game or series have balance. Rather, I think he schemes to be able to be equally good at both and shows a willingness to opt for one over the other when the opposing defense over commits to defend one or the other.

    I think next year will be a very interesting year. If we can evolve along the OL to where we become more consistent and physical, I think we can the cushion the blow from the transition from Aaron to Mason.

    • Cosmic Dawg

      This is a great post. Bobo probably got some criticism he did not deserve, probably got some that should have been on CMR.

      In fairness to the moderate fans who have been frustrated at times, as someone posted above, it can be infuriating to see us passing the heck out of the ball for 3 quarters then turtle up with three and out runs in the 4th to give the other side a sporting chance to catch up…there have been a few head scratchers over the years.

      But we also need to be a little more forgiving of these guys – truly they are under a lot of stress, and nobody can call a perfect game or make plays for the players.

      Congrats, CMB!!

    • charlottedawg

      My major gripe with the offensive coaching staff, Not isolated to Bobo is the lack of development of a consistent O line. They run a pro style offense, those positions are critical to our offensive success. You can’t continually say “well the O line didn’t give us much to work with as an offense”, as coaches it is your job to identify talent at said critical position and develop them to a level of competency so that your scheme can succeed. Hopefully Will Friend and Co. are working to reverse said trend.

    • BMan

      Great post mdcgtp. Wish I had read it before I posted what I did above in reply to another, as you’ve written it far better than I did.

  17. Cosmic Dawg

    +1 on retirement for the meme, Senator!

  18. Macallanlover

    The first half of CMR’s time at Georgia was spent with the defense carrying the load (although everyone thought Richt would dramatically uptick UGA’s offense from it’s past history.) The second half of his 12 years, the offense has been the workhorse, for the most part, and that coincides with Bobo’s elevation to OC. The continual whining about playcalling and lack of offensive production from UGA “fans” is baffling, but you have to remember this is the same group who wants to fire all/most of the coaches 2-3 times per season. The fact this offensive explosion has happened despite UGA’s lack of a dominant OL in any of the “Bobo years” is particularly impressive, especially in a defensive oriented league like the SEC. Playcalling is the most understood aspect of football, imo. Fans are actually expressing disappointment in the result of the play which is almost always determined by the execution of the offense, or the defensive alignment of what the DC has in place, and how they react/execute.

    Bottomline, Mike Bobo is a very solid OC and we are lucky to have him. I don’t know if he has the skill set to be a great HC or not, simply don’t know him well enough (and he stays pretty low-key in interviews.) I suspect he is happy to stay in Athens and wait for CMR to step aside if he thinks he is in line for the job. If not, someone will be giving him a ringy-ding in the next few weeks and he will get his shot at a mid-level program….if he wants it.

    • Well, as one of the playcalling whiners, I’d have to disagree with some of your assessment.

      My feeling about Bobo is that he’s always had it in him to be a first-rate playcaller. You’d see stretches in games like Auburn and Tech in 2010 when he’d shred the opposing defense apart, only to abandon what worked suddenly because the book said to be balanced.

      What I like about this season is that he seems much more assured in his own ability to call a game. I don’t expect every call to be perfect, but I do expect someone with his experience and instincts to trust himself more than he has in years past. And that’s why he deserves the kudos.

      Plus, if Murray comes back next year, look out for Georgia’s offense in 2013.

      • Brian Dawg

        If Murray does come back, UGA and AM will blow the doors of many records. Hoping he does….

      • Mayor of Dawgtown

        I hope you are right about Murray coming back for ’13 but I fear he’s gone already. In any event, Mason likely will be terrific even if Murray leaves and the O probably will not miss a beat next season either way.

        • Merk

          Murray has gotten 0 espn love. Thus he will be at best a 2nd or 3rd round take. While he will make some money doing this, he will not be secured for life like a 1st round pick getting millions upon millions for a few years. Also I think that he is smart enough to see if he stays he will have all the records, a masters degree, and probably a better shot at the 1st round.

      • Slaw Dawg

        Right. The Bobo calling plays the last couple of years isn’t quite the same guy who was calling plays earlier. We all, hopefully, get better at what we do the more often we do it. And, as others have said, he now has the tools to do what he wants to do. Running Carlton Thomas between the Tackles may get you a foot or 2 and an occasional burst for more. Running Todd Gurley (or Knowshon Moreno or Keith Marshall) there will often get you a few yards and sometimes much more.

        Let’s also remember the importance of QB stability. Georgia had 3 different starting QBs in each of 2008, 2009 and 2010, and 6 different starters between 2004-2010 (7 years). Murray’s now been at it 3 years–the longest period of stability in the Richt era since David Greene. That type of stability breeds QB confidence and communication in the linemen, receivers, RBs–and between the OC and QB. In fact, my biggest concern this week is whether Murray will be wound too tight, because that could seep into the rest of the O and Bobo. If he plays his game, Georgia is likely to win. If he doesn’t, it’ll take UF type turnovers by Bama for the Dawgs to pull it out.

      • Silver Creek Dawg

        We may need the 2013 O to carry us while the 2013 D grows up a bit. Gonna be awful green on that side of the ball.

      • paul

        I have done my fair share of blaming HoneyBobo on this blog. So much so I finally agreed not to do so anymore. You verbalize my frustration with his play calling perfectly. I often wished he would channel a little of the OBC (call it until they stop it). He seemed to refuse to keep calling what was working in favor of “balance.” Drove me bat…, well, insane. I agree that this year he does appear more confident. Go HoneyBobo!

      • HVL Dawg

        I wonder if you’d care to guess what percentage of the plays get changed by Aaron Murray at the line.

        You could say that Bobo calls 2 or 3 choices for each play and Aaron chooses which one we run. Do you really think Bobo called the look in throw to the flanker or was Aaron and the WR correctly reading the blitz and adjusting? Or did Bobo really call the back shoulder sideline route or did Aaron see a corner playing a soft 1 on 1 and call off the tight end up the middle?

        Bobo’s offense is schemed to look at the defense and change plays at the line. Bobo’s offense requires a bright quarterback, bright wide receivers, and a bright tailback. When was the last time we had that total combination?

      • Macallanlover

        I would not place you among the “whiney” element of Bobo, or Richt, critics. Your comments are very balanced with you giving credit as often as you question. I never feel expressing concerns or inviting discussion on our performance is out of line, just feel it should be civil and constructive. The fans I refer to are those who come unglued on every unsuccessful 3rd down call, red zone failure, or loss. They tend to yell violently in the stands, or take to the web/phones to spew venom on their target as if perfection is all that will be acceptable to the Red and Black.

        I don’t object to a fake punt that fails, a draw play on 3rd and 24 that doesn’t fool the defense, or a dive play that fails to score on the goalline or doesn’t net the first down on short yardage plays. Like everyone, I hope those plays succeed but usually find an ineffective block, a back that makes a bad cut, a good guess/call by the DC, or a great effort by a defender more the reason for failure than the acutual call. The better discussions are the ones that deal with offensive philosophy, not playcalls. Your feeling that the drive for balance is a major driver of the Bobo playcalling decisions is much more interesting. As we have seen, there is more than one definition of “balance”, but it is a subject that can be explored on a higher level than individual play failures.

        I would certainly like to hear CMB’s thoughts on the issue and see if his decisions are based on a play count of pass/run, or if he switches away from one or the other to keep the defense honest, or tries to catch the DC off guard.

  19. Take one part maturation as a play-caller, two parts dynamic running back, one part prolific QB that can make all of the throws, and a heaping portion of WR targets that will catch the ball, and you have a Georgia offense that can move the ball and put up points. Some of these ingredients have been missing in the past, and it felt like the offense has bogged down in crunch times. The balance that was hoped for was unattainable due to deficiencies in personnel, ability, maturity, whatever.

    The rub – for me – came when I (in all of my infinite wisdom limited understanding) could tell balance was unattainable, but they plowed forward into the face of cannon fire anyway. Or, they would find something that worked only to leave it when they needed to make a play in crunch time. Or, Bobo would call a brilliant play followed by utter silliness. But, honestly, I can’t think of a time this year that I have thought any of those things. Maybe Bobo is more confident in his players. Maybe he doesn’t feel like he has to trick defenses, but instead he can line them up, run the ball, use play action, and beat you with an effective game plan and talent instead of trying to hit a home run on a gimmick.

    Maybe everything the offense does looks better when the defense is destroying people and the special teams are competent. I don’t know, but I’m happy they have figured it out. What I do know: Bobo’s success certainly makes it easier to identify fans that don’t know their asses from holes in the ground. If they still think Bobo is incompetent, then you know right away that you should completely ignore anything they say.

  20. Scott

    This headline in Alabama newspaper is attracting attention today: Bulldog Swagger has come Unleashed

    http://www.al.com/alabamafootball/index.ssf/2012/11/bulldogs_swagger_has_come_unle.html#incart_river

    • PTC DAWG

      While Saban whines about where the loser of the game might be headed. You can’t read too much into any of it.

      Me, I like the way the Dawgs have played in the last month.

  21. AusDawg85

    It’s fair to retire the meme, but there was a reason “1st & bomb” and “Carlton Thomas dive play on third and long” was a recurring frustration. We’ve seen none of that this year, and it’s a real testament to the maturation of CMB, CMR’s vow to be more involved leading up to this season, excellent recruiting, a continuously improving Murray, a deep bench of receivers, and Gurshall.

    Not taking anything from him, but with all those weapons, he damn well have better have had a great season.

    And I still have goosebumps thinking about that fullback counter-dive at the goal line. I can see that being a game winner while the Bama D keys on Gurley.

    • Rocket Dawg

      The difference between this year and previous years is that we have been hitting 1st and bomb, if you look at Murray’s numbers he is averaging over 10 yards a pass on 1st down. Similarly the draw on 3rd down has been successful due to the fact that the safeties are playing back expecting the pass. I don’t think the playcalling has changed all that much (grated the Pistol and some of the other wrinkles that are new this year have helped) but by and large we are running the same plays. The execution has just been much, much better.

      • BMan

        1st and bomb works better when it’s 1st and Mitchell (who seems damn near impossible to overthrow), and 3rd and Carlton isn’t nearly as effective as 3rd and Gurley.

        • AusDawg85

          Troof in all the above. We’ve seen a greater mix of the TE’s and FB’s in the game plan. Not so many of those naked WR quick screens. The overall mix has been better. But maybe that was all a function of Murray…both his capability to manage a greater play mix than in the past and/or the checking-off at the LOS.

          The best play mixes are always those Gurshall runs for 30+ yards though!!

          • Rocket Dawg

            Amen brother! I grew up on the “Goal Line Stalker” and nothing warms my heart like an 80 yard touchdown run.

    • WFdawg

      I don’t know if Bama has paid attention to recent trends in our O, but I’m actually expecting the FB counter-dive in that situation now, esp. with Zander at FB. Course, folks probably knew we were going to run it with Brannan Southerland too, back in the day, but that didn’t mean they could stop it.

  22. W Cobb Dawg

    I believe CMB has turned a corner this season, and that’s a great thing for the Dawgs. The O is more focused on scoring and going north-south, instead of east-west.

    Lets not forget CMB was within an inch of being dumped with Wille, Fabris & Jancek. Anyone who thinks CMB didn’t deserve criticism has selective memory. Go back and watch the 2010 season, when he had 10 starters return and finished a 6-7 season with an awful performance against UCF.

    I’ll be happy to join in the CMB victory dance if the O performs better in this week’s secc than they did in last year’s secc.

    • Rocket Dawg

      Not to pick nits but the one guy who was new on Offense was RFr Aaron Murray. The playcalling was conservative at the beginning of the year due to the fact that he was new and we were missing #8 for the first 4 games (I will never forgive the NCAA for that one). A lot of that season was Bobo calling a play and it either worked or didn’t, not too much audibling going on at that time.

    • Macallanlover

      I don’t believe Bobo was anywhere near close to being fired with those other assistants. And it is a little more complex than saying he is doing a good job because our numbers are better and wins up, just not that simple.

      And who, specifically, was “off” that night against UCF: Bobo, Murray, the OL, receivers,or maybe the RBs? Perhaps they all had some bad seafood the night before, or were drugged. Headline readers and folks who draw conclusions from boxscore numbers are just too much. That performance was so much like the Music City game against Boston College, and Bobo didn’t call plays then, and none of the current players were even there. In both of those games it comes closer to “this isn’t a bowl we want to even be here for” and I guess that happens to a lot teams disappointed with their season and going through the motions. Look at Alabama and Utah’s bowl game? Do you think that stud Alabama offensive line really couldn’t block Utah’s pass rushers? They had one guy missing and looked like a sieve.

      Lower level bowl games are questionable anyway, and those played in the cold are worthless. That is a reward? Fun? If it weren’t for the extra practices I would be for passing on all but the Top Tier bowls.

      • Rocket Dawg

        That is exactly what happened against UCF, the players were pissed and didn’t want to be there (can’t say that I blame them) and their play reflected that.