Daily Archives: August 16, 2014

Old habits die hard.

With all the usual caveats about preseason happy talk in mind, I still like what this little story represents:

Corey Moore had done the drill wrong, and Jeremy Pruitt wasn’t happy. He was even more unhappy when Moore began trying to explain why he had messed up.

“Is that what you’re gonna have, what we had last year, making excuses?” Pruitt said, according to Moore.

Moore, a senior safety, shook his head and said “no.” And Pruitt went on with the drill.

“That’s what we need,” Moore said later in an interview. “Some people hate it. But, at the end of the day, it’s gonna be for the best.”

This, too.

“He puts you in every scenario in football, live football,” Moore said. “That’s what we need, and what we didn’t have last year.”

Moore used this word to describe Pruitt: “Perfectionist.”

“He feels like if someone’s not doing their job in the program, you should confront them,” he said. “If he’s not doing his job, he wants you to confront him, and if you’re not doing your job he’s gonna confront you. I feel like that was our biggest thing last year, we didn’t have too many people confronting each other, and just taking accountability when we were wrong.”

Such as that time in practice.

Again, it may prove to be a lot of offseason talk. Four years ago, defensive players were also bullish on the changes brought by Todd Grantham. But Grantham’s changes were more schematic. Pruitt’s have been different and, the Bulldogs fervently believe, stronger.

As I’ve said repeatedly, the end of Martinez’ stint was marked by players who didn’t believe in their coaches.  Grantham came in and changed that attitude by showing that he knew football.  The problem was that his NFL-type approach left his players second guessing themselves, especially the young ones who struggled to learn his complicated system.  Pruitt seems to be aware that job one is getting the players’ confidence in themselves back.  But that means breaking down a lot of ingrained behavior he inherited when he took over.  Even if you think he’s a good enough coach to get his players where they need to be, it’s not likely to be a smooth, overnight transition.  More like fits and spurts… with the hope that some sort of corner gets turned by mid-season.  I guess we’ll know it’s working when Corey Moore stops making excuses.

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Envy and jealousy, one-liner edition

Nothing wrong with the occasional cheap shot at humor.  Gentry Estes gets my nod today.  He’s got a piece up about Georgia’s two smallest players, J.J. Green and Isaiah McKenzie.  Here’s one thing he had to say about the former vying for the starting spot at Star:

He hasn’t locked down the position, but he’s still on the short list.

Booyah!

He’ll be here all week, ladies and gentlemen.  Don’t forget to try the veal.

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Tulane football is Chantastic.

You may not know this, but Georgia Tech travels to Tulane the second week of the season.  Having a road game against a mid-major is bad enough, but here’s what makes it really special:

It took 14 minutes for Tulane fans to make a statement.

That’s how long single-game tickets to the Green Wave’s home opener against Georgia Tech, in the newly-constructed Yulman Stadium, were available to the general public.

Prior to Friday’s brief public sale, Tulane officials said it already sold all but 2,000 season tickets to the new stadium. Despite a slightly higher price tag – $50 for the opener, as opposed to $35 for the remainder of the season – calls flooded the Green Wave ticket office on Friday morning.

All without a single accompanying hot dog or Coke.  Somehow I doubt the same would have occurred at good ol’ BDS.

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Saturday morning buffet

It’s time to eat.

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Scrimmage, scrimmage

Stats from last night are here, if you’re into trolling.  The only thing of interest to me out of those is the run-pass ratio of 81/41.  Since that’s not a likely mix for the regular season, it looks like they wanted to test the candidates for the secondary early and often.

As for more general observations, from what Seth Emerson caught, it sounds like it was a sloppy night, perhaps because some of the kids were pressing in light of Richt raising the stakes.

Richt said he made clear prior to the scrimmage that it would be vital in deciding playing time going forward.

“Maybe some guys got a little uptight with that, I don’t know,” Richt said. “But there’s gonna be a lot more pressure when there’s 95,000 (in the stands) and a few million people watching. But there was just too much of that for this time of year.”

On a better note, Richt is keeping hope alive on one front.

Isaiah McKenzie did not participate in tonight’s scrimmage, but he will be ready to go for Saturday’s special teams scrimmage. Richt said McKenzie is in “heavy consideration” for both return jobs, especially punt return.

“It was one of the more exciting things about his high school career, that made me wanna go after him, because I thought his ability to return punts and kicks could help us a lot,” Richt said.

Bottom line:  still a lot of work to be done before Clemson comes to town.

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