Vanderbilt takes on more of the trappings you’d expect of a big-time football program in Tennessee.
Category Archives: James Franklin Is Ready To Rumble
The line is open, so grab a plate.
- SEC Network announcement is postponed in the wake of the Boston Marathon tragedy.
- I don’t know what it is about Les Miles and head coach rankings, but Athlon, it’s real simple: any head coach with a national title and a program that’s a perennial contender in the SEC West is a better head coach than Dan Mullen, for starters.
- Another weird list. I mean, Jeremy Hill is one of the top ten players to watch in the SEC? Good player and all, but still…
- Texas State’s move to FBS football has its costs.
- Georgia Tech decides it needs to go shopping for recruits out of state, while Vanderbilt keeps adding on Georgia kids. I guess James Franklin agrees with the Genius: “I certainly think there’s people in Georgia that can meet the academics.”
- Year2 looks at how technology is running ahead of NCAA recruiting rules. No surprise there.
- He also maps SEC historical series here and SEC East historical series here, if you’re interested.
- Possible opening day note: Clemson loses its starting TE to ACL tear suffered in spring game.
James Franklin tweeted this: “No 1 can offer combination of attributes we can,no 1,best of both worlds,if u want 2 settle in life this probably isn’t place 4 u anyway!”
Now I get that this is really little more than puffery for the product he’s selling, so I can’t say I’m offended. But I can’t say I feel too bad about how he got treated by a radio host for the comment, either.
Host: “Do you believe if a player you are recruiting decides to go elsewhere that they are settling in life by not going to play for Vanderbilt?”
Franklin with a laugh: “You’re a beauty. What I found funny about that whole thing is that’s really been a consistent theme with us about having the ability to come to Vanderbilt and chase all your dreams at the highest level. If you look at the graduation rate, I think they speak for themselves. People can try to create this into a story. The graduation rates speak volumes when you look at what these schools are doing, other schools.”
Franklin sidestepped the question pretty well, so the host asked him again, and this was Franklin’s response:
“You’re real interesting (Franklin laughing). What I’m telling you is Vanderbilt is an unbelievable opportunity and if you look at graduation rates — people should be ashamed of themselves when they look at graduation rates what’s going on in this country. And Vanderbilt can give you an opportunity like very few places can. That’s what I’m saying. You can put words — you can say whatever you want. That’s what I’m saying.”
The subject was brought up again and Franklin got defensive again and asked the host to “relax” before saying that he “didn’t realize I was coming on this show to get jumped and try to create problems.”
I’m not sure what the version of “lie down with pigs, get up smelling like garbage” is for dickheads, but when you’re the overly aggressive type and claim your behavior is necessary in defense of your school, you shouldn’t be surprised when the audience assumes the worst about anything you put out there.
“I don’t tweet when I’m angry or upset,” he said.
Well, let’s check the tape on that.
You know, he’s right. No cell phone in sight there.
There are two ways to paint a picture of an opposing program to
gullible kids recruits, according to James Franklin.
“It’s all over the place. We hear it consistently from a lot of different angles. I think when you have a really good product to sell, you can focus on your product. I don’t necessarily think it’s negative recruiting when people do some research and find some facts. I don’t have any problem with that. There’s no oasis out there. There’s no perfect place. Every place has strengths and weaknesses. I have no problem with people doing research and showing it. But when it’s just negative recruiting without any facts to back it up, that’s the stuff that’s a little frustrating when you’re dealing with 17-year-old and 18-year-old kids that can be easily influenced. Or for a family that really hasn’t been through the recruiting process and they don’t understand, it can be overwhelming. That’s why the trust you have with the young man, his family and his high school coach is very, very important. Because you’re always going to get negative recruiting. Everybody is going to deal with it to a degree. That’s part of the nature of the beast of coaching and competing in the SEC.”
What do you want to bet that Franklin considers himself to be more in command of the facts than any other coach in the conference?
Seriously, what does this guy say when the cameras aren’t on him?
This may be the first positive Coaches Poll story I’ve ever read.
… I heard plenty about that dreadful prediction on Twitter from the moment the Tide’s butt-kicking of the Irish began. Then, I get to the coaches convention in Nashville a few hours later. I run into Vanderbilt coach James Franklin. He tells me about all of the hate mail and such that he received for having voted Notre Dame No. 4 in the USA Today coaches poll last month… Franklin said Vandy had played Wake Forest the week after Notre Dame did, so through film study, Franklin had become very familiar with the Irish and how good they actually were.
Give Franklin credit for not traveling with the herd there, but I think that’s little more than a case of the exception proving the rule.
James Franklin got the number of the truck that hit his team last Saturday.
“I’ve been doing this for almost 20 years now, and I thought that was as impressive of an offense as I’ve seen in terms of a veteran quarterback, physical offensive line, physical running backs and speed on the perimeter as well as size.”
Of course, I can’t help but notice he didn’t have any compliments for Georgia’s defense.
Could there be a more obvious Musical Palate Cleanser for this post than this?
Coaches gonna coach. Players gonna play. So let’s put our version of the rematch to the side for now and commence firing random bullet points.
- Okay, first the obvious: the defense isn’t going to have a problem with focus Saturday night. The worry is the opposite, that it comes out overly amped and struggles with gap assignments and overrunning plays that the Commodores’ offense successfully exploits.
- Speaking of those gap assignments and other blown matters, Georgia’s defense has given up eight big plays in its first three games. Here’s how that breaks down: those eight plays have yielded 333 yards, or 41.6 yards a play; the other 213 plays run so far against Georgia’s defense have averaged 3.3 yards.
- While we’re talking about coming out overly amped, here’s looking at you, Aaron Murray.
- I like Vandy’s defensive coordinator, Bob Shoop. It’s early, but he’s coaching the 11th best defense in the country. And it’s third nationally against the pass. You can tell his unit is well coached. It plays hard and is fundamentally sound. But it’s still Vanderbilt, which means the line is undersized and overall depth is an issue. Vanderbilt had fourth quarter leads in both of its losses this year.
- That being said, Georgia is by far the best offensive team the ‘Dores have played this year. The Dawgs’ #20 ranking in total offense is a good bit higher than South Carolina’s #47 and Northwestern’s #63.
- Both teams want to establish the run, and for the same reason – to draw one of the safeties out of pass coverage and into run support. Which team is likely to have more success doing so?
- Vanderbilt’s other problem with its offensive game plan is that it has two good receivers in Jordan Matthews and Chris Boyd, but little behind them. The two have combined for 29 of Vandy’s 43 receptions so far. So even if Grantham feels the need to cheat a little with safety run support, he’s still got a better chance to cover the receiving options with the secondary than Shoop does (especially if Georgia can run the ball out of one-back, four-receiver sets).
- With all the extra-curricular distractions in last year’s game, it’s easy to forget that Georgia had built a 16-point lead in the third quarter and appeared to have the game under control. Things unraveled because of 2011′s big bugaboo, bad special teams play. The ‘Dores had a 96-yard kickoff return for a score, blocked that late punt and survived two missed field goal attempts. If there’s one area that’s a cause for concern tomorrow, it’s Georgia’s punt return game, which hasn’t done much and saw a couple of muffs last week against FAU.
- The other development that swung the direction of last year’s game was the insertion of Jordan Rodgers into the game at quarterback. He didn’t throw the ball all that well (4-19, 31.3 passer rating), but he surprised the Dawgs by running the ball effectively (11 rushes for 80 yards). That seemed to open up Vanderbilt’s offense. Zac Stacy ran for almost 100 yards and Franklin made up for some of Rodgers’ lack of production in the passing game by pulling off a couple of trick plays, one of which went for a 45-yard TD. I don’t expect Grantham to be asleep at the switch this year, no matter who starts at quarterback for Franklin. (And remember that Missouri’s James Franklin had a poor day running the football against a Georgia D that was clearly prepared for him.)
- One other Vandy coach who impresses me is the guy who coaches the offensive line, Herb Hand. He’s earned a spot in the GTP Hall of Fame for this quote, but he also happens to be good at his job. His problem is that he doesn’t have that much to work with. The Vanderbilt offensive line, as you might expect, isn’t particularly big by SEC standards. And it’s had its struggles, no doubt. That line yielded five sacks against South Carolina. Vandy only rushed for 62 yards in that game.
Bottom line here is that I think Georgia shuts down Vandy’s running game and Vanderbilt can’t do the opposite. The Dawgs had best be prepared to see a heavy dose of the dink and dunk passing game with an occasional trick play tossed in to see if they’re staying awake and aware. The line is somewhere in the neighborhood of two touchdowns and that strikes me as reasonable. Stay away from mistakes, grind the Commodores down and grab that second divisional win.
Oh, and don’t forget to shake hands after the game, fellas.
Those of you who want Saturday to be just another day at the office, so to speak, are going to find themselves a little disappointed as the week progresses, I’m afraid.
Attitude and a liquored-up Sanford Stadium should make for an interesting game night atmosphere.