Aaron Murray, bright spot

Even the most rabidly pessimistic Dawg fan would have to admit that Aaron Murray’s play to date has been a pleasant surprise.  In fact, you could argue, judging from this statistical comparison with four of his predecessors, that he’s not getting enough credit for his start.

Two things in particular which jump out from those numbers are (1) how consistent the redshirt freshman has been…

Another telling statistic is the variation in the passer ratings for each quarterback over that five game span, i.e., the difference in each player’s efficiency between their best game and their worst game over the five game stretch described above.

Greene:  131.1 (215.5 – 84.4)

Shockley:  157.7 (236.6 – 78.9)

Stafford:  94.2 (203.3 – 109.1)

Cox:  156.31 (256.00 – 99.69)

Murray:  18.19 (157.27 – 139.08)

What this tells me is that Murray, despite not having the gaudy statistical game that all of these guys had at one point during their five game stretches, is far more consistent – at least to this point in the season…

and (2) that he’s amassed those stats despite only having A.J. Green as a target in one game (a game in which Durham didn’t play, by the way).

His early play has caught his head coach by surprise.

“Aaron has done well. I think he’s thrown for over 60 percent. I don’t know exactly how many TD’s he’s thrown but his touchdown-interception ratio is very good. He’s making decisions that are very wise so far. He just hasn’t thrown the ball up for grabs. Even the pick last week, it was a situation where he might have held the ball a hair or two too long, but he was getting hit as he released it and didn’t see the guy coming. He’s overall made very good decisions on not throwing the ball up for grabs. I think his ability to run is even better than I thought it would be. His ability to avoid trouble and to actually cross the line of scrimmage and get some first downs, that’s been even better than I thought it would be. I knew he was a good athlete, but I didn’t know he would be able to make that many plays. There are times where he needs to get to his second receiver a little bit quicker, and he needs to be a little more accurate here and there like most guys. To wrap up what he’s done considering he’s a first-year starter and a freshman, he has done very well. I’ve been pretty proud of him.”


UPDATE: It looks like Murray won’t have his full ensemble of receivers this week, either.



Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

44 responses to “Aaron Murray, bright spot

  1. JoeE

    I hate to beat this drum again, but Murray’s current performance makes the decision to go 7-5 with Joe Cox last year look even dumber in hindsight. As well as he’s done so far this year, he’d be a badass with some real game experience from last year, and we probably wouldn’t have lost the Kentucky game either.


  2. X-Dawg

    Is there a typo somewhere? 18.19 passer rating for Murray? I know this was a cut & paste, but methinks that Chucky-O is a little off.


  3. etenndawgfan

    To think, QB play was my biggest apprehension heading into the season…


  4. Pingback: Sunday Snacks: One and F— « Rachel G. Bowers

  5. Vious

    The fact that AM is doing what he is doing with the laughable OL, no running game, no AJ, and pathetic coaching


    • Puffdawg

      Is it possible that “The fact that AM is doing what he is doing with the laughable OL, no running game, no AJ…” could be due to execellent coaching?


      • King Jericho

        Couldn’t be. They’re too busy calling the wrong plays and instigating the players into situations to get arrested to be able to have a positive influence anywhere in our program. That’s why we’ve been blown out in every single loss!


        • Prov

          Don’t forget they also caused the BP oil spill, Hurricane Katrina, the current economic climate, Islamic jihad and broke up the Beatles. Their ineptitude knows no limits.


          • Dooley's Wig

            I thought Yoko Ono did ALL that.

            Found value in keeping her music around, though. You put it on when company is over, its late, big day tomorrow and you’re getting tired.

            It makes folks leave! Then you can go to bed. (maybe the redcoats can do a tribute to her Saturday)


      • Don’t you dare talk about someone coaching well….

        Seriously, I was thinking about that very thing in the bar in Boulder after the game.


      • Reptillicide

        The question is – who is more responsible for Murray’s success: Bobo or Richt? Both?


      • carolinadawg

        Yes, thats very possible. I’m sure Plant High School had excellent coaches when Murray was there.


        • Puffdawg

          And Les Miles won a natty when Murray was there.


          • Scorpio Jones, III

            don’t be childish Puff


            • Puffdawg

              Well, I had a long response typed out about how if you watched Mett’s improvement in his short time in Athens and still think our QB coaching stinks you’re beyond rational discussion and analysis. Also was going to note the success of 4 of the last 5 starting QBs for UGA and mention the one who wasn’t “successful” led our team to a top scoring SEC offense. But then I realized I would be wasting my time pointing out that maybe, just maybe, something is actually positive in Athens. My bad.


              • carolinadawg

                I’m glad you’re satisfied with our coaching staff. I guess you’re satisfied with our 1-4 record too. Good for you. I have higher standards and expect more from our team and our coaches.


                • Puffdawg

                  Yes, I am satisfied with the job Bobo/Richt have done this season teaching Aaron Murray how to play QB. And I take it you are not. That does not mean I am happy with the play calling or adapting to Murray’s strengths, but those are separate issues.

                  Though inaccurate, nice touch on the 1-4 comment there, slick. 😉


                • carolinadawg

                  I guess you’d praise the captain of the Titanic for remembering to release the hawsers before leaving the dock too. As I said, pretty low standards. But if thats all you want, then more power to you.


                • Puffdawg

                  No. I’d praise the captain for making sure his pilot was prepared to steer the ship before the journey began. Then I’d be pissed at him for failing to realize how to maneuver the ship to get maximum efficiency. You see, the pilot was ready to go. The problem was that when they saw the iceberg, at the captain’s orders, they slowed down instead of speeding up to improve their turn radius. They were too dang conservative. Much like Bobo is failing to use Murray as he should (more rollouts, etc), the Titanic captain had properly prepared the pilot, he just didn’t know how to use him.


                • AmpedDawg

                  I think that my oldest son, at a whopping 8 years of age, makes similar false assumptions when analyzing things that are said to him. Point X doesn’t necessarily lead to Conclusion Y. David Greene, D. J. Shockley, and Matthew Stafford were very successful college quarterbacks that showed incredible progress over their years in Athens. To point out that this might be due to coaching doesn’t lead me to conclude that Puff is satisfied in general with the coaching. And please don’t throw out “but what about Cox?” He was a Super 11 QB out of high school just like Stafford. Perhaps he just wasn’t as talented as the coaches thought that he was going to become with some coaching. That happens with players at EVERY school in the nation.


                • Mayor of Dawgtown

                  Plus, Cox only got to play one season. Even though he was a senior he was really a freshman in game experience and made some freshman mistakes, just like Staff and Greene did their first year. The only first year UGA starter at QB under Richt who didn’t was DJ and he played about 20-25% of the time his first 3 years–not a rookie when he did get the call to start.


  6. Otto

    Given those #s and how few TDs UGA has scored, I would assume Murray has been allowed to call a more conservative game.


  7. Will Trane

    Perfer his ratings among his current peers rather than past Dawg QBs. That is with whom he is competing and where he is competing.

    Where he sits in D1 stats ties to what CMR is saying. CMR had 2 top QBs at FSU. But CMR is not the only coach is SEC that has noticed Murray.

    Crowell or any other top RB wants to go somewhere other than UGA, that’s Ok. But most championship teams have a top notch QB.

    In my view UGA will have a great stable of QBs the next 4-5 years. Losing Stafford a year early and the arm trouble Murray had his frosh year has impacted Dawgs performance.

    Think back to the fumble at Colorado, if he could have read that rush, checked out, and had an outside release. Colorado had two weeks to prepare for him and he had one after another long road trip. The “kid” has played 3 D1 schools on the road. A very tough assignment.

    Here out will say how much he takes those lessons learned to the next level. Will be fun watching it.

    Wish Murray the best. He deserves it because it is obvious he has put in the time.


    • 69Dawg

      I’m sorry to rain on the parade but we took the number 1 draft choice QB and combined him with the number 12 draft choice RB and an NFL starting WR Mo Mass and won how many SECC. Zero zip nada. Football games are won in the trenches and we are losing them in the trenches so I don’t give a rat’s rear end about QB’s RB’s or WR’s.


  8. Puffdawg


    Was looking at some of Aaron’s stats and I calculated his rushing stats if you bakced out the sacks…. he’d be a top 20 rusher in the SEC. Not too shabby either.


  9. dudetheplayer

    Check out that 256.0 by ‘ole Coxy.

    Gat damn.


  10. Irishdawg

    What I like most about the kid is his toughness. He’s taken some shots and he pops right back up.

    I liked that about Stafford, too. He made bad decisions sometimes, but he took his lumps. It apparently was good prep for the NFL, where the Lions are seemingly not going to get him a line that will allow him to remain vertical for more than six minutes.


  11. Will Trane

    From my replies you can tell I like Boise State and their offense. Did not until Peterson came on. And I like their O line Coach Huff. They are the guys who got me to watch their pad levels…it is hard to tell if they will rush or pass.

    If you watch Bama v Florida, you can almost always tell if Bama will run or pass.

    In 2009 Boise State went through 11 O line combos with their freshman QB. Their rushing numbers were down. It cost them in the game with TCU. This year their O line is settled and their 2nd year QB and TEs are lethal.

    Just watch their team speed, tempo, the O line push and pad level, and how their QB does not hold the ball (he had that problem last year like Murray does this year).

    I think the Dawgs can have an offense as productive as Boise because I think we have better players.

    When you stand in the Dawg walk did it ever occur to you the Dawgs size and etc. vs. what you have seen other teams. It did me. Always been amazed by it .

    The other thing I have a question about other than the mat drills and weigth program is how much these guys run. I think not enough in the off season.


  12. Russ The Temporary Mascot

    Now that my days as mascot are coming to a close, I have to tell you a story about when I was a pup.

    Every day Charles would would take Uga, me, and the other pups out on a walk out across this creek.

    As the lead pup, Charles gave me basic training on how the read the water level in the creek to determine if I should jump it or run right through it. The other pups would always follow me.

    On these walks, Charles would never tell me exactly what to do. Sometimes I didn’t read the creek right and all the pups would get washed down the creek back to where we started.

    The pups got mad at Charles because they thought he was always telling me to do the wrong thing. They even called him “stupid” behind his back.

    Charles took a lot of heat but never let on that it was always my decision.

    Today, I want to let you know I can read that creek better than any dog in Savannah.

    Our walks are almost always fun and all the big dogs trust me.

    Charles was very proud.

    This is how I became Russ The Temporary Mascot.

    See ya Sattidy.



  13. Certainly am not going to defend the OC but the Dawg’s QB position coach has a proven 10 year track record that proves wothout a doubt that he is one of the best. Wait till we see what Mett. learned from him when we watch him play for LSU. CMB will always be able to find work as a QB coach. Nuff Said.