Daily Archives: October 22, 2010

Mr. Steele keeps riding the pony.

He liked Aaron Murray big two weeks ago and he likes him tomorrow.

Aaron Murray, Georgia-I used redshirt frosh Murray a couple of weeks ago against Tennessee and called for him to have a career day and he had 266 yds (68%) with a 2-0 ratio and added 41 rush yds (5.9) and 2 TD’s. The Bulldogs and Murray had 4 straight losses w/out WR AJ Green at full health but have outscored their last two opp’s by a combined 84-14 with him 100%. This week Murray faces a Kentucky pass defense that is drained from the come-from-behind win against South Carolina and I look for Murray to keep putting up solid numbers and he gets the Bulldogs back to .500. Murray is a surprise pick with the fact that he is only a frosh and Kentucky is off a huge upset over South Carolina last week.



Filed under Georgia Football, Phil Steele Makes My Eyes Water

The Amazing Mr. Hamilton

It turns out that with no fanfare at all, Tennessee terminated Bruce Pearl’s employment contract in the wake of the NCAA letter of inquiry being issued in connection with several of Pearl’s recruiting practices.  If you haven’t seen Mike Hamilton’s termination letter, take a minute to read it.  It’s a doozy.

In light of the harsh terms contained in the letter, many people now wonder why Pearl hasn’t been completely dismissed from the program.  In fact, things are proceeding in the opposite direction.

Tennessee men’s basketball coach Bruce Pearl has worked without a formal contract for more than a month, but his boss said both sides are “in the process of finalizing” a new contract.

According to athletic director Mike Hamilton, the coach has been working under a “letter of appointment” since Sept. 9. Hamilton said he sent the proposed new contract to Pearl and his lawyers on Oct. 8, and the sides have since been working to complete the deal.

“We’ve made the decision — and Bruce knows it — that he’s our coach, and this is just a part of the formal process to get him back under the new contract with the new terms,” Hamilton said Thursday night. “Technically, he violated the terms of the previous contract, so that contract had to be terminated. There was a new contract [needed] as a result of that.”

“Technically, he violated the terms of the previous contract” has such an innocuous ring to it, doesn’t it?

I think about this in recalling something Pearl said when Junior was busy getting under everyone’s skin.

… During a Wednesday meeting, SEC commissioner Mike Slive intends to implement the Kiffin Rule. In other words, telling his coaches to stop the bull—-.

Whatever happened to The Golden Rule?

“He’s playing you guys perfect,” Tennessee hoops coach Bruce Pearl said of Kiffin.

Pearl is the guy who advised Kiffin that it’s good to be hated. That means you’re doing something right in the SEC.

“My goal was to be the least popular coach in the SEC in a year,” Pearl said. “He managed to do it in a week.

“I know one of the biggest problems when I took over was the players didn’t believe. What I’m saying is, your coach better believe. He’s got something different … I get him. I get him in the sense that, look at how they’re recruiting. You have to do that with a certain confidence and a certain swagger. He’s probably said some things that other people were probably afraid to say. I truly believe he’s misunderstood.

“There’s nothing to dislike about him.”

Again, what does a coach have to do to get on Mike Hamilton’s bad side?  And how does Hamilton still have a job at UT?


Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange

Corching up special teams

I think it’s fair to say we’ve been a bit envious of Florida’s special teams play – and the pride Gator players have taken in that area – in seasons past.  So this sounds like a recent development that we should take heart over:

… Georgia has some of the best special teams in the Southeastern Conference and part of the reason is the wealth of starters who want to contribute and have a chance to earn extra stickers on their helmets.

“Special teams isn’t emphasized enough as far as the fans go, but coach (Mark) Richt wants the best guys out there,” Georgia quarterback Aaron Murray said. “Those guys get rewarded. If you play special teams, you get more bones on your helmet and this and that. Now we’ve got starters wanting to get out there and play special teams.”

Front-line defensive players are among the most eager volunteers, and helmet stickers have a lot to do with it.

Standards for earning dog bones on defense are a little different than on special teams.

“If I didn’t play special teams, I wouldn’t have half the dog bones that I have now,” Georgia cornerback Sanders Commings said. “There’s more opportunities for dog bones. To get dog bones on defense, you have to make a tackle. But on special teams, you don’t have to make a tackle. You cover your responsibility, you get a bone.”

I guess that works better than a challenge.


Filed under Georgia Football

What hath RichRod wrought?

With last night’s evisceration (and if you want to see an amazing stat, check out the time of possession numbers from the game:  has a team ever lost a game by 47 points before while running up a 17-minute advantage in TOP?) in mind, this is a timely article on the rise of running quarterbacks and the success of the zone-read option play in college football.

The stats show that we’ve entered a new era of offense.

… Four of the nation’s top 18 rushers in the Football Bowl Subdivision — Robinson, Martinez, Newton and Nevada’s Colin Kaepernick — are quarterbacks.

Robinson leads the nation with 1,096 yards rushing in seven games. To put that in perspective, Nebraska’s Eric Crouch ran for 1,115 yards overall on his way to the Heisman Trophy in 2001. Robinson already has run for more yards this season than Vince Young, Tim Tebow, Michael Vick and Tommie Frazier gained in any season during their storied careers and he’s closing in on the single-season record for yards rushing in a season by a quarterback (Air Force’s Beau Morgan had 1,494 yards in 11 games in 1996).

But it’s not just the big-name quarterbacks who are gouging defenses with their legs.

According to STATS LLC, quarterbacks have accounted for 15 percent of all rushing yardage in the FBS this season. That’s the highest total in the past 15 years. As recently as 2006, quarterbacks accounted for just 8.9 percent of the yards rushing. In 1996, that total was just 5.3 percent.

Quarterbacks have rushed for more than 18,700 yards this season — already more than in any entire season between 1996 and 2000. In all, 16 quarterbacks rank in the top 100 nationally in net rushing yardage. If that holds up, it will by far be the highest total of the past 10 years…

It will be interesting to see how defenses adapt.  Judging from Oregon’s play last night, they’ve got their work cut out for them.


Filed under Strategery And Mechanics

Sometimes, the stats don’t lie.

There’s no question that, as of today, Cam Newton is the SEC player of the year.  But John Pennington makes a good case that no player in the conference is more valuable to his team than is Aaron Murray.

… Georgia’s redshirt freshman quarterback Murray might be the breakout player of the year in the SEC.  Yes, Carolina’s Lattimore has looked tremendous, but Murray has flashed potential greatness, too.  And the quarterback position is tougher to play than the running back position.  Murray’s passer rating is good, he’s proven to be very mobile, and he ranks high in 4th quarter passing, too (a stat we showed you yesterday).  If he continues to progress, Murray looks to be a future All-SEC quarterback, if not better.

We’ve noticed.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Little facts that sneak up on you.

From the department of I-wasn’t-aware-of-that:

South Carolina has lost seven SEC road games in a row.

The ‘Cocks will try to break that string tomorrow in Nashville.


Filed under 'Cock Envy

Thank you, sir, may I have another?

It should be obvious that I’m a sucker for Animal House references, so this rebuttal to Dan Wetzel’s Death to the BCS has the schwing! factor going for me when I read this:

… But if you’re Doug Neidermeyer and Greg Marmalard in the BCS’ Omega Theta Pi, as opposed to Pinto and Flounder in the non-BCS Delta house, you’re looking at a big pile of cash.

Grab a playoff - it don't cost nothin'.

Seriously, though, the article highlights the money side – the haves vs. the have-nots side, that is – of the football postseason debate in a succinct manner.  And while there’s little doubt that a 16-team March Madness-styled football playoff would be a real Boon (see what I did there?) for the mid-majors, there’s too much money at stake for the big boys to risk making major changes.

Too much regular season money, I mean.  How much?  This much:

… Take the Southeastern Conference. The SEC is the premier conference in terms of BCS Championship trophies. It just distributed $209 million to its 12 members for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, a tidy $17.3 million each. About $150 million of that windfall came from football through TV contracts, bowl payouts, and the SEC Championship Game.

The SEC takes in up to $41 million in game ticket sales every week. According to the Birmingham Business Journal, South Carolina anticipates bringing in $16.5 million in ticket sales this year, while Florida raked in $16.8 million in 2009. School records show Florida’s football revenue jumped $7.2 million, to $61.3 million, after the Gators’ title in 2008.

Georgia averages $1.8 million to $2.9 million per game in ticket sales, and Tennessee, with a stadium that holds 102,455 screaming Vols fans, looked to collect $27 million in 2009 ticket sales.

Of course, that’s still not in the NFL’s league. So far in the 2010 season, with an average price of $76.5 x 15 games a week x average attendance of 67,695, that equals more than $77 million in weekly ticket revenue. But given that more than twice as many teams are in the NFL than in the SEC, the SEC is actually making more money per capita from ticket sales. [Emphasis added.]

When you’re making more money per sale than the NFL, that’s something you’re gonna be awfully reluctant to screw with.  Even Greg Marmalard’s not that dumb.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs, It's Just Bidness