Daily Archives: November 29, 2011

“It just so happens…”

Mark Richt’s never been one to toot his own horn much, so I appreciate the subtle way he goes about reminding the media at today’s presser that his program has been a member of the SEC’s upper crust over the past decade:

“Since I’ve been at Georgia, LSU has been the winningest team in the Southeastern Conference. It just so happens that three of the four times we’ve been in the SEC Championship Game, LSU has been our opponent. We’re looking forward to the opportunity and the challenge of it.”

Nobody’s made more championship visits to the Dome in the last ten years than he has.



Filed under Georgia Football

It’s just a flesh wound.

If you love the Tennessee football program as much as I do, you’ll get a chuckle out of John Pennington’s post about the Knoxville natives getting restless with Son of Dooley.  The best part of all is Pennington’s advice that comes after a lengthy list of (rumored) examples of how things are slowly sliding out of control:

… a long-term view suggests that UT’s best bet is to stick with Dooley for at least one more season and allow him to further stabilize the program from a roster standpoint.

One can only hope.  In fact, I would argue that he needs more than one short season to try to right the ship.


Filed under Because Nothing Sucks Like A Big Orange

Second year’s the charm

When it comes to stats, I always prefer it when somebody else does the heavy lifting for me.

Such is the case with Year2’s look at the Georgia defense under Todd Grantham’s second year of direction.  It’s pretty frickin’ impressive:

… Here is how Georgia’s BCS conference opponents (plus Boise State) did against Grantham’s crew this season. The points are offensive points only; I did not include special teams scores, defensive scores, or safeties. Also, I did not include any stats accumulated against I-AA opponents.

Opponent Points PPG Diff. Yards YPG Diff.
Boise State 35 41.82 -6.82 390 477.6 -87.6
South Carolina 24 24.62 -0.62 395 366.5 28.5
Ole Miss 7 12.55 -5.55 183 277.6 -94.6
Mississippi State 3 20.73 -17.73 213 335.5 -122.5
Tennessee 12 17.82 -5.82 270 323 -53.0
Vanderbilt 21 22.55 -1.55 349 345.8 3.2
Florida 13 20.91 -7.91 226 323.4 -97.4
Auburn 7 19.27 -12.27 195 320.3 -125.3
Kentucky 10 13.82 -3.82 142 242.9 -100.9
Georgia Tech 17 31.00 -14.00 355 441.2 -86.2

Average Point Differential: -7.61

Average Yard Differential: -73.58

Grantham’s crew held every offense below its season average to some extent. He held eight of the ten under their yardage averages as well.

Actually, Year2 understates the case in one respect.  68 of South Carolina’s rushing yards came on that bloody Melvin Ingram fake punt (that if I hadn’t seen with my own eyes still wouldn’t believe had happened) and not against Grantham’s defense.  Take that out of the equation and only one team finished with a total offensive yardage amount over its season average against the Dawgs’ defense, Vanderbilt – and that was barely above.

That being said, I think Vandy was the one team this season which caught Grantham unprepared in one area, although to be fair, nobody saw Jordan Rodgers’ success as a runner coming that day.  Hell, he wasn’t even the starter.

So maybe one question we ought to be asking is whether LSU plays it straight on offense or whether the Tigers decide to throw Grantham a curve ball.  The stats suggest that the more they stick to the script, the better Georgia’s chances are to slow them down.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Rematch, redux

Sounds like Mike Gundy could stand a few lessons in BCS politicking from Mack  Brown:

Gundy is not a voter in this season’s USA Today/Coaches poll. But he said if he did fill out a ballot, right now he would put 11-1 Alabama ahead of 10-1 OSU after comparing each team’s loss.

“If somebody sat me down and said (I) had to make a decision,” Gundy said, “with where we’re at right now, Alabama lost to what would be the No. 1 team in the country (LSU), and Oklahoma State lost to Iowa State.

“In our situation, if I was doing it fair, I don’t know how I could put us in front of (Alabama) right now.”

Fair?  Screw fair!

Somewhere in this great land of ours, T. Boone Pickens is blowing a gasket right now.


Filed under College Football

Over 9 Million and counting

The last million hits at the site came in less than three months.  November is already a record month in that regard at GTP, with a day and a half to go.  It’s getting well over fifteen thousand hits a day now.  Wow.

And that’s without nudity or a football program in disarray.

Thanks for coming, folks.


Filed under GTP Stuff

Does Georgia have the horses?, part one

I think my favorite national statistic right now is defensive passer rating.  Georgia ranks fourth in that.

The Dawgs are also fourth in the SEC in defensive passer rating.  That’s right – the four best teams in the country at shutting down opponents’ passing attacks (all four with ratings under 100) all play in the same conference.  And you wonder why there aren’t many good quarterbacks in the SEC this season.

Anyway, LSU ranks third.  The Tigers are going to be a huge challenge for the second best passing attack in the conference.  Can Georgia cope?

The comparison that’s already being made is with the one SEC team ranked higher in passing offense than Georgia.

… The challenge for LSU is a wide array of receivers that are nearly a match for the Arkansas group, plus perhaps the best tight end in the SEC, Orson Charles, who has 40 receptions for 530 yards and five touchdowns.

“They’re very talented and a very fast group,” LSU safety Brandon Taylor said. “A lot of people say Arkansas receivers are the fastest group in the SEC, but Georgia, they are very fast. I know (Tavarres King), I played against him my sophomore year, and he actually kind of got away from me that year, too. They actually have the most talented tight end in the SEC.”

If that’s valid, there’s good reason to hope that the Dawgs can be effective throwing the ball.  Arkansas had by far the best showing against LSU’s defense from a passer rating standpoint this season.  And somewhat surprisingly, it was only the fifth lowest passer rating the Hogs compiled in 2011.

If there’s something which gives me pause for thought about the comparison, though, it’s that Georgia’s passer rating has fluctuated much more than Arkansas’ has this year.  The Hogs’ low point came against Alabama (110.39) and their high against Southwest Missouri State (195.64).  Georgia’s passer rating has run from 99.41 (Florida) to an otherworldly 255.64 in the Auburn game.  (And, yes, that was by far the worst showing Auburn’s defense had this season.)

So Georgia can throw the ball on LSU.  But Aaron Murray and his receivers need to be having one of their “on” days for that to happen.  Easier said than done, but it’s something LSU has to be legitimately concerned about.

And while I’m on the subject of pause for thought, I sure hope somebody in the Georgia offensive brain trust is working on a way to give Justin Anderson some help handling Barkevious Mingo.  That is one scary match up if you’re trying to keep Aaron Murray upright.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

My Week Thirteen Mumme Poll ballot

This isn’t getting any easier, people.

  • Alabama
  • Arkansas
  • Boise State
  • LSU*
  • Oklahoma
  • Oklahoma State
  • Oregon
  • Southern Cal
  • Stanford
  • Wisconsin


  • I swear, I feel like I’ve changed this list at least four times in the last day.  I can’t imagine how much time I’d need to compose a top 25 ballot in order.
  • I dumped Michigan and Kansas State this week.  Michigan, because I don’t think a top ten team struggles with Ohio State’s offense like it did.  Kansas State, because I grow less convinced each week that the Big 12 is as strong as everyone insists and because that Miami win shrinks in value week by week.
  • I think Wisconsin is the best team in the Big Ten right now.  The Badgers are playing good ball.  And as much as it pains me to say it, so are Junior’s Trojans.
  • Virginia Tech is out because the Hokies don’t have a win over an upper tier opponent.  And if I exclude them on that basis, Georgia stays out, too.  Georgia is a better team right now than South Carolina.
  • Houston… yeah, they keep winning.  But the best wins the Cougars have are over UCLA and Tulsa.  That ain’t much at all.  It’s an undefeated team with a great quarterback that ranks 60th in total defense playing Sagarin’s 111th rated strength of schedule.  A slightly shinier version of 2007 Hawaii, in other words.  I can’t buy in.


Filed under Mumme Poll

Cooler heads prevail.

There’s a name missing from the list of Broyles Award finalists that kinda surprises me:

… The award’s 10-member panel – Broyles, former Georgia Coach Vince Dooley, former Washington Coach Don James, former Syracuse Coach Dick MacPherson, former Baylor Coach Grant Teaff, former Brigham Young Coach LaVell Edwards, former Iowa Coach Hayden Fry, former Oklahoma Coach Barry Switzer, former Tennessee and Pittsburgh Coach Johnny Majors, and former Florida State University Coach Bobby Bowden — announced earlier Monday the finalists for the 2011 version of the Broyles, which consists of three coaches from the SEC and two from the Big Ten:

  • John Chavis, Louisiana State University, Defensive Coordinator
  • Paul Chryst, University of Wisconsin, Offensive Coordinator/Quarterbacks
  • Greg Mattison, Michigan, Defensive Coordinator
  • Garrick McGee, University of Arkansas, Offensive Coordinator/QBs
  • Sal Sunseri, Alabama, Assistant Head Coach/Linebackers

I don’t quibble a bit with the first three names there, but McGee and Sunseri ahead of Todd Grantham?  Makes you wonder if somebody’s paying a price for being a bit too public with his temper.

For the record, my vote would go to Mattison, even if Grantham were on the list.  The turnaround he’s worked with the Michigan defense this year has been remarkable.


Filed under College Football