Monthly Archives: July 2013

Tuesday morning buffet

Smells good.

21 Comments

Filed under Auburn's Cast of Thousands, Big Ten Football, Georgia Football, Georgia Tech Football, SEC Football, Strategery And Mechanics, The NCAA

Back in the day

Fun six-minute clip of some mid-90’s Dawg action:

Make sure you catch Tanneyhill’s reaction at 0:42, Hines Ward’s patented toughness at 2:50 and most of all, Robert Edwards’ incredible touchdown run at the 1:08 mark.

Edwards had a memorable career at Georgia, but I can’t help but wonder how things would have turned out if he hadn’t suffered that horrendous injury against Tennessee.

26 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

The week’s best argument for O’Bannon

I don’t know about you, but I’d rather see the players get paid than give Gordon Gee a $5.8 million retirement package.

5 Comments

Filed under It's Just Bidness

Evil Richt ♥ Clowney.

Mark Richt turned provocateur at last night’s “UGA Day” event at the Gwinnett Center, and it seems to have gone over a lot of folks’ heads.

No, man.  You’re not getting it.  Mark Richt didn’t say that because he truly believes it, because what he believes about Jadeveon Clowney’s greatness is irrelevant.  Richt just flipped the media conversation from terrorized quarterbacks to “insane hype”.  It’s a tasty soundbite that ESPN will chew over all the way to September 7th.  Maybe Clowney lives up to it; maybe he doesn’t.  But in any event, he’ll have to own it for the next few weeks.

Meanwhile, Georgia can get ready to prepare for its first two games.  Well played, ER.

19 Comments

Filed under 'Cock Envy, Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

“When’s the last time you’ve seen a white tailback at Georgia?”

Garrison Smith is quite taken by freshman running back Brendan Douglas.

I reserve the right to borrow the phrase “the white Adrian Peterson”.  LOL.

28 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Next, on the SEC Network

If Johnny Manziel ever appears on Finebaum’s show, the results are guaranteed to be awesome.

30 Comments

Filed under PAWWWLLL!!!, WOAH! It's Johnny Football!

A meaningful season

Georgia makes CFN’s list of the thirteen games of the 2013 regular season that matter most four times, more than any other school on the list.

4 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Return of the Fabris Pool

I’ve had a few inquiries about whether the pick ’em pool will be making another appearance at GTP this season.  The answer is yes.  Expect to see invites to sign up go out next week.  I don’t expect to change the format from last year, as everyone seemed satisfied with it.

Look for more details to come as we get closer to the season’s start.

4 Comments

Filed under GTP Stuff

College football, the NFL and the read option: been there, done that.

Chris Brown does his usual fine job describing how much of the NFL spent the offseason trying to figure out a way to defend the read option.  What’s so enjoyable about his piece is that it nicely illustrates one of the college game’s big advantages over the NFL – diversity.  That’s because what the pros are struggling to defend now is something their college cohorts had to deal with a while back:

Last fall, these plays — common in college football but relatively new to the NFL — brought havoc. As one SEC offensive line coach put it, watching NFL teams try to defend the read-option was like stepping into a time machine: The poor technique, naive tactics, and ugly results were like seeing college defenses try to defend these plays, but a decade ago.

Indeed, what’s striking about the NFL’s search for answers this past offseason is how often it took the pro coaches to the college ranks.

To stop the read-option, ostensibly a “college” scheme, NFL coaches have gone back to school. Green Bay head coach Mike McCarthy sent his entire staff to visit with Kevin Sumlin’s staff at Texas A&M, and Packers defensive coordinator Dom Capers separately spent time with Wisconsin defensive coordinator Dave Aranda, who faced Colin Kaepernick and his Pistol Offense for years at Hawaii and then Utah State. I’ve been told of visits from NFL coaches — some official, some very off-the-record — to schools as diverse as Stanford, Oklahoma State, Clemson, Alabama, Vanderbilt, BYU, and Florida State, where the primary topic of discussion was how to stop, or at least slow, the read-option.

What comes across as you read the article is how much more confident the college coaches sound about defending and deploying the read option than the pro guys do:  “NFL coaches have been understandably vague about just how they plan to stop the read-option. Even with all of last fall to focus on answers, teams still struggled, which led to the question of where solutions could be found.”  They went were the action was, because they had no better choice.

When it comes to scheming at the college level, necessity is definitely the mother of invention.  A lack of top-to-bottom parity, both in talent and financial resources, forces the have-nots to get creative to have a fighting chance.  It’s kind of like watching bacteria mutate in a petri dish.  And it’s definitely not what the NFL’s about:

The lower levels of football are always going to be more experimental than the inherently conservative NFL, as hundreds or even thousands of teams, many of them lacking even basic resources, grasp for any advantage they can get as part of a collection of teams with disparate talent. Rich Rodriguez famously said his staff invented the zone read at lowly Glenville State because they were “just trying to get a first down.” NFL teams, by contrast, are awash in facilities, technology, a relatively open market for players, and, maybe most important of all, time — time for coaches, who don’t have to zip around the country recruiting, and for players, who are full-time professionals.

How boring.

As I’ve said before, Paul Johnson may be an ass, but I love having the triple-option as part of the college game.  It’s part of the charm.

14 Comments

Filed under Strategery And Mechanics

Georgia/Clemson, a Steele-y comparison

The season opener is about a month away, so maybe it’s time to get the ball rolling, discussion-wise.  Thought it might be fun to start a conversation by looking at Phil Steele’s rankings of each team’s units and seeing how they stack up against each other.  Steele has Georgia ranked ninth and Clemson fifteenth in his preseason top 40, but has them spaced farther apart in the one power poll he publishes.  In that, Georgia’s sixth and Clemson’s 20th.

Here’s how he breaks down the respective units (he lists the top 45 nationally at each position):

  • Quarterback.  He’s got Clemson fourth and Georgia sixth.  Boyd’s got gaudier numbers than Murray and Clemson’s backup quarterback has more experience than any of Georgia’s do.  Still, those rankings are close enough to be considered a toss-up.
  • Running back.  Monster gap here:  Georgia is first and Clemson doesn’t even rank in his top 45.  Boyd is the Tigers’ leading returning rusher.
  • Receiver.  Another close one, with Georgia fifth and Clemson seventh. Both teams lost one of their top receivers, but still return a lot of depth at the wideout position.  Watkins will be the scariest guy on the field that night.  Georgia has more productive tight ends, though.
  • Offensive line.  Steele projects a pretty good-sized difference here. Georgia has his third-best unit and Clemson only ranks 28th. Both teams bring back experience, but Georgia brings back more.
  • Defensive line.  The shoe is on the other foot here, with Clemson at #15 and Georgia at #42.  The Tigers did lose a big, if uneven, talent in Goodman, but still bring back seven of their top eight from last season. The Dawgs… don’t.
  • Linebacker.  Back to the toss-up – Georgia is 30th and Clemson is 32nd. Clemson actually brings back more experienced players than Georgia does, so take that for what it’s worth.
  • Defensive back.  Close, but not impressive:  Clemson’s at #39 and Georgia is 44th.  And that doesn’t take into account JHC’s suspension.
  • Special teams.  Neither team shows up in his top 45, which in Georgia’s case is a little hard to follow, as he describes them as finishing thirtieth in his 2012 rankings and expects improvement this season.  On the other hand, Clemson’s place kicker has been more consistent than Morgan, who, yeah, won’t play opening night.  Call this the big wild card of the game.

I see two talented offenses, except that Georgia has a more balanced running threat (Clemson does have a couple of freshmen backs from whom it’s hoping for big things).  That’s probably not such good news for the less highly ranked defenses.  Subject to our old friend turnover margin, I’m seeing Gurley and Marshall as difference makers, but I’m a little concerned about who wins the special teams part of the night.  What do y’all see?

42 Comments

Filed under Clemson: Auburn With A Lake, Georgia Football, Phil Steele Makes My Eyes Water