I’m not even going to waste your time with a summary. Just read the damned thing in its entirety. And then bookmark it.
Filed under Stats Geek!
That’s great stuff right there. Field goals are a failure. Someone needs let CMR know that especially inside the red zone.
I’ll be sure to let 2006 Mark Richt know.
I’m a dyed-in-the-wool Disney Dawg and Richt defender, but If there’s one thing he does that drives me crazy, it’s his tendency to settle for field goals (especially now when our offense is some much more potent than our defense).
I think you are looking at it a bit wrong. Coach Richt doesn’t want to kick the field goal. He wants to punch it in, but he knows that it’s better to take the points once it is 4th down.
Connelly says field goals are a failure. I understand you want to take points when they are available. His point is that teams play with fire when they don’t punch it in when they get to the red zone.
He makes an interesting point about field goals
“Even with a good kicker, averaging three points per scoring opportunity will win you about one-third of your games. (Keep this in mind the next time your team kicks an 18-yard field goal.)”
Makes me wonder if a lot of coaches should rethink the almost-automatic decision to kick the FG on fourth-and-short.
But you have to keep in mind that he is saying “averaging 3 point”. That doesn’t mean never kick a FG because 0 pts weighs on your avg more than 3.
Yeah, but the differential in taking a slightly greater chance to get seven points instead of three might be worth pursuing.
Are you going to trust our O line to get the push we need for that one yard?
Pardon my ignorance – does he get paid to write? I certainly hope so. Seems like he puts a ridiculous amount of time into his posts.
Ha. +1 Ginny
I do, yes. But thanks for outing my “Write a ton of words, and people will skim and just assume it’s good” approach.
Ha, you do great work Bill. I’m very glad you are compensated for it. Anytime I need to back up a football argument with an awesome stat I know who to ask!
We read them! We really do! And I know lots of us here have been for a long time. One of my biggest regrets as a freeriding interwebz user is not checking my email quickly enough and missing buying you supper as you passed through my town on your SEC tour. Thanks for all your great work and hollar when you come back to Asheville.
That was a cool response. Glad to know you drop into the room.
Read every word, and during most of it, was thinking “This guy is so much smarter than me”. 🙂
You never fooled me! But seriously, I always look forward to reading your stuff. Keep it up.
Yes Ginny, some people don’t believe in the science and math and some people think Bill C. – like Nate Silver – is probably a witch
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Bill seems like he’d make a good addition to an football staff as an analyst.
I couldn’t help but think of the Gators while reading Bill’s article. In 2012 they killed it on turnover margin, and that helped get them 11 wins. 2013? Not so much. No turn overs. No explosive plays. No pints inside the 40.
This is fantastic information as a fan. My question is, I wonder how much of this type of info gets related from coaches to players? This should be mandatory reading as to how just the little things can make such a big difference……one example was the punt returner letting it bounce instead of coming up to field it, then the ball rolls 25 yards down the field. To be able to quantify how much of an impact that potentially has would make it a little more real to the players.
I mean I’m sure the coaches relay this information in broad terms to the players…….in the example above, at least one of the coaches is gonna say something to the punt returner along the lines of “You just killed our field position!”. But if the punt returner already knew ahead of time exactly how important it was to field that ball and not let it bounce, that’s a much more proactive way of dealing with the situation.
Obviously I’ve only keyed on one specific example, but there is so much meat in that post that coaches could dig into with their players, and make the players much smarter as to the why’s and how’s of everything.
I can vaguely recall as a player that I was aware that I should maximize my yardage, make explosive plays when possible, protect the ball and score as often as possible….and I don’t think Connally was around back then..so what has changed??
There was an article linked in a post on here in the week before the Clemson game where Grantham is basically just praying for turnovers and I got my ass jumped on by multiple posters when I made the EXACT point BC makes about turnovers, i.e. its largely out of your control, and that when you are as a coach reduced to praying for turnovers you are pretty much stating your belief that your defense is going to suck.
The point being, beware the optimism of August, it overrides common sense.
Always remember the bowl game against UCF. Opening drive…Dawgs drive it down inside the five and settle for 3. It was a message that took a long time to overcome. Even if you don’t make it on 4th you leave the other team with the whole field to march..and you tell your offense you believe in and are counting on them, and not the FG unit. I hate field goals.
I made a proposal, years ago, on the old ABH blog site..I still think it would make sense, so here it is again.
Field Goals should not all count equally (3 points). Why reward a team that took over at the other team’s forty, drove it nine yards and then, because they have one skinny kid they poached off of a soccer team in Australia or elsewhere..a kid who doesn’t even understand the game…who very possibly kicked in the first American football game he’d seen…why reward that team the same amount of points as a team that drives the ball 90 yards and then kicks a chip shot? I contend that a kick from fifty yards out should count for one point and a kick from three or four or five (los) yards out should count for four points. ..fill in the values for the in-betweens…maybe two points if the los is outside the twenty and three if outside the thirty.
It makes sense.
And I also would change the overtime rules to say that neither team may kick a field goal or extra point at all during any overtime period. Let
‘um go for seven and then two… That will stop these multiple overtime finishes in which everyone gets dangerously worn out.
“We’ve got some grown men up front that don’t let you run it,” Smart said. “We force you to throw it, and then we stop you throwing it.” -- The Athletic, 1/13/22
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