Daily Archives: March 10, 2014

Everything’s easier in Louisville.

Either I’m missing something here, or Bobby Petrino is.

As for the installation plan, Petrino says Garrick McGee and Todd Grantham will install the entire offense and defense in the first seven practices and then repeat the installation beginning with practice No. 8.

I guess it depends on what your definition of “install” is.



Filed under Fall and Rise of Bobby Petrino

Growing the organization chart

Marc Weiszer notes that this offseason Georgia has added four to the staff as quality control assistants: George Helow, Alex Jackson, Kelin Johnson and Jon Richt.  That brings the total of graduate assistants and quality control assistants to nine, an increase of three over what Georgia had last season listed as graduate assistants and program coordinators.

While that appears to be following the general trend in the conference to beef up the numbers on the non-coaching side, what’s interesting is that unlike what we’ve seen at several other schools, Georgia isn’t adding high-profile high school coaches to its support staff.  That indicates to me that Richt values what his coaching staff brings to the table on the recruiting front.  There seems to be a feeling that there’s more bang for the buck freeing his coaches up on the administrative side so that more time, even if it’s incremental, can be devoted to recruiting.

This next year is really going to be interesting in a lot of ways.


Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting

Is this as good as it gets?

I think they’ve found this year’s meme for Georgia Tech football.

When you get down to it, it’s just another way of saying Chantastic.


Filed under Georgia Tech Football

Les Miles and the HUNH – you knew it was going to be different.

There is everybody else’s argument against the player safety defense of the 10-second substitution rule, and then there’s Les Miles’.

“There’s little or no evidence that would say that injury is likely,” Miles said. “Having said that, the incidence of injury in football is 100 percent. That being said, ‘He hurt his hand. Why? Because he was playing football. He hurt his elbow. Why? Because he was playing football.'”

In other words, since sooner or later they’re all gonna get hurt anyway, why worry about the HUNH?

I’d love to hear Bert’s reaction to that.


Filed under Wit And Wisdom From The Hat

“You’re hiding all the good numbers from me.”

There are so many ways ESPN’s influence over the sport of college football depresses me.  Here’s another one, straight from MIT’s eighth Sloan Sports Analytics Conference.

The panel, like the other larger productions at Sloan, is being held in a spacious ballroom at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston. Its organizing idea so far has been a particular cogent observation by Oliver, which is that “best” and “most deserving” are two completely different things when it comes to ranking teams for inclusion in a playoff. Addressing both separately, instead of trying to cram them into one metric, is a perfectly sensible thing to do, and for this, ESPN has brought all its considerably weaponry to bear. Oliver and other senior analytics staff have spent the last two years immersed in college football, which has lagged behind other sports in statistical sophistication…

… But we haven’t really talked much about CHAMP and FPI during the football playoff panel. It’s been more focused on how the individual SOS and dominance numbers are good tools for committee members to look at, if they want. It’s enough to make you wonder why ESPN would even bother with the catch-alls. Then, suddenly, Rece Davis, Mark May, and Lou Holtz are bellowing down at the audience in Ballroom A at the Hynes from two giant screens, projected on either side of the room, howling about who the best team in the country is. “Alabama,” says a grinning Holtz. “They’re the best team in the country, they don’t have the best record—that’s the problem.”

… It’s an open secret that the ESPN analytics team generates far more data than it makes public, and certainly more than make it onto TV. “We’re still a TV company first,” many analysts will tell you in private moments, when you ask about stuff that only lives on “dot com.” This means that anything that isn’t generated for a specific story will get dumped into what’s called an NST (notes, stats, trends) pack, and sent out as notes to anchors. If you really like an item, you might phrase it in 140 characters or less, to make it tweetable, though those often go unclaimed as well. You learn whom to pitch to (Kirk Herbstreit is great; Jay Bilas is a sponge) and whom to avoid (maybe stay away from Corso). ..

… That isn’t evil; it’s just good sense. ESPN is not a statistics-generating non-profit put on Earth to further our understanding of sports. But it is the tension at the heart of the entire conference: TV personalities using numbers and concepts with their edges sanded down, a platform (panel, conference, network) that often insists analytics are dichotomous with all other forms of knowledge about sports…

It’s not enough to have various talking heads spinning a narrative your way. ESPN arms them with serious looking metrics that ESPN in its infinite wisdom has concocted to make them sound more authoritative to the listening public. And to, who knows, maybe even a selection committee or two.  That’s some seriously pernicious power there.


Filed under ESPN Is The Devil, Stats Geek!

Going for two

The NFL is pondering changing the extra point rule because it’s almost automatic now.  That’s not exactly the case on the college level, but given there’s a certain percentage of folks who think that anything the NFL adopts should automatically be considered by the NCAA, you might be interested in reading what Chase Stuart has to say about the prospects of a mandated two-point play rule.


Filed under Stats Geek!, Strategery And Mechanics