Win, lose or draw in its game this week, South Carolina’s psyche is going to be an interesting thing to watch in the days leading up to the Georgia game. One thing Steve Spurrier has highlighted was his team’s attitude going into the Texas A&M game.
“We won a bunch of games where some players don’t play all that super, but we win,” Spurrier said. “So we stop them on third down, get a few turnovers here and there. And when you win, everybody thinks, ‘I can play this way and we’re always going to win.’ And it doesn’t work that way. It didn’t work that way. We need to try and dominate out there.”
… Spurrier said his team wasn’t overconfident against the Aggies, who started a sophomore quarterback in the place of departed Heisman Trophy winner Johnny Manziel, and jumped to ninth in this week’s rankings. But, he admitted, the Gamecocks seemed a little lackadaisical in contrast to their opponent, one reason for the ramped-up tempo in practice this week.
Makes you wonder if somebody got caught doing a little premature looking ahead to week three against Georgia.
They insist it’ll be different this week. It probably will. East Carolina isn’t as talented as TAMU, and while it runs the same offense, it wasn’t as prolific last season, either. (Although its defense did give up a lot less yardage than the Aggies did in 2013.)
If the ‘Cocks win in a blow out, all will be forgiven. What will be interesting to watch is how the team and Spurrier react if they get in another shootout.
It seems that Agent Muschamp is getting some pushback about ending three player suspensions based on a one-play game against Idaho and doesn’t particularly like it.
So what don’t we know, Coach?
While Muschamp criticized his critics for failing to have all of the information, he decided against adding any details that could perhaps cast his reinstatement in a different light.
I guess he could tell us, but then he’d have to kill us.
This week’s big game is Michigan State-Oregon, so make sure you don’t miss Chris Brown’s “one defense to rule them all; one defense to bind them” analysis of makes Dantonio and Narduzzi so good at what they do.
This is a lesson for every defensive coordinator:
What’s more, they know that great D isn’t the function of a magical scheme; it’s about mastering fundamentals and playing with discipline and effort. The scheme is there merely to channel the players’ energy and help them play fast and without hesitation.
Proof of an aging fan base: Ohio State asks its fans to turn in reports to police of people who stand during game play.
Northwestern’s head coach partly blames his team’s loss to Cal on local media and bloggers who didn’t report that the backup quarterback could run.
Take a victory lap, fellas.
UPDATE: Too bad a blogger didn’t give Fitzgerald the lowdown about this.
I get the point that a message needs to be sent there’s a lot of room to improve, but…
Pruitt said he was happy with the effort of his players. But there were still mistakes, and “a lot of them,” according to Pruitt. Some were technical and some were mental. To hear Pruitt tells it, the Bulldogs got lucky on a bunch of plays.
“The tape doesn’t lie. There’s a couple times if you watch tape there’s guys running open, and some of the guys win up front so the quarterback doesn’t get the ball off,” Pruitt said. “There’s times in the back end where somebody guarded their guy really well, we don’t have the right pass rush lanes, and the guy scrambles. So it takes 11 guys doing the right stuff all the time. Our guys understand that.”
… isn’t one of the points of having a fierce pass rush is that it gives help to an inexperienced secondary? Can’t that be counted as a win?
Here’s the summary from Year2’s solid analysis of Georgia’s defense in the opener:
Georgia’s defense showed us on Saturday that it has the potential to be one of the best in the conference. It also showed the potential to get torched badly when it can’t get to the quarterback. Which is the “real” Georgia defense? Probably both, actually. I’m certain we’ll see both the Jekyll and Hyde of the Bulldogs’ defense at different times this year. It’ll all come down to matchups. For instance Texas A&M, with its terrifying passing game and nearly NFL-caliber line, would be a nightmare for UGA. Fortunately for the Red and Black, the Aggies aren’t on the schedule.
The fact that this is something of a down year for quarterbacking in the SEC means Georgia has a great chance to escape its defensive deficiencies in most weeks.
That’s an observation I made in the preseason. There simply aren’t that many offenses on Georgia’s schedule that can attack its inexperienced secondary. Does South Carolina have one of those offenses? Year2 thinks it does.
South Carolina makes for a good second test of the Bulldogs’ defense. Carolina’s offensive line is better than Clemson’s is. Dylan Thompson is more mobile than Stoudt is and is more experienced and a better passer than Watson is. Mike Davis is a question as he’s banged up, but Nick Jones and Pharoh Cooper will test the secondary from out wide. If Thompson has time to throw or can use his feet to buy time, guys will get open.
If Gurley gives Georgia a lead—and really, that’s probably more “when” than “if”—we know what will happen. When the Gamecocks went down against Texas A&M, they threw the ball almost every play. It was a far cry from Clemson’s shell shocked play calling. Pruitt could easily respond by blitzing the Gamecocks out of the stadium, but South Carolina will at least put some level of pressure on the defense’s weakest links.
I think there’s some truth there, at least as long as Georgia doesn’t have enough of a lead to keep Spurrier from going pass first. If the SC offense is forced to go chase mode, I’m not sure it’s going to have any more success with Georgia’s pass rush than Clemson did.
I’m amused that even the computer formulas get sucked into preseason rankings bias.