Daily Archives: November 20, 2014

“And I know Florida wants to hire a guy that’s well enough known you don’t have to Google his name.”

I was going to do a mock post on the chances of the GPOOE™ being named Florida’s next head coach, but I see Pat Dooley has taken the wind out of my sails by noting that some folks have already suggested that possibility.  Seriously, of course.

Damn, it’s a shame Jeremy Foley has never been that desperate an athletic director.

39 Comments

Filed under Gators, Gators..., Tim Tebow: Rock Star

“I always think you’ve got to be – I say it all the time – balanced.”

Ah, yes.  The “B” word.  Mike Bobo’s mantra.

Except I’m not sure that word means what he says it means.  Here’s the full quote:

“I always think you’ve got to be – I say it all the time – balanced. And you’ve got to be able to run the ball in this league. Just going back every year and kind of doing a self-study, the years that we had over 500 carries as an offense we were always pretty successful and ending the season very well in a higher bowl with more wins. So our goal going into this year was to rush it for over 500 attempts. We’ve maybe rushed it a little more than I thought we would. [Emphasis added.] But we’re always going to run the ball. We’re always going to give the element of getting in a two-back set and make guys fit those runs and play those runs, which is a little bit different than what guys are seeing, and then still give the ability to spread out. I think that’s what makes us hard to defend. We’re not your traditional two-back team and that’s all we’re going to do. We’ll get in spread. We’ll go hurry-up and run a lot of different things. But we still always want to let guys know we’re at the ballpark by being physical.”

“A little more”?  Actually, Georgia is on pace to set a record for highest percentage of running plays in the last decade.  And it’s not really even close.

2014 — 63.6 percent runs
2013 — 51.4 percent runs
2012 — 56.8 percent runs
2011 — 57.2 percent runs
2010 — 55.9 percent runs
2009 — 56.4 percent runs
2008 — 51.6 percent runs
2007 — 58.4 percent runs
2006 — 55.4 percent runs
2005 — 55.6 percent runs

Note that prior to this season, the three years above with the high percentage of running attempts (’07, ’11 and ’12) resulted in a 33-8 record, two SEC title game appearances and a BCS bowl game for Georgia’s teams.

That’s where the talent is this season.  It’s an enormous swing from 2013, which makes sense when you think about it, because after the first half of the Tennessee game, Georgia was playing only true freshmen at tailback until Florida and even after that, played them when Gurley needed a blow.  (And Gurley was hurt prior to Tennessee.)  Aaron Murray was by far Mike Bobo’s best bet as the horse to ride.  This year, with Murray’s departure, even with Georgia again playing true freshmen tailbacks, the talent has swung from the quarterback position to running back.  Bobo’s just following the talent.

But there’s more to it than that, though.  Bobo’s been able to rely on the running game as much as he has because the course of most of Georgia’s games this season have let him do so.  As he describes it,

On whether there have been games this season he planned to throw it more …

BOBO: “There’s no question. Even in this game (against Auburn), I thought we’d have to throw it a little bit more. But the defense was playing well, and we got the lead, and we were just trying to keep the ball away from that offense. And grinding out first downs was the way to go. Each game kind of dictates how we go. There’s a mindset we want with into each game of what we’re trying to do, but sometimes if you have success running the ball early and are keeping the defense off the field, we’ll stick with what works.”

I would suggest that’s exactly what you want out of your offensive coordinator.  Let him sing all the praises to balance he wants.  Me, I’ll hum “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it” all day long.  Just keep doing what you’re doing, Coach.

42 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

Fab frosh

This year’s freshman class didn’t come in with a catchy nickname, but it’s been pretty damned productive this season.

Nick Chubb has been the most visible member, of course, but he’s far from alone.

Two weeks ago, the conversation about Georgia’s freshmen might have been at a peak. In the Bulldogs’ 63-31 rout of Kentucky, a quartet of freshmen — running backs Chubb and Sony Michel, tight end Jeb Blazevich and return specialist Isaiah McKenzie — combined for six of the team’s nine touchdowns, recording rushing, receiving and special teams scores.

In that contest, freshman outside linebacker Lorenzo Carter did enough chasing the quarterback (2.5 sacks) to earn the SEC’s defensive lineman of the week, capping a three-honor week for Georgia freshmen with Chubb (co-freshman of the week) and McKenzie (special teamer of the week).

The freshmen didn’t fold under the spotlight of, arguably, Georgia’s biggest stage of the season against Auburn. Chubb was terrific. Carter earned yet another start within a loaded, veteran linebacker corps. And freshmen defensive backs Dominick Sanders and Malkom Parrish, who collectively recorded the team’s only pass breakups and forced fumble, impressed, as well.

Considering a variety of factors – the offseason attrition on defense, last year’s lackluster special teams, and, of course, Gurley’s suspension – the timing of all these kids stepping up as significant contributors couldn’t be more fortuitous.  (Although you could argue it probably helps explain the somewhat up and down nature to this season, as well.)

And the best may be yet to come.

Fellow offensive lineman John Theus, who started on the offensive line when he was a freshman, said coaches and players are well aware of “guys who don’t play who (they) know are going to be really good” players, too, suggesting the team’s youthful depth goes far beyond what Georgia has put on the field in games this season.

I’m guessing that’s at least in part a reference to a couple of the freshmen offensive linemen who have already cracked the two-deep, although not the starting rotation.  If that’s not just happy talk, and Georgia can hold serve on what looks like another stellar class coming in 2015, this team may not miss much of a beat next season.

53 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Hutson Mason’s #1 job

Here’s a short quote from Bobo that illustrates the importance of Hutson Mason’s role in the SEC’s leading scoring offense:

“We haven’t thrown it a lot and when we throw it, we’ve made the plays,” Bobo said. “It’s like I told the guys in the quarterback room (Tuesday), we didn’t complete some of those balls, but I think us throwing the ball downfield did a lot for us. (We were) able to run the ball in the second half. It kept the secondary back, the safeties back. They weren’t as fast to fill the hole.”

Georgia is built to run the ball this year.  Everybody knows that, including opposing defensive coordinators.  So Bobo has to have enough of a legitimate threat of a downfield passing game to make DCs respect it and keep from crowding the box with eight defenders or more for the entirety of a game.  When Mason can sell that, even if his receivers aren’t hanging on to the ball as much as we’d like, it makes life a lot easier for his line, his backs and his coach.

39 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

“I wish I could take credit for being that smart, but I can’t.”

Dang.  Even I’m not cynical enough to suggest that Georgia paid for Todd Gurley’s increased insurance coverage only because Gurley (or his attorney) demanded that as a condition for his return to the team from NCAA suspension.

But that somebody out there is… what does that say about McGarity’s PR skills that people could think that’s the reason B-M acted as it did to help out its star player?

29 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, It's Just Bidness

“As soon as it can be done, it’ll be done.”

Richt softens the coaching staff’s blow about the new IPF.

“But the thing I want to reiterate is it’s gonna happen, it’s a matter of time,” Richt said. “We just want to do it right. And I’m very excited and thankful for our administration and the board, the president, everybody who is in the middle of allowing us to get this thing done.”

If I didn’t know any better, I’d say McGarity is getting a dose of good cop/bad cop.  (And even Richt admits recruits have asked him about when one will be built.)

If I had to guess on a time for ground breaking, I’d say not as soon as Pruitt is hoping for, but sooner than McGarity originally intended.  Which means airing it publicly will have worked.

21 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Musical palate cleanser, another passing edition

Damn it.  Now it’s Jimmy Ruffin’s time.

There can only be one song for that.  And it’s a great, great one.

It sure does suck getting old.

12 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized