It’s a good thing they can get all four of ’em on the field at the same ti… oh, wait.
Maybe Pruitt needs to run a
1-6-3 1-6-4 scheme.
Hell, maybe they can get them all on the field at the same time. Good lord, that’s scary to consider.
Now this qualifies as a bold SEC preview prediction. (As noted, written by Jerry Hinnen, as voted on the CBS Sports college football panel.)
Coach of the Year: Mark Richt, Georgia
Is it now or never for Richt? On paper, Jeremy Pruitt’s experienced, talented defense should be the best the Dawgs have enjoyed in years, and Nick Chubb gives Richt’s offense the kind of backfield bell cow his best offenses have always been built around. Meanwhile, no other SEC East team looks nearly as complete, and the West champ will have run a far more taxing divisional gauntlet. If Richt can’t end the Dawgs’ SEC title drought in 2015, it’s fair to ask when he will — but that’s also why it’s never been more likely that he actually will.
Great googly mooglies. As much as I’d like to go there, I can’t bring myself to click the keys. But as my mom used to say, Jerry, from your lips to Gawd’s ears.
Nick Chubb, quote machine.
In back-to-back games, the freshman crossed the 30-carry mark, something Gurley never did at Georgia. Chubb’s stamina and toughness kept him mobile for most of the season, and even when he tired, his mental fortitude kept him on the field and off the sidelines.
“I was tired almost every game, but I didn’t really show it,” Chubb said.
“If you’re tired, just go in and score and get off the field. That’s my mode, I just go in and score and get off the field, and I won’t be tired anymore.”
I don’t know if he’s Georgia’s greatest running back since Herschel Walker, but he’s definitely Georgia’s greatest wordsmith since Walker.
Only one worry…
And as long as his contacts are clear and secure, he’s nearly invincible.
“If they come out, I’m coming out,” Chubb said with a laugh.
“That’s definitely my weakness right there — my contacts [falling out].”
So now I’ve gone from being concerned over keeping Sharpies out to contact lenses in. It’s always something.
Let Brian Schottenheimer present the award.
““We like tight ends here, so we’re going to use them in different ways to keep people off-balanced by using them in different spots,” Schottenheimer said. “Those four guys have had maybe the best camp of everybody. Done a real good job. Again, from Jay Rome down to Jordan Davis, all those guys have done a good job.”
Between having a new offensive coordinator who loves utilizing the position and quarterbacks still getting their feet wet in the passing game, next to having ridiculous depth at tailback, that is a nice security blanket to be able to hang on to.
Here’s a good piece from David Wunderlich about how Gus and Boom aren’t exactly what we expect. To wit,
… There is just one potential worry spot, though. Muschamp has done his best work in battling spread schemes. There have been a few exceptions here and there, but that’s his calling card. AU was 2-0 against Urban Meyer during Muschamp’s DC stint in 2006-07, his Texas defenses were all great (though less great in a rebuilding 2010) while facing almost exclusively spread offenses in the Big 12, and he shut down Johnny Manziel in the second half of a win over A&M in 2012.
Oddly, he’s not been as great at stopping more traditional offenses despite being a Nick Saban disciple. If you look at the highest yards per play allowed against FBS competition in his time at Florida, you find Alabama at No. 1 (2014) and No. 11 (2011), 2013 Florida State second, LSU at third (2011) and tenth (2013), and Georgia at fifth (2013) and sixth (2014). Mark Richt has been a particular thorn in his side, dropping 37 and 45 points, respectively, on his 2006-07 Auburn defenses.
That’s not to say that Muschamp was a bad hire for Auburn, but he’s going to be facing Alabama, LSU, and Georgia every year. You can add Arkansas and its paleolithic offense to that list as well. The marriage of Malzahn and Muschamp will almost certainly prove to be a wildly successful one, but it’s going to take both of them at times to keep the wins coming in.
Auburn has a formerly pass happy guy now known for the run and a Saban acolyte who stops the spread but isn’t as good against the pro set…
All worth considering. But you know there’s one consistency about Auburn that nobody’s really talking about – the Tigers’ tend not to live up to high preseason expectations. I’ll be curious to see if Gus manages to rise above Auburn’s lofty top ten rankings in 2015.
If you don’t read anything else today, read Charlie Pierce’s take on Baylor. It’s a tour de force from start to finish.
As I just remarked, in Columbia, it’s the Year of the Questions. And I’m not the only one who has them.
For the first time since 2010, South Carolina will open the college football season unranked. Before we get to that, take a moment to say a few kind words over the deceased streak that just ended. The Gamecocks were ranked entering each of the last four seasons – No. 12 in 2011, No. 9 in 2012, No. 6 in 2013 and No. 9 in 2014.
Prior to that run, the most consecutive preseason polls the Gamecocks had been ranked was two (2001 and 2002). In fact, from 1962 (the first year the team’s complete rankings history is available) through 2010, South Carolina was ranked in the preseason four times combined.
The preseason Associated Press poll was released Sunday. The Gamecocks were nowhere on it. Not even in the “others receiving votes.”
That’s both a helluva tribute to the job Spurrier has done and observation about how down South Carolina football appears from the end of last season. Kendall’s right that a 3-0 start and things will be right back to where they’re expected, based on Spurrier’s records, but getting there… well, that’s the question.