Daily Archives: September 18, 2015

Run the damned ball, Schotty.

This doesn’t exactly sound like your classic case of an immovable force meeting an unstoppable object:

Georgia is averaging 259 rushing yards per game since the start of last season, 14 yards more than the next-closest SEC team. In that same stretch, South Carolina’s defense has allowed 5.4 yards per carry, worst in the conference and 117th among all FBS defenses.

Runs between the tackles have been particularly damaging for the Gamecocks. They have allowed 6.2 ypc on inside runs this season, fifth worst among Power 5 defenses. Since becoming a starter last fall, Chubb is averaging 107 ypg on runs between the tackles, the most among active Power 5 players.

Yeah, I’d like to see them get Lambert untracked this week.  But let’s not reinvent the wheel here, fellas.

27 Comments

Filed under 'Cock Envy, Georgia Football

Agent Muschamp is on a mission.

Count me among those who thought Ellis Johnson was a pretty decent defensive coordinator who was undone at Auburn by the lack of a pass rush last season.  For those who believed Boom would be an instant upgrade over Johnson – and judging by the wholesale preseason love for Auburn, there were lots of folks in that camp – this data, from Mr. Conventional Wisdom, of all places, has to come as a bit of a shock.

Auburn is 2-0 but here are the ugly numbers on defense:

* Auburn’s opponents have converted on third down 48.5 percent of the time. That’s 114th nationally.

* Opponents are 10-of-17 on third-down passes.

* The Tigers have given up an average of 199.5 rushing yards per game, which is 96th nationally.

* Auburn’s defense has been on the field for 170 plays in the first two games. That’s more than any team in the conference other than Tennessee (172).

Every one of those stats he cites is worse than last year’s.  And don’t forget those are compiled against an 0-3 team and a FCS squad.  I don’t think Carl Lawson can fix all of that on his lonesome.

31 Comments

Filed under Auburn's Cast of Thousands, Stats Geek!

Congratulations… it’s a meme!

From Jake Rowe’s South Carolina preview:

Anyone who thinks South Carolina will back down from the Bulldogs just doesn’t understand this rivalry. Two things are for certain here. First of all, South Carolina will be ready to play. Secondly, not only will it be ready to play, but Georgia will get the Gamecocks’ best shot[Emphasis added.]

Well played, everyone.

*************************************************************************

UPDATE:  The meme gathers steam.

“Every year this team brings their best shot against us,” Theus said.

66 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Not happy about the targeting rule?

Let Rogers Redding sooth your ruffled feathers.

In the early days of the rule, officials were often reluctant to call targeting penalties, in part because it was so new.

That has changed in recent years as officials have become more comfortable making the calls and received extensive training, including videos specifically on targeting.

“I think they’ve gotten better at it,” Redding said. “They’ll miss some. I mean, gosh, it’s very fast, this is very fast action and you’re going to make mistakes. The officials are much less reluctant now. Nobody likes to throw a player out of a game, but the foul is so serious and it’s a play we’ve got to get out of our game.”

I must have missed those early days.  But, hey, at least there’s this:  “Just from an overall, big picture, it’s not that much different from last year.”  Thanks, Mr. Redding!

45 Comments

Filed under The NCAA

Applying a business model to the gridiron

At some point, everyone is going to wake up to the reality that college sports is big business, which is starting to bring a whole new meaning to college prep.

IMG is at the forefront. It is trying to enhance its academy brand with football, perhaps the most visible sport. And it is applying a business model to the gridiron that has long been profitable for tennis and has expanded to golf, soccer, baseball, basketball, lacrosse, and track and field. The academy has nearly 1,000 students from more than 80 countries enrolled in prekindergarten through 12th grade and postgraduation. About half the students are international.

The school, 45 miles south of Tampa, recruits football players from around the country, offering high-performance training, college preparatory courses, coaches with N.F.L. playing experience, facilities that resemble a small college more than a high school, and a chance to play a national schedule and on national television on ESPN against some of the country’s highest-rated teams.

Though IMG Academy has fielded a varsity football team for only three seasons and, as an independent school, is ineligible to play for a Florida state championship, it is stocked with six of the nation’s top 100 senior recruits. The roster has players from 21 states and six countries. This month, IMG flew to Texas for a game. On Saturday, it will travel to New Jersey to face another power, Bergen Catholic High School.

The full cost of tuition and boarding for a year of football at IMG Academy is $70,800, although need-based financial assistance is available. School officials would not provide specific figures, but they said that payments by families could range from tens of thousands of dollars to a competition fee (between $3,750 and $4,500) to nothing.

Team helmets are adorned not with a lion or a tiger but with IMG’s corporate logo.

Nice.  So is this.

IMG officials are upfront about their profit motive. And they have been backed financially by powerful state lawmakers who justify the assistance by citing the academy’s economic impact to the region in training more than 12,000 athletes yearly from the youth level to the pros and in hosting numerous amateur and professional sports competitions.

Although it is private, IMG Academy has received more than $7 million from the Florida state budget over the past two years, according to news accounts. An additional $2 million was pledged by lawmakers in June but was then vetoed by Gov. Rick Scott.

Ain’t amateurism grand?

20 Comments

Filed under College Football, It's Just Bidness

“We live in a glass house — coaches and players.”

Ah, rage in an age of social media and smartphones… not the best mix.

In the age of social media, coaches find themselves sending messages that occasionally are at odds with each other. They want their players on an emotional high for each game while carefully avoiding the type of misstep that occurred at Tennessee and BYU.

Arizona State senior associate athletic director of football Tim Cassidy said his school has coaches and administrators on the sidelines helping prevent any potential conflicts between players and fans. Cassidy said Arizona State’s players are reminded that “you can’t focus on the game if you’re chit-chatting or going back and forth with anybody who paid $70 to come watch you play.”

Then again, maybe the trick is to get your back-and-forth in before the game, when nobody’s paying attention.  That seemed to have worked out for Jordan Jenkins last weekend.

“That’s just why I love away games so much,” he said. “That hostility just fuels even more. I love when people talk trash. I like practicing in a way to where I want somebody to get mad and try to fight me because that’s going to make me get mad and even practice harder.”

Hey, it was Vandy.  Sometimes you do what you gotta do to get the juices flowing.

6 Comments

Filed under Social Media Is The Devil's Playground

Corch gonna Corch.

I’d tell Urban Meyer to act like he’s been there, but I’m afraid this is how he acts like he’s been there.

36 Comments

Filed under Big Ten Football, Urban Meyer Points and Stares

Let’s try this again.

Boy, you could see this one coming a mile away.

A lawyer for Oklahoma State says the school notified Texas it wants new depositions from Longhorns coach Charlie Strong, three staff members, a quarterback and former athletic director Steve Patterson if a breach-of-contract lawsuit against a Texas assistant proceeds toward trial.

Oklahoma State sued Longhorns assistant Joe Wickline for almost $600,000, arguing he made a lateral move to Texas in 2014 and didn’t take a promotion with play-calling duties as stated in his previous contract.

Strong was already deposed in March. The pursuit of new testimony from Strong, one of his key players and Patterson, who was forced to resign Tuesday after less than two years on the job, is an aggressive step by Oklahoma State in an unusual case that has angered Texas fans and pulled back the curtain on the inner workings of a major college football program.

Oklahoma State plays at Texas on Sept. 26.

Oklahoma State attorney Sean Breen said Thursday night that the request for new depositions depends on whether a judge sends the case to trial or it is resolved beforehand.

“The case is going to get resolved one way or another,” Breen said. “And perhaps the new fresh air at UT means it can get resolved in a business manner instead of in a courtroom.”

Maybe OSU could arrange to have a process server on the sideline to catch Texas coming out of the locker room.

Patterson may be a little more problematic.  How do you serve someone in Dubai?

5 Comments

Filed under See You In Court, Texas Is Just Better Than You Are.