Daily Archives: November 2, 2015

Change of plans

Honestly, I don’t know whether to laugh or cry over this.

Georgia’s starting quarterback for Saturday wasn’t known publicly as of Monday morning, but it won’t be Brice Ramsey, if the official depth chart is to be believed.

That depth chart, which was put online Monday, lists the first-team quarterback as Faton Bauta OR Greyson Lambert.

Ramsey is listed third team. He’s the only Georgia scholarship quarterback who has yet to start a game this season. Bauta started against Florida on Saturday, after Lambert started the first seven games.

The official depth chart isn’t always a good guide for what will happen the following game. But the change is noteworthy because it’s a change from last week, when Lambert was first team, followed in order by Ramsey and Bauta.

Got that?  The third string guy started the last game.  Now he’s listed as a co-number one, with the same guy who was benched for him.  Consistency would suggest that makes it Ramsey’s turn this week – assuming, I guess, that his punting duties don’t interfere with his prep time.

I’d say we’re being trolled, but I don’t think the coaches are organized enough for that right now.

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A fine mess: about Richt

Coach Mark Richt opened his teleconference call Sunday by saying he didn’t know who would be the quarterback for this week’s game against Kentucky.

“We’re not ready to get to the quarterbacks yet, but we will discuss all possibilities,” he said.

“We’re not ready” isn’t as butch a theme as “Finish the drill”, but what it lacks in testosterone it makes up for in accuracy.

Those of you who thought starting Faton Bauta was a sign of desperation on Richt’s part couldn’t have been more wrong.  Alarmingly, it was a sign of something even more disconcerting.

Cluelessness.

I’ve heard my share of rumors about how Richt has managed the program of late.  I don’t know enough to say whether the story of a somewhat detached CEO approach is true.  What I can say is that it really doesn’t matter if the program has slid because Richt isn’t involved enough in the day-to-day details or because he is.  The real problem is the stunning number of details that are being ignored on a weekly basis.

“Stunning” is the right word here.  Georgia is doing things we haven’t seen in a while.  It’s lost three of its last four conference games, and it’s not a stretch to think that, but for a Kenneth Towns touchdown saving tackle, it could easily have been a clean sweep.  This past Saturday, the Dawgs were held to three points for the first time ever under Richt.  Those aren’t indications of a well run football team.

You know what else isn’t an indication of a well run team?  Setting players up to fail.  I’ve already had my say about the ill-advised manner in which Bauta was prepped and the game plan that didn’t do him any favors, as well as letting a kid like Reggie Davis continue to do what he’s already shown he’s not capable of handling.  Who sits back and lets shit like that happen without thinking about the consequences?  Or, just as sadly, supports decisions like that?

There is a certain amount of irony here in how we’ve all been a little guilty of not seeing the forest for the trees. I know I have. Georgia is a serious mess this week, not because Richt isn’t fiery, or because his players aren’t good at handling adversity or because of undersigning.  Georgia’s a mess because it’s a rudderless ship.  It’s losing and its head coach has no idea right now how to regain direction.  If you aren’t convinced that’s the case, read this sad story in the AB-H.

One thing I’ve always said about Georgia head football coaches – recent history indicates the ones that lose their jobs are the ones that don’t have good coordinators.  That’s a lesson I thought Richt had absorbed.  Now, I’m not so sure.  I’ve already explained that I’m not enamored with much of what Schottenheimer’s done this year.  Here’s what his boss had to say in response to an obvious question:

Richt won’t be stepping in to take some of Brian Schottenheimer’s play-calling duties.

“I’m in there just about every meeting,” Richt said. “We do a lot of talking in terms of personal in terms. We do a lot talking in terms of downs and distances and situations and things of that nature.”

Whatever you two talk about isn’t clicking.  Schottenheimer is in the process of going down as Richt’s worst coordinator hire, which is a helluva statement on my part, because I still think of Willie Martinez as the gold standard in that department.  Richt stuck with Martinez too long, but at least I could understand why.  There’s no personal bond between Richt and Schottenheimer; if Richt hasn’t seen enough yet to be convinced some serious change is badly needed, I don’t know what it’s going to take for him to get to that point.

I don’t think Richt is losing his job this year.  There’s too much money at stake and it’s shaping up as a bad time to go out and sign a new head coach.  (Okay, not from Jimmy Sexton’s point of view.)  But there shouldn’t be anything stopping Greg McGarity from asking Richt to explain and justify exactly what’s happened and where things go from here.  If nothing else, maybe that’ll force Richt to pay more attention to the myriad of issues he’s let slide.  Something’s got to change, that’s for sure.

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My Week 9 Mumme Poll ballot

Well, hayul.  I thought things were supposed to get easier as the season wears on.  Instead, it seems I’ve expanded my ballot this week.

  • Alabama
  • Baylor
  • Clemson
  • LSU
  • Ohio State
  • Oklahoma
  • Stanford
  • TCU

Is there a more inexplicable loss this year than Oklahoma losing to Texas?

Even with the changes, it still took me only about 10 minutes to put that together.

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SEC Power Poll, Week 9

Lots of teams with bye weeks means not too much movement in my latest Power Poll ballot.  The coming week, however, boasts a schedule that’s all SEC, all the time.

  1. Alabama.  Relax, world.  No matter how the Alabama-LSU game plays out, there won’t be a rematch.
  2. LSU.  In this corner, an Alabama team facing another must win game.  And in this corner, Les Miles.
  3. Florida.  I think Jim McElwain is winning his argument with Will Muschamp.
  4. Mississippi.  It’s easy to forget, but it’s this team that controls its destiny, not Saban’s.
  5. Mississippi State.  The Bulldogs have had such a quiet season that I almost didn’t recall they were off this week.
  6. Texas A&M.  The Aggies ended a two-game losing streak, but didn’t exactly dominate a weak South Carolina team in doing so.  Progress of a sort, in other words.
  7. Tennessee.  I was skeptical of the Vols in August, but this team appears to be picking up steam as the season progresses.
  8. Arkansas.  Curb stomped a FCS team.  Isn’t that what SEC West teams are supposed to do?
  9. Georgia.  After the first four games, how many people thought after this week, Georgia still wouldn’t be bowl eligible?
  10. Auburn.  The Tigers gave up well over 500 yards of offense to Ole Miss, even with Carl Lawson’s return.  Obviously the Will Muschamp era is going swimmingly.
  11. Kentucky.  Another year, another great start followed by a collapse.
  12. South Carolina.  Showing a little more life post-Spurrier, but I’m not sure that says much.
  13. Vanderbilt.  Losing 34-0 to an AAC team?  If that’s not the most embarrassing loss by an SEC team in 2015, it’s gotta be in the top two.
  14. Missouri.  After Vandy’s showing, I’d move you up, Mizzou… except you lost to Vanderbilt.

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Fabris Pool results, Week 9

A seven-way tie for first place this week.

STANDINGS for WEEK 9
Rank
Selection Name
Standings
Adjustment
W-L
Pts
Tie Breaker Game
27-19
1 BosnianDawg Adj 8-2 8   28-13**
1 You Sunk My Shattle Bip Adj 8-2 8   31-21
1 suzieuga Adj 8-2 8   35-17
1 3rd and Long Sprint Draw Adj 8-2 8   31-7
1 CoastToCoast Adj 8-2 8   35-21
1 Scubadawg Adj 8-2 8   38-20
1 mwo Adj 8-2 8   45-21

Congrats to Bosnian Dawg, who took the tiebreaker.

The race for the season tightened.

SEASON STANDINGS through Week 9
Rank
You
Selection Name
W-L
Pts
1 uglydawg 52-38 52
2 Biggen 51-39 51
2 Senator Blutarsky 51-39 51
2 Noonan the Dawg 51-39 51
2 erikzatuga 51-39 51
6 Lamont Sanford 50-40 50
6 DawgVegas 50-40 50
6 mwo 50-40 50

This one isn’t getting settled any time soon.

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And now, a brief word from your host

Over the past two weeks, I’ve received a growing number of comments from folks, all along the lines of, “I love your blog, but if Georgia loses to Florida, I’m going to stop reading it for a while because the comments section has become too toxic for me to read.”

That’s a problem for me.  Nor can I argue about it too much.  I’ve cringed over some of the stuff I’ve seen lately.

I get that Mark Richt’s career is polarizing.  I understand that for some of you, whether he stays or goes is of paramount importance and that fuels your passion on the subject.  What I think some of you have lost sight of is that many of us don’t share your passion.  Including me.

Get The Picture is a blog primarily about Georgia football.  Mark Richt is obviously a major component of that, but he’s not the be all and end all.  This isn’t a blog about Mark Richt’s career.  Unlike some of you, I’m not emotionally invested in whether he stays or goes, because no matter where Richt is at, Georgia football will still go on.

An occasional bout of self-righteousness on a topic you feel strongly about is certainly understandable.  (Hell, I’ve been guilty of that sin as much as anybody.)  But on a non-stop basis, it’s a real turnoff.  And I can’t have readership feeling alienated because in your heart, you know you’re righteous.

So, a few reminders of what goes here follow.

  • Be respectful of other commeters.  It’s one thing to argue an opposing position.  It’s okay to mock another’s argument.  But getting personal with someone who disagrees with you isn’t.  If you can’t think of a way to disagree without personal invective or threats, perhaps you need to step away from the keyboard for a while.
  • Be respectful of others.  If you think Mark Richt is doing an awful job, just say so.  Personal slurs on his character, or the character of other coaches or players simply aren’t acceptable.  And before any of you race to play the Ben Carson politically correct or the ludicrous “some of my best friends…” cards, realize that if I tell someone they’re out of line with that garbage, I don’t care about your defense.  Anyone who comments here does so as my guest.  Freedom of expression isn’t the same thing as freedom to be an unmitigated ass.
  • Quit grinding things into the ground.  I don’t know how many times I have to say this, but repeating the exact same thing ad nauseam doesn’t win you any converts.  People aren’t growing tired of coming here because they’re intimidated by your towering intellect.  It’s because they know what’s coming and don’t want to see it again.  And again.  If you can’t find an original way to express yourself – and Gawd knows, it’s not like I don’t give you plenty of opportunities to find new angles to analyze the issues – hold your tongue.  Trust me, we won’t forget where you stand.
  • Li’l ol’ me.  It bears repeating that I am not emotionally invested in the concept of Mark Richt, Georgia head coach. That ship sailed a while back.  If you think that reflects badly on my credibility, buddy, that’s your problem, not mine.  This blog is coming up on its ninth anniversary.  In that time I’ve literally written thousands of posts about Georgia and Richt.  Anyone who thinks my position on the subject can be boiled down to three words, two of which are “a Richt…” isn’t trying.  If you’re too lazy to make the effort to understand why I write what I do, or simply find it more convenient to mischaracterize that, don’t expect me to take what you have to say in response with any seriousness.

I’ve written before about how one of the great pleasures of blogging is that it’s plugged me into a virtual community of folks who share my passion.  Some of you don’t realize a far larger part of that community reads GTP faithfully but doesn’t comment.  However, I do.  I can honestly say that there isn’t a comment made here that’s worth jeopardizing that readership.

I don’t write that to insult or belittle any of you who comment.  I say it because I want some of you to understand that what I’m about to write isn’t an idle threat.

This blog is a labor of love.  It isn’t all-encompassing, though.  I have a career.  I have a family.  I have a life.  What I don’t have is any more time to baby sit some of you who can’t control your emotions like grown ups.  I could sit here and say I’ll just start banning people who can’t respect the ground rules, but honestly, I’m getting tired of that (trolling excepted, that is).

Instead, what I’ll do if things don’t clean up is shut down comments entirely for a while to let things cool off, with the understanding that when I open commenting back up, it’ll be on a restricted basis, with full registration and moderation of those of you who have been least inclined to control your vitriol.

It’s not what I want to do.  I love having a freewheeling comments section.  At it’s best, it’s a lot of fun.  But right now, it’s not at its best.  One way or another, if some of you can’t figure out how to make your point without getting personal, it’s getting dialed down.  It’s only a question of who’s going to handle the controls.  Please don’t make it me.

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