It’s not just that Georgia saw its point production fall so precipitously from 2014 (41.3 ppg, good for 8th nationally) to 2015 (26.3 ppg, 85th nationally). It’s that it managed to do so during another season of record setting offensive production.
While you were watching (from the stands), sleeping (during another late-night Pac-12 game) or actually crunching the numbers, the most notable college football record of the modern era was set. Again.
The national scoring average increased to a record 29.65 points per team in 2015, according to official numbers compiled by the NCAA for CBS Sports. This is the fifth time since 2000 the scoring record has been set, and it shatters the previous record of 29.5 points set in 2012…
That previous scoring record in 2012 was not only broken but shattered. The three-tenths of a point increase per game is the biggest one-year increase in the record since 2001.
All-time highs were also set in yards per rush (4.51), total offense (411.56 yards), yards per pass (7.30) and yards per play (5.76). Average rushing yards (178.33) were the highest since 1980.
Interestingly, scoring production was down in the SEC, better than three points per game. Then again, Georgia had a lot to do with that, as it finished below the conference average.
There were plenty of reasons for that – Chubb’s injury, spotty quarterback play, poor production on third-down all played a part. So did Richt’s decision after the Florida game to play extremely conservatively on offense after the Florida debacle, although scoring actually ticked upwards once the Dawgs got past the three toughest defenses they faced last season.
The point here isn’t to reopen old wounds. It’s that Chaney’s job out of the gate may not be as daunting as it looks, especially if Chubb is able to return at some point this season. To get some idea of how much scoring production fell off last year, 2015 marked the first time since 2006 that Georgia didn’t manage to exceed the national scoring average. (Coincidentally, Mike Bobo wasn’t the offensive coordinator either of those seasons.)
It’s too much of a stretch to think everything that troubled Georgia’s offense last year can be fixed in one fell swoop by a new staff. But if they can get a handle on just a few of the problems, it’s not unreasonable to expect an offense that once again is on the right side of the national scoring average.