Daily Archives: October 16, 2016

Go, dog, go.

I’m still trying to cheer you guys up.

Boise State has a dog that retrieves kicking tees.

You’re welcome.

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39 Comments

Filed under College Football

Effing balance

Given that early Mike Bobo used to drive me nuts with his counterproductive insistence on balance in his play calling, it’s only fair to shake my head over what Kirby said yesterday about his offensive game plan.

In a win over South Carolina Sunday, Georgia was dominant on the ground — they racked up 326 rushing yards and two touchdowns on 50 carries, while Eason went 5 of 17 for 29 yards and a touchdown. This week, Eason took advantage of soft coverage while Vanderbilt held Georgia to 75 rushing yards on 35 carries.

“We were trying to establish the run still in the second half because when you become one dimensional, pass-pass-run, pass-pass-run, you’re predictable there and they just rush you,” Smart said. “It’s frustrating anytime you’re not successful and we look at everything internally, but to be honest with you, I thought the kids had an opportunity late in the game to run the ball and the offensive line wanted to do that and we weren’t doing that with much success.”

The problem with that line of thinking, as Smart and the rest of us discovered much to our chagrin on the last play of the game Georgia ran, was that Vanderbilt never gave up on selling out to stop the run.

I don’t get what’s so hard about taking what the other guy is willing to give you until he shows otherwise.  Maybe it’s something about the Ray Goff coaching tree.

53 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

Once and for all, can we please dispense with the Alabama 2007 analogy?

I know for some of you comparing the downward trajectory of this season to Saban’s first year in Tuscaloosa offers the comfort of a warm, soft blanket, but reader Bob explains why it’s a false comfort.

A lot of us are constantly reminded about what Nick inherited. I will tell you what he inherited. He inherited programs at LSU and Bama that had losing seasons when he took over. Those programs won 28 games in their previous 4 years. Alabama had been on probation. Kirby inherited a team that won 40 games the previous 4 seasons…

That’s hardly all, if you think about it.  There are two other huge reasons to disabuse yourself of the notion.

  1. 2016 Kirby Smart isn’t 2007 Nick Saban.  When Nick Saban took over at Alabama, it was his fifth head coaching job.  He’d already won a national championship at LSU. He’d coached in the NFL and in two other conferences, too.  In short, he already had his notions about how to run a football program tested and honed; he walked into his new gig knowing not only exactly what he wanted to do, but how to implement his vision from the start.  None of that applies to Smart.  It’s his first head coaching job.  He’s getting his feet wet in college football’s toughest conference.  Simply put, 2016 is on the job training for Kirby Smart, with all the hiccups that ensue.
  2. Alabama isn’t Georgia.  Duh, I know.  But I’m not even thinking about the obvious administration commitment levels here.  It’s more a matter of how the schools went about their business in the two seasons under comparison.  Alabama was hungry to the point of desperation, but it started from the vantage point of wanting experience for its next head coach and was confident enough in its ability to provide resources to shoot the moon, first with a hot name like Rich Rodriguez and then, after he turned the Tide down, Saban.  Georgia, in turn, started with little more than a belief that it was better than what Richt had delivered, and entered the job search market with a conviction that Smart was its guy.  History may prove McGarity to be correct in that regard, but there is literally nothing to suggest that to date, unless you believe that greatness can be passed to an assistant coach by osmosis.

Before you go there, none of this is offered to make the case that Richt shouldn’t have been let go, or that Smart won’t deliver down the road.  It’s simply that Georgia’s 2016 season is a sui generis disappointment and insisting that Alabama losing to a directional school nine years ago is some sort of evidence for thinking otherwise is… well, embarrassing.  Just stop.

123 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

“Georgia’s makeover looks more like a decline.”

If I didn’t know any better, I’d say Jeff Schultz is enjoying himself.

Nothing says thoughtful analysis like drawing ultimate conclusions seven games into a career.

55 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Media Punditry/Foibles

Reggie Davis, prophet

— “Vanderbilt’s always been a good team,” Georgia senior wideout Reggie Davis said. “They play very hard. The first couple of games they played everyone close. … So they’re definitely a good team and you don’t want to underestimate anybody in the SEC.”

—  “You don’t want to sleep on anyone in the SEC,” Georgia wide receiver Reggie Davis said. “You can’t sleep on them, you can’t take them lightly. They play hard from the first quarter on all the way until the clock says zero.”

My biggest regret from last week was ignoring my first instinct when I read those quotes, which was to post something about how fretting about not taking an opponent lightly is a good sign you’re probably already taking an opponent too lightly.  But I feared I might be too pessimistic.

Then came the opening kickoff and the subsequent penalty on the first play of Vanderbilt’s lengthy scoring drive.  Boy, don’t I feel foolish now.

Reggie, I promise I’ll never take your musings for granted again.

I know it’s popular to sneer at Chip Towers, but this observation has Georgia nailed: “Look, bad losses happen and upsets occur every weekend in college football. But the only thing Georgia has been consistent about is playing down to the level of its opponent.”

Sure doesn’t bode well for Kentucky or (gulp) Louisiana-Lafayette, does it?

32 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football