Daily Archives: December 28, 2016

“The burden for that falls on me.”

I give Jim Chaney credit for at least having the grace to throw himself under the bus.

Chaney also acknowledged that at times the offense tried to be more straight-ahead and physical when in fact freshman quarterback Jacob Eason was more comfortable in the shotgun.

“There was a little contradiction with that at times,” Chaney said.

The trick going forward is to make sure there’s nothing to apologize for again.

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31 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

They’ll always have Tuscaloosa.

Looks like Junior’s tongue is starting to get its swag back.

That didn’t take too long.

If we’re lucky, soon they’ll both wind up chasing the same South Florida kid on the recruiting trail and the Laner will let us know what he really thinks about Saban’s recruiting tactics.

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UPDATE:  Context.

Kiffin hasn’t always seen eye-to-eye with other coaches in Tuscaloosa. He acknowledged as much Tuesday at a Peach Bowl press conference while praising Nick Saban’s decision to make Steve Sarkisian the next offensive coordinator.

“He’ll do a great job with Coach,” Kiffin said. “Coach talked to me about it, and I think in some ways, he’ll do a much better job than I do with Coach.”

When asked to explain what he meant, Kiffin replied, “The way I would describe it without details is (Sarkisian’s) personality will work a little bit better than mine with coaches, and I’m not saying it was a bad thing at all. I would say Sark manages people better than I do at times.”

For three years, Kiffin and Saban made an odd couple that helped Saban evolve to changing offenses in football and tried to help Kiffin repair his image. The “ass chewings” Kiffin received on the sideline — as Saban likes to call them — complemented sustained success by Alabama’s offense.

“I don’t recall a happy moment,” Kiffin said when asked for his happiest moment with Saban. “I just recall the ass chewings. I won’t take that part of the process with me (to Florida Atlantic), though.”

Definitely warm and fuzzy.

11 Comments

Filed under Don't Mess With Lane Kiffin

It’s all relative.

Honestly, having watched Alabama and Georgia football for a while, this strikes me as kind of a strange perspective:

Pruitt inherited a talented bunch to work with, but it’s his personality that has earned him the most respect from the players.

“I think he’s just brought us all more together,” Alabama defensive back Marlon Humphrey said. “I feel like he cares more about us that previous coordinators we’ve had. I think that’s always a good thing when you feel you can go up to your defensive coordinator and talk with him about whatever, other than just football.”

Humphrey’s words are strong considering Smart was Alabama’s defensive coordinator for nearly a decade.

It’s only one kid, so take that for what it’s worth.  I would bet that Maurice Smith has a different opinion on Smart’s level of care.

Then again, maybe it’s about being around Nick Saban longer.

30 Comments

Filed under Alabama, Georgia Football

“But every coach in America would have done the same thing.”

I know this WSJ piece is about the NFL, but it’s still a fascinating statistical look at how successful conventional playcalling is.

… The NFL’s current roster of coaches is a very conservative bunch. And that might not be a formula for success.

A Wall Street Journal analysis of NFL play calling this season shows that—despite a legion of mathematicians, economists and win probability models urging them to take more chances—most of the league’s coaches still reach for the conventional choice by habit.

The Journal analysis examines how coaches played their hand this season across three broad categories of game management: fourth downs; play calling (blitzing on defense; passing on early downs or with the lead on offense) and special teams (going for a 2-point conversion and onside kicks when ahead).

I would argue there’s more than just habit at work here.  There’s also the parity factor.  When you don’t have a huge talent gap between teams — and say what you will, the gap in the NFL is way smaller than the gap in college — the consequences of coaches’ decision making at key times become magnified, especially those decisions that backfire.  Wrapping oneself in conventional wisdom is an obvious defense to criticism.

Again, one of the great things about college football is that disparity in resources forces greater creativity in strategy to try to offset the disadvantage than we see in the pros.  At least that’s the case at schools that don’t use their backup quarterbacks to field punts.

13 Comments

Filed under Strategery And Mechanics

Your second random factoid of the day

Actually, it’s a factoid mash up.

An area Georgia hasn’t fared well this season is in red zone defense. When opposing teams get inside the 20, Georgia has allowed a scoring conversion rate of 94.6 percent. Twenty-nine of the 35 scores were touchdowns, with the Bulldogs having a hard time of holding teams to field goals in the red zone.

Tucker said this has been an area of emphasis, especially since TCU has posted touchdowns on 30 of its 44 red zone scores.

Best keep ’em out of the red zone, then.

13 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

I’ve got some good news for you and I’ve got some bad news for you.

Per Bill Connelly, advanced stats suggest the typical coach sees a big bump up in S&P+ ratings in his second year.  (Yay!)

Unfortunately, things flatline from there.

No matter how good you’ve been, you’re likely to improve in your coach’s second year. But outside of that second-year window, your fortunes depend as much on recent fortune as tenure. To some degree, everybody regresses or progresses toward the mean.

Now, this is an overly gloomy assessment in any individual coach’s case, of course.  (Not to mention Bill hedges on whether the data is statistically significant.)  But it’s probably worth keeping in mind that a positive move in Georgia’s fortunes next season wouldn’t be a shock.

23 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

The difference between following recruiting and following recruits

Boy, the opportunity I’ve let pass at GTP.

If I ever think about going down that road, just shoot me.

9 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting