Tom Herman’s math

I get why Herman said it, and he wasn’t being disrespectful towards Georgia when he made the point that the Dawgs’ running game won’t “be anything too formidable for us”, but his choice of examples for why that’s the case are a little strange.

“We played a team in Oklahoma that had gone six straight games of rushing for at least 290 yards,” Herman said. “The week prior we were against a Kansas team that had a freshman running back named Pooka Williams who rushed for 200-and-something yards against Oklahoma the week prior to that.”

Texas held the Sooners to 129 yards rushing and just 3.2 yards per carry in its 39-27 loss to Oklahoma in the Big 12 Championship Game on Dec. 1.

Against Kansas, on Nov. 23, the Longhorns held Big 12 Newcomer of the Year Pooka Williams to 103 yards on 16 carries and the Jayhawks to 137 yards rushing as a team in a 24-17 win.

“So, yeah, there are some teams that do like to throw it in our conference,” Herman said. “But the last three games that we played, being Iowa State, Kansas, and then Oklahoma, are all in the conversation for very difficult teams to defend running the football.”

Texas did a good job defending the run in the Big 12 title game, but Herman didn’t mention Oklahoma’s rushing stats when the teams met earlier during the regular season.  They aren’t particularly pretty:  31 attempts, 222 yards (7.16 ypc) and 2 TDs.

As far as Pooka Williams goes, sure Texas did a better job of stopping him than Oklahoma did, but Williams still managed almost six and a half yards per rushing attempt against the Longhorns defense.

Looking at the game logs, I don’t really see where you can clearly say Texas’ rush defense improved by season’s end.  Yes, the ‘Horns did well in that regard against Iowa State and Oklahoma, but three of the last five offenses they faced all averaged above Texas’ season average.

Georgia’s running game, on the other hand, clearly improved as the season wore on.  And before you jump on the decline against Alabama, consider that Georgia rushed for a higher ypc average against the Tide defense (3.92) than Texas’ run defense averaged (3.88) for the season.  That’s kind of formidable in its own way, you’d think.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!, Texas Is Just Better Than You Are.

19 responses to “Tom Herman’s math

  1. Biggus Rickus

    Regardless of raw totals, their defensive stats are slightly above average across the board by S&P+. Georgia ran the ball fine against defenses with better statistics than theirs, but they probably do have more talent than someone like Kentucky. So maybe Georgia only runs for around 200 yards. I can live with that.


  2. Russ

    Texas has a decent DL and rush defense, but their pass defense is pretty week. If they focus on stopping the run, Fromm will throw for 300+ and Fields may add another 150 himself.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. stoopnagle

    I watched Texas a few times this year. With our OL at full-strength, Swift and Holyfield are going to gobble up yards. We aren’t like OU running the ball: we run it on purpose, not as a side show. And Kansas and Iowa State? Lord, please!

    They’ve got good players and coaches. It’s going to be tight in the first half, but they’re about the 3rd or 4th best team we’re playing this year and we’re playing our best ball. I just don’t see how they’ll keep up.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Otto

    Agreed with others if they sell out to stop the run, Fromm picks them apart.

    I also don’t see any comparison between the Big12 rushing attacks which usually are dependent on their wide open passing attacks spreading the field. They haven’t faced a downhill running game and OL like UGA’s. I think UGA mauls them in the 3rd Qtr if UGA doesn’t make stupid play calling mistakes.


  5. AusDawg85

    Sure Tom, sure. You can handle the UGA rushing attack. Go ahead and focus on something else, like fake kicks.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’d recommend they have a look at what happened to OU in the second half of the Rose Bowl last year. But for a scoop and score, they got bludgeoned in the second half.


    • Otto

      I got a chuckle from Tom saying their defense held someone to fewer yards than OU’s D:

      Herman said. “The week prior we were against a Kansas team that had a freshman running back named Pooka Williams who rushed for 200-and-something yards against Oklahoma the week prior to that.”

      OU wasn’t exactly stopping anyone.


  7. talking smack to Kirby Smart and company just really tends to not work out well. And he really should focus on his team right now


  8. Bluto, WTF kinda math did you expect coming from the big 12 conference with only 10 members…….on the up side to bad math is some good BBQ!

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Math update: the longhorn hc says the UGA rushing attack is not “formidable”….it very well could wind being an “abominable rushing attack”! GO DAWGS!


  10. Texas is going to get Crockpot treatment.


  11. Olde Dawg 78

    Dang coach, I don’t think I would’ve said that. I don’t know what you were trying to do, but I’m pretty sure you caught the attention of our running backs and o-linemen. I doubt they are amused.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. JAX

    Fields is gone. Wish him the best.


    • Why in the world would he do this? He’s not going to be able to get a D-Rob hardship transfer, so he’s going to sit next year. Why would he go through bowl practice if he’s planning to leave? His sister signed to play softball at UGA next year. Something doesn’t add up.

      Liked by 1 person

      • playmakers in space

        The timing and (apparent) rationale is absolutely bizarre. I am honestly not sure why he ever committed to UGA in the first place.


  13. D as in Dawg

    JF, tell me it ain’t so.