Bill Connelly, in his new gig at ESPN, started spewing some great stuff yesterday — more on that in a sec — but he tweeted a couple of charts that, in particular, are worth sharing.
There’s a lot to unpack there, so let’s do some unpacking.
- Over fourteen seasons, there’s only one when Georgia was below the conference average — 2016. Crap on Richt all you like, but that’s a remarkable run of consistency.
- That being said, it’s impossible to deny that over the past two seasons, Smart has rapidly elevated the program to a level superior to Richt’s.
- If you don’t think Bobo’s departure killed Richt, take a close look at that week-to-week graph for 2014 and 2015.
- As bad as Schottenheimer sucked, Chaney managed to outdo him the next season. Good luck with your transition this season, Vols.
- Speaking of 2015, we all heard stories about how Pruitt was throwing his weight around that year, as the defense was carrying the offense, but that was after a 2014 season in which the reverse was true. Not to mention the first half of 2015 was a bit rocky for Georgia’s defense, too.
- You can really tell when Smart and Tucker got things sorted out for Georgia defensively, can’t you? It started coming together Week 10 of the 2016 season and what’s really noticeable from that point on is how consistent the performance level of the defense has been.
13 responses to “Georgia, in two charts”
Schitty sucked, and Year 1 Chaney sucked.
Jim Chaney should thank the Man Upstairs every day that Nick and Sony came back for one more shot.
Those charts directly reflect how I view our program right now. We are consistent. We don’t have wild swings in performance week to week. Surprised the LSU game and Texas games didn’t show a bigger dip.
Also think the defensive number take a step forward this year. That will be the difference this year in the postseason. Roquan, L. Carter, and Baker made those 2017 numbers so good. We will never have another Roquan but I think overall the defense is more talented this year too to bottom than 2017.
I don’t know if Nakobe Dean can be the same type of player, but he seems to have the physical tools and the knowledge of the game to become that type of player.
I was thinking the same thing about Dean. Really looking forward to seeing what he can do. I think the lack of depth on the inside will give him the opportunity to contribute early in his career if he has the talent and work ethic. By all accounts so far, he does.
Man, 2014 was such a missed opportunity.
I came here just to say the same thing. 2014 was a massive blown opportunity–and we did it with a game manager at QB, instead of Greene, Stafford, or Murray.
I know this is not the playpen, but here’s some more fuel for the “Crap on Richt all you like” conversation.
First year: Richt 8-4, Smart 8-5. Second year: Richt 13-1 with an SEC title and No. 3 poll finish, Smart 13-2 with an SEC title and No. 2 poll finish. Third year: Richt 11-3 and No. 7 poll finish, Smart 11-3 and No. 7 poll finish.
Yes, I know all about the Rose Bowl and the National Championship. I love Kirby and I’m not here to criticize him. Just making a point. We’ve been here before and haven’t been able to break through. I’m cautiously optimistic but I’m old and I grew up with Larry Munson. I let myself believe a couple of years ago. That didn’t work out. Now you have to show me. I know this isn’t a popular opinion on this blog, but these opportunities aren’t endless. Even Kirby cannot continue to recruit at this level if he can’t bring home the trophy. Kids these days are not interested in almost. They expect Instagrammable careers.
Difference between Richt and Smart as expressed through recruiting.
Recruiting ranking 247 composite
2001 LSU, UT, AU, Ark, UGA (5th) – 2nd in East
2002 UT, UGA (2nd), UF) – 2nd in East
2003 UF, LSU, UGA (3rd), UT – 2nd in East
2004 LSU, UF, UGA (3rd), UT – 2nd in East
2016 (Bama, LSU, OM, UGA (4th), AU, UF, UT – 1st in East
2017 (Bama, UGA (2nd) , LSU, AU, UF – 1st in East
2018 (UGA (1st), Bama, AU, UF, LSU – 1st in SEC
2019 (Bama, UGA (2nd), TA&M, LSU, UF – 1st in East
Remember there was no team like Bama during Richt’s early years in the SEC, much less the country. I believe the SEC is a Jimmie’s and Joe’s league. UGA isn’t trailing UF for talent in the East as we were under Richt. We also only trail Bama in the talent department and not three teams like we were under Richt (UT, LSU, and UF). The LOS players inherited by Richt vs Kirby and the changes on the LOS experienced in the coaches first four years makes the differences between the coaches easier to discern.
Richt was a very good coach his early years at UGA and Kirby is on the same trajectory records wise. The difference is in the talent acquisition comparative to the league and the deployment of resources (facilities, staff, etc.) for the football team. I think Kirby gets the edge on both of those. Kirby still needs to climb Mt. Everest that is Bama under Nick Saban to take us to the promised land. Not an easy task but I have faith we have the right coach for the job.
Gruven, I agree. I think Kirby is the guy. Unfortunately, I don’t think he can continue to recruit at this level indefinitely. He needs to break through sooner rather than later if he wants elite talent to continue to choose Georgia. I don’t think that’s fair or right but I do think it’s reality. Sadly, I also believe he needs to beat Saban to do it. Otherwise, no matter what his legacy there will always be the caveat that “yeah, he’s great but he never beat Saban.” That’s unfair but it’s how folks think.
I agree with your point that KS needs to capitalize while the iron is hot, but don’t think we will fall very far. We will still be competitive, and high enough up in the polls with big games every year, and we are a program close to a lot of major talent. We may not be in the top 3 in recruiting if we don’t get over the Bama hump (on the scoreboard) the next 2 years, but we will still be in the 7-10 range. Many teams, Clemson the most recent example, have shown you can win with recruiting classes that average closer to 10 than Top 3. Kirby may not land all the big fish, or draw from all over the country. but the boy won’t be outworked, nor lose his touch with the players and their families. Not saying recruiting doesn’t matter, it just isn’t that precise; and evaluation and development will still play a major role. UGA is a big brand; these young players are growing up seeing UGA on the big stage 4-5 times a year.
All good points Macallanlover.
I completely agree Paul. It’s also a concern of mine. The question around continued recruiting success revolves around how the top recruits in the state have still shown their willingness to go other places. It hasn’t hurt too bad so far because Kirby has enjoyed a boom from outside the state. The defensive line recruits not withstanding, but I belive in order to have the same continued success, he needs a title or he’ll need to make headway on keeping the best in state recruits home. He can do either and maintain. If he does neither, being one of the “it” schools will dwindle for the National recruits and then without the top in state guys, the classes will slide. There is a window, we need to keep that window open.
If Mary Beth comes down with cervical cancer and Kriby starts rambling about rings gathering dust, then you can continue the comparisons. Richt lost his edge during Katharyn’s cancer scare. I am a firm believer that Richt would have two rings and would still be coaching at Georgia if not for her health.