Daily Archives: January 7, 2020

Whither Fromm?

If you’re like me, you’ve probably been asked a number of times in the past few days by people who know you’re a Georgia fan if you know whether Jake Fromm is staying or going.

And if you’re like me, you have no idea about his decision.

I have heard whispers and seen speculation going both ways.  Todd Blackledge yesterday said, “I’ve heard some rumblings of another potential maybe grad transfer quarterback might be headed that way.”  On the one hand, I can’t imagine a good graduate transfer QB would be interested in coming to Athens to sit behind Fromm.  On the other, it would not be prudent for Kirby Smart to start doing his due diligence until after Fromm announced he was heading to the NFL.  So I’m not sure those rumblings mean much.

Jeff Sentell reported yesterday that Fromm and Smart met about that decision.  Obviously, whatever they discussed hasn’t been made public yet, but I have no reason to think that Sentell is wrong about Fromm entering into any decision without a good deal of careful thought about it, because that’s the way Fromm is.

And I’ve wondered myself about this very same thing that Sentell mentions:

The thought of Georgia opening up things more offensively will be discussed. That’s something that Fromm would very likely want to see.

I don’t think that’s much of a stretch, as Fromm’s hinted at that kind of stuff already.

Fromm did let it be known that he’s ready to run, something he’s not been asked to do very much in Georgia’s offensive scheme.

“That’s where the game is going, and with my feet, I’m ready to go,” Fromm said. “Let’s go play football and be a football player.”

Is Kirby willing to let him?  Stay tuned…

86 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Your Daily Gator is back in business.

They may not have played the national title game yet, but Florida’s season is over, so it’s not too early for one of the 247Sports writers at the Gator site to stir up the rubes with this look at next year’s playoff field:

Projected matchup: No. 1 Ohio State vs. No. 4 Florida

How we’ll get there: It’s a bit hazy, sure, but there is a justifiable path to the Playoff for Dan Mullen in Year 3 with the Gators. Let’s say Florida finishes 11-1 during the regular season with its only loss coming to Georgia in Jacksonville — which would include a Top 10 win over LSU in Gainesville. Georgia finishes 11-1 with a loss to Alabama, thus wins the East with the tiebreaker. Then, the Crimson Tide beat the Bulldogs again in Atlanta, ensuring Florida is the SEC’s second-most attractive option for the Playoff committee. Hmm. Keep an eye on Florida quarterback Kyle Trask, who will surge to the front of the Heisman race.

Clever, that Dan Mullen, letting Kirby win.  You can’t lose to Alabama if you don’t play Alabama.

30 Comments

Filed under Gators, Gators...

Hurried

Brace yourselves — I’m speculating again.

Seth, in his At Second Glance piece about the Sugar Bowl win ($$), notes that Georgia’s offense did one thing in that game out of character from its regular season proclivities:

First there was tempo, which we’ve wondered all season why Georgia didn’t use it more often. There was never a clear answer, but much of it probably came back to that run-oriented approach. But when you pass more, you can go quick more often. And Georgia did that against Baylor.

For the season, Georgia averaged 28.8 seconds of possession per play, which ranked among the slowest in the country, per SportSource Analytics. But in the first half of the Sugar Bowl, the Bulldogs went more than three seconds faster per play: 25.6 seconds. The second quarter, when Georgia was particularly successful, it averaged just 23.8 seconds per play.

Kirby Smart, as we all know, is quasi-addicted to substituting personnel throughout a game, on both sides of the ball.  The problem with doing so on offense is that it slows the game down — the offense substitutes and the defense gets the chance to match.  So even though we’ve seen numerous times when Georgia going up-tempo has allowed the offense to flourish, Smart’s natural tendency takes away that advantage.

Now, it could be argued that one reason Georgia went more quickly in the Sugar Bowl was do to personnel losses; in other words, because there were less players on offense to substitute, Georgia didn’t allocate as much time to substitution.  Eh, maybe.  I wonder — and again, here comes the rank speculation — if the SECCG debacle had more of an impact on Smart’s willingness to go up-tempo.  As I wrote after Smart’s presser then,

… Read the first paragraph from that presser quote of his again. LSU ran 28 straight plays in 11 formation yesterday. Certainly that frustrated Smart the defensive whiz who loves matching players to situations, but it’s also an alien concept to him on offense, because it’s ingrained in his approach that mixing and matching personnel and sets is the way to go, even if his quarterback’s performance suffers.

That was in response to this:

… So they go tempo, but they don’t go tempo to just run the ball, they go tempo and take shots. They never change personnel. It’s like 28 consecutive snaps with the same people on the field. So it does not allow you to substitute in the pattern that you want to.

So there’s a combination of a lot of things, and it is scheme oriented, [Emphasis added] but it’s a lot more than scheme. They have plays that they’ve run all year, that we’ve run all year. Our plays haven’t looked like their plays because a lot of times we might not have the same guys doing those plays.

They’ve got a great group of wideouts combined with an extremely athletic quarterback, and it hit at the right time. I’ve got a lot of respect for what they’re doing and who they’re doing it with. They’re hard to defend.

“They’re hard to defend.”  You want to know how to get through to Kirby Smart?  Make it hard for him to play defense.

The irony here of making improvements to the offensive scheme because Georgia’s defense didn’t play well doesn’t escape me, but I don’t care, either.  Anything that will allow the offense to play more effectively is welcome.  Not only that, but the beauty of using more up-tempo playcalling is that of anything Coley and Smart could embrace, it has the least impact on their manball approach to the game.  (In fact, you could argue by preventing the defense from substituting regularly, up-tempo enhances that.)

I don’t know if we’ve seen a glimpse of the future in that regard, but I am curious to hear whatever reasoning Smart gives us when he makes his next coaching hire.

Thoughts?

36 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

Eh, what do we know?

Food for thought…

Not a prediction, but what would the NCAA do if it turned out that not letting players earn money for their NIL rights depressed fan interest?

5 Comments

Filed under The NCAA

Bigger is better.

From Bill Connelly’s “How 40 years of college football history would have been different with a playoff“:

Under Mark Richt, Georgia makes the show in both 2002 and 2007; the Bulldogs would have had a chance against Miami in 2002 but probably would have fallen short. In 2007, however, they were maybe the hottest team in the country and would have had an excellent shot at beating Ohio State and either LSU or Oklahoma. Does this help Richt to survive a run of lesser (but still very high-quality) play in Nick Saban’s shadow in the 2013-15 range?

No way of knowing for sure, of course, but I think everyone would have to admit it would have been a closer question.

The interesting thing about Bill’s piece is that he excludes Georgia from the 2012 “playoffs” and has Florida going as the fourth seed.  I think it’s safe to say had that happened, heads would have exploded all across Dawgnation.

Anyway, it’s a good thought exercise about what playoff expansion does for coaching security.  That’s why Jim Boeheim keeps advocating for March Madness to go beyond 64.

9 Comments

Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Georgia Football

Musical palate cleanser, “the world premiere of a song that’s 35 years old” edition

Here’s a Neil Young song you probably haven’t heard before.

Background here.

3 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized