Daily Archives: January 13, 2020

Saving his best for last

No guarantees in life or graduate transfers, but this is a stat worth noting.

For Newman, I wonder how much of that was due to defenses having to respect the run option.



Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Say what you want about the tenets of roster management, Dude, but with Kirby, at least it’s an ethos.

Damn, the man sure knows how to restock a roster.


UPDATE:  From Dawg Post, so take it for what it’s worth…

McKitty has proven he can be an asset in the passing game. He’s been used a lot in the screen game for Florida State and has decent speed for a guy his size. He catches the ball well, he pushes the pile forward and has the ability to create yards after the catch.

The route he’s mastered is the short curl route. He’s great in mid-to-short yardage situations where he can run a 5 or 10 yards curl route. He does a good job of knowing where the first down marker is and puts himself in a position to get that first down more often than not. He does a nice job of finding a hold in zone coverage and bursts up the field once he’s made the catch.

He’ll also bring some athleticism to the position. He’ll be one of the more versatile and more athletic tight ends on the roster now. He’s not a game-changing tight end, but he’s a guy who does his job and will help open things up in the middle of the field in the passing game.

If you play tight end at Georgia, you better know how to block. McKitty is a weapon catching the football, but has showed he’s a reliable blocker as well. He can handle linebackers at the next level and could see lots of playing time in Athens when the Bulldogs run two tight-end sets.


Filed under Georgia Football

“But the difference in the game is the quarterback.”

Really good Q&A with LSU offensive coordinator Steve Ensminger here.  They touch on a lot of subjects, including Kirby changing his defense for the SECCG and an Eric Zeier comparison with Joe Burrow, but for my money, this was the most interesting exchange, if you’re wondering how the interaction between he and Brady went during games:

Q. (On the credit for changing the offense)
STEVE ENSMINGER: I don’t give myself any. Well, I knew we had to change. Coach O said, Hey, let’s do this. I said, let’s go.

It’s not about me. It really is not. It’s about LSU. I played there, I went to school there, I love that school. Whatever we could do to make LSU great, I’m in. I appreciate Joe Brady, I promise you. He’s brought a lot to the table. I couldn’t be more happy for him.

Q. How do you two decide how the calls will be made during the flow of a game?
STEVE ENSMINGER: We talked about it before the game. I tell him, I know what my strengths are and I know what my weaknesses are. Joe is better with our compact packages. Joe is better at our empty package than I am. So I tell him, we talk about it before the game, Look, when I want to go empty, be ready. If it’s third and whatever, and I have a call, I make it. If not, I tell him. He has it all highlighted. I’m like, Take it.

We can go to empty right now. I said, Joe, I’m going empty. Take it, he’s ready for it.

Compact meaning our bunch packages, a condensed formation, stuff like that. He’s better at that than I am. I know it. I tell him, Hey, I want to go whatever it is, bunch, pack ’em all in here. I said, Call it. He’s ready for it.

It helps to lack a big ego to make something like that work seamlessly.  That, and Joe Burrow, of course.


Filed under SEC Football, Strategery And Mechanics

“That means, 2020 is the year for Florida to retake the East.”

Hoo, boy, this one’s good.

As always, the Georgia game is in Jacksonville. Georgia may come into this game with two losses already, as they will face Alabama in Tuscaloosa in mid-September and then Auburn in early October. If Newman struggles like I think he may, Florida may be seeing Carson Beck in his first or second start of the year.

He manages to write an entire piece without mentioning Georgia’s defense, which is certainly one way to argue the gap’s been eliminated.  We’ll see how that works in real life.



UPDATE:  Here’s Jake Rowe’s projected 2020 depth chart for the offense.  The spots that make me most nervous are tight end, which has to be rebuilt from the ground up (yeah, I know, but work with me here) and left tackle, because of how good Thomas was.


UPDATE #2:  Evidently, this guy’s take on elite recruiting has changed dramatically since mid-season.

But the reality is that injuries are such a glaring issue precisely because there isn’t much depth.

This offseason, I looked at the likelihood that a player got drafted based on his recruiting ranking. The likelihood of a 5-star player getting drafted was way higher than even the best 4-star player, indicating a much higher level of production.

Florida’s roster contains one 5-star (Brenton Cox, not eligible), 38 4-stars and 35 3-stars. Georgia’s roster boasts 14 5-stars, 45 4-stars and 25 3-stars. It’s a talent mismatch.

The problem is you can’t use that as an excuse. When I wrote about recruiting extensively last offseason, the counter narrative was that Mullen had to “show it on the field” to get the elite recruits to come to Gainesville. He then had an excellent first season that was followed up with a recruiting class that ranked very similar to his first, particularly when you factor in non-qualifiers.

There is no doubt that recruiting is trending up compared to the McElwain regime. But it’s not really where it needs to be to compete with Georgia and Alabama on a regular basis.

The 2020 class is right where the 2019 class was last season: fighting for position somewhere between 7th and 12th. If you’re relying on on-field performance to provide a significant bump, this loss certainly doesn’t help.

A reminder – Florida is seventh in the 247Sports Composite.


Filed under Gators, Gators...

Your national championship game day post

Wonder who this dude is pulling for…

Bill Connelly has as in-depth a game preview as you’ll likely need right here.  Bill sees Clemson covering the 5.5-point spread, a call I happen to agree with.  Other than favoring whatever outcome would make for a less obnoxious version of Dabo Swinney, I don’t have a dog in this hunt.  I just want to be entertained.

How ’bout you guys?


Filed under BCS/Playoffs

Who’s foolin’ who?

There’s something about playoff expansion that brings out the bullshit artist in every conference commissioner.  Here, for example, are the supposedly tortured stylings of Jim Delany’s successor as head of the Big Ten:

“We have to ask ourselves what’s in the best interest of the student-athletes for them to be able to get a world-class education and participate and to remain healthy — healthy mentally, and physically, and emotionally and spiritually,” Warren, the first African American Power 5 commissioner, said in an interview with ESPN.

“If we do that, and we get people in the room to say, ‘If they were my son, or that were my grandson, and I would be comfortable with whatever decision is made,’ then we’ll know when that is right. No matter what we do, we have to put the best interests of the student-athletes at the center. We have to remember they are not professional athletes and they should not be held to a standard to win a national championship by playing 20 games.”

Well, unless the money is good enough.

What happens when stakeholders and market forces demand more of the same product? Ask the NCAA postseason men’s basketball tournament, which started with eight teams in 1939 and now has 68.

In 1981, when the NCAA considered expanding the tournament from 48 to 64 teams, Stanford athletics director Andy Geiger explained why he supported expansion.

”We all need money and that new TV contract kind of helps,” Geiger said then in the New York Times. ”You can increase the field now, and teams will earn as much as or more than they earned this year.”

From 1982 to 1984, CBS paid $16 million a year to televise the tournament. That doubled to $32 million with the expansion to 64 teams in 1985, leading the NCAA to “study ways of distributing what some feared could become an embarrassment of riches,” according to The Associated Press in 1985. Thirty-one years later, the NCAA announced an $8.8 billion, eight-year contract extension from CBS and Turner Sports through 2032.

Funny how that works.  And football playoff expansion will likely be just as lucrative.

One professional estimate predicts an eight-team playoff could fetch an additional $420 million a year from ESPN or whoever pays for it.

According to this estimate from Navigate Research, adding another four playoff games would add an additional 60 million viewers, which would be worth an additional $420 million at the rate of $7 per viewer. The Navigate estimate is based on the fact that playoff games in the current four-team format average around 65 million television viewers, which is roughly $7 per viewer for ESPN for those three games.

To use that tired chestnut, we know what you are, Mr. Warren.  We’re just haggling over the fee.


Filed under BCS/Playoffs, Blowing Smoke, It's Just Bidness

Somewhere on the border between fate and freaky

Check out Jamie Newman’s high school logo and jersey colors:

Screenshot_2020-01-13 Jamie Newman How Georgia football will remind him a lot of back home

His high school coach, Anthony Timmons, opted to reach for something from the divine column.

“I think it is God’s plan,” he said. “I told a reporter earlier this morning I believe. I am kind of glad I kept some of my old Graham gear. That way I can pull out a Graham hat that has got the Graham and the Georgia ‘G’ on it and feel right at home.”

“I’m a firm believer that everything happens for a reason.”

It isn’t an exact match. Graham High is known as the Red Devils. Not the Bulldogs.

“Everything except the mascot,” Timmons said. “But we tried to be Georgia and like Georgia through and through with everything.”

Weird, hunh?

Feel free to insert your “McGarity is going to ask for retroactive royalties” joke here, if you like.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stylin'

Making your presence known

Just curious, since I didn’t get out much this weekend, if anyone’s seen this and can tell the class where it is:

The cowbell with the pirate’s logo is a nice touch.


Filed under Mike Leach. Yar!