Daily Archives: April 13, 2020

Requiem for a three-year starter

Andy Staples ($$) sums up Jake Fromm:

If Georgia’s Jake Fromm is available at this point, the Bucs should grab him. Fromm regressed in 2019 after excellent freshman and sophomore seasons, but that may have more to do with playcalling and supporting cast than any deficiencies with Fromm himself. He’s still the guy who took his team to an SEC title and a national title game berth as a true freshman. His physical tools don’t measure up to the tools of, say, Washington QB Jacob Eason. But remember, Fromm replaced an injured Eason as Georgia’s QB in 2017, and even when Eason got healthy, he didn’t get the job back because Fromm had the Bulldogs rolling. Brady, who also got dinged for his lack of athleticism and arm strength when he was in the draft, would be the perfect teacher and Fromm the perfect understudy.

Agree or disagree?

24 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

“The first virtual G-Day experience”

What’s that, you ask?

While the annual G-Day spring football game will not be played at Sanford Stadium later this month, the Bulldog program is excited to announce a Virtual G-Day plan for April 18, presented by Piedmont Healthcare.

The SEC Network will re-broadcast the 2019 matchup between Notre Dame and Georgia starting at 2 p.m. Georgia head coach Kirby Smart will tweet during the game from @KirbySmartUGA as another source of game commentary. In addition, the Bulldog radio crew, including Scott Howard, Eric Zeier and Chuck Dowdle, will have a Facebook live broadcast on the Georgia Bulldogs account as a third-screen experience for fans during the afternoon.

Sorry, but it’s not a Kirby Smart G-Day experience unless he tells us we need 93K watching so we can pump up the recruits.  Oh, and a condom-clause contract thrown in would be good, too.

Seriously, appreciate the effort, fellas.

2 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football

Mask out, anyone?

A friend of mine forwarded this to me:

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Wear it, and be wonderful… although fifty bucks (40% off!) strikes me as a bit steep.

32 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Stylin'

The boys of summer

For the sake of argument, let’s say they figure out a way to get the 2020 college football season off on time.  How do they get players in shape without the virtual year round experience that offseason training has morphed into over the past decade or so?

Old school, baby!

Pittman said he believes players could be ready for the season on time of they are back on campus by Aug. 1, and he provided very sound reasoning.

“I’m a little bit old school, because I’m a little bit older, and I was a high school head coach and junior college head coach,” Pittman said. “And when I was at Oklahoma in ’97 and ’98, the kids that stayed for summer school were either the kids that were way out of shape and you encouraged them to stay, or guys that needed the summer school hours. Everybody else basically went home and you got them back the first of August and you started football.

“I still think we can do that, and I think if you talk to out strength coach, he would think four to six weeks before the season started would be prime time. I believe if we get started by July 1, that would be wonderful time.

“If we have to wait until Aug 1, I’m a little older than the other coaches, I’ve gone through that, I think we could have the season start on time if we came in the first of August, as well.”

Although Dabo’s worried about soft players.

The physical condition of players might determine a key question: How much time does a football team need to be ready for the season? Those in the industry say anywhere from 30–60 days. “If you got a bunch of guys that are sitting around doing nothing, eating Twinkies every day and watching Netflix, well, it’d probably take longer,” says Clemson coach Dabo Swinney.

Sounds like it’s Junction Boys time!

Texas A&M University hired Bear Bryant as head football coach in 1954, replacing former coach Ray George. Bryant arrived in College Station on February 8, 1954, and began cleaning house. He felt that many of the players on the team were weak and not properly trained or coached. He decided that his players needed a camp away from the distractions on campus; thus, he arranged for the camp to be held in the small Hill Country town of Junction, where Texas A&M had a 411-acre (1.7-km2) adjunct campus (now the Texas Tech University Center at Junction).

At the time of the camp, the Hill Country was experiencing an epic drought and heat wave. The drought, the worst in the recorded history of the region, had lasted four years and would last another two after the camp was over. According to the National Climatic Data Center, all 10 days of the camp had hot temperatures with a few days topping 100°F (38°C).

Practices began before dawn and usually lasted all day with meetings in the evening until 11:00 pm. The oppressive heat combined with the brutal practice schedule was too much for many of the players. Each day, fewer and fewer players would be at practice, as many players quit the team from illness or disgust. The situation was compounded by Bryant’s refusal to allow water breaks. This practice, which is now widely recognized as dangerous, was at the time commonly employed by coaches at all levels in an attempt to “toughen up” their players. The only relief provided the players were two towels soaked in cold water; one towel was to be shared by the offensive players, and one by the defense. One of the Junction Boys, future NFL coach Jack Pardee, would later say in an interview that it was not unheard of for players to sweat away 10% of their body weight.

If you can survive a coach going Bear Bryant on your ass, the coronavirus ought to be no big deal.  (I keed, I keed… a little, anyway.)

25 Comments

Filed under College Football, The Body Is A Temple

Corch is a man with no regrets.

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Oh, what might have been.

So, it’s inevitable that the guy who chose a kid to be his starting quarterback instead of another who wound up winning the national championship and a Heisman Trophy along the way — at some place other than Ohio State — would be asked if he made the right call.

“The guy” being Urban Meyer, what would you expect him to say in response?  This, of course:

Meyer told NFL Media that Haskins was the clear choice to be the starter at Ohio State in 2018, when Burrow transferred out.

“Dwayne Haskins is probably the best quarterback ever to play at Ohio State,” Meyer said.

Still, Meyer thinks highly of Burrow, saying that he did a good job of catching up and improving despite not being at Haskins’ level when the two were both in Columbus.

“Joe was a little behind. You know why? Joe was also Mr. Ohio in basketball and they had a great team in the state championships, and he’s just one of those all-purpose tough guy leaders,” Meyer said. “Joe Burrow is a no brainer. Absolute no brainer. Can he throw as accurately as Dwayne? He’s improved, but he wasn’t that way. But his leadership skills, his toughness, competitive — you talk about a competitive maniac, that’s who Joe Burrow is.”

It’s nice that Corch thinks highly of Burrow.  It’s just that he thinks more highly of himself.

(h/t)

11 Comments

Filed under Urban Meyer Points and Stares

If Rahm Emanuel were a conference commissioner

“You never let a serious crisis go to waste. And what I mean by that it’s an opportunity to do things you think you could not do before.”

Echoing a conjecture I made last week, Dan Wolken suggests that the coronavirus crisis presents a golden opportunity (see what I did there?) for college football to go ahead right now and take the leap to an eight-team CFP.

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Filed under BCS/Playoffs

“But for us, we’ve had to change some things as offenses have changed, you adapt.”

If you’ve got some time to kill today, you could do a lot worse than to spend an hour listening to Kirby Smart talk about the way his defensive philosophy has evolved over time, with Alabama’s shocking loss to Ohio State in the 2014 title game being the real catalyst.  Interestingly enough, while the common wisdom is that it was sitting down with Tom Herman in the offseason that made Saban and Smart rethink their approach, Kirby chalks it up to Todd Orlando, who used to be Herman’s DC at Houston and Texas.

The conversations and off-season studies resulted in Smart modifying his 3-4 philosophy with lighter (faster) players and shifting to a 3-man front Georgia still runs and calls “Mint.”

It’s not news that uptempo offenses present problems for defenses, which often struggle to get lined up properly before the ball can be snapped.

“I don’t believe in backing down from what you do because a team goes fast, I believe in getting lined up and doing it faster,” Smart said.

The challenge for Smart and his staff was coming up with a defense that could remain multiple and handle spread offenses playing uptempo while in the  3-man front.

“We came up with things that were automatic, but would give them trouble,” Smart said. “The beauty of Mint … is you have more depth in your defense. Todd Orlando taught us that. We’ve got more people standing up that can fire (blitz) from different places.

“When you got three guys down, you now have the multiple of eight that can come from anywhere and anyplace, and we felt like that defensively made us better and gave us more multiples.”

If that kind of stuff piques your interest, here’s Smart’s whole talk (along with something from Glenn Schumann).

7 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

What he said

Seth Emerson did a pretty neat thing yesterday ($$), posting a Q&A with a Georgia fan who’s struggling with how the coronavirus has affected him and his family.  The part that struck a chord with me was when Seth turned the conversation around and asked this question:

What are your thoughts on sports coming back?

“I think about it. We’re season-ticket holders. And to be honest with you we only went to one game last year (he has a small child and his wife was pregnant). But we would usually tailgate and that kind of thing, for the social aspect of it. We always love getting to Athens. It’s one of our favorite places to be. But you know, the thought of sitting around people that close again, I’m just not sure if I’m prepared for that yet. Who knows if you can get this again. Do I want to go through another two weeks of this quarantining again? No. Is it worth going to a football game? Not really. Do I love going to a football game? Yes. It’s a lot of fun.

“The other side of that is you hear about will they play games with people not in the stands. Can you imagine a third down on defense with nobody there? How weird would that be? I just don’t think that’s a good look too. Even for baseball it’s not a good look. I know they say they just want to play, they don’t care if people are there or not. I don’t know. I have a hard time picturing it.”

Just like him, I want to believe things are okay when they invite us back, but in the absence of a vaccine, do I really want to take that leap with 92000 of my closest friends?  That’s a really tough sell for me, I’m afraid.

But if they’re really able to protect the players — and I mean really — could I watch broadcasts of games without fans?  My guess is yes, for the simple reason that I could use the distraction.

Where do y’all fit in?

63 Comments

Filed under Georgia Football, The Body Is A Temple