Daily Archives: June 11, 2020

I got ‘yer gap right here.

Bud Elliott is back with his blue chip ratio post for 2020… and three of the teams don’t look like the others.



Recruiting rankings are not perfect. But they are damn good, especially in the aggregate. Four- and five-star recruits are about 10 times more likely to be drafted in the first round than their two- and three-star counterparts. And five-stars are about 33 times more likely to be All-Americans as two-stars. For every two-star who becomes a big success, there are multiples who will be going pro in something other than sports.

That is not to say that development does not matter. It certainly does. But nobody wins a national title by player development in lieu of elite recruiting. Plenty of coaches who are regarded as elite have never sniffed winning it all because they can’t get enough talent. On the other hand, there are examples of coaches who are not regarded as premier head men who have won it all thanks to elite recruits.

Coaching matters. But recruiting is by far the most important piece when it comes to separating the good from the great.

Now, if only somebody would tell certain members of the pundit class that…



Filed under Georgia Football, Recruiting

“I Am A Better Offensive Coordinator Than James Coley”

This is great.  So great, in fact, I’m not gonna even make a low bar crack here.


Filed under Georgia Football, Strategery And Mechanics

My favorite year

Over at ESPN, Bill Connelly, Ivan Maisel and Mark Schlabach pick their favorite college football seasons.

Maisel wins with this:

Maisel: 2007. Good choice, but 2007, with all the chaos, was soooooo much better. The season began with Nick Saban arriving at Alabama and ended with LSU becoming the first two-loss team to win it all. In the 369 days between those two events, the sport went entertainingly haywire: Appalachian State beat Michigan, and Stanford, a 41-point underdog, beat USC. Thirteen top-five teams lost to an unranked opponent. Kansas went to the Orange Bowl, Illinois to the Rose and Hawaii to the Sugar. An FCS assistant coach named Chip Kelly took over the Oregon offense and introduced the up-tempo spread. Les Miles didn’t go to Michigan. And Mike Gundy turned 40.

How great was that season?  I’m a Georgia fan who watched his team fall short of the SECCG due to a regular season hiccup against South Carolina and I still wouldn’t trade the awesomeness of 2007 for anything.

As much as Maisel packs into that paragraph, he doesn’t capture every crazy moment.  He doesn’t reference West Virginia’s shocking loss to Pitt that cost them a shot at a natty.  And he doesn’t mention Darren McFadden, who had an insane 2007 season that should have netted him a Heisman.

These stats are something.

Screenshot_2020-06-11 Darren McFadden College Stats College Football at Sports-Reference com

Oh, I left out these stats.

Screenshot_2020-06-11 Darren McFadden College Stats College Football at Sports-Reference com(1)

A 268.5 passer rating.  Jeebus.

He played in my favorite game of the season, which is saying a lot, considering what happened in Michigan’s opener.

How great was 2007?  It’s the only season in the last 25 years of my life that justified an eight-team playoff in my mind, and not just because there were that many teams deserving of a shot.  It would have meant the season would have been extended two more weeks.  Some seasons, there’s no such thing as too much fun.


Filed under College Football

“TDs > FGs!”

One of Kirby Smart’s best traits is the way he travels a learning curve quickly.  He came in 2016 as a novice head coach and it showed.  2017?  Boom — one busted coverage away from a national title.

Which isn’t meant to say it’s been entirely smooth sailing.  There are very few programs that have that kind of track record.  But I do think it says something about what we might expect from Georgia’s offense in 2020.

Let me show you a couple of charts to illustrate what I’m thinking.

That’s not exactly distinguished company Georgia found itself with last season.  But, given the way the offense sputtered over much of the season and how reliable Blankenship was, you can’t exactly fault Smart for playing the hand he was dealt the way he did.  (Even if you want to argue he was the dealer.)

That being said, this is what distinguished company looks like.

Screenshot_2020-06-11 The Tailgate Tent on Twitter Unrelated, but related Here are the teams that scored TDs at the best ra[...](1)

Blankenship is gone.  So is Coley.  What lessons do you think Kirby has learned from 2019?


UPDATE:  Along those lines, you should read the opener to Seth Emerson’s state of the program piece ($$).  It wraps up like this:  “I got this.


Filed under Georgia Football, Stats Geek!

Ready for ‘rona

I’m sure most of you are watching the pandemic numbers as carefully as I am.  They’ve been a mixed bag of late.  The trend in states where restrictions have been relaxed are troubling and I don’t expect the protests to help much.

What does that mean for college football?  Honestly, we don’t know yet, but I’ll just put this out there for your consumption:

We spoke to the following four public health experts, asking them to assess the risk various activities pose to spreading coronavirus.

  • Dr. Matthew Sims, Beaumont Health director of infectious disease research
  • Dr. Dennis Cunningham, McLaren Health Care medical director for infection prevention
  • Dr. Mimi Emig, retired infectious disease specialist with Spectrum Health
  • Dr. Nasir Husain, Henry Ford Macomb medical director for infection prevention

The doctors pointed to five factors, when considering how risky a given activity might be: Whether it’s inside or outside; proximity to others; exposure time; likelihood of compliance; and personal risk level.

Outdoor activities are generally safer, they said, because the virus becomes less concentrated outside and doesn’t get recirculated around like it could indoors.

Activities that prevent social distancing – like playing basketball or packing in at a music concert – are also riskier.

The experts also point to exposure time as a factor.

They graded various settings on a 1-10 scale, with 10 being the riskiest.  Here’s what they said about you know what:

Sports stadiums

Risk level: 8

Just like concerts, sports stadiums have crowding and alcohol. People are also likely to cheer, yell and sing, among other noises, which also makes the spread easier.

The only places riskier are bars.  Alcohol, for the win… fortunately, nobody drinks at a tailgate.

There is this, for consolation.

The doctors emphasized that if everybody takes precautions, the risk level for each activity is dramatically reduced, they said.

I’m sure everyone will wear their masks for four hours straight in the September sun.  No worries!



UPDATE:  I don’t know why some of you are so insistent about arguing with me about this, but just to reiterate, all I’ve said from the beginning is that we don’t know enough about COVID-19 to draw major conclusions about what is safe and what is not, which means those making public policy decisions should be cautious about the consequences.

I am not someone who makes public policy decisions, in case you didn’t realize that.  Therefore, trying to convince me that we can be less cautious is a waste of bandwidth.

Instead of delivering your keen expertise my way, perhaps you should send Morehead and McGarity your wisdom, so that they can do away with their planning for the season.

Right now, UGA is looking at three options regarding fan attendance.

Option I: In this scenario, patrons will not be allowed to be in attendance at any of our athletic events. Events would take place with only essential staffing (game officials, management, etc.).

Option II: In this scenario, there will be limited attendance with mandatory social distancing. Our policies would align with state guidelines for live performance venues. We have designated seating throughout all our athletic facilities to mandate where patrons can sit while still maintaining their 6’ distance. We will install decals on flooring to ensure 6’ spacing in all lines (ingress, concessions, restrooms, etc.). We will also attempt to eliminate potential congregation elements such as misting tents and water refill stations. We will move to cashless operations in all areas while additionally removing touchpoints where possible (parking, ticketing, concessions, etc.). Our concession workers will be mandated to wear gloves and masks.

Option III: In this scenario, social distancing practices are relaxed and there are no restrictions on attendance. This eliminates the need for reduced seating configurations and maintaining social distancing in all lines. Our focus will shift to other best practices for mitigation. We will eliminate potential congregation elements. We will still move to cashless operations and reducing touchpoints where possible.



Filed under College Football, The Body Is A Temple

“What is the most interesting QB battle?”

Athlon speculates, and one of its guys has this to say about the Gators:

“Florida could be the most intriguing and the most impactful,” Gall wrote. “Replacing the solid but unspectacular Kyle Trask for the upside and excitement of Emory Jones would just be the next in a trend of star backups – Tua, Lawrence, Ian Book – to unseat established stars in college football. Which guy maximizes Dan Mullen’s scheme the best?”

I don’t know what I like more about that, calling Trask “unspectacular”, or labeling Jones a “star backup” comparable to… well, you see there.

What I don’t understand, though, is how the Portal Master™ could even consider a change at the position in the absence of spring practice.  Wouldn’t that mean he would be giving up a huge tactical edge over Kirby Smart?


Filed under Gators, Gators...

On brand

Two iconic looks:


Both do a terrific job of making sure the label faces properly, but the question is, who sells it better?


Filed under Georgia Tech Football, Nick Saban Rules